AMA

Houston Supercross notes

Lucky 7s: Team Chevy Trucks Kawasaki's Ricky Carmichael nailed down his 7th win in a row last weekend in Minneapolis, Minn., with an impressive victory, leading from wire to wire. The win, his eighth on the season, gave Carmichael a 29-point lead...

Lucky 7s: Team Chevy Trucks Kawasaki's Ricky Carmichael nailed down his 7th win in a row last weekend in Minneapolis, Minn., with an impressive victory, leading from wire to wire. The win, his eighth on the season, gave Carmichael a 29-point lead in the series standings. Suzuki-backed Travis Pastrana, 17, captured his third win on the season and leads the 125cc Eastern Regional Supercross Series. Pastrana's climb to the top of the series points lead was a long one. In Atlanta, Pastrana fell victim, to a nasty first turn pile up that forced him to start last. The lanky Maryland speedster finished the event in 14th place, setting him back to fifth-place in the series points lead.

Doubling Up: Travis Pastrana, who rides for Team Suzuki, will ride both the 125cc and 250cc classes this weekend for Round 11 of EA SPORTS Supercross. "I have been wanting to ride both classes since I was five-years old," said Pastrana. "The guys at Suzuki are a little nervous because there is more of a chance of getting hurt, but I feel confident that I can do it."

Ping Pong: Red Bull/KTM's David Pingree is ready for action this weekend after a long break from 125cc Western Regional Supercross competition. "I took a week off to rest up and have been doing some outdoor testing," said Pingree at the press conference Thursday. "I had some minor problems with my bike earlier this season, but I have them worked out and am ready for this weekend."

Hometown Hero: Travis Elliot, who is the local star from Alvin, Texas, will be riding in the 250cc class this weekend for the first time in his career. "I don't know if I will get a win here this weekend, but I will get a lot of great experience," said Elliot. "I am pretty excited about racing in front of my hometown."

Battling Brothers: Gio and Ivan Tedesco, who are from Albuquerque, N.M., have been racing against each other since age five and have dreamed about competing in supercross. Their dream came true as they have made their way into the top 5 in 125cc Western Regional Competition. "Ivan is my younger brother, even though he looks older than me," said Gio Tedesco. "We are always pushing one another at practice and in competition." Both brothers agree that having each other on the same team has helped their careers.

Plush Ride: A change was made to the suspension on Jeremy McGrath's bike last weekend in Minneapolis. "WE have changed to last year's suspension," said Larry Brooks, Team Manager, Mazda/Yamaha. "Jeremy did a lot of testing before the season, and we just forgot about last year's suspension, but as it turns out, this is the best set-up yet."

Tying The Record: Ricky Carmichael can tie both the all-time supercross win record of 14 and the all-time wins in a row record if he wins the next six events. McGrath holds the record from his '96 season when he won 13 races in a row before being stopped in St. Louis by Jeff Emig. If Carmichael wins there will be a permanent asterisk on him because there is one more race in the series. McGrath did it in a 15-race series. Two Pair: There are three four-time winners of the Houston Supercross: Jeff Ward ('85-'88), Mark Barnett ('81-'82), and Bob Hannah ('78-'79). Note: When Barnett and Hannah won there were two events held in the Astrodome.

King Of Houston: Jeremy McGrath has the most wins in Astrodome history with five ('00, '99, '96, '95,'94).

Crackin' The Line Up: Team Strategic 3's Michael Byrne cracked the top 10 last weekend when he finished ninth. In his first year of American supercross, Byrne, who is the Australia supercross champion, has made tremendous strides on the indoor circuit, which he says is completely different from what he is used to racing on. "I have never walked into a stadium and was so amazed by the size of the jumps like I have been here in the U.S."

Bionic Man: Extreme Athlete standout Shaun Palmer, who just won an ESPY for ESPN's Action Sports Athlete of the Year, has been training for the opening round of the Outdoor Nationals at the Carmichael compound down in Florida. "It's like boot camp down there," said Palmer. "We do nothing but train all day. Right now I am riding on Ricky's outdoor track with Brock Sellards." Is there anything this guy can't do. Once dubbed, on the front page of USA Today, as the world's greatest athlete, Palmer continues to make a statement for extreme athletes.

Whooped Out: The track in Houston is the largest on the tour, with enough floor space to create a technically-sound track that offers some of the most challenging obstacles. "The whoops are going to be huge," said Todd Jendro, Director of Supercross, SFX Motor Sports. "Dirt Wurx will start to build the whoops right after Friday's practice, and Saturday will be interesting."

Commercialized: Factory Honda filmed a commercial for the ABC broadcasts of EA SPORTS Supercross at Pontiac, Dallas, and Salt Lake City Friday morning. On hand for the festivities were Shaun Palmer and Sunny Garcia, who both ride Hondas. "The commercial is to show the growth and diversity of supercross among extreme athletes, and that is why we had Palmer and Garcia here," said Greg Wright, Public Relations Manager, Honda.

Injury List: French riders David Vuillemin, Team Yamaha, and Stephane Roncada, Team Chevy Trucks Kawasaki, will sit out of the Houston round with injuries. Roncada, who missed last weekend's event as well, suffered an injury to his heels at Daytona. Vuillemin, in his second full-year of American supercross, broke his collar bone last weekend in Minneapolis.

-SFX

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About this article
Series AMA
Drivers Ricky Carmichael , David Vuillemin , Travis Pastrana , Jeremy McGrath , Jeff Emig