Since retiring from AMA SX/MX after his 2007, Ricky Carmichael has remained close to the Suzuki brand, filling the role as brand ambassador.This relationship continues for 2018 after Suzuki announced that Carmichael, known as the “GOAT” (Greatest of All Time) due to winning five Supercross and seven Motocross title, will continue his role as brand ambassador.
Suzuki says Carmichael will help with some grassroots initiatives as the brand looks to progress amateurs to professionals.Carmichael will continue to be an integral part of Suzuki’s efforts including the RM Army initiative – the umbrella under which Suzuki racing support resides. The Camp Carmichael program, an exclusive Suzuki offering, will continue with Carmichael providing personal coaching for riders who qualify on Suzuki RM and RM-Z race bikes.As a champion who rose to prominence through amateur racing, it’s fitting that Ricky will continue to provide guidance to Suzuki Amateur Elite Team riders.In support of Suzuki’s all-new factory racing program in the U.S., Carmichael will also interact with Autotrader / Yoshimura / Suzuki Racing team management at Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) as well as the contracted racers directly. This adds to the solid start the JGR group has had since the team was announced in September.A significant portion of Carmichael’s responsibility with Suzuki will be product development and feedback. With the recent announcement that Suzuki Motor Corporation (SMC) was suspending participation in the MXGP and All-Japan MX championships, a greater portion of the development and refinement of the company’s motocross models has shifted to Suzuki in the United States.“We are fortunate to have Ricky as a resource to improve our products and represent the company in the United States,” said Kerry Graeber, Suzuki’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing. “Ricky’s success and voice in the motocross world is unparalleled. Suzuki is the winningest bike in U.S. motocross over the past decade and RC is a huge part of that success. We are stoked to continue our fruitful relationship with Ricky into the foreseeable future.”Carmichael echoed Graeber’s comments. “I won championships and wrapped up my racing career on a Suzuki, so obviously the brand is near to my heart,” said Carmichael. “With the increased emphasis and importance on Suzuki in the U.S., I am looking forward to doing what I can to help further develop its products and racing success.”His relationship with the Suzuki brand began in 2005, campaigning the RM-Z450 following a season off due to a knee injury. Carmichael dominated SX, claiming the title after beating out rivals James “Bubba” Stewart and Chard Reed. He won seven SX titles, and followed that up with winning all 12 events in the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross series, and claiming the US Open of Supercross title. He also helped lead Team USA to victory at Motocross des Nations. He followed that season up with the 2006 Motocross title before riding part time in 2007 and retiring.Carmichael’s team, RCH Racing which he founded with freestyle motocross legend Carey Hart, won the 2016 AMA Motocross Championship. Carmichael and Hart closed the team at the conclusion of the 2017 racing season.In addition to his expanded role with Suzuki, Carmichael will continue to contribute to the motorcycle industry and sport though the Ricky Carmichael Daytona Amateur Supercross, the Ricky Carmichael University, and other charitable endeavors.For additional information, visit Ricky Carmichael’s website. The 2018 AMA Supercross season begins on January 6, 2018 at Anaheim Stadium.
This week, Senior Editor Nic de Sena rides the all new Ducati Monster. Big changes have been made by Ducati–has the company ruined the considerable heritage of the iconic Monster–or are the changes worth it? In the second part of the show, we chat with Nick Ienatsch, Founder and Head Instructor at the Yamaha Champions Riding School. He says: “We aim to change your riding life by introducing you to Champions Habits: The techniques, approaches, skills, and the mindsets of the best riders in the world. These Champions Habits are the foundation of safety and consistency to whatever speed you ride, in any venue on any bike. Street riders, this is just as much for you as track riders. The best way to make safe riders is to make good riders.“ We hope you enjoy this episode!