Interview: Renny Roker Talks About Jag Race

September 11, 2010 by  

Mike Carruth interviews Renny Roker, Promoter of the Jag BMX Global Championships

Whether or not you were around BMX in the late 70s and early 80s, chances are good you have heard of the Jag BMX World Championships. Held from 1978-1981 in Indianapolis, then moving to Las Vegas for the 1982 installment, the race was the first world championship in BMX racing. The events were massive, with 4,000+ riders attending, and were among the first to garner both TV coverage and marquee sponsors such as Coca-Cola, 7-11 and Thom McCan Shoe Stores. All of this was the brainchild of then-music promoter and BMX team owner, Renny Roker.

Renny made an abrupt exit from the sport in the early 80s, and left as many questions as he did hard feelings in his wake.

With his recent return to the sport of BMX racing, promoting a new-era Jag race, this time dubbed the Jag BMX Global Championship, it has been the source of some discussion on the forum, and at races this summer. As the date of this year’s event draws near (December 18-22), we felt it was time for BMX News to sit down with Renny to hear more about his plans, and to seek answers to some of the tough questions our readers have been asking.

Renny was on the scene at the recent NBL Grand Nationals, and that provided a perfect opportunity to do a face-to-face recording. His plans are grand, as they have always been, and the years seem to have put a statesman-like polish on the unbridled enthusiasm for which he was so famous decades ago. He addresses our fairly-direct questioning in a very candid fashion.

The full running time of the interview is about 45 minutes. In order to make it easier on listeners, we are offering it as a full-episode, and in two segments of about 23 mins each.

Full Episode

Part 1

Part 2

We’re talking about the interview over on the Vintage forum. Who knows, maybe Renny, himself, will drop in on the discussion.