Questions & Answers
What is your full name? My name is Luis “Wicho” Rodríguez. What's your Instagram? @wichofilmspr. Here's how I chose that name. When we were kids, my sister got a new bike and I got a camera. I wanted a bike, so they passed my sister's 16" to me. It was the one where you can add the top tube for males. LOL Anyway, my dad is a retired photographer, and I was always helping him taking photos or videos. Then on my own I did photos of surfing, dirt bikes, and bicycles. My dad's photo studio burned in 2008 and we lost all photos, negatives, and video tapes. Back in 1995, I came to Florida to study photography and worked for NASCAR for few years, did some (three) surf flicks, and a few music videos. In honor of my dad, I called my video/photo business Wicho Films PR (Puerto Rico). Moving forward almost eight years, I opened my Instagram because I was doing freelance for the Weather Channel. My Instagram was more for weather content, surf, and my motorcycles, and I called it @wichofilmspr. Three years later is when my son asked me to teach him to wheelie, and that’s when my page went from 5K followers to 93K today! How old are you? I was born in 1969, baby! So, I’m 54 years old, the oldest kid on the team. Where do you live? I grew up on the island of Puerto Rico. Now I live in Daytona Beach, FL. What's it like riding for SE Bikes? Riding for SE Bikes is a one-of-a kind experience! My son got me my first SE Bike (black Beast Mode Ripper) when I was 49 because he knew that was the best choice versus my 1971 Schwinn. I was trying to teach him to do wheelies and he said, ”Dad, you need the best bikes out there.” Well, he was right, and I started to ride every day. I was getting better with every pedal, and I told myself that I wanted to be one of the best, like I was when I was young. And SE Bikes brought that into my life! I started doing rides without even thinking about becoming a team rider. I started to also teach the kids around my neighborhood and my son's friends. I was also posting the progress that these bikes made happen in my life, and have definitely been a lifetime game changer! Today, I’m humbly honored and proudly happy to be part of the best team in this game! BIG SE, BABY! How did you get into bike life I got into bike life through taking my son and friends to ride around Dayton Beach. But, in 2018, they did the Spring Fling in St. Augustine. My son was exited to go, so we went! He had the burgundy Fat Ripper at that point and I went on my Schwinn. I was taking photos and started to see all the SE riders like DBlocks, MoBlox, and Twisted, and then all a sudden Todd Lyons came out with the prototype Monster Quad. I was like, "Holy smokes, what a bike!" Then we went riding and I ate sh*t on my Schwinn doing a wheelie. That’s when my son said, “Dad, we're getting you an SE!" After the whole day of watching all theses pros and awesome riders, I was hooked! At the end, Todd asked me who I was taking photos for. I said, "For myself," because I’m a photographer. He asked if he could look at the photos. I said to take them all, and they used some in the famous SE catalog! A year later, to thank me, Todd sent me the yellow Fat Ripper, the first bike that was ever given to me. Then I fell deeper in love with SE and bike life! How far can you wheelie? I can ride a wheelie for maybe one-and-a-half or two miles, but the fun is also to do all kinds of tricks that I have learned. Now I’m 54 years old achieving so many tricks and that really fills up my soul. What's the bike life scene like where you live? In Florida, we have an amazing family in the bike life scene! Here in Daytona Beach, I try to do one rideout per month and people come from all over Florida to ride the beach together. Also, Orlando and Tampa are close enough for me to go to their rideouts to support, and more importantly have fun with so many awesome riders and sharing the love for what we do. What is your favorite thing about bike life? The best part of riding my bikes is that when I sit on my bike, all I focus on is to keep that wheel up the best I can. Or do the best jump or a trick that’s a new challenge for me. Then I forget all the problems, bills, negativity, or even any bad stuff. Then it's a joy to make it happen and it's the most fun every time. Teaching new generations and helping riders around the world get better is also an incomparable joy. Meeting people and sharing knowledge, seeing so many bikes and cool stuff, and traveling with my bikes to bring my energy to places that need help with their community is also a huge part of being a SE Bikes team rider. What's the best rideout you've ever been to? Every rideout has been unique and has a spot in my box of memories. So many amazing people I have met. So many things I have learned! My first rideout was when I went to NYC for first time with my son, before I even thought I could be a team rider. DBlocks took us all over NYC, to his house in Harlem, and then all the way to Time Square. People were showing up from every corner—what an experience! Then I went to the Santa Cruz rideout, which was unique because like a week earlier I was sick with COVID. At same time, Todd sent me an email asking if I wanted to be part of the team! I was jumping to the ceiling with excitement. The Wednesday before the rideout I got a negative test, so I called Todd and said I was going—another outstanding experience. The most famous rideout was the SE Hoedown where I was introduced as an SE team rider officially. I was at Todd’s house with all my teammates, and a spectacular feeling of success kicked in! I’m blessed. But, the Puerto Rico rideout where I revived the bike life wheelie rides on the island I grew up also has very special place in my life. Colombia was amazing, Galveston was epic, Tampa, MLK in Miami, Philly, Orlando, New Orleans—all are happiness! Then in the last year-and-a-half, DBlocks and I found a new kind of love in Jamaica, and we love our bike life family there, too! What is your favorite place to ride? On my back tire, because for me it's too hard to ride a bike without doing wheelies! Puerto Rico is always special to me because it's where I did wheelies and jumps growing up. Now, riding in New York is something that nowhere else can offer. To ride in the biggest and busiest city in the world is an awesome rush. How many SE bikes do you currently own? Now I have eleven SE bikes. In Puerto Rico I have the black Beast Mode Ripper, a red Fast Ripper, and a Mike Buff Fat Ripper. Here in Florida I have a 20” Wildman, DJ Ripper HD, yellow Fat Ripper, silver Monster Quad, Black Sparkle Fast Ripper, Golden Beast Mode Ripper, the very first Killer Quad, and a brown box secret bike that I can’t tell you about right now. LOL How many followers do you have on Instagram? Right now I have 93K followers, 7,777 posts, and I have more than ten viral reels ranging from 250K to 12.9M views. Also, Luis Wicho Rodriguez is my Facebook, and I've been working on my YouTube channel, as well (Wicho Films PR The Pepperoni Production) What is your favorite SE bike? My favorite SE bike is the Beast Mode Ripper because it was my first experience on an SE and I learned this new game of tricks. But, I love all of my SE bikes because they all ride differently and help to gain more wisdom. Like in surfing, you need to have different surfboards for different styles or different waves so you can expand your abilities to do more stuff with them. That applies to bikes as well. Are you part of a riding crew? I created SE Bikes Puerto Rico to help my community to enjoy bike life like never before! We have been doing a lot of fun stuff and events there, and I think now we have around 400 SE bikes on the streets of Puerto Rico. We hand-donated and gave away around 32 SE bikes to kids that needed help and earned them. It's an amazing feeling to see the growth of bike life in the community of Puerto Rico. What's a fun fact that people may not know about you? Having fun is a big part of my life with my family. I love surfing and I love photography! And playing games like ping-pong and pickle ball are lots of fun! I love motorcycles, as well. I have few Harleys and I've probably had 14 dirt bikes (still have one). I also enjoy snorkeling, and cooking, too. What advice would you give to someone getting into bike life today? Ride for fun! It's heathy for the body and mind! Go places and experience new memories. Teach, learn! Make videos. Do not hate! Be kind and strong! Life is about keeping everything in balance! And three things: dedication, sacrifice, and discipline will not only bring success, but will be the elements to maintain growth in life. Ride as much you can, and have few different bikes to expand your skills. What's your secret to improve your riding skills? Ride every day! Practice new things. Have multiple bikes and see the different things you can apply to each one. Watch the pros and absorb knowledge to make it your own style. Share the knowledge. Go to rideouts. But more importantly, do it for your own satisfaction. Go have fun. What would you be doing if you never found bike life? Bike life found me and I found bike life at 49 years old. I lifted my front wheel when I was four years old for the first time and it runs in my blood. It's hard to answer this question because I would be lost with out my bikes and my bike life family. Will you ever stop riding? I’m so glad you asked this question, because my ultimate goal is to break the record for the oldest guy to do a wheelie in the world. I am hoping to do it at 80-85 years old, so I have another 30+ years to go on one wheel!