Representing DB with Team Rokform


Photo Courtesy of Kenji Yoshimoto

Lilly Ball, Asst. A&E Editor

Riding a bike for thirty miles uphill and around the city might seem like an overly strenuous activity to most people, but to junior Kenji Yoshimoto, it’s the highlight of his day. Yoshimoto, at only age 17, is already a sponsored cyclist who has won multiple races.

After being inspired by his father, Yoshimoto started biking in sixth grade. Since then, he has kept a strict routine. Excluding Mondays and Fridays, which he calls “rest days,” Yoshimoto rides for thirty miles, a journey that takes him only an hour and a half. On Saturdays and Sundays, Yoshimoto races competitively, and recently placed first in the Men’s Junior Category in the Red Trolley Classic race in San Diego.

“I like to go fast and take some risks. When I go out for a ride there isn’t a time where I get bored.” Yoshimoto said.
Yoshimoto was once the co-captain of the DBHS Mountain Biking team, and was involved with a club team for four years prior to being on the school team.

After the Mountain Biking team disbanded, he sent his resume to Team Rokform, who evaluated his past races and qualifications. He was then accepted and began biking in the junior development team. The team is sponsored by over 20 companies, such as Rokform and Specialized, who give products to the team in exchange for advertising their products during races. Within his first year of being with Team Rokform, Yoshimoto has received helmets, clothing, lights, shoes, and even food.

“It’s fun to watch yourself improve through rides and races. As you gain experience, the more time you want to spend getting better to beat your competition and help your team mates get up to the podium.” Yoshimoto stated.

During his weekday 30 mile biking routine, Yoshimoto often rides with his father, who introduced him to the sport that is now their shared passion. His father, who still competes, has been racing for years and has won several races.

“[Cycling] helps keep me focused on what I need to do….when I get home I have my priorities straight and ready to go,” Yoshimoto said.

Training, competing, and riding takes up the majority of Yoshimoto’s time, but he has no intention of slowing down. Yoshimoto is determined to continue cycling, and wants to possibly make it a career. If that does not work out, he wants to become a mechanical engineer.