Earlier this week we posted that Ronnie Mac had been removed from the official roster of Team Puerto Rico for the 2018 Motocross of Nation and that he would be replaced with another rider, likely Kevin Windham. Multiple things online, from Steve Matthes’ initial report to a dealership saying that Windham had purchased a new motorcycle from their showroom, made it clear that the fan-favorite rider was on the short list to line up and this was confirmed by team member Travis Pastrana on Thursday morning.
It’s been years since Windham raced at a professional level, as he decided to retire in the early rounds of the 2012 Monster Energy Supercross Series. The Mississippi native will join Pastrana and Ryan Sipes on the starting line at RedBud in October as a member of the team that was created to raise money for the island that is still reeling from the devastation of Hurricane Maria in 2017. In the two weeks since the team was announced, they have raised over $15,000 in funds through merchandise sales, which will be donated back to the island (merchandise can be purchased at teampuertorico2018.com). Because Puerto Rico is a territory of the United States, a loophole in the rulebook for the MXON allows anyone with a US passport to race as a member of the team.
Since the Federación de Motociclismo de Puerto Rico Inc. announced their 2018 MXoN line up, Team Puerto Rico has undoubtedly captured the attention of the entire racing world. From the team's seemingly fictitious and unlikely rider line-up, to the goal of raising funds for the hurricane-torn territory, to their first donation, Team Puerto Rico has had an eventful couple of weeks. The team has faced numerous hurdles and obstacles as they prepare for Motocross of Nations and today, the Federación de Motociclismo de Puerto Rico Inc. has confirmed rumors that had begun to circulate around the industry: Kevin Windham will be replacing Ronnie Mac on Puerto Rico's 2018 Motocross of Nations team
Although Ronnie's departure may be a letdown to many fans, it should not come as a surprise. It turns out that Ronnie Mac does not possess the proper licenses needed to race and understandably, the FIM cannot bend the rules for a fan favorite character. Team Puerto Rico is grateful to Ronnie for helping to get this project off the ground and for his continued support of a good cause. The world will have to wait for the self-proclaimed "best motocross racer in the world" to showcase his unmatched skill.
The Federación de Motociclismo de Puerto Rico Inc. is excited to have Kevin Windham on board for 2018. Windham has one of the best resumes in all of racing and his wins include a 2005 Motocross of Nations Championship. "I'm always nervous when I get a call from Travis Pastrana and to be honest, I wasn't even sure this was real. It took a bit of convincing, but I'm happy to be a part of Team Puerto Rico and support a good cause, both inside and outside the racing community," said Windham.
"As team manager I'm ecstatic to welcome KW to the team. No one else has more love from the fans than he does… and he is going to help support our end goal of helping others. It really says a lot about him to come back to racing for a good cause," said team coach and manager, Ricky Johnson.
"While I am bummed Mac can't race, we all knew it was a long shot. I'm just happy he came to me and the team with this idea and that we are going to able to finish what he helped start. Not many people know this, but my grandfather is from Puerto Rico and I still have ties to the island so I am especially pleased we are going to help. And we got Kevin Windham!!! He is my freaking idol! This is going to be fun!" said Pastrana on the new developments of the team.