ANCHORAGE (KTUU) — Safe to say, Sutton’s Chase Andersen was born to ride motocross.
At the age of three years old, he became one of the youngest motocross riders in the world, and seven years later Andersen continues make a name for himself in the sport.
"People ask where we are from at competitions, and they get surprised when we say Alaska," Andersen said.
Andersen won the Mini Olympics in Florida recently competing against some of the country’s top amateur motocross riders.
"I didn't expect to win," he said.
His win didn’t come as a surprise to his father Andy.
"He didn't do it by luck, he lead every single lap of his main event, he got the whole shot, and lead every single lap," Andy said.
While victory is the ultimate goal, the Andersens had plenty to celebrate after the Mini Olympics when Chase became a factory rider with the Yamaha Development Team.
"It was very obvious that Chase was serious, and it wasn't a fluke he was here,” Andy said. “That this kid is from Alaska means business."
Becoming a factory rider means Chase will get a lot of help from his new team, including a larger trailer for his bike at competitions, better bike care, and entire crews to support him.
"As a dad who's literally changed cylinders out in hotel rooms before because we don't have a workshop or nothing like that, I’m stoked to just show up and go It's running a little rich I think.'"
But support for Chase’s motocross dream has never been a problem. Andy built Chase and his siblings a track in their backyard to train on. Friends and family often sponsored Chase, donating air miles so he could compete out of state.
"Every time we reach out, the support from Alaska is amazing,” Andy said.
The Andersens say Chase will have to make nationals five times to remain on the Yamaha team. This summer, they hope to fly up professional motocross riders to host a camp at their home-built track in Sutton.