The United States motocross scene has been searching for its next big star since men such as Bob Hannah, Broc Glover, David Bailey, Ricky Johnson, Jeff Ward, Ricky Carmichael (pictured here), Ryan Villopoto and Ryan Dungey hung up their helmets.
So who will be the next Goat (the Greatest Of All Time) in the US?
The search goes on as the 2018 US outdoor season hits full throttle, the 12-round series set to visit the Thunder Valley Motocross Park in Colorado for round three this coming weekend.
Colorado’s Eli Tomac has shown already that he might be the next big thing, with four wins from four starts thus far, and Frenchman Marvin Musquin is right behind him, while German Ken Roczen already has two series titles under his belt and Jason Anderson won an unexpected Supercross title earlier this year.
But none of these riders has become the sport’s dominant guy, at least not yet.
Villopoto won seven combined outdoor and Supercross titles before retiring in 2015 and Dungey walked away in 2017 after winning seven combined titles.
Tomac appeared to be ready to take over the mantle after winning the 2017 outdoor title, but had some struggles during the 2018 Supercross season, finishing third. Musquin and Blake Baggett have been steady with top-5 season finishes, but have yet to win a title.
Roczen has a pair of outdoor titles under his belt, but suffered a horrific crash during the 2017 Supercross season that led to multiple injuries to his left arm. He will likely have to ride himself back into shape this outdoor season after an injury to his right hand during the 2018 Supercross season.
Anderson, Dungey’s former training partner, finished third in the 2016 Supercross season and fourth a year ago, but battled injuries both his outdoor seasons. The New Mexico rider had a breakout performance during the 2018 Supercross season, winning four races to claim his first 450cc title.
With factory equipment and resources, Anderson has continued to improve and won the Supercross title in Las Vegas after a mishap the race before in Salt Lake City cut his lead to 14 points.
“I’ve been riding dirt bikes so long, so to win this championship is the most surreal moment of my life up to this point,” Anderson said after the Las Vegas race.
But there’s still a long way to go for riders such as Tomac, Musquin, Roczen or Anderson must go before they can claim to be one of America’s motocross legends.
And you could argue, anyway, that none of these achievements will match up globally to the 10 motocross world title wins achieved by Belgian Stefan Everts.
© Photos by Andy McGechan, www.BikesportNZ.com
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