Seth Fargher went from small town hopeful to FMX athlete to “quad noggin” in a hospital bed to a position with DWT and now GPS Off Road products, all the while chasing a freelance writing career and just being a cool dude. All in the matter of a few years. And if we don’t keep tabs on him every once in a while, we might miss one of his many adventures. We asked Seth some questions and he got back to us ASAP with some very interesting answers. Check it out!
Your journey from Bomb Squad hopeful to Sponsorship Coordinator for DWT to a key part in the start up of GPS Off Road products has been a long trip, but in a very short time! What do you hope you’ll be doing next year? In 5 years?
Indeed yes it has been quite a journey. Every time I trade emails or have the chance to chat with one of the big names in our industry like Josh Frederick, Wayne Matlock, the Moore brothers or Jeremiah Jones I kind of internally pinch myself because it wasn’t all that long ago that I was on the outside looking in, reading about all these guys and watching them in movies. I’m incredibly grateful to be able to call them my friends. As far as the future I hope that I can always be a part of this industry. Growing up my dream was to be a professional racer or freestyle rider. While I dabbled in freestyle, I’m completely content with my role as a marketer, journalist, sales guy, tire changer or whatever else you could call me. More specifically, I’d like to be back living on the East Coast, attending events and supporting our riders and continuing to build the GPS Offroad brand. Content is a huge piece of the marketing game and I love getting out and filming and taking pictures and then sharing that online. Amateur riders especially love seeing their picture or reading their name in a press release and honestly, a lot of riders in this industry don’t really know how to market themselves so I want to try and help get exposure for those hard working, deserving individuals that need a little help.
In five years, honestly my passion is helping people pursue their passion. Whatever that is. I’ve been so blessed to get to literally live a dream of mine these last 3-4 years that I want to help others have that same opportunity. My big picture dream I guess is to write and speak to young people, like high school and college age people who are looking out at what they want to do with their lives and help them find ways that they can go after what they love. I love meeting passionate people. Doesn’t really matter what their passion is, passionate people have a contagious attitude. I love being around that and I would love to help people along their way to pursuing their dream.
Do you miss freestyle or ever get the itch to jump on a quad and ride at the races you attend?
Everyday. Its been an interesting road for me and after my accident a couple years ago, I wasn’t really sure that I would ever jump again. But back in December of 2011 I had the opportunity to go out and set my ramp up and give it a try. It was like a burden lifted and it felt so incredibly good to jump again. There is no other feeling in the world like it and I can’t really describe how insanely cool it feels to fly through the air like that. I said I’m content in my role now, but I still miss riding and will hop on a quad any chance I get. I’m still debating about getting back into freestyle but just for fun. I still have my ramp so I’m weighing it out. I know I’ll have to give it up someday, for responsibilities sake, and with Caleb Moore passing recently, its definitely got me thinking. I put so much hard work into being able to ride freestyle that it will be tough to reach that point of saying “I’m never going to hit a ramp again” but we will see. There’s always sand dunes and mx tracks that I can find jumps to trick off of.
How do you feel about the decline in ATV racing and FMX? What’s it going to take to boost interest and riders?
Honestly, passion. I think the perspective of a lot of racers is kind in the wrong place. People need to ride or race first of all because they love it. I was talking to Mark Baldwin at the nationals a couple years ago and he said that a lot of these young racers now days don’t have a lot of passion for what they’re doing. Tim Farr, Shane Hitt and Jeremiah Jones did it because they loved it, whether there was money in it or not. I definitely saw that when I was doing trackside support and guys would come by the trailer looking completely burnt out and discouraged. Racing definitely can seem like an uphill battle but if you’re not enjoying it, you’ll be hard-pressed to ever get much satisfaction out of it. When people start getting back into it because they love it I think it will boost riders interest. I honestly think racing at the local level is where the future is at. No pressure, just groups of friends that meet up and week after week to give it their all but not worry so much about the outcome. The ATV community is definitely like a big family and I think that gets lost when it becomes so competitive and stressful. The reality is, not many people are going to make a living racing an ATV in the foreseeable future so don’t get too focused on that. Nobody started racing because they thought it would be a lucrative and lifelong career. It was fun. We need more fun in ATV racing.
As your time as a sponsorship coordinator you put a lot of thought into the Do’s and Do Nots of Sponsorship and wrote an article about it. What was the most ridiculous request you received during that time?
Oh my, Jen Rath and I used to trade emails and sponsorship stories almost weekly about the outlandish requests and prima donnas that we would have calling telling us why they needed free stuff. A couple that stick out immediately are the ones that focus so much on their discount and not on what they’re actually paying. It’s amazing how people get so hung up on 50% vs 25% like it’s a popularity contest. The reason a racer seeks sponsorship is to help them save money. You might get a low percentage offer that actually saves you money over a bigger discount off a higher priced product. Just do the math folks before you freak out on the person that made you an offer. I also had some kid commenting on Facebook once that anyone who accepts an offer that is less than what they deserve is only hurting the sport. Something about companies need to suck it up and give riders what they deserve and that is the reason why so many companies are going out of business. I tactfully suggested to him that perhaps it was sponsored riders not doing their job and helping said companies sell product which is THEIR job as a sponsored rider and ultimately, sales is what keeps the doors open.
Is it tough to be Seth Fargher?
It’s definitely interesting. There are days when I would say yes but that’s only because I’m pretty much wide open in everything that I do. The reality is I love what I do and I try to give my all in everything, and to everyone, which can be pretty exhausting. For example I’m writing this from an airplane at 2 A.M while flying back east to visit my girlfriend because this was pretty much the only time I could fit in to sit down and respond. I easily get caught up in the craziness of launching our company, keeping sponsored riders happy, doing my content marketing stuff, and following through with media deadlines but truth be told, I love it. I get stir crazy if I’m not busy and I’m so incredibly thankful that I get to do something that I love.