JESSE FURTADO: UNCHAINED
Motorsports racing is oftentimes a sport where competitors will do everything within their power to gain an advantage over their rivals, whether it be optimizing their bike setup, shaving a few extra tenths off of their lap time, or buying a Team Manager a beer in the airport. Wait...one of those things might not sound like the others, but that’s exactly what young Californian Jesse Furtado did while waiting to board a flight home from Texas after the cancellation of the JS7 Freestone Spring Championship last month. He had just wrapped up a few weeks of strong results at both the Daytona RCSX and Spring A Ding Ding, collecting a total of three top-five overall finishes between the two events, including a 3rd place overall in the 65cc (10-11) class at Daytona. After a solid year in the 65cc ranks last season, Furtado is determined to step up his game this season and he’s doing exactly that, currently sitting in 2nd place overall in the 65cc (10-11) Dirty 100 standings in addition to 3rd and 4th overall in 65cc (10-11) Limited and 65cc (7-11) classes, respectively. If that wasn’t enough to grab the attention of some factory-supported teams, Furtado took things into his own hands with a little extra motivation from DMXS Radio host and regular amateur motocross announcer, Kevin Kelly, when he approached Nathan Ramsey in the food court with a frosty Coors Light in his hand. It was Furtado’s way of getting some attention from the Orange Brigade team, but it also provided everyone with a little comic relief in what was a frightening time to be getting on an airplane and traveling across the country. We checked in with Jesse to see what he’s been up to during the quarantine and how he mustered up the courage for that little power move.
Hey Jesse, what’re you up to?
Yeah, I’ve been basically just chillin’. A couple of days ago we got a drum set, so we’ve been playing that and then if my mom can get off work early enough we try to ride. We drive out (to the desert in Nevada) on Friday or Saturday and we’ll go to one of my friend’s spots.
Have you ever done any desert races before?
When I was seven years old and I was on 50s, I did a race in Nevada that was like a desert race. It was pretty fun, but I mean it’s pretty wide open.
Your mom said you’ve been running up her credit card with Xbox charges, what have you been playing?
I’ve been playing MX vs ATV All Out, it’s a fun game! I’m getting ready for the Road to Loretta’s thing they’re doing on there. If they don’t open up Loretta’s, then why not just do the closest thing to it?
So I saw the story on social media about you buying Nate Ramsey a beer at the airport and I thought that was awesome. Tell me how that all went down.
So basically, we were walking through the airport and we were sitting down with some Whataburger. We looked over and saw Nate Ramsey over there and Kevin Kelly was like “Hey, you should go get Nate Ramsey a beer, he’ll love it.” So my mom went and got him a Coors Light, she brought it back, and I was kind of shy at first and I was getting all scared and flustered, but I finally got the courage to go over there and give him a beer. Now basically every time I see him, I’m gonna say “What’s up!? How’d you like that beer?” (laughs)
We also reached out to Nate and he admits that the situation caught him a little bit off guard, but he drank the whole beer nonetheless. Here’s what he had to say:
“We were gettin’ out of there (Texas) basically and everyone was sort of waiting, I didn’t even see them sitting over there in the little food court. There were four of us: me, Hope, Robbie, and Derek and they already had a couple of beers because we had ordered already. I get this tap on my shoulder and it was almost like the trick tap, like he tapped me on my left one as he walked by and I looked left, and he was standing on my right. I look up and I see this kid -- I know who he is obviously, I’ve seen him around -- but it didn’t register in my mind at the moment. I can’t remember what he said but I look at him and I’m thinking “he’s got a beer in his hand, how the heck did this kid get a beer?” (laughs) First of all, it’s kind of weird ‘cause they had beers in just a regular food court at the airport, not like a bar. This little kid is just holding a beer and I’m thinking what is going on? I think I looked confused and Hope or someone must’ve said “Look over there,” and it was Kevin Kelly and the rest of the crew, and we all started just dying laughing. It was a funny little situation and it took me by surprise, but I took it and I drank it. (laughs) It was kind of funny -- we were just relieved that we made it to the airport, we’re going to make it home, and this funny little dude walks up with a beer; I thought it was pretty cool. I knew who he was and I’ve seen him around, I can tell he’s a pretty good character from seeing him in staging and different places like that. For sure that helped me to know him better, I don’t think I’ll forget that!”