Throwback Thursday: Ricky Carmichael Backs Up Big Talk at Budds Creek ‘97

Larry Lawrence | December 20, 2018

Throwback Thursday: Ricky Carmichael Backs Up Big Talk at Budds Creek ‘97

Budds Creek 125MX 1997 - Ockert
Cycle News Photo Collection/Karl Ockert

Ricky Carmichael had some big talk to back up at the Budds Creek National in 1997. RC, who was in his first full season as a pro in the outdoor nationals, had a miserable outing in the mud at High Point a round earlier. Perhaps in frustration after going 18-10 for 13th overall, he was quoted at High Point as saying that he was going to “blow those guys away” at the next round.

The next round was a few weeks later at Budds Creek, Maryland, and true to his word Carmichael earned dominating 1-1 moto finishes in the 125cc class.

Afterwards a somewhat contrite Carmichael said, “I’m happy that I could back my words up, but I kind of regret saying what I did.”

RC seemed to take that lesson to heart and for the rest of his career he nearly always spoke with the utmost respect for his fellow competitors. Of course, Carmichael didn’t have to deal with many 18-10 weekends from that point on either. He went on to clinch that year’s AMA 125cc Motocross Championship, his first of many titles.

This wonderful Karl Ockert photo (shot on Fuji Super G 400 film for you old photo buffs) shows Carmichael (No. 70) leading the pack through the first turn at the start of the second 125 moto. Coming around the outside, also with a great start, is Carmichael’s SplitFire/Pro Circuit Kawasaki teammate Casey Johnson (No. 32). Also visible in the shot are Damon Huffman (just to the inside of Carmichael), David Pingree (No. 57 SplitFire/Pro Circuit Kawasaki), Michael Craig (No. 15 Honda of Troy), Michael Brandes (No. 33 Chaparral Yamaha), Stephane Roncada (No. 112 Honda of Troy), Casey Lytle (No. 71 Honda of Troy) and David Kratz (No. 79 Montgomeryville Cycles Suzuki).

You can read about this race at Budds Creek and much more by subscribing to the Cycle News Archives at:

Larry Lawrence | Archives Editor In addition to writing our Archives section on a weekly basis, Lawrence is another who is capable of covering any event we throw his way.