Episode 208 features Wrong Seat filler, Chris Rea talking about life, bikes, and commitment.


Wrong seat filler, Chris Rea, shares perspective on what it takes to be lucky. Listen in as one of the Lost Boys shares how going all in (on whatever you’re doing) has an impact on life. Be sure to listen on your favorite podcast app.



4:25 – my dad had to pull me out of t-ball because I was too competitive

9:45 – for my sister and I, sports were life.

13:24 – if you want to play football, you’re 100 pounds.

21:41 – my first foray into offroading was a high school club called Unauthorized

28:36 – in 2005, I realized I was going nowhere and I was going to be nothing, so I joined the military

32:52 – if there was a rule, it was black and white as far as I was concerned.

41:14 – one of my favorite things is that Tracy Jordan is still scared of me

54:17 – I’m just here to stay fit so I can beat my dad

1:05:48 – I’m just some random guy who’s been really lucky to work with amazing teams

Special thanks to 4low Magazine and Maxxis Tires for support and sponsorship of this podcast.


[00:01:39.550] – Big Rich Klein

On today’s episode of Conversations with Big Rich, I’ll be speaking with an off-road enthusiast, An old rock crawling judge, a rock crawling spotter, KOH tech guy, right seat navigator, Navy veteran, bicycle racer, husband and father, you guys have all probably guessed it by now, Chris Rea. Chris, thank you for spending some time and coming on here after work and talking about your life.

[00:02:08.070] – Chris Rea

It’s an absolute honor to be asked to do this, Rich. Thank you so much.

[00:02:12.410] – Big Rich Klein

So let’s jump right in. We go back, well, you just brought it up in our little pre-talk, but we go back like 20 years to the day, almost. But we’ll get into that. So let’s start even earlier than that. Where were you born and raised?

[00:02:29.700] – Chris Rea

So I’m a SoCal, born and raised kid, born in a city called Tarzana, California, which is in the valley, just outside of Los Angeles. And then when I was about five years old, I moved to Simi Valley, California. That’s pretty much where I spent the rest of my life before college.

[00:02:49.920] – Big Rich Klein

Simi Valley. That place has been, I don’t know if you’d call it notorious, but it’s well known for a couple of trials that happened there.

[00:03:01.310] – Chris Rea

That is correct. Yeah, and I got to live through that. 1994, the Rodney King trials, the police officers that that beat him. We’re tried in my city, and that was my first taste of being on lockdown because the entire way in and out was blocked with National Guard.

[00:03:25.560] – Big Rich Klein

Yeah, we even we even shut down our our Sears store that I worked for at the time because when the riots all started after that, it got crazy. And I was in the Bay Area, and we were figuring everybody was going to be a target. But hey, that’s life. So let’s go about talking, how old were you when you moved from Tarzana to Simi?

[00:03:53.220] – Chris Rea

I was five years old. Five.

[00:03:54.720] – Big Rich Klein

So that’s, Simi is where you really have memories?

[00:03:59.100] – Chris Rea

Yeah, it’s basically That’s really the only thing that I know other than very short memories in Woodland Hills, where I went to church with my family and my grandparents. My grandparents lived there, so that’s where I did a lot of my growing up, too. But It’s all in that same general vicinity.

[00:04:17.520] – Big Rich Klein

Let’s talk about those early years. What activities did your family do?

[00:04:25.480] – Chris Rea

Right when I was five years old, you know me well enough I know my competitive edge, but it was even worse when I was a kid. So I started with T-ball, and my dad had to pull me out of T-ball because I was just too competitive at five years old. And so he put me into BMX racing because I couldn’t blame anybody but myself if there was a problem. I was the only one on the bike, and I was the only one that had any say of what I did. So I raced bicycles competitively. I played pretty much every sport except football. Growing up, I played T-ball. I got back into baseball around six or seven and ended up on the All-Star team, played soccer, ended up on a travel team that won all sorts of awards and raced bicycles until I was about 12 or 13 years old. And then I looked myself in the mirror and that was the tail end of the night or the mid-90s. And that was when we had this drop in BMX racing, the sponsors were starting to walk away. We were starting to just not see a lot of money in the sport.  READ MORE

Follow Big Rich

SHare this article

This site uses cookies to offer you a better browsing experience. By browsing this website, you agree to our use of cookies.