Just a few days remain before the 2010 Rockstar Energy RedBud National, round six of the Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship, kicks off with the longstanding 4th of July tradition of American motocross. For four decades, the world’s greatest riders and most well known personalities have battle it out on the rich Michigan soil and to celebrate the illustrious history of the facility, RedBud is hosting a pair of festivities to help build the excitement of the event.
Since 1974, motocross has been a summer institution in Buchanan and throughout the last 36 years, the Michigan Mafia has been a staple of that tradition. The Great Lakes State is a longtime hotbed of motocross that produced one of the most iconic groups of riders in history: Jeff Stanton, Mike Hartwig, Todd DeHoop, Brian Swink, Alan King, Eddie Warren, Keith and Greg Bowen, Kelly Smith, Dave Hollis, Denny Bentley, John Grewe, Jimmy Wilson, the Bigelow brothers, the Hinkle boys, Lisa Akin-Wagner and more. There was also the legendary Team Dynamic amateur juggernaut that ruled the circuit through the seventies and early eighties.
The Michigan Mafia tradition still lives on through today with DeWitt native and Monster Energy Kawasaki rider Nick Wey, not to mention WMX stars Sarah Whitmore and Ashley Fiolek (now a transplant to St. Augustine, FL) among others.
To honor the men and women that put Michigan motocross on the map, RedBud is hosting the Michigan Mafia Reunion. Throughout the weekend, several members of the Mafia will be on hand to bench race and celebrate Independence Day with the fans while nostalgic photos and bikes from the ’70s and ’80s era adorn the facility. Fans can also expect to see “honorary” members of the Michigan Mafia like Mike LaRocco, Connie Fiest and Larry Witmer, all of who were from next-door Indiana but lifelong Red Bud regulars.
On Friday evening, RedBud will host the second annual Fan Fest at the track, centering around the Michigan Mafia Reunion. Former champion and Coldwater native Stanton, Cheboygan’s Whitmore and current Michigan Mafia flag bearer Wey will sign autographs for the fans and take part in the pre-race celebration before the world’s best take to the track and attack LaRocco’s Leap on Saturday afternoon. The festivities run from 6-8 p.m. EST.
Additionally, RedBud will be eco-friendly in 2010 by going green in a concentrated effort to promote recycling at the track. Every disposal site throughout the entire facility will be accompanied by a recycling bin designated for the thousands of glass, aluminum and plastic containers that will be used throughout the weekend. Recycling banks will also be located at high traffic areas in an effort to provide ample opportunities to help the environment.
The Rockstar Energy RedBud National will also be the second of three live events broadcast exclusively on NBC Sports. This marks the second year that NBC has brought RedBud to the millions watching at home and last season, Muscle Milk/Toyota/JGR’s Josh Grant was able to break through for his first career win and instantly become a household name. The NBC broadcasts are a groundbreaking opportunity for the sport of American motocross to enter the mainstream, reaching millions of households throughout the country. After a successful debut season on the network, the Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship has returned, hosting its NBC premiere from High Point Raceway on June 12, introducing breakout rookie sensation and Rockstar/Makita Suzuki rider Ryan Dungey who captured the win on that day.
The gates drop at RedBud beginning at 1 p.m. EST on Saturday, July 3. NBC Sports coverage of the second 450 Class moto begins at 3:30 p.m. EST. Next-day coverage of the 250 Class can be seen on Sunday at 4 p.m. EST on SPEED. As always, live internet stream of the first motos of each class can be seen at www.allisports.com/motocross.
For tickets and fan and racing information on the 2010 Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship, log on to www.allisports.com/motocross.