SUPERCROSS: Dallas press day notes

Art Eckman, Media Prof. Dallas: The first Dallas supercross was staged in 1975 with Jimmy Ellis of Cobalt, CT winning on a Can Am. That was the second year of the series. Ellis went on to sweep the season following with wins in Daytona, Houston...

Art Eckman, Media Prof.

The first Dallas supercross was staged in 1975 with Jimmy Ellis of Cobalt, CT winning on a Can Am. That was the second year of the series. Ellis went on to sweep the season following with wins in Daytona, Houston and Los Angeles.

This would be the last season they'd stage a 500 supercross series. Steve Stackable of Austin TX won two of the three races taking Dallas and Daytona.

No rider has ever won Dallas three years in a row. Ricky Carmichael has that chance this season should he break his current three race loss string.

Rick Johnson has the most wins here with three. Four riders, Kevin Windham, Jeremy McGrath, Damon Bradshaw, and Jim Ellis scored two of their career wins here.

Of the 23 previous 250 races at Dallas there have been 16 different winners.


Chad Reed has brought the class alive with three straight wins bringing about a thrilling end to the season. He might be too far back to steal away the championship with Ricky Carmichael taking second place each time but it has certainly been competitive. If Reed and "RC" go one and two for the rest of the season, Ricky still wins the title by seven points, but the tighter it gets the more important costly mistakes become.

For the first time since round five, six and seven of 1988 (14 years) the same riders (Reed, RC, & Fonseca) have finished in the exact order on the podium three consecutive races. Back then it was Rick Johnson, Jeff Ward and Ron Lechien.

Of the top eight finishers in Irving last year only one, the winner, Ricky Carmichael will probably be at the gate this year because of injuries and illness. Jeremy McGrath got the early lead for three laps last season before being passed by "RC" who pulled away leading the final 17 laps. Chad Reed after finishing his 125 East title run jumped on a 250 for this race crashed on the opening lap and placed in 18th, one spot ahead of Ernesto Fonseca. It was the fourth 250 race of the season for Reed who opened the season out West with a sixth, fifth and eighth.

Ricky Carmichael:

Looking for a three peat. Still his title to lose despite not winning over the last three races. Leads by 16 points. With all the competitive excitement lately let's not over look the fact that Ricky is having an outstanding season. His worst finish was a fourth at Phoenix.

He has seven wins with four seconds and one third. 12 podiums in 13 races (11 consecutive podiums) Ricky has led the most laps of anyone with 122 out of the 260 run. (47%)

This will be his 67th consecutive start. If he wins in Irving he will have his 8th win of the season - the 34th career 250 supercross win. He will be one win away from tying the mark for the most wins in three consecutive seasons. The record held by McGrath is 33 between the '94 and '96 seasons. And also one win away from the record he has stated he wants the most - the all time SX/MX combined career record of 89 wins also set by Jeremy.

Larry Ward:

Larry leads all the privateers in Clear Channel Privateer Bonus money collecting more than $14,000 for making 12 main events. (The Bonus for a privateer winning a main event has been upped by Supercross Director Todd Jendro from $5,000 to $10,000)

Good starts including two hole shots in the last six races have been the major key to Larry's move into the top ten in points.

His best race of the year was at Houston (one of two fourth place finishes) where he got the hole shot, and led for eight laps.

This will be his 187th 250 main event only three shy of the all time record held by the injured Mike LaRocco. Has three career supercross wins. The last one in Seattle in '99.

Ezra Lusk:

Has been out with an injured wrist from a hard crash in practice at Houston. Has one win at Dallas in 1998. Won his 12th career victory at Phoenix earlier this year. His first since '99. His last podium was a second place at Minneapolis 2/15.

Chad Reed:

With his fifth win of the season Chad passes David Vuillemin's outstanding rookie mark of four wins set in 2000. Chad has now led 103 out of 260 laps run this year (almost 40%) compared with Vuillemin's 67 laps led in 320 laps (21%).

Reed is tied in rookie wins with Jean-Michel Bayle and Damon Bradshaw both getting five in 1990. Chad can't match Jeremy's ten first year wins in '93 but he's got a shot at tying or moving ahead of Bob Hannah's six wins. (Hannah got his six wins in only a ten race season).

Wins - 5, podiums - 11 (6 consecutive) Hole shots - 1, Laps led -103

Qualifying heat wins - 8 (with every win he's also won his qualifying heat.)

If he wins the Dallas SX he will have tied Hannah for the best rookie season ever for a Yamaha rider.... Chad will be the first rider other than "RC" and Jeremy McGrath to win four in a row since Damon Bradshaw in 1992....Ties Hannah for the third most wins in a single season by a Yamaha rider. (6)

Ernesto Fonseca:

His third consecutive third place finish last week gave him five races he's placed in the top four, and in all five he's had good starts.

That was far from the case earlier in the season when he was averaging almost a 10th place start and a 12.5 place finish in a crash filled first seven races.

His drastic turnaround has shown the character and confidence that had him becoming the only rider in supercross history to win both a 125 East and 125 West championship.

Nick Wey:

Has a chance to move into the top five with any luck. His eighth place finish was actually a better ride than it looks considering he was in 19th place after the opening lap.

Nick's best finishes this season were fifth places in San Diego, Minneapolis, St. Louis and Houston. He has a twelve point lead on his MACH one teammate Heath Voss.

Heath Voss:

Is coming off his best finish of the season (5th) after matching his best start (4th) Has fought through some nagging injuries this season.

Sean Hamblin:

Last week at Pontiac he posted his best 250 finish of the season with a fourth place. The week before he won his first 250 qualifier after being told he would ride out the rest of the season in the top class.

Sean has five single digit finishes in six 250 events. A tenth at Daytona his only tough time of it. (10th) Sean has a shot at the top ten despite missing the first six races of the year when he started the season in the 125 West.

Sean's best finish in the 125's this year was a fourth at Phoenix. If he wins here it would be the first Dallas supercross win ever in the 250's for Suzuki. ( A dream come true for Roger DeCoster after Jesseman winning the 125 East last weekend)

Keith R Johnson:

The race is on down the stretch for privateer of the year honors and that $25,000 first place bonus plus a new Nissan pickup truck. Keith has put back to back sixth place finishes on the board the last two races. It's given him a 25 point lead over Ryan Clark with three races to go.

If Keith ends up holding his current standing he stands to make more than $71,000 this season from purse money and privateer bonuses.

Ryan Clark:

It takes two to make it a competition and Ryan has dogged Keith Johnson for top privateer honors all season long. He held the edge until a near disastrous day at Anaheim III.

Coming off a ninth place at Pontiac he has finished in the top ten three races in a row. His best finish was in the season's opener at Anaheim (7th) It was his best career 250 finish.

If the season ended today he stands to make more than $50,000 in purse and privateer bonus money.


The 125 scene picks up with the 125 West with James Stewart setting his sights on winning the #1 plate. The West region hasn't had a race since the eighth of February. Several riders bided their time riding 250's. James Stewart did not.

James has a 31 point lead on the only rider with a mathematical chance, last years champion Travis Preston. A third place or better for Stewart would give him enough points to win his first professional supercross championship regardless of where Preston finishes.

For the first 12 years the Dallas 125 supercross was an East/West meeting During those years there was from two (Dallas & Houston) to four East/ West 125 meetings during the season. ( One time 1996 - Minneapolis, Houston, Dallas & St. Louis) The last six years it's been exclusively a West region race.

During East/West shootout days a West champion won five races, an East champ took four events and a non champion won three times.

Jeremy McGrath is the only rider to win more than one 125 race in Dallas. Three riders won both a 250 and 125 race here - McGrath, Doug Henry, and Kevin Windham. Three riders won their very first 125 victories at Dallas - Bobby Moore '85, Ty Davis in '86 and thirteen years later Grant Langston won his first here.

James Stewart:

Before the break he dominated like no other this season winning his last five races. He led 70 of the 75 laps. Every lap in the last four races. Not uncommon for him to win by 20 seconds.

This was the first year James has won more than two in a row. (the last two races of the 2002 season) James has won seven of his last eight 125 supercross races, leading 83 of the 120 laps (69%) James does not have great affection for Texas stadium. Last year going down four times, finishing in 16th he went from a 10 point lead to a ten point deficit with only one race remaining on the season.

Biggest question fans want to know: Will James move up to the 250's next year. Has yet to lose a qualifying heat. His only loss this year was the opener in Anaheim when a bad start saw him come from as far back as 18th to finish in second place.

If he wins in Irving -- #6 on the season and 10th career 125 win. Tying him with Michael Pichon eighth on the all time 125 sx win list. A sweep of the final three races would put into second with Damon Huffman, Ernesto Fonseca and Brian Swink. (12 wins) McGrath is the all time leader with 13 wins.

Travis Preston:

Won last years race taking the lead away from Travis Elliott on the third lap and led the following 13 laps. Strikingly similar to this years lone win in the Anaheim opener. Both races he took over first in points and led 13 laps.

Has had a good season defending his 125 West title with a win and three second place finishes. It was the sixth place at Anaheim II followed by an 11th at San Francisco that took him out of a championship race.

Time heals all wounds but one wonders if Travis and Matt Walker get together again. It started with Travis putting Walker down with a hard block pass for second place at Phoenix. Walker's teammate

Eric Sorby gave Travis some pay back slams in the next race at Anaheim II. Then Walker was fined after putting Travis into the finish line jump scaffolding at San Francisco.

Bad starts limited him to second place finishes in the last two races before the break. Despite his problems with Walker and Sorby, Travis has finished first or second nine times in the last 15 races. If he wins tonight - he matches last years win total. It will be his fourth career 125 win. Ran in the 250's class during the Eastern swing. His best finish was a fourth at Daytona. Twice he graduated to the main event out of his qualifying heat with second place finishes.

Matt Walker:

Has had a good season despite the lack of wins. His best finish a second place at San Francisco. It was his first podium since his first supercross win last year in Houston.

In his only double digit finish (14th) he was in second when Preston put him down for the position. Last years coming off his first supercross win in Houston he won his qualifying heat. A bad start (11th) he worked up to finish fourth his second best finish of the season.

Christopher Gosselaar:

Has showed a lot of progress this season. Took a fourth in the opener after leading the first two laps. He took a fourth at Anaheim II after starting way back in 11th.

Got a podium (3rd) at San Francisco.

Andrew Short:

Ran four 250 races on the Eastern swing but sat out the last three races after suffering two concussions in ten days. Was in third before the break after a third place in the season's opener, his best ever finish a second at Anaheim II. In his last 125 West race he went from winning the LCQ to getting a 13th place start in the main. It made his fourth place finish look like an outstanding accomplishment.

A clutch problem led to his biggest disappointment on the season at Anaheim III.

Travis Elliott, Danny Smith, Josh Woods & Andrew Short were injured during the 125 West break and Sean Hamblin was moved to the 250's thinning the ranks.

Josh Hansen:

Came back from 15th to finish eighth his best of the year at Anaheim III

Craig Anderson:

Chad Reed's cousin trying the American series for the first time. His best finish was a sixth at Phoenix. He led the first three laps after getting the hole shot.

Billy Laninovich:

Has had a good season with only one double digit race. - a 10th after being T boned. At Anaheim II he got into the main event winning the LCQ. He got the hole shot and ended up with his second career podium (3rd).

Tiger Lacy:

Got hole shots in the last two 125 West races.

Eric Sorby:

His best race of the season - Anaheim III where he got the hole shot to the right and held onto third place.


Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series AMA , Other bike
Drivers Jeff Ward , Ricky Carmichael , David Vuillemin , Kevin Windham , Jeremy McGrath , Ezra Lusk , Ernesto Fonseca , Chad Reed , Damon Huffman , Heath Voss , James Stewart , Mike LaRocco , Doug Henry , Andrew Short