GRAY HAMILTON is a 19-year-old motorcycle mechanic, originally from North Carolina, living in Florida, currently wrenching at the Winter AMs and actively seeking employment following the last race of the series. He’s SO not your typical ‘Man Friend.’
Gray, why would someone want to hire you?
I’m a hard worker and I have a lot of respect for people. I think I’m good at what I do.
What do you do?
Well, I work on dirt bikes. I grew up racing and decided I was better at working on them. So it’s a passion of mine.
Then what’d you do?
I first started helping Joshua Schmitt while I was in high school and learned a lot while working for him for three years. Then, I went to school for a year and a half at the Motorcycle Mechanics Institute and graduated.
How was that?
Going in the industry knowing what I wanted to do makes it a little bit easier to get through school. I met a lot of cool people in Orlando and a lot of nice people in Florida. School all-in-all was a good learning experience, but it can always be better.
So, do you think you learn more on the road?
Yes, nothing against MMI or the program they run, but it’s not centered around motocross and the pace there is nowhere near what you have to be on the road.
So, now that you’ve graduated, where are you qualified to work?
Paper and certification wise, Suzuki and Kawasaki I guess would be my specialty, and then I also have extensive work with Honda and Yamaha, so any of them, but on paper, it says I’m Suzuki and Kawi trained.
What do you like better?
In general bikes, or out of the two?
Out of everything? [I’ll ask the questions, thank you.]
I think Honda has a good program, period, and I think Kawasaki has the best amateur program.
So, what are you doing right now?
I’m helping a friend, Dr. Knauft’s son Erik Knauft. He’s a good C rider. He started a little late—later than normal. He tries really hard and he has a lot of heart, which is important and this is going to last me through the Winter AMs and then I’m looking.
I heard you were talking to some people from MTF?
I actually have no clue with what I’ll be doing after the Winter AMs, I would like to get a hold of them, but everything is still up in the air.
What would be the best opportunity for you?
I’d like to finish this year with an amateur, meaning go through Loretta’s and if he does well, re-sign for another year. I’d really like to get on an amateur team.
Xtreme Team Green, Honda of Houston. Preferably Xtreme Team Green. I think they have a good program and they’re dedicated.
What does the future hold?
I think I want to work on bikes about five to ten more years, and hopefully I can do some on-line courses with college and get a business administration degree and I’d like to go into sales and stay in the industry.
I have the gift of gabber.
Well, we can definitely get you a sales job. Do you want to thank anybody?
I’d like to thank my parents. They put me through school and they’re always there for me. Other than that, I’d like to think I work hard and show people what I got.