📷 Chelsea Stratso
“Was this my plan? No, this was not my plan whatsoever. In high school I was your average nerd, you know? If you told me back then, ‘Chase, in four years you’ll have already been to every corner of the United States,’ I would say there’s no way. You’re nuts.”
The third installment of the World of Echo blog is undoubtedly the longest yet, clocking in at just under two hours of audio unedited. Tennessee’s Chase Dunivant appears to be quite the talker! It must be that southern charm… or the refreshing fact that Chase wouldn’t be caught dead taking himself too seriously. But don’t mistake his lightheartedness as lackadaisical, because he has certainly cemented himself as a workhorse on the amateur national circuit, known for being on the cutting edge of coverage and content with his YouTube channel, MotoChasin. His work is attached to nationally and internationally known names like Vurbmoto, Monster Energy, Leatt, and Race Tech. To top it off, MotoChasin alone has amassed over one million views since its inception in 2012.
Chase could choose to flaunt this in my face all he wants, but he doesn’t. He’d first rag on himself before speaking on success, or tell you about how he poked fun of some people at the races. To put it in perspective, I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s introduced himself in public as Sally Slo Mo, he’s just that kind of guy. Fun-loving but hardworking. It’s something the industry can never have enough of.
Discussion includes: Life and times as a Vurbmoto contributor, ditching the homecoming game to film at Monster Mountain, music in motocross, plans for the future of MotoChasin, and much more…
World of Echo: Yo, Chase?
How you doing man?
Good! I’m doing good.
I didn’t want to hold you up on your Fortnite session…
Oh, nah man I’m not even playing Fortnite, just doing some editing.
I hopped in the stream there for a little bit. (Chase was live streaming on his YouTube channel just before our interview, so I watched for a bit while finishing up some notes). You just got back from Freestone, how was that?
It was good. Wait, is this part of the interview right now? Are we recording already, or what?
Yeah. I mean… you know.
Ok! I just didn’t know to be nonchalant, or… But yeah, Freestone was good. It’s always a long week there, you know. It was good to get some work and get to film again, I haven’t really filmed that much [with] dirt bikes this year. I went to GPF and the Carmichael Farm at the end of January, that was like the last time I actually filmed.
You were hooked up with Jake Jaynes for a little bit there [at Freestone].
Yeah, Jake actually hooked me up this year. I used to do all of my traveling with James Gingerich, you know James pretty well. James and I used to always do the nationals together, we’d meet each other at the airport and then we’d split the rental car and hotel pricing. This year, since James isn’t around right now, Jake offered to help me out with picking me up at the airport and pretty much being my chauffeur for the week; going back and forth to the hotel and everything. Big thanks to him for that.
James told me he retired!
Yeah! My dude James… I don’t know. It sucks, honestly. I miss James being around, like I said we always did all the nationals together. At the beginning of the week we were always so excited to see each other, but by the end of the week we were ready to be apart for a little while. (laughs)
Getting back to Freestone, you also met up with last week’s interviewee: Charles Bakke.
He actually came up to me and he goes, “Do you know a guy by the name of [World of Echo]?”
I said, “Yeah, he just texted me yesterday and he wants to do an interview with me. Did you get interviewed?”
He goes, “Yeah, I got interviewed last week!”
I was like, “Oh dang, bro we’re gonna be on the same page!”
He was pumped though, to get his interview. And Charles, he’s a great kid too, I met him in 2015 at Cycle Ranch. We all got hired out to do “Kings of the Dirt,” and James was there too, but that’s where I met Charles at. He’s an awesome kid and he does some really good work too, I enjoy all of his stuff. He does more of the… behind what [motocross] really is.
Charlie’s sick, I’m glad he agreed to come on the blog. But anyway, let’s get to it. I’ve got a full stack of questions here.
First off I wanted to thank you for getting sick in 2015, because that was the one and only time I ever got to work for Vurbmoto. You got sick and couldn’t film at the RedBud Regional.
Yeah, you’re welcome on that one! RedBud for me is a twelve hour drive so I didn’t really feel like driving twelve hours while [I had sinus issues]. For me, I have really bad sinus problems and it always hits differently, not like how it hits regular people. So for me it’s always hardcore, and I was like, “I’m not driving twelve hours like this right now.”
I was so pumped, I was there for another gig but before I left James called me while I was packing and, yeah. I had had videos posted on Vurb before, but to actually be hired and be a tiny part of it was amazing.
I can understand that too, because I remember whenever I started MotoChasin my goal was to get a video posted on the Vurb website. It took so long, and it ended up being my first ever GPF video [that got posted]. Then half a year later I ended up working for them and I was thought, “Is this real right now? Am I really going to shoot somewhere for Vurb?”
That’s the kind of stuff I wanted to get into. I feel like you have quite the history with Vurbmoto, I wanted to know if you could expound on that. How it started, or maybe how you got involved with them?
My involvement with Vurb… hold on let me look up one quick video to remember what year Mini O’s this was, that it started.
So, the year was 2013 at Mini O’s. I got track access from Chronic MX because I was just a kid, no one knew who I was at the time. I went there for Chronic MX and the last night, it was Saturday night and the racing was over, Wes Williams was going around and telling everybody, “Hey, we’re gonna have a pit bike race where all the vendors were parked at. We’re just going to make our own track out of garbage cans.”
So my friend Zach Bishop and I went and I remember they were doing the pit bike race, Markolf and all them were, and then all the kids started to go to their campers and stuff. I stuck around, and at this time Chelsea Stratso was the main photographer for Vurb, and there was Danny Stu [Stuart], and then Wes along with some other people who were all sitting around the fire. Danny ends up saying, “Ok everybody, introduce yourself and talk a little bit about yourself as we go around the fire.”
It came to me and I said, “…I’m Chase Dunivant, and I film dirt bikes.”
Danny and Wes didn’t really know who I was or anything, so they were like, “Oh, you film? What do you have?”
I replied, “I just have a Canon 7D, but compared to what you guys have…” At that time Wes had just gotten his first RED I’m pretty sure, and Danny had just gotten the FS700 which at that time was the camera I wanted too. We talked for awhile and introduced ourselves and everything.
Later on in January, I had Wes’ email at the time [and] the Mill Creek Spring Classic warm-up race was coming up. I decided to email him and ask him, “Hey, do you have anybody going to cover the warm-up race at Mill Creek? It’s only two hours away from me and I’d love to get some content for you guys.” I had just graduated high school, I graduated a semester early, and whenever I got my email back from Wes saying they’d love to have me go there I was probably like a kid under the tree on Christmas morning.
Did they like what you made?
[It] being my first go around there was no one else there for Vurb, I was by myself pretty much. I did two videos using the Canon 7D. It wasn’t the greatest audio at the time so we had to do some little tweaks with that. I did a full edit and a couple of GoPro’s, but they were happy with the majority of everything.
As time went on, did you go on any shoots with those guys? Wes? Danny? Jason Crane?
Yeah, were you ever running with those guys at some of their shoots? Or how did that all work out?
At that time Ashton had gotten out of it a little bit, him filming moto wasn’t a big thing. Jason had moved to Cali, I think. They were doing that Good Times & Dirt Bikes tour. [Vurb] started sending me to regionals on my own at first, because they had no one to really cover it. That year, Wes was filming for War Machines. We were at the Vurb Classic at Silver Dollar and he was going to be filming the next day with Mitchell Harrison for his segment in War Machines but Mitchell ended up hurting his knee at Silver Dollar. Wes was super bummed out trying to figure out someone to ride [in the video], and I said, “Hey, Tristan Charboneau is driving down from Washington to GPF right now and I think he’ll be there tomorrow. Do you want to get him in it?”
And he was like, “Yeah, for sure!”
I didn’t think anything of it, I was just getting ready to go home and he asked me, “Are you gonna come with us to shoot for War Machines, since you got us the guy and everything?” I was super pumped about that, I have like two clips in the segment and that’s about it. It was Danny and Wes there and I will say their stuff blows mine out of the water, so I was fine with just my two shots.
I actually have the War Machines DVD. I haven’t watched it in awhile but I’ll give it a rewatch and look out for those clips.
Oh, don’t worry. Two-hundred and forty frames. It’ll be easy to find.
Who gave you the Sally Slo Mo nickname?
The Sally Slo Mo nickname came from good ol’ Matt Burkeen. Front flippin’ Matt Burkeen of MX Simulator, as people know him.
Oh, so this was an MX Sim thing?
Yes, because every time he is racing, no matter what position he’s in, he does a front-flip over the finish line jump.
Was Sally Slo Mo also an MX Sim thing, though?
Kind of. Matt and I knew each other before I really got into Sim so he came up with the name before Sim, but it kind of carried off into the MX Simulator world so everybody there knows me as either MotoChasin or Sally Slo Mo.
Didn’t you have stickers made up or something?
It’s actually a butt patch on my best friend, Joshua Guffey.
He rocks the Sally Slo Mo butt patch?
Yes he does, but he just got a new gear sponsor. I manage the majority of his stuff so we’re not going to do Sally Slo Mo this time. I have a nickname with him where I’m called “Manager Jeffe,” so we’re gonna have me animated in a suit with “Manager Jeffe” underneath it for a butt patch this time.
Going back to some of the Vurb stuff for a minute, what was your last video to go on the site? At this time did you start to see signs that Vurb might be phasing out?
My last year was 2015. I did a video with for them called “Real Deal MXTF,” and that was my last video that I thought would go on the site, because [at this time] I was just going to start doing the MotoChasin thing and try to get regular contracts through James. Just going to the nationals and doing our own thing. Then [Eric] Shirk hit me up for Loretta’s 2016 and asked me if I would be able to help out Tom [Journet] at Loretta’s that year. We all knew around that time that Vurb was no longer going to be a thing at the beginning of the new year, so that was the last time I ever did anything with Vurb.
You’re from Nashville, right? Or do you live there now?
I’m close to Nashville, I’m forty minutes south of it. I go to Nashville probably twice a week when I am home for my Dad’s work.
What does your dad do?
My Dad owns a wholesale business where he sells motorcycles, UTV’s, and ATV’s. He’s been doing it for twenty-seven years.
So, street bikes?
Yeah, more like street bikes and stuff like that.
Not much in the way of motocross bikes.
We do get some. We’re strictly used [bikes], we can get anything new though because of the dealers we work with. We get a majority of used stuff that comes from trade-ins, we’ll usually get those, so if we need something new we can get it for any bike pretty much.
From Left: Chase and his brother outside of the family business, Ronald’s Cycle Center. Fun in Chattanooga, TN, and another shot of Chase alongside his brother and sister.
What do you do to help your Dad with the business?
When I’m home from traveling and filming dirt bikes I help out here and there. It’s a family owned business. It’s my Mom, my brother, my Dad, and I. Whenever I’m home and he has to go to Nashville, or anywhere in Tennessee or Alabama, I’ll go with him to help pick up and load the trailer. Or if it’s a day at the business I’ll have to clean the UTV’s, like today. I had a very stressful day of cleaning a Polaris Razor 900 that was filthy. It was not fun.
Being from Tennessee, what was it like being so close to Loretta Lynn’s? Did you ever visit or try to qualify?
I rode when I was younger but I quit riding when I was about thirteen. I was just like that kid that went to fair races, stuff like that. I had no idea what Loretta’s was until I was fifteen or sixteen. I was thinking, “I kind of want to get a bike again…” and one of my friends I went to school with was into riding [and we started talking about Loretta’s]. So that’s how I found out about it. I realized, “Holy crap, the biggest amateur national is only an hour and a half away from my house.”
The most important event to cover is only a stone’s throw away from you. Most of the media must dread it.
Everybody else dreads it because I’m one-hundred percent posting on my Instagram and Snapchat stories, “Oh boy, only an hour drive!” Everyone’s texting me, “We really dislike you right now.”
They’re landing on the tarmac going, “Man… fuck Chase, dude.” (laughs) How often did you ride before selling your bike? I bumped into a guy at the RedBud National who claimed he bought your last bike, I can’t remember his name though.
I sold it to Dalton Fisher, and his Dad is Mike Fisher. That was the last bike that I owned, it was a 2012 Kawasaki 250f. That bike actually made it to Loretta’s, I was pretty excited to see that bike got to ride at Loretta Lynn’s. The last time I rode… [I think it’s been] three and a half or four years since I rode on a track, which is sad. Last week at Freestone I was watching one of the A motos, because I don’t always film, I like to take a break and actually watch the racing. I will say I’m an avid motocross fan and I like to watch. So I was watching [the A motos], and I texted my friend Josh and I said, “…I want to ride again. Can I borrow one of your bikes and we do a role swap where I ride and you can film the slow guy?”
I couldn’t imagine not riding for that long. It must be torture watching the A guys at a national, because that’ll really get you going.
That’s the thing, whenever you’re watching them you’re thinking, “Oh, I can get on a bike right now and shred.” But then you get on and it registers, “Nah, I can’t ride like them!”
They make it look too easy.
They do. Actually, yesterday I had to clean a KTM 500; It has a headlight on the front of it so it’s not really a motocross bike, but still. I took it up the road yesterday and I thought to myself, “Man, that makes me want to ride even more.”
What tracks would you frequent when you did ride? Did you ride trails?
I’m more of a track guy, was never a fan of trails. My favorite track to ever go to was Fast Farms, and that’s where I started with everything, filming or riding. It was one of my favorite tracks to go ride at. I went to some Alabama tracks like Sand Mountain, McClarty MX. I went to Thunder Valley MX one time as well, the one in Tennessee, not the one in Colorado.
Did you go to Monster [Mountain, in Alabama] at all?
That was actually the last time I rode was at Monster Mountain, but it wasn’t on [my own] bike it was on Harrison West’s CRF 250 at the time. That was the last time I rode on a track.
So you rode as a kid, got out of it, then got back into it. Where did cameras or filmmaking come into the picture? Were you ever set on being someone who filmed motocross?
Was this my plan? No, this was not my plan whatsoever. In high school I was in all honors classes. I was in student council, beta club, all that stuff. Your average nerd, you know? My plan was to go to college, I was going to go for computer engineering, and then my Junior year in 2012 was the first time I ever went to Loretta’s. My friend Ryan Whittle and I, we went one day to watch. I had a Canon T3i that I had been goofing off with making car videos with my friends back in the summer, and Ryan suggested, “Hey, we should go back [to Loretta’s] and you should bring your camera and make something.”
At the time I was watching the Vurb videos, and I just loved watching those, so he said I should try and make a video. If you link stuff in this, or anything like that, don’t. No one should watch that video. It is on the MotoChasin YouTube channel but it’s very, very cringeworthy. If you have epilepsy, don’t watch it, for sure!
It’s interesting to hear that this is not at all what you imagined you’d be doing. I feel like for certain people their art is so engrained in them, they have such a passion for their work, that this path is etched in stone in front of them. You’re telling me it wasn’t even close?
My parents have always been super supportive of whatever I’ve wanted to do, and whenever I told them I wasn’t going to go to college they were a little skeptical about it. We thought about maybe going to an art school for film because they had some filming programs at art schools. I actually applied to Nossi College of Art and got accepted, but I talked to some people that [were into] film and they said that you’ll learn more in the industry than you will being in school. So that’s what I decided to do. My parents asked, “Are you sure this is what you want to try to do?”
I answered, “Yeah!” Because filming, or photography, are things you just fall in love with. It’s hard to give it up. I’ll say last year, I got into a position where [I saw] James getting out of [the industry] and I was wondering if I wanted to do this anymore either. I lost the creative side of things, because I kept making videos over and over and over, I felt like I was making the same thing. In May after I went to Lincoln Trail I decided I was going to sell my RED Scarlet. I had just gotten it [the year prior] in November and I was going to sell it and be done and finish out my contracts with my FS700. I took a three month break, but I had to go to Loretta’s to do some work, and it was there I thought, “I don’t want to be done. I really enjoy this.”
So having that break made me realize what I have and that I enjoy what I do.
I was on the fence for a long time in regards to College. I ended up enrolling for a year at a fine arts school in Chicago, but it didn’t seem to be a good fit. I’m not trying to say I knew more than the teachers, but some of the classes I took were a bit elementary in terms of film terminology and techniques. It wasn’t awfully stimulating.
Where I went to high school at, it was a very small school. My graduating class only had forty-eight people. It was a middle and high school together and the whole school had four hundred people. We didn’t have any computer classes or anything, it was a very country-based school so it had all of the agriculture classes and that kind of stuff. And [on the off chance] we did have a computer-app class we were learning Microsoft Word or Powerpoint. Whenever I’d go to those types of classes my Junior and Senior year, everybody would ask, “Can I be Chase’s partner?”
There was one time they were teaching us how to use Windows Movie Maker, and at this time Sony Vegas was the editing software to have, but we had to make something with Windows Movie Maker. I asked the teacher, “I have a different editing program, can I use that?”
She goes, “Yeah, but I’m going to critique your’s a little bit harder than everybody else’s because you know a little bit more.” So I learned nothing about video in high school, everything I’ve learned has either been in the field or Google.
From the beginning, has it always been “MotoChasin?” Was that something you had knocking around in your head from the moment you started making videos?
The very first time I ever posted a picture or video that was moto-related, it was MotoChasin. The name came about that day at Loretta’s [in 2012]. I had my camera in my hand and I was trying to think of names that didn’t have “film,” or “cinematography,” or “production” in them. Nothing like that. I wanted it to be like what Vurb was.
You didn’t want to be “Dunivant Productions,” or “Chase Films.”
The name came about because I was trying to think of something that deals with moto and my name. So Chase is in “Chasin,” but it also works the other way because it’s, “Moto. Chasin.” You’re chasing the moto, like, I’m a kid “chasing” moto by going to events and filming.
Did the logo come about in a similar fashion? Did you draw the “MC” logo?
I didn’t have a logo until about five months into it, I was just doing some ugly text, that was it. I contacted Brandon Biro at the time, somebody who used to film moto, and asked him if he knew how to design. He said, “Yeah.”
I asked him, “How much for a logo for MotoChasin?” So the MC that you see on YouTube was designed by him, but the lower-third on the videos was made by Gustavo Diniz.
Another MX Simulator alum.
Gustavo is my go-to guy for anything design related. That Sally Slo Mo thing? He made that. The Nathan Hall butt patch that went around, the one with the heart and the wings, he made that as well. Gustavo does awesome work, it’s crazy to know that I’m really good friends with a guy I’ve never met who’s from Brazil. (laughs)
How did having MotoChasin effect your association with Vurb? Did you have to put aside what you had going with MotoChasin, or were you able to mesh with the work you had to take care of for Vurb?
MotoChasin was, at first, just a place to post my content because I had nowhere else to post it. My goal was to get to work with Vurb, but I wish when I started working with them that I would’ve kept uploading to MotoChasin as well, because I wonder what the growth of it would look like now [had I kept uploading to MotoChasin]. So that did kind of side track me from MotoChasin, I had a pretty long break of uploading to my channel, from June of 2014 to about April of 2015.
Were you worrying about the lack of content coming out of MotoChasin, or were you too focused on your stuff at Vurb to even notice?
I didn’t know at the time if it would be a conflict of interest in regards to posting on MotoChasin, but whenever Wes told me, “If you want to keep posting stuff on MotoChasin as well, you can do that,” I decided to start putting some GoPro [videos] out there.
That’s how it came back pretty much. But I was really involved with Vurb, because that was my dream of what I wanted to do in the moto industry, was to work for Vurb. Back in the day, that was every videographer or photographer’s dream.
It was the premier site for amateur motocross, that’s where everybody went and you knew that if your stuff was on there it was good. I don’t want to call it a rite of passage but to echo your sentiment, that was the dream.
The funny thing about the GoPro videos [I was uploading], was that the fourth GoPro I put up since I started posting on MotoChasin again, was [and is] my most popular GoPro video. It’s my most popular video on my YouTube channel, it’s of Mitchell Harrison at Monster Mountain and it has seventy-two thousand views. It’s crazy to think that if I didn’t decide to start posting GoPro videos I wouldn’t have that Mitchell Harrison GoPro.
I wanted to touch on your early work a bit, and I was wondering if you still listen to Hoodie Allen? (Chase laughs) Because that seemed to be a really popular choice for you in the early days (laughs).
I have the “Who Cares?” video pulled up, with Austin Pearson.
That was actually one of the first people I met that rode, besides Ryan Whittle. Hoodie Allen though… I never actually listened to him, not in the car or anything.
You can admit it, if you want. It’s ok.
No! I didn’t actually listen to him! It was because of copyright! I wondered, “What’s a song that’s kind of good that has some rap in it that’s not going to get me a copyright strike?” And it might even actually have a copyright strike now, being that it’s Hoodie Allen. Is he even still making music? (laughs)
I think he might’ve had something come out semi-recently. I’m not one-hundred percent sure on that.
I just opened up that video we’re talking about. *Chase starts to watch the video* Oh man! The logos! What is going on!?
(laughs) They’re just like… on top of each other?
I KNOW! They’re all over the place, what was I doing!? (laughs)
You were probably editing that and little Chase was thinking, “Dude, this is going to be fucking sick.”
For real! I was probably thinking, “This is going with the beat so well!” I have it muted right now but it’s probably off-beat so hard, but hey, we all start somewhere.
Exactly. I know a lot of the old videos on my channel are… well actually, a lot of them are of me riding when I sucked ass, so that’s awesome. (laughs) But I think it’s cool to jump ahead and look at the growth over time.
If you want to see any riding of me from a GoPro angle, “This Is Where We Start – GoPro,” on MotoChasin. That has me in it. There’s another GoPro that’s unlisted though, it’s called “Small Clips from Fast Farms feat. Chase Dunivant,” with a whopping three hundred and thirty-seven views. But that bad boy ain’t going nowhere.
C’mon. Do it for the people, Chase.
I’ll keep it unlisted, but I’ll send it to you so you can put it in there. So that way anyone who visits the site can see it.
It’ll be a blog exclusive, you have to visit to see Chase riding. This’ll probably blow up, dude. I’ll have ten thousand views on this article.
Quick question before we move on to the next one. How have the articles been doing? Have you posted any yet?
Yeah, the first one I did with Uwe Fröhlich went up last week, and Charlie’s went up yesterday. They’re doing modest. I think Uwe’s got a decent amount of views, I don’t know. I don’t really plug them too hard.
See, that’s something that Charles and I talked about. I was like, “Dude, I don’t see anything from this guy forever, and then I just see a Facebook post from him.”
I’m like, “Where’d you go?” But you’re still involved!
(laughs) I don’t know, I guess. What you have going with MotoChasin is kind of like an entity. I’ve never had that entity or platform built up to where I need to be posting a lot of content. I guess that’s why I disappear at times. I’m not a huge fan of social media either, I think I had one post on my Instagram page from June before I started linking the interviews on there. I try to only go on when I need to post.
I wish I was as strong as you in not being as involved with social media. Some days I wish I could just delete it all, but I can’t because that’s pretty much my job these days, just posting on social media.
I hear you, man. I’ve wanted to delete my Facebook for so long and have no online presence whatsoever, but that’s where I get the most views if I make a video. Sharing on Facebook has boosted a lot of my videos and I couldn’t afford to lose that. It’s a tough act to balance, that relationship between being on your device a healthy amount but at the same time getting your content out.
…Didn’t we start on this conversation from the Hoodie Allen question? (laughs)
I feel like a big difference between you and I is that you have a TON of videos on your channel. I mean, the very nature of MotoChasin is having content from all of the year’s biggest events, whereas my content isn’t really angled that way. Regardless, you have a ton of videos and you’re all over the place as well. When did you start expanding beyond the Tennessee scene? What was your first big trip?
My first big trip was going to Monster Mountain, that was a big ordeal. Trevor Tate found me after I made a video with Austin Pearson that he saw on Facebook, so he messaged me and said, “Hey, we should make a video.”
We went to Deer Run MX in Alabama and made, “450, In For The Kill.” I really don’t want to watch that video either because I know the soundtrack is awful. Then a couple weeks later he hit me up and was like, “Hey, do you want to go with us to Monster Mountain to film and do a video on me?”
And I was nervous, I thought, “Oh my gosh… This is going to be the first time I’ve ever stayed in a toy hauler. What do I bring with me? Do I overpack? Do I pack [at all]? What do I do?” And Trevor was also somebody I barely knew, I had only met him once.
But right before this I actually had to go to my high school for homecoming, because I had gotten picked to walk somebody out during the ceremony. I didn’t even stay for the game, I had to be driven to the nearest exit with my bags and stuff. My parents dropped me off. Now, I’m very close with my Mom, I always have been. Even when I’m gone to this day, I talk to her on the phone at least once a day, no matter what. I’ve been a Mama’s Boy my entire life. So when I finally told her, “Hey, I want to go with this guy to Alabama” [which is] four hours away, to film him ride, she was a little skeptical about it. Mama Tracy wasn’t too sure about what to do on that.
They ended up letting me do it and honestly, it was [awesome]. I give a big thanks to Trevor Tate and Harrison West, because that’s where it really started out for me, was filming with them in Tennessee. At the time they were two of the top guys in Tennessee trying to qualify for Loretta’s, so we made a series together called “The Outcome,” which is supposed to be like a copy of the RedBull “Road to Loretta’s.” I went with them to their Area and Regional Qualifiers and then we went to Loretta’s. So within my first year of filming I ended up going to Texas, Michigan, all over. I was very blessed within my first year of filming to be able to travel to all those types of places.
By the way, the soundtrack to “450, In For The Kill” is Skrillex.
Oh no! I wish you could see my cringing face right now! (laughs)
Somehow worse than Hoodie Allen. To be fair it is a La Roux remix, but still. I’m not playing the audio, but I’m watching the video.
Oh, dude, don’t even watch it! It’s so bad.
It’s beautiful. (laughs)
I was shooting on a T3i. See, that’s where young Sally Slo Mo came out, that’s where I found out how to slow down clips. But I was only filming at thirty frames per second so when I’d slow it down it would skip frames. There’s this “warp thing” in Final Cut… it’s so awful.
So that’s like the Final Cut equivalent to Twixtor?
So you Twixtor’d all of this?
Oh, man. (laughs) Coming back to the trips though, hearing that you got to travel so much when you were just starting out is interesting. You came all the way up to Millington, Michigan, right? Baja Acres?
Yes, that was my first time ever going anywhere above Kentucky. I’d never travelled up north for anything in my life, so whenever I got to go there I was pretty excited. I didn’t know what to expect, I will say it was a little bit different compared to down south.
In what ways?
Just different accents really, that was the big thing.
Gotcha. Baja is crazy, though. I’ve only been there once. It’s a bit of a drive for me, for you I could hardly imagine.
I’ve been twice. That time, and the other time was for the Baja Brawl in 2015, I drove all the way there. I had met Tucker Vest that past winter whenever I went with Mitchell Harrison for his Arenacross races, and we stayed at Tucker’s house. I’d met Tucker back at Mini O’s when he came with Andrew Maroney and they were all telling me how [Tucker] was really good at snowboarding. So I was like, “We should make a video together.”
I later found out that Mitchell was really good friends with him. We ended up going to the JS7 Ride Day with Mitchell, Tucker and I did, and we went to Walmart with Brian Harrison. [Mitchell’s Dad] was taking funny snapchats of us. [It was after that] that I finally got to film [Tucker] snowboarding that year, then whenever Baja was coming around he suggested, “Hey, come to the Baja Brawl and film. You can stay at my house during the week.” So I did.
*Note, this video comes a few years after the initial Baja exchange. This is from 2017.
You’ve mentioned before that your “Week at Mammoth” video is one of your top five favorites. Talk about traveling out there for that. That wasn’t the first time you went out there, right?
No, the first time I went out there was with Mitchell Harrison and his Dad, Brian. He was going out there to do some suspension testing with Pro Circuit when he was on Team Green and I was doing this whole “life video” about Mitchell. That was the first time I went. The second time I went was for Mammoth.
I mean, you flew there right? You didn’t drive…
Mm-mm, nope. No way. Nowadays I don’t drive anything over seven to eight hours.
Aren’t plane tickets expensive?
Yes, but that’s why I work two different jobs, so I can be able to fly to some of the events nowadays.
I was just curious. So, since this is one of your favorite videos I was wondering if you could expound on the process of making it? I know you mentioned [in the livestream that] riders were hitting their marks continuously allowing you to pull of some seamless jump cut shots.
The Mammoth video is in my top five favorite edits, for sure. A lot of people won’t like the song because one, it’s rap, and two, it’s $uicideboy$. I didn’t make that edit until about two or three weeks after [Mammoth] happened. Nowadays if I don’t have my full edit out within the first week I’m freaking out inside; it’s going to be irrelevant by that time. I had so much other work to do at the time with Leatt, but I had a bunch of random footage at the time that I was using for Instagram. I thought to myself, “I think I have enough to make a full edit.”
So it came out of nowhere, the making of that video, and I didn’t know if people were going to like it because of the song. And that Jordan Bailey stuff, the jump cut there, and the Gage Schehr jump cut… I don’t plan that stuff. Only when I go back and look at the footage do I find that it works out really well. So a lot of the shots I get, sometimes they’re planned, but sometimes your best shots are totally unplanned.
Motocross in itself is incredibly hectic without adding on the equipment and ground to cover when filming at some events, running ragged to capture it all. In my experience I’ve found a lot of my best shots “after the fact,” ones that I didn’t even know I had.
On Instagram this week, I posted my favorite shot from Freestone and I had no idea I had that shot. It’s so sick because it has the rider in focus and I’m probably 10 yards away pulled in on the zoom, and it has the crowd and the fences going [in the foreground].
When everything clicks it can be amazing. I don’t know about you, but sometimes I’ve filmed events and at first things don’t really click. You’re out there thinking that you’re blowing it, but then you get that one shot that you know is going to be great and it can turn your whole day around.
One hundred percent. [To add to that], I think a lot of people don’t listen to music while they film, but I always do because certain songs can just click in my head and… I just get some kind of inspiration. If I’m not with people or talking, I’m always listening to music, no matter what.
Are you an album guy? What do you listen to?
I am most definitely not an album guy, but I listen to everything. One minute I can be listening to NF, I could be listening to Lil Peep. Or XXXTentacion, Post Malone. Or I can go over to some Alternative stuff like Tame Impala, Kid Cudi.
I will say this, I will listen to some girly music sometimes. I will listen to some Sia. I like Melanie Martinez. I’m all over the place. Sometimes I’ll even go a little OG and listen to the Ying Yang Twins and stuff like that.
I think that’s awesome that you explore and listen to a lot of music, that’s one of my favorite hobbies. I think that’s important to your work, because if you have the same music in all of your videos you’ll become stale.
I’m very blessed with this job [I have working for my Dad], because whenever I’m washing stuff I’m able to have my headphones in and listen to music.
I saw last year that you were at Chillitown for their Area Qualifier, you also did the documentary about the track as well. You were at Eastfork, Monster Mountain. I feel that with the amount of coverage you’ve been able to get over the years, this is a sort of “passing of the torch” moment in terms of MotoChasin being the place for amateur coverage. Is that starting to become your goal, to have MotoChasin be the place for amateur coverage?
First of all, thank you for saying that. That does mean a lot that you said my place is the main place to go for amateur content. My goal [with MotoChasin] is that I just want to enjoy it, really. I just want to enjoy the time I have with what I do. The traveling, the friends I’ve met. I hardly have any friends from home right now, but the majority of my friends are from elsewhere. But the goal with my YouTube is to be… me, I guess? I do post the vlogs on there too, [but] I do want it to be the main place people go for amateur content. I also want it to be a place for people to see funny videos too. Do I feel like that torch is being passed onto me? I don’t want to sound cocky.
You don’t want to claim that?
I feel in a way my YouTube is becoming that. Like, say Mammoth or Loretta’s is coming up, I want people to think, “Oh! We have to go to the MotoChasin YouTube to see the content that’s coming out from the week.” I hope it’s turning into something like that. Do I see a website or anything like that coming about in the next year? No. I don’t want to get into all that. I just want to have a YouTube channel where I get to post what I want to. I don’t want it to be [just one thing].
I said earlier that I felt MotoChasin was its own entity, and that it wasn’t just you. Are you saying you want to dial that back a little bit and present MotoChasin as something less of an entity, and more of you as a person?
See, that’s the difficult part of explaining this. This is what I always tell people when they ask me about MotoChasin, I say, “MotoChasin is me.” I guess that’s the easiest way to say it. Like I said earlier, I didn’t want [my name] to be “Chase Productions.” I wanted it to be MotoChasin. So I think of MotoChasin as myself, I’m “MotoChassin.” Some people will say that, “What’s up, MotoChassin?”
Things could change, but right now I want it to be where certain people can send me stuff they want to have posted, that’s fine. But it’s mainly just my videos and my stuff, including the vlogging and things. The reason I do the vlogs is because later on in life I want to be able to go back and look at my videos and all of the stuff I did.
I feel like in 2018 the change that came from the break you took in 2017 has been a little more present in your content. I feel like you’re doing a bit of what I call the “YouTube Hustle.” Vlogs, live streaming, reaction videos. Is that all because you want something to look back on?
Pretty much. That react video, Josh [Guffey] and I had the most fun ever making that video. The day that it came out we laughed our butts off about it because we thought it was so funny. The “YouTube Hustle” is kind of a thing, yes. I try upload at least five days a week, taking the weekends off, because on weekends I always say I’m going to work on videos but it never works out that way. Sunday night comes and I’m freaking out thinking, “Bro, I need to get a video ready for tomorrow morning.” (laughs)
“A-Team” sizing up the competition at the Winter Olympics in Gainesville, Florida. Guffey and Dunivant, 2017.
The YouTube Hustle is real [in that] I’m trying to get the channel growing. Some people say quantity is better than quality for YouTube. I’m trying to make quality work but have it come out daily.
I’ve heard that too. While I never amassed a following quite like yours, I sort of know how the game works regarding the site’s algorithms. A lot of the time what helps a channel grow is getting your video in the site’s algorithm to where it pops up in everybody’s recommended feed. Having more videos just up’s the chances for it to do the rounds. I’m not dissing the YouTube Hustle, I’m just calling it like I see it as a change in your content.
I guess a way to put it is, that I want my platform to be one where anyone can come here and watch something. If you’re a huge motocross fan you can come here to see edits and GoPro’s. If you’re into gaming I do play Fortnite and livestream. And with the vlogs too… certain people like to see other people’s daily lives. I’m just trying to make my YouTube for anybody to come and watch.
Did you ever think you’d make it this far? Five thousand subscribers, over one point two million total video views, traveling across the country. Did it ever occur this was what was going to happen?
If two years ago you told me that I wouldn’t be working for Vurb and that my own YouTube would be growing and have five thousand subs, I’d say your crazy. If you told me back in high school, “Chase, in four years you’re going to be traveling all over the place. You’ll have already been to every corner of the United States,” I would say there’s no way. You’re nuts. I’ll be stuck in Tennessee.
The one point two million views on my own videos? That’s nuts to know that one point two million people have watched videos exclusively on MotoChasin, that’s nuts to me. That’s crazy. I’m very appreciative and I thank everybody that does go to MotoChasin to watch my stuff and support what I do. The families that have helped me over the years, the families that help me today that let me travel with them or let me film. Anyone who’s out there just helping me out, thank you.
If you want to ever want to see any of my stuff, you can go to MotoChasin. My Instagram is @chasedunivant and my Snapchat is chasedunivant25, I’m on there all the time. I’d like to thank Monster Energy, Vurbmoto, Race Tech, Leatt, 6D Helmets. I’m sure there’s others I’m forgetting, but thank you.
I’d also like to thank Ryan Whittle. Thank you for telling me to take my camera to Loretta Lynn’s, I wouldn’t be doing what I’m doing today if you didn’t tell me that. Thanks to Trevor Tate and Harrison West for getting me started with traveling. Mitchell Harrison and Brian Harrison, thanks for everything. It’s been a count, I’ll say that for Brian. The Charboneau family, thank you. They were a big part in getting me to a lot of places, like Washougal. That was an awesome trip. The Guffey family, thank you guys a lot, you guys are like my second family to me. You guys mean a lot to me and you guys have helped me out a ton over the past two years. I can’t thank them enough for practically treating me like I’m their own kid.
Last but not least my friends and my family. My parents are pretty much my backbone, I think of them no matter what. I know that no matter where I’m at in the world, if I needed them they would be there in a heartbeat. My brother, my sister, my niece, my nephew, my sister-in-law, just thanks everyone.