By Alison Kennedy
If you’re at this week’s Deschaumbault Grand National Amateur Championship or this Sunday’s Rockstar Energy Pro National, you’re likely to bump into FXR rep and former Canadian National rider Marco Dubé. While you may already know Marco as a rep for several brands under the MD Distribution banner, he is also an accomplished racer who’s lined up in Canada, the U.S and Europe. While we were digging through the archives this week, we stumbled on some old school photos of this Quebec hero in action at the Riviere de Loup Arenacross and decided to give him a call. We caught up with the FXR rider turned rep as he was pulling through the gates at Deschambault.
You had a long career in Canadian motocross and racing internationally. What are some of the accomplishments you’re the most proud of?
I raced all over the world. I was a racer; that was my passion. One of the things Im most proud of are my results at the Bercy Supercross in Paris back in 2006. I got 10th overall but 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th were all tied in points [this included Sebastien Pourcel, Marvin Musquin, Marco and Jason Lawrence]. On the Friday night, I finished 6th in the main. That is one of my proudest results because the best racers in the world were there. It was also one of the first years that the 250F was allowed in the main. I’m also proud of our third place finish with JSR and Blair Morgan at the World Cup in California—the year the MXDN was cancelled last minute and I’m proud of my results at the Four Stroke US Open too. Obviously I’m proud of both of my Canadian Championships too—they were really strategic and I just played it safe all year long. When I look back though, I was just a young kid doing my best and doing what I loved.
You’ve seen motocross grow and change in Canada over the years. How do today’s Nationals compare?
Back in the day when I first started, I turned pro in 1994, and I started racing Carl Vaillancourt and JSR, the series was professional but the look of it was less professional. I definitely saw the switch to the big rigs back in 2000 when Doug Dubach came and this 39-year-old guy was beating me up (laughs). I was mad all year long. Today’s CMRC racing circuit looks a lot more professional with the big rigs and the big canopies. Everyone is serious now but we were serious back then too. To me it wasn’t any different, pitting in a big truck or pulling a 24-foot trailer with my friend Dougie Dehaan’s bike. We were going racing and our mission was to go and get the best purse possible because that was our paycheck at the end of the day.
We had TV coverage in 1998 if I’m not mistaken and to me the circuit hasn’t grown that much since my day. It looks better because of the rigs and the tents. We have 5 US racers in the top 10 and then also Metcalfe from Australia—this is amazing and makes the Canadian circuit more attractive to the rest of the world.
You were one of the earliest riders to wear FXR and continue to do so today, as well as helping to market and grow the brand in Quebec. How has the gear improved and what do you think about seeing a Canadian company do so well?
Milt Reimer and Aaron Wiebe called me up in late 2004 and we started talking. I was excited because a Canadian company was contacting me and we went from there. The mission then was to try and grow the brand. I believe we went from 400 or 500 kids to 1800 kids the next year. My personal mission was accomplished. It was my duty to promote my sponsor and help them sell more gear and more product and today I’m doing the same thing … but now I’m selling their product myself too.
It’s amazing how well they are doing. I think Andy White has been a big help. Andy and I go way back to ProTech Suspension, Diablo Honda team and the KTM Team. Andy is great at what he’s doing and I think he’s been part of the success of FXR in this last year.
They are hard workers over there and Milt is a visionary. He knows what he wants and the gear from 2015 to 2016 was a huge improvement. At the ride day a month ago, I had a chance to try the new four-way stretch product and it’s just unreal. We’ve got a company out of Canada who is making the best gear in the world right now. They are not afraid lead the pack and to make gear that stands out. It’s pretty awesome.
You are still very involved in the Canadian motocross industry today with both your own company and FXR. Tell us about what you’re doing now?
In late 2008, I started my own distribution company while I was still racing. I started with Forma Boots and after 8 years, we carry several brands across Canada now including Forma, DT1Air Filters, Deft Family, Mika Metals, Enzo Vision and D&D. We are trying to stick on high performance products and that’s what’s working for us. People want quality. At the same time, I started repping for FXR in 2008. Since 2005, Milt had been asking me to be his rep in Quebec and in 2008 I said yes. I know the sport, both motocross and snowcros and I know the industry. It’s what I love. I’m also a Canadian rep for 6D helmets, Atlas Brace Technologies, 100% and Matrix Concepts. Life is good but we are still wide open.
Your children are racing BMX now. Tell us about being involved as a parent in two-wheeled sport now?
I have a daughter who is 4 and she is doing a bit of strider racing. My son, Alexie who is turning 7, has been racing the whole Quebec BMX circuit. We actually went to the Canada Cup in Toronto a month ago and he won his races. It’s an awesome sport. I’m really enjoying watching him race. He’s improving every time he gets on the track. We are going to the Canadian BMX Championship in Calgary to represent FXR and our sponsors and try to get a top 4 finish that will qualify him for a spot for the World Championships in South Carolina next year. They are only in America every 12 or 15 years. He’s all pumped and he’s loving it. This week our whole family is at Descahumbault but Alexie will also be racing BMX in Trois Riviere on Saturday and Sunday. If you look at Dusty Klatt, Cole Seeley and Jeremy McGrath—they were all great BMXers. Maybe someday he’ll race motocross, but right now he’s building his skills.