It took a little while after receiving his new bike but, one day, Regan Durand decided he wanted to go for a ride, so he grabbed his Norco and just rode away like it was the most natural thing ever. Photo by James Durand

Just let it happen

By James Durand

It’s tough as a coach, a parent, or just me, to let things happen naturally.

I’m stubborn, competitive, and I have very little patience. So with all that said, you can see how I want to make things happen quicker, smoother, and perfectly the first time.

I didn’t say I was realistic in my expectations.

For most of my biking life, I’ve dealt with things I could control somewhat. It was racing, machinery, or people who thought like I do, so we managed to keep things on track and not have too many failures.

These days, I am not running a national race teams with pro rides, I’m “coaching” a four-year-old who loves biking … until he doesn’t because he wants a fig bar, or a nap, or maybe his Mom.

There is no rationale and I am quickly learning that I’m not in charge.

So, three months ago my buddy at Norco hooked me up with a sweet little DH bike for Regan. Considering he is four, and destined to be a world cup DH racer (Dad’s dreams. not Regan’s) how could I pass this up?

I built it up, customized a few things, and brought it home. Regan’s eyes lit up, then he told me “No, it’s too big Dad.”

The bike sat either at Swicked, or at home, collecting dust. Every time Regan wanted to ride (every day), I grabbed the little Norco, then he grabbed his old bike, then I put the Norco away, trying not to look disappointed.

After a while, I gave up.

And today, he asked to go for a ride, grabbed his Norco and just rode away like it was the most natural thing ever. We hit a simple trail and within a few minutes, he was shifting gears, bouncing on the suspension, and trying to do wheelies.

I’d like to think he’s been listening to me and my coaching has paid off, but we all know the truth here. He’s just doing what he likes, because he’s a kid. He might be doing more coaching with patience than I am with biking.

I’m James Durand and I’m Goin’ Ridin’…