When Andrew Kali began riding a bicycle without training wheels at three, his father Richard realized he had the balance and talent to begin riding a dirt bike, a natural transition for him with an older sister already enjoying the sport of motocross.
And so at the age of four, Andrew began racing, and today, at the ripe old age of seven, has built an impressive racing resume.
"The sport of motocross does take a great deal of dedication, training, talent, and maturity for his age level," said Andrew's mother, Tina Kali. "He often races in full protective gear in 90 degree heat in the summer."
Photo special to the Town Crier
Grateful to his trainer, former professional racer and X Games gold medalist Mad Mike Jones, seven-year-old Andrew Kali also thanks his numerous sponsors for their support. Andrew is pictured participating in the sport of motocross, in which he has excelled since the age of four.
Most recently, Andrew participated in The KTM Jr. Challenge, part of the Monster Energy Motocross Championship Series held at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. He was one of 15 seven- and eight-year-old racers selected from more than 1,100 applicants from across the country to compete in the event. To be considered, Andrew had to submit his racing resume highlighting the regional and national events he has competed in as well as his report card and other rider qualifications.
The third fastest qualifier in the time trials, Andrew and 14 other racers competed in a three-lap race on the same track the pros raced on. The event was broadcast live on the Speed Channel.
Sharing that during the winter months, Andrew rides once per week at an indoor facility, Kali added that in the summer, he races nearly every weekend and trains with former professional racer and X Games gold medalist "Mad Mike Jones" from Pittsburgh.
According to Kali, Andrew plans to continue racing regionally and is excited when he qualifies for national events, such as his hope to return to the U.S. National Championships at Loretta Lynn's ranch in Hurricane Mills, Tenn., this summer where he competed last year. The event there includes the top 40 riders in the world in their respective age groups, according to Kali, who added that many racers Andrew's age travel all over the country and are home schooled.
"Andrew travels the eastern part of the country and his goal is to compete at the national level each year," she said.
A first-grader at Holy Family School, has two sisters, Katherine and Audrey, who are proud of his accomplishments. In addition to racing, Andrew participates in soccer in the fall in the Hubbard Community Youth League.
With summer break right around the corner bringing a more active involvement in his sport of choice, asked what he enjoys most, "I like going fast and flying through the air on my dirt bike," said Andrew.