Professional rider on closed course competition.

Team Makita Suzuki Racing’s Ricky Carmichael Wins Phoenix Supercross Thriller

January 17, 2006

Round 2 – Amp’d Mobile AMA Supercross Series
Phoenix, AZ
Bank One Ballpark
Jan. 14, 2006

Team Makita Suzuki Racing’s Ricky Carmichael captured his first 2006 Supercross win in front of an overflowing Arizona crowd at Phoenix’s Bank One Ballpark on Saturday night. Serendipitously, last year Carmichael carded his first 2005 Supercross win at none other than the Phoenix venue. Teammate Ivan Tedesco finished ninth overall after suffering a mid-race get-off.

“I feel good, I’m happy to get the win and it was a good race for the fans,” said Carmichael. With this win, the defending AMA Supercross Champion claims a record 130 combined AMA Supercross/Motocross victories.

Although the evening ended satisfactorily for Carmichael, it didn’t start out that way. Paired in the first Supercross-class heat race with teammate Tedesco – who got a great start and finished an impressive second -- Carmichael got caught up in a turn-one melee.

In spite of the bad start, the defending Supercross champion still piloted his Makita Suzuki RM-Z450 to third place by the end of the heat’s eight laps. “I was unhappy with the heat race,” Carmichael admitted. “I was pretty upset after that. I knew I was better than that and I was pretty disappointed.”

As in the earlier heat race, Tedesco was out front again at the start of the 20-lap main event. The aggressive rider was in third position on the first lap and had moved into second fairly quickly. Unfortunately, he fell while trying for the lead.

“I was in a good flow but I guess I tried a little too hard to catch Jeremy (McGrath),” said Tedesco after the race. “The track was really slick and the front end just washed out. No doubt about it, if you pushed too hard on that track, it was going to put you on the ground.”

Meanwhile, Carmichael again suffered a lackluster start. Even so, he charged hard on his Makita Suzuki RM-Z450 and picked off his competitors as he moved through the pack. By the midway point in the race, the Floridian had taken the lead and rode consistently and smoothly to take the win.

“It was a good race,” said Carmichael. “In the main, I still didn’t get a good start but I just tried to plug away and not make any mistakes. I made a few mistakes, but fortunately not big ones. The championship fight is turning out to be pretty good. I’m trying to have patience and enjoy the moment and the momentum, and may the best man win. Hopefully, we’ll all stay healthy and give the fans what they want to see.”

With this victory under his belt, Carmichael has nothing but praise for Phoenix and enthusiasm about next weekend’s second Anaheim event. “I love Phoenix,” he said. “I love everything about this place. And now I just want to try and build on this momentum and take that to Anaheim. It’s a long season.”

Similarly, Tedesco is ready to move on to the next race and is excited about returning to Anaheim. “I’m going to be working really hard this week to get ready for next weekend’s race,” he said. “I’m looking forward to redeeming myself.”

In the Amp’d Mobile World Supercross GP, Carmichael and Tedesco remain in second and fourth positions overall, respectively.

Ricky Carmichael, Team Makita Suzuki Racing RM-Z450, #4
1st Place – Supercross class, Amp’d Mobile AMA Supercross
Tied for 1st Place – Overall

Ivan Tedesco, Team Makita Suzuki Racing RM-Z450, #9
9th Place – Supercross class, Amp’d Mobile AMA Supercross
8th Place – Overall

Supercross Class Top 10 Finishers:
1. Ricky Carmichael, Team Makita Suzuki Racing

2. Chad Reed, Yamaha,
3. James Stewart, Kawasaki
4. Jeremy McGrath, Honda (holeshot)
5. Nick Wey, Honda
6. Michael Byrne, Kawasaki
7. Ernesto Fonseca, Honda
8. Mike LaRocco, Honda
9. Ivan Tedesco, Team Makita Suzuki Racing
10. David Vuillemin, Honda

Supercross Lites Class Top 10 Finishers:
1. Nathan Ramsey, KTM
2. Billy Laninovich, Honda
3. Grant Langston, Kawasaki
4. Ryan Villopoto, Kawasaki (holeshot)
5. Andrew Short, Honda
6. Sean Collier, Yamaha
7. Paul Carpenter, Honda
8. Darcy Lange, Kawasaki
9. Brett Metcalfe, Yamaha
10. Mike Alessi, KTM

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