Have you ever wanted to build your dream bike? What did you want it to look like? Where would your inspiration come from? For Spencer Luczak, this dream was put into action and became a reality. Spencer is a racer with serious passion for the sport and he wanted to create something that the industry and himself would drool over. We met Spencer in Utah during the photo and video shoot for AJ Catanzaro’s James Stewart Red Bull Straight Rhythm tribute and were immediately impressed with his enthusiasm, his family’s passion, and of course his bike and insanely picturesque track. We had to find out more about Spencer and get his story…
Hey Spencer! Give us a brief introduction on yourself for those who may not be as familiar with you yet.
Hey! Born into a German-American family that loved adventure and anything with an adrenaline rush. I'd say life for me was never boring. Although my parents met while practicing ski arials, my dad's love for motorsports and event promoting meant that, like many others in the 80's and 90's, I grew up traveling a lot for races and shows. Yes it's true, I had a long blond mullet for years, my favorite muscle car was a late 60's El Camino, and my favorite bands were Van Halen, AC/DC, Rush and Led Zeppelin. Fast forward 30 years...the mullet is gone, my dream restore project is still an El Camino and my favorite music is still rock n' roll and old metal. I have been fortunate enough to travel overseas involved in athletics and sports for many years and thankful to have earned multiple degrees from higher education. I love a well-rounded itinerary and all of my experiences have contributed to my love for creativity and self-expression in my personal projects. Now, at age 31, I still maintain that passion for riding, building race tracks and of course, building anything on two-wheels.
Where did your love for motorcycles and Motocross start?
Oh I would say my love for riding started when I was still a fetus...:) Okay, probably not that young, but similarly to most kids who grow up in homes with parents who ride or race, the love for anything on wheels starts before we can walk, right? I knew I was hooked when, as a little kid, a family friend gave me a No Fear T-shirt with a girl standing in front of a motorcycle and read, "If it has wheels or a skirt, you can't afford it." I remember thinking, I don't really get the concept of girls yet, but that bike will be mine, oh yes, she will be mine. Now combine that with habitually watching on repeat movies like RAD, Crusty Demons of Dirt, The Great Outdoors, all of the Steel Roots, and Terrafirma series and you start to get the picture. If you give me a shovel, a few solid dudes and a pair of wheels I'm positive the day is going to be as good now as it was when I was a kid. Building and sessioning jumps and sand tracks with my dad and friends are still some of my fondest memories.
How big is the sport in your family?
My dad's career, making it on Team Greens satellite factory program, definitely made Moto a big part of my life for me when I was young. Nowadays I'd say the sport is still a big part of our family culture, albeit not as intense or financially dependent as it used to be. We may not be hosting races, putting up big pro purses, or drawing in riders from all over the country, but we still collaborate with various companies and individuals on projects, photo shoots, commercials and test riding. Supercross and Motocross is still like religion at home and we watch each race as part of our weekly family time. My dad and I spend a great deal of time working on our private moto facility here in Utah throughout the year. In the off-season, you'll find us working on bikes or other bike-related projects.
You have one of the sickest tracks we've ever seen, how did the track come together?
The Flying Iron Horse Ranch, as the name might imply, is a piece of property outside Park City, UT on the Weber River that my dad has had his eye on for most of his life. Back in 2003 we acquired the land and began improving areas for where my parents would build their last home. Seeing as though ever since I was a baby we had tracks in our yard or close by, this piece of property would be no different. Every day after work and school, my dad and I head up to the property to landscape, excavate and build. Over the course of 15 years the place has changed dramatically and now it is starting to look like a pristine golf course with a MX track on the lower half buttressed up between the Weber River and our 200 foot black lava rock. The outdoor national track is currently shut down, due to the misdoings of our liberal county council trying to dictate what rural farming community can do with private property. However, with enough support and positive vibes, we will get that track back up and running so we can finish the back yard. In-between both tracks will rest the house and numerous MTB trails and jump lines. It feels like an eternal project, but I find it very therapeutic to go play in the dirt and create something from scratch.
What's the day to day maintenance like?
There is so much to cover here. The land itself is an ongoing project, but as the years go by, maintenance gets easier for us because we made our own special mix of soils and sands that allow us to shape and prep the track in less time that the average MX park. The landscape, including all the trees, grass and boulder work, make the track picture-esk, but tending to those needs takes a lot of time watering everything by hand and such. We do get some assistance from the riding community to come help pic rocks and plant trees, but outside of that we do 100 percent of the work ourselves. It's a labor of love for sure.
How is the Motocross scene back in Utah?
Compared to places like SoCal the Motocross scene is not as big in Utah as far as pure Supercross and Motocross is concerned. However, the riding community is strong and the number of riders and places to ride are immense. With local tracks closing due to liberal influence and population/housing growth, the track scene is not that big, but outside of that, Utah has tons of adventure, enduro and off-road riders and phenomenal races each year. If we could get Summit County to let us utilize our private property according to how we want, the national track will blow people's minds and give locals a place to dream and ride.
So by now everyone has seen the "Roxanne" build and our run at Red Bull Straight Rhythm. How did that build start?
Oh boy, how much time do you have?? Haha, "Roxanne" started when I was six years old. Rock N' Roll and racing were life for me since birth so it's no surprise that my riding is heavily influenced by music. Although for years I have named every bike I've owned, "Roxanne" was the first personified motorcycle for me and since this 2004 KX125 Factory Tribute build is based partially from my family's background with rock music, Team Green, and a reminder of why I love to ride, I couldn't think of a better fitting name for this build. Just before the two-stroke fever broke out a few years ago I knew one day I'd always build a 'dream' bike of sorts. I think after a few major surgeries and having to sell my 4-strokes to pay medical bills I thought a two-stroke would put the fun back into riding and give me time to build what I wanted without breaking the bank. Well, two things happened after I had that epiphany, it took more time than I thought to get to where the bike is now and I ended up breaking the bank a few times to get here. With over 500 hours of research and shop time put into the bike, there are still a few things left to do. Some people may ask, "What else can you throw at that bike?", but that's not the right question. The important questions are, "What is working well?" and "What areas need a little tweaking to dial things in?". I look at the latter questions with input from the pros that have ridden the bike and am now beginning the final phase of project "Kickstart My Heart". Readers will just have to stay tuned in for what I have in store. No, this bike is not a money pit, and yes, I could have bought a few new bikes with what is into her, but this particular bike is half factory tribute and half art project. Sure I want it to look nice and all that, but my version of a dream bike should perform better than she looks. I'd say for a 15 year-old bike she's earning her stripes.
Where did your inspiration for this build come from?
I've never been one to just remake a traditional “replica” build. That's not to say my ideas are all original, but I like to give projects my personal touch and creative vision. I tend to lean towards “Tribute” builds where I can take the OG Factory bikes and spin them to add modern flare. Hence, one look at the Roxanne and you'll immediately be taken back to 2003/2004 and the Pro Circuit Chevy Trucks team bikes. I was in high school during that time and the PC bikes were my dream bikes. Since the last national championship anyone ever won on a 125 was in 04', and it just so happened to be one of my favorite riders of all time, James "Bubba" Stewart, riding a Kawasaki, a 2004 would be the basis of my build. Why is 04' important other than James' title? Well, the answer lies in manufacturing. 2004 was the year Kawi made the most and last major updates to the bike. 2005 would see two minor internal updates for maintenance and then past 2006, the bikes went out of production, or at least saw no changes. Although my bike is build on the 2004 platform, I loved the livery on Mike Brown's and Matt Walker's 2003 PC bikes so that is what directed the graphics. I could have done a full updated plastics kit to make the bike look like a 2018 KX, but I missed the old curves and never see old bike ripping local tracks very often. I did however update the front end quite a bit, but the best looking modern plastics to put with the old back end are the 2013-2015 front number plate and fender in my opinion. They line up nicely and give the bike a bit of old school/new school feel.
Now, aside from the visuals of plastics and frame, the only thing left stock on the bike is part of the engine casing and gas tank. Essential the entire rest of the bike has been replaced, fabricated, or changed in some way. The build list is crazy long and if people want to see more of the nuts and bolts, they can go to RacerX or META to find a complete build list up to this point. To give you a little taste of changes, here are some of the major things we did:
Carbon Talon hubs w/ ceramic bearings
Titanium axels, laced to A60's and oversized spokes; 90 percent of the bikes bolts are Titaniu
Motostuff custom caliper
Braided brake lines
Full Hinson clutch system
Highly modified motor with custom transmission and piston to match the port/head work
Vortex programable ignition
Custom coatings and suspension internals from Bones at Pro Circuit
Tons of LightSpeed Carbon parts that haven't been made since 04/05'
Every bolt/nut, washer, gasket, seal has been replaced with OEM or better parts….. and the list goes on for days.
How was it to see AJ Catanzaro rip your bike during the Red Bull Straight Rhythm event and come out with a podium finish?
Well for starters just being at the event was unreal. That was my first time at RBSR and being able to pit with all the teams was a dream. To be honest I was more concerned the bike was going to run properly for AJ and put in a good showing. The first race down the course was exciting and nerve wracking at the same time. I had my trusty pitboard out with positive phrases written down after each pass. Sometimes I'd throw out funny captions like, "Where's the after party?" and other times I wanted AJ to focus so I would simply put, "Stay Positive". Every round we advanced my heart beat faster and my grin got bigger. The battles always came down to the wire and coming so close to winning against good competition and modern bikes was beyond expectation. AJ rode solid and the whole crew played a huge part in making it to the podium. The sights and sounds of two-strokes made me feel like I was back in the pits at races in the 90's all over again. Not to mention our Stewart throwback theme really got the crowd going...just replay the victory dance moves AJ threw out at the end of the race. It was definitely a Collective Experience.
What other things do you have in the works?
The bike is currently getting torn down to clean up and repair the damages from racing. Over the winter the last phase of this project will take place and if I can get things buttoned up by outdoors, I'd love to get the bike to a Dream Race and Red Bull Straight Rhythm if they host two-strokes again. I can't say much more yet, but I think Roxanne is going to turn more heads next year again.
If people wanted to find out more about you and follow along with some of the builds, where should they tune in?
For those out there with questions or want to know more about the bike build, my Instagram handle is @Luczak101 and our property is under the title @Flyingironhorseranch. I don't have Facebook, but I'm happy to answer questions with a quick DM. You'll start to see more of my builds next year in RacerX and other media sources.
Want to check out what race day was like for Spencer, AJ Catanzaro, and The Collective Experience? Check out our behind the scenes video:
Make sure to follow along with Spencer as his KX-125 “Roxanne” build nears completion. And remember if you ever get a chance to make it out to Utah, make sure you get linked up with Spencer and his family and check out their incredible track…it’s worth the travel. Stay tuned for more insights and advice from the trail blazers and do-ers in the Supercross and Motocross industry.