Reigning Supercross champion and Minnesota’s own, Ryan Dungey has announced he is retiring from professional racing. In an announcement that shocked many, Dungey’s retirement comes when he appeared to be at the pinnacle of the sport. He just secured his third consecutive AMA 450SX championship in a hard fought season. He won the championship in what would be the final race of his career.
Dungey leaves with an impressive list of accomplishments to his name. He won a total of nine AMA Championships including: four AMA 450SX titles (2017, 2016, 2015, 2012), three AMA 450 Class MX titles (2015, 2012, 2010), an AMA West Coast SX Lites title (2009) and an AMA 250 Class MX title (2009). Beyond that, Dungey was a critical part of the U.S. Team’s success at the Motocross des Nations in 2009, 2010 and 2011 helping bring home three championships.
Dungey revealed in an interview that this was the hardest fought championship win for him. He feels that he is at the top of his game physically, but struggled mentally to be as focused as needed to continue winning. It showed throughout the year with Dungey only winning three races outright.
He did not announce any future plans, but did state he will remain involved in the sport and try to make it better. (MMM has a standing offer for Mr. Dungey to contribute stories, air out test bikes over big jumps, or enter local MX races under an assumed name- Ed.)
Nicky Hayden Seriously Injured
Former MotoGP world champion Nicky Hayden has been hospitalized in intensive care in an Italian hospital after being injured in a bicycling accident on May 17th. The Kentucky native was on a training ride near the Italian town of Rimini after he had competed in a Superbike World Championship race in Imola the previous weekend. According to reports he suffered injuries to his chest and head and was placed in a medically induced coma. A statement from the hospital stated “[Hayden] is still in the intensive care unit … [and] has suffered a serious polytrauma with subsequent serious cerebral damage, …the prognosis remains reserved.” Details were still limited as we went to press, but early reports are that Hayden was hit broadside by a car in an intersection. ADDENDUM: Since the paper was printed, Nicky has passed. RIP. – Ed.
Ducati For Sale
Got 1.5 billion Euros burning a hole in your pocket? Volkswagen, the parent company of Ducati is considering the sale as part of the automaker’s effort to streamline operations, according to a report from Reuters news service. The automaker is still cleaning up after it was rocked by the emissions scandal. According to sources, Volkswagen is reaching out to potential buyers, but hasn’t announced who those buyers are. Speculation is varied on who may be interested, but some indications point toward India’s Hero Motorcycles or an unspecified Chinese firm. Volkswagen’s Audi division bought Ducati in 2012 for about $935 million Euros.
The Cannon Ball Memorial
Erwin G. “Cannon Ball” Baker will be memorialized by a group of residents from Garfield Park, Indiana who are raising money to erect a historic marker in front of a house where Baker lived for more than 30 years. Born in Indiana, Baker was a motorcycling pioneer who set dozens of cross-country records riding a variety of motorcycles. Baker began riding in 1908 on an Indian motorcycle, entering races and even won the first race ever held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 1909. He earned his nickname after a record-setting transcontinental ride in 1914 when a New York newspaper writer compared him to the Cannon Ball Express train. From the 1910s through the 1930s, he set 143 riding and driving records. His best remembered record was a 1933 New York City to Los Angeles trek, setting a 53.5 hour record that stood for nearly 40 years and was the impetus for the legendary Cannon Ball Run. Efforts to raise money for the marker have included several events and raffles. Anyone interested in donating to the cause can find out more information through the Garfield Park Neighborhood Association http://www.garfieldparkneighbors.com/.
A Win for Off Road Riders
President Donald Trump has ordered a review of all national monument designations that are greater than 100,000 acres made by administrations during the past 21 years under the American Antiquities Act of 1906. The review is to be conducted by Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, who has 45 days to submit interim recommendations and 120 days to submit suggestions for legislation or recommend that the president reduce the size of monuments larger than 100,000 acres or rescind the designations altogether. The legal power of a president to rescind monument designations is uncertain. But some presidents have used their authority to resize monuments designated by previous administrations. This is considered a major win for off road riders which have seen previously accessible land closed off through what the American Motorcyclist Association saw as an over use of the American Antiquities Act by previous presidents in a bid to appease environmental activists