DeCoster to captain Carmichael, Ferry and Hughes in the Olympics of Motocross PICKERINGTON, Ohio (Sept. 10, 2003) -- After a two-year absence Team USA Chevy Trucks returns to the Motocross des Nations in Zolder, Belgium, on Oct. 4-5. Current...
DeCoster to captain Carmichael, Ferry and Hughes in the Olympics of Motocross
PICKERINGTON, Ohio (Sept. 10, 2003) -- After a two-year absence Team USA Chevy Trucks returns to the Motocross des Nations in Zolder, Belgium, on Oct. 4-5. Current AMA Supercross and Motocross Champion Ricky Carmichael heads up the American squad along with teammates Tim Ferry and Ryan Hughes. Racing legend Roger DeCoster will captain the U.S. squad. Team USA Chevy Trucks is hoping to earn its 16th victory in the prestigious international competition. The European press has dubbed this year's race as the "Clash of the Motocross Titans" in reference to the powerhouse teams fielded by America and Belgium and the showdown between Ricky Carmichael and world champion Stefan Everts.
The American team is enthusiastic about getting back to the Motocross des Nations. "It's good," said Carmichael, who is riding for Team USA Chevy Trucks for the fourth time. "The past two years was something we had no control of, so it's awesome to go back to the real Motocross des Nations and get this ball rolling. Ever since our win in France I think the past two years we could have won."
Carmichael referenced Team USA's last win in France in 2000, the last time the team competed in the world event. That year in St. Jean d' Angely, Carmichael, Hughes and Travis Pastrana led Team USA to its 15th Motocross des Nations victory. Carmichael was the leading scorer in that year's competition.
Undoubtedly the strongest team the U.S. will face this year will be the host country's squad that features three current world motocross champions -- Stefan Everts, Joel Smets and Steve Ramon. Everts recently completed an astounding season of motocross winning the MXGP championship and becoming the only rider ever to win three races -- in three different classes -- on the same day in the final Grand Prix of the season in France. Everts, the all-time wins leader in world championship motocross, is considered by some to be the best motocross racer of all-time. Naturally American fans have a differing view on who owns that title.
Carmichael is also coming off a phenomenal season, winning both the AMA Supercross and AMA Chevy Trucks U.S. Motocross Championship. This year he surpassed Jeremy McGrath as the all-time leader in combined AMA Supercross and Motocross victories. Carmichael is the only rider in the history of AMA Motocross to complete a perfect season -- going undefeated in 24 motos and 12 rounds during the 2002 season.
If Team USA Chevy Trucks manages to win in Belgium it will tie Great Britain for the country with the most wins in the history Motocross des Nations. The international motocross team series began in 1947. Great Britain dominated much of the 1950s and '60s. The United States got a late start in coming to the esteemed event. The U.S. first fielded a team in 1972. Team USA broke through to take its first Motocross des Nations title, winning unexpectedly in 1981, with the legendary team of Chuck Sun, Johnny O'Mara, Danny LaPorte and Donnie Hansen. The U.S. went on a 13-year winning streak in the 1980s and early 1990s to establish itself as the premier country of motocross racing in the world.
Interestingly, the same weekend Carmichael, Hughes and Ferry take to the track in Belgium, Team USA 1981 is to be inducted into the Motorcycle Hall of Fame in Pickerington, Ohio.
For immediate post-race results, points, live transponder scoring, in-depth series and rider information, regular columnists and much more, log onto www.USMotocross.com.