Sports & Recreation

Hollister resident earns gold medals at World Fire and Police Games

Hollister's professional motocrosser and Morgan Hill Police Officer Billy Jurevich won two gold medals at the 2015 World Police and Fire Games

Hollister's professional motocrosser and Morgan Hill Police Officer Billy Jurevich was recently named the fastest police and fire motocrosser in the world. Jurevich took home two gold medals in the 30-34 Expert and Open Expert classes at Budds Creek, Maryland, home of a legendary motocross track, at the 2015 Police and Fire World Games. 

More than 12,000 athletes came to Fairfax, Virginia, located about 30 minutes outside of Washington, D.C. and Maryland, to participate in the fames. Similar to the Olympics, athletes were welcomed at the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium for opening ceremonies and the cheering continued for the next 10 days for more than 60 sports like baseball, softball, dodgeball, track and field, archery, crossfit, boxing, ultimate firefighter, golf, paintball, rugby, shooting-skeet, soccer, and toughest competitor alive.

The motocross track, Budds Creek, was about an hour away from the athlete village, but racers didn't seem to mind.  Just days beforehand, the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship was hosted at the muddy race track for world-class riders Ryan Dungey, Ken Rockzen, and Marvin Musquin.  Jurevich said, "It was really cool to race on a track, that I could see on TV. Back East has a different kind of soil and climate which makes the track more difficult than what I am use to riding here on the West Coast. The tracks develop deep ruts when raced on." 

Tornadoes and severe weather couldn't stop this Hollister boy from shining on the podium.

The West Coast states were well represented at the Games thanks to "the godfather" Ed Wilson, retired Los Angeles County firefighter and creator of Fire & Police Motocross Nationals (FPMX). Wilson had more than 20 police and firefighter's dirt bikes and gear bags trucked across the country to Maryland.  Nor Cal rider Jurevich wasn't a stranger to FPMX, having won the 2015 Fire and Police National Grand Champion and the 2015 United States Police and Fire Olympics at Glen Helen Raceway in San Bernardino. Jurevich said he is looking forward to the Fire and Police Christmas GP and hopes his local law enforcement riding buddies makes the trip to Glen Helen. 

Jurevich began racing motocross professionally since he was 16 years old, so traveling across the country to race brings back fond memories with his parents Bill and Debbie. Unfortunately the cherry and apricot season at Jurevich Farm doesn't pause for racing, like most things do in the Jurevich household, so his parents could not make the trip.  Jurevich is forever thankful for his parents who continuously support his motocross dreams and for teaching him hard work and dedication to help him succeed in many aspects of his life. 

Jurevich has competed at the highest level in motocross. He competed in the Pac Bell Supercross in 2004, but Arenacross was Jurevich's area of expertise. Jurevich said he preferred the small tracks with big jumps which the basketball arenas provided, and was Nationally ranked as the 2001 AMA Arenacross Rookie of the Year.

Jurevich continues to dedicate his racing to Jake "Turtle" Wikoff. Turtle passed away in a car accident two years ago in Hollister. According to Jurevich, "Turtle was a huge inspiration and mentor with riding." Turtle would take the time out of his busy schedule and spend hours coaching Jurevich at local tracks. Jurevich still runs the number 180 on his bike, which was Turtle's racing number a few years back. Wikoff was another Hollister homegrown motocrosser and also raced in the professional motocross ranks for several years.

Not only did Jurevich give back to his community by becoming a police officer, he trained and coached several of Hollister's motocross riders who became professional racers themselves. Jurevich taught them the importance of nutrition, physical fitness, dedication to making goals, and accomplishing dreams. 

Jurevich made the decision to pursue a career in law enforcement at the age of 20, and was hired with the San Benito County Sheriff’s Office at age 21.  Although he could have continued pursuing a career in motocross, he said he decided to join the San Benito County Sheriff's Office to protect and serve his community.  Motocross is an exciting career but is not financially or physically stable, and Jurevich had his injuries in the past.  Despite being a full-time police officer in Morgan Hill, he is still able to compete on a professional motocross level.

Jurevich was part of the San Benito County budget layoffs in 2012 and was fortunate enough to lateral over to the Morgan Hill Police Department where he is now employed. Chief of Police David Swing agreed, saying “Having outside interests, such as competitive sports, is important regardless of our profession as those interests help provide balance. Outside interests are even more important in law enforcement as officers face unique stressors that are uncommon to many other professions. The realities of our job makes a balanced life all the more essential by helping to relieve some of that stress and live a healthier and longer life.”

Jurevich would not be able to race and compete without the support of local and longtime sponsors such as: Morgan Hill-based Fox Racing, Pros Plumbing and Rooter, Blonix,, Hollister Powersports, Faultline Powersports, and Jurevich Farm, along with many others who supported along the motocross journey.

BenitoLink Staff