Wayne and Kristen Matlock’s shared passion for off-road racing has trickled down to their two young sons Clayton and Wyatt. Racing UTVs at the highest level for Polaris, the Matlocks understand the importance of race-dialed suspension.
Winning the Baja 500 on Live Valve is one of Kristen’s proudest moments. Although the husband and wife team are competitors on the dirt, Wayne likes to remind everyone that he’s still Kristen’s biggest fan. The Matlocks are the fourth featured drivers in our new FARTHER video series for FOX Stories.
“I got into off-roading at a young age, going to the desert with my family,” Wayne Matlock explains. “I kind of just grew up in the racing environment. I started racing professionally on ATVs from 2001 through 2013.”
“I actually got into off-road racing when I met Wayne,” Kristen says. “I didn’t grow up in the sport at all; I had no idea where I was going and what I could become within the sport. And I just took the baby steps it would take to get up to this level now.”
“And I’m so thankful that I ended up where I am,” she adds. “Competing against my husband is definitely something special when we get out on the racetrack. He’s ultimately just another competitor, but at the same time we’re teammates.”
“Kristen is one of my biggest competitors, but also I’m one of her biggest fans,” Wayne says with a smile. “If I win or she wins, it’s our program.”
“It’s awesome having the kids race,” Wayne adds. “We both work pretty hard at trying not to push them. We ask the kids, do you want to go to the river and go tubing and water skiing, or do you want to go race? And both of them are like, we want to go race! All right, let’s go racing.”
“I hope what we do with them with racing teaches them to be better young men,” Wayne says. “If you don’t maintain your vehicle, you don’t prep it right you can’t go win a race. And it’s the same thing in life. It’s fun fostering that and helping them grow and trying to guide them. You can’t be afraid to live life. You gotta go and have fun!”
Good suspension is free horsepower
“You could be the best driver on the track,” Wayne explains. “And you can have the fastest car on the track. If it’s not handling right, you’re not winning. There’s nothing you can do to overcome bad suspension or a bad setup.”
“With FOX, there’s so much technology that comes along with it. Standard suspension and shocks have been unchanged for quite a while. FOX race technology has included internal and external bypass, and then they come along with Live Valve and change the whole game.”
“Now other companies are trying to catch up, but it’s not the same” he adds. “FOX is just so far ahead with its technology, especially coupled with the Polaris RZR Dynamics. And the new Live Valve X2 includes rebound and compression. It changed the game. A lot.”
“FOX shocks helped me win the overall at Baja 500,” Kristen explains. “I always made sure that my shocks were dialed in perfectly and I have to give FOX credit for that because they’re so good about taking care of their racers, constantly offering to take us out to the desert and do whatever it takes to be the best. FOX definitely puts 110% into everything that they set out to do.”
- Fourth FOX Stories FARTHER Video Features The Matlocks
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