Interview: Brian Kachinsky

Andrew Brady photo

What’s the attraction of BMX? Is it the daredevil in some of us, is it the no beginning or end, lack of guidelines or rulebooks, or the challenge of constant evolution, or maybe a break from tradition … Maybe, its just to piss your parents off coz we don’t want to play baseball, who knows?

I guess, if there’s one thing I know about BK though, is that he eats, sleeps & breaths BMX. He’s in it for the right reasons. It shows in everything he does & how much time & passion he devotes to bike riding. I honestly don’t think a moment goes by without him thinking about his bike or things that relate to his bike. Brian has that pure child-like excitement about riding that you don’t really see too much from other grown men riding a little kid’s bike ….. But I’ll be honest. For a smart college educated man, Kachinsky sure aint too bright. Of all hobbies, pastimes, crazes or whatever you want to call it to get into, you’d think he’d be into a something that had some kind of future ….. I guess we all make mistakes in our lives.

-John Povah/Etnies

Kachinsky! How are you man?

I’m doing well man. I’m all caffeinated, stretched out, warmed up, energized, fed and feelin’ ready for whatever this interview has in store for me. Let’s do this!

I wanna dive right into The Bakery, which is a pretty big thing for you right now. I think having a spot like yours is a progressive logical step for a pro rider and a great thing for BMX. From beginning to end, how long did it take for The Bakery to come to life?

Thanks for the compliments man. I’ve wanted to have an indoor place to ride in the winter for years now, but didn’t actively start looking for a spot until this past December. I didn’t really talk to anyone about it since I didn’t want to get anyone’s hopes up.

Fast forward to mid February of this year and I had everything ready to go. A building rented, plans drawn, wood ordered, etc. It was originally supposed to be smaller and just a place to ride in the winter months. The building and my imagination then spawned the whole website and The Bakery as we know it now.

At what point did you decide to pull the trigger and move ahead with it?

There were a few different things that really set it off:

1) I had met with the owner of the building and it was too perfect.
2) It was cold as fuck and snowy when I looked out my window at home.
3) Nate Wessel had agreed to come and help me build it.

The defining moment for me was when I was at Home Depot about to order all of the wood and supplies. I had never put down money like that all at once, it was heavy and it was all coming out of the same account that I feed myself with every day. I remember turning around to Andrew Brady as I was about to sign the receipt and just said “Fuck it, I guess I’m doing this”. It was nose to the grindstone after that.

From the outside looking in, it’s easy to think that you just waltzed into a location and set up shop, but what’s some of the nitty-gritty business behind getting something like The Bakery up and running?

It was a ton of work. I basically didn’t touch my bike for a month because I had started paying rent, and was motivated and dedicated to getting this thing started. I knew that the sooner I built it, the sooner I could ride.

Finding a building wasn’t easy. It’s hard to find a building and property owner who will allow this sort of thing to happen. He’s cool, but I also have to obey his rules, which is that the place remains very private. This building is also located in the second most dangerous neighborhood in the USA. It’s hood, it’s gnarly, it’s dangerous but it’s affordable and real.

The money up front for all the wood, first 3 months rent, materials, food for builders, drinks, hotels, etc… all came out of my pocket. That was tough. Basically every single dollar I made at a contest last year went straight into The Bakery. I figured this was a better investment than a fancy car or anything else that I could have improved my “status” with. I’m pretty happy driving my Honda and living modestly, so why not build something that’s a dream of mine and something that I can share with some friends, and something that will give back to BMX and not just me personally. This decision is risky and I love calculated risks, but the financial part of all this was scary.

There was plenty of other bullshit I had to deal with while building this, but I won’t bore you with that or tell you any sob stories, but instead I’ll say that I couldn’t have done this without great help. My friends came from far and wide and help me out with this on many levels. Some picked up a broom or a nail gun, some welded, some gave me legal advice, some brought me coffee, some just made me laugh for hours while we worked away in the old, creepy abandoned bread factory that’s now home to BMX.

Riders having their own private setup isn’t anything new, but you are the first to use a space to pump out quality consistent thought-out web content. Was that always the plan?

It wasn’t the plan at all actually. I just wanted to a place to ride when the weather wasn’t good. I knew that if I built something, chances are we would film in there since I live in the same neighborhood as David Leep and Andrew Brady, but the building itself just spawned “The Bakery” and the ideas started flowing after that. There are still more ideas we are running by each other daily about how to improve it, but we are also trying to take it one step at a time and keep it fun.

As far as I’m concerned, the execution has been perfect so far. The name, the Baker’s Dozen theme, the visuals and of course, the riding. Did all of these elements naturally fall into place, or did you brainstorm a bunch on how you wanted to present all of this?

The recipe was basically:
1 cup brainstorming, a pinch of good luck, a dash of hard work and the rest of the ingredients just fell into place. This might sound a bit weird or elitist, but I have always thought that pro-level riding should be put on a pedestal. My friends are some of the best riders in the world, they are seriously incredible and I’m surrounded by them constantly through trips, sessions, texts, calls, tweets, etc. The internet has been a good thing for BMX, but what I thought was lost a bit was this exclusivity. Sometimes these riders were forced to just spew out edits that might not capture the real essence of their talent or personality. I also wanted to make sure it was fun for everyone who visits and relatively comfortable. I think The Bakery has achieved that. Plus anyone who knows me well knows I have a hefty sweet tooth.

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  • ruh

    Dear Brian Kachinsky,

    You are awesome.

    Regards,
    Dan O’Halloran

  • Timm-e

    I absolutely love that Props section. It gets me the most stoked to ride to see that someone I look up isn’t superhuman, that they take slams too! Watching a polished edit can make you feel horrifically unskilled haha.

  • CY Magazine

    Awesome interview, congrats on The Bakery! Check into another great interview on BK @ CY Magazine http://www.cy-magazine.com/2011/07/brian-kachinsky-work-hard-play-hard/