Looking Back At The Motocross des Nations

This past weekend Team USA’s Ricky Carmichael, Kevin Windham and Ivan Tedesco trounced the field at the 58th running to the Motocross des Nations. For Team USA it was their first win since 2000 when Carmichael led the team to victory in Belgium. It also marked America’s 16th win at the event, and effectively tied them for first with Great Britain for the most des Nations victories. Here at TransWorld Motocross we were curious as to just how this magnificent race began, so we decided to do a little research to find out who started it, and who’s been doing all the winning over the past 58 years.

Established in 1947 the FIM sanctioned Motocross des Nations is the oldest running FIM event. Over the years the race has under gone some slight changes to the format, however, it has always remained the “Olympics of motocross. From the beginning, the race was designed to establish the world’s fastest country for the year, with the winning team taking home the coveted Chamberlain Trophy.

In the early years Great Britain ruled the race. At the 1947 event the powerful Great Britain team, which consisted of Bill Nicholson, Fred Rist and Bob Ray took the win. Since then, Great Britain has gone on to claim a total of 16 victories, and until this year, no other country has matched that record; Team USA, however, officially tied the Brits after their win on the tough Ernee track this past weekend. And while Britain might have the most wins, the U.S. has had the longest win streak. Back in the 80’s, and into the early 90’s, America had a 13-year streak going—1981-1993. In fact, the beginning of the win streak was the first year the U.S. won the event, with the team of Donnie Hansen, Johnny O’Mara, Chuck Sun and Danny LaPorte doing the honors. Those are just a few of the highlights of the prestigous event.

Now, we could go on forever about how many times so-and-so won, or what country has the most victories, but we decided to make it easy on you. Below is a list of the top countries in the history of the race, as well as the top American riders and where each U.S. team finished. Have fun reminiscing…

Most Wins:

  1. United States-16 wins
  2. Great Britain-16 wins
  3. Belgium-14 wins
  4. Sweden-7 wins
  5. Italy-2 wins
  6. USSR-2 wins
  7. Czechoslovakia-1 win
  8. France-1 win

Most Successful Team USA Riders:

  1. Jeff Ward-7 wins
  2. David Bailey-5 wins
  3. Johnny O’Mara-4 wins
  4. Mike Kiedrowski-4 wins
  5. Ricky Johnson-3 wins
  6. Jeff Emig-3 wins
  7. Jeff Stanton-3 wins
  8. Ricky Carmichael-2 wins
  9. Jeremy McGrath-2 wins
  10. Damon Bradshaw-2 wins

Past Team USA Teams and Their Finishes:

2005 – Ricky Carmichael, Kevin Windham, Ivan Tedesco-1st
2004 – No Team
2003 – Ricky Carmichael, Ryan Hughes, Timmy Ferry-2nd
2000 – Ryan Hughes, Ricky Carmichael, Travis Pastrana-1st
1999 – Mike LaRocco, Kevin Windham, Ricky Carmichael-4th
1998 – John Dowd, Doug Henry, Ricky Carmichael-5th
1997 – John Dowd, Jeff Emig, Steve Lamson-8th
1996 – Jeremy McGrath, Jeff Emig, Steve Lamson-1st
1995 – Steve Lamson, Jeff Emig, Ryan Hughes-2nd
1994 – Jeff Emig, Mike Kiedrowski, Mike LaRocco-2nd
1993 – Jeff Emig, Jeremy McGrath, Mike Kiedrowski-1st
1992 – Billy Liles, Mike LaRocco, Jeff Emig-1st
1991 – Mike Kiedrowski, Jeff Stanton, Damon Bradshaw-1st
1990 – Jeff Ward, Jeff Stanton, Damon Bradshaw-1st
1989 – Jeff Ward, Jeff Stanton, Mike Kiedrowski-1st
1988 – Ron Lechien, Rick Johnson, Jeff Ward-1st
1987 – Bob Hannah, Rick Johnson, Jeff Ward-1st
1986 – David Bailey, Rick Johnson, Johnny O’Mara-1st
1985 – David Bailey, Jeff Ward, Ron Lechien-1st
1984 – Rick Johnson, Johnny O’Mara, Jeff Ward, David Bailey-1st
1983 – David Bailey, Mark Barnett, Jeff Ward, Broc Glover-1st
1982 – David Bailey, Johnny O’Mara, Danny Chandler, Jim Gibson-1st
1981 – Chuck Sun, Johnny O’Mara, Danny LaPorte, Donnie Hansen-1st
1981 – No Team
1979 – No Team
1978 – Bob Hannah, Rick Burgett, Chuck Sun, Tommy Croft-4th
1977 – Kent Howerton, Tony DiStefano, Gary Semics, Steve Stackable-2nd
1976 – Rex Staten, Bob Hannah, Tony DiStefano, Kent Howerton-5th
1975 – Jim Pomeroy, Brad Lackey, Kent Howerton, Tony DiStefano-9th
1974 – Jim Pomeroy, Brad Lackey, Tony DiStefano, Jim Weinert-2nd
1972 – Gary Jones, Jim Weinert, Brad Lackey, Jim Pomeroy – 7th