Welcome to the …. Limelight

Welcome to the …. Limelight

(click on small images below to view the larger photos)

We walked towards the entrance of the futuristic looking building. Very impressive! (Editor’s note: We would tell you the secret location of this event, but if we did, we were told we would become lifeless, mindless, zombie-like robots, incessantly rambling unintelligible statements such as “It’s not like it’s rocket surgery”. Definitely not worth spilling the beans to you about the location!) Then we were greeted by staff that made us feel right at home. In front of the building’s entrance were various Kawasaki machines, including James Stewart’s championship winning KX 125.

The doors opened at 6:30pm. We walked inside the building, wondering what we would see next. The interior design was something out of this world too – very high-tech industrial. In the giant lobby, wait staff were on hand, serving us champagne and tasty appetizers.

At 7 we were ushered into the theater/presentation area, complete with stage, lights, music, and large overhead video screen. It was like going to a movie premiere!

Mr. Keith Code was the Master of Ceremonies. Then Bob Moffitt spoke, and championship rings were given to Jet Skiers Chris MacClugage and Dustin Motzouris, Drag Racers Jim Carroll, Ryan Schnitz, and Chip Ellis, Off-Roader Fred Andrews, and Motocrosser James Stewart, Jr. All of them won championships in 2002 on Kawasaki’s.

The ‘Man’ at Kawasaki, Bob Moffitt, is retiring after 27 years with the company. He’s retiring so he can ride his motorcycles more! Bob was acknowledged on stage for so much of what he’s done in motorcycling, and presented with a beautiful painting (see photo). Jeff Ward, 7 time AMA champion, was a surprise special presenter to Bob.

Next up, the 2003 Motorsports teams were introduced:

  • Jet Ski Racing – Manager Joe Heim, riders Chris MacClugage and Dustin Motzouris
  • Drag Racing – Manager John Hoover, riders Chip Ellis, Ricky Gadson
  • Muzzy Drag Racing – Owner Rob Muzzy, rider Ryan Schnitz
  • Road Racing – Manager Michael Preston, riders Eric Bostrum, Tommy Hayden, Tony Meiring
  • ATV Racing – Manager Reid Nordin, riders Heidi Landon, Mike Penland
  • Off- Road Racing – Supervisor Jason Smigel, riders Destry Abbott, Fred Andrews, Shane Esposito, Chuck Woodford
  • Team Green Motocross – Supervisor Craig Martin, riders Gavin Gracyk, Jessica Patterson, Ryan Villopoto, and 50 others
  • Team Pro-Circuit Kawasaki – Manager Alley Semar, riders Mike Brown, Justin Buckelew, Eric Sorby, Matt Walker
  • Team Chevy Trucks Kawasaki – Manager Bruce Stjernstrom, riders James Stewart, Jr., Ezra Lusk

Finally, it was out to the Limelight Lounge – an outdoor patio party complete with food, adult beverages, dessert, coffee, pool tables, a DJ, an indoor basketball court, and a Drag Bike Racing Simulator!

We talked to Jacquelyn McCurdy and Matt Freeman, who helped organize this beautiful event:

Matt: We are honoring our 2002 Kawasaki champions and presenting our 2003 motor sports teams to the media, sponsors, and important industry personnel.

Jacquelyn: This year we probably pulled off most of the preparation in about a month’s time. We try schedule this around the AMA banquet, so the athletes are in town, and we don’t take much time out of their busy schedules.

Earlier today we spent time doing media training with the athletes. We had our professional media trainer helping them with on-camera interviews and working with the media. By the time they got here today they had already had a seven-hour workday.

To put this entire event together takes two or three people from every department within Kawasaki. There are people who bring display products, such as our race replica bikes out front for everyone to see, there’s somebody from Information Systems doing the Power Point presentations, various executives preparing their portions of the show, team managers and their athletes, and more. We also hire a special Master of Ceremonies. The FCB advertising agency pulls together all the video for the presentation, Freeman McCue public relations pulls together all the media and invites. And this year Freeman McCue took on more of an event planner role. All in all, it’s probably a good section from each department within Kawasaki and the agencies that are contracted with them. It’s become a big production.

Matt: This year we went with a ‘Limelight theme’, which has a nightclub atmosphere. So we have the pool tables, bar, and couches outside. This is something different for us, especially since we are here at (the secret location). It’s such a unique place, with it’s industrial architecture look that you might see at a nightclub.

Definitely a lot of sleepless nights for a lot of people to put it all together. My role was to help write the program that was handed out tonight. The actual presentation took so many people to do. Jacquelyn, Sheryl, Mary, Damien. Everyone in the marketing department at Kawasaki, and so many other people.

Jacquelyn: One of our goals with all this is to create a ‘feel good’ event where we honor our champions from last year and present the championship rings to them. So it’s kind of a ceremony as well. And it’s also an opportunity to publicly and formally announce our 2003 teams, even though we’ve done it through press releases and the media already. This is also a time where we get to invite our sponsors, KMC employees and agency employees to show our appreciation. Everyone gets to meet and share, and have a good time.

Good times were had by everyone!

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Walking towards the entrance

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You may enter

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Bruce Stjernstrom

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James Stewart’s championship 125 on display

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Overhead shot of Eric Bostrum (don’t ask!)

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Mr. Ezra Lusk

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The ‘secret location’ has an indoor basketball court!

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Bob Moffit, 1979!

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A beautiful painting, celebrating Bob Moffit

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James has a championship ring!

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Matt Freeman helped organize

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Good times were had by all!

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Kawasaki’s 2003 Off-Road Team

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The Drag Bike Simulator was a hit

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Cecilia Muriello, Lou Heimann, Sheryl Bussard

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This is Drag Racer Ricky Gadson – World’s Fastest Supermodel too!

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Yamaha knows how to ‘cook’!

Yamaha knows how to ‘cook’!

A hot & sunny November day in SoCal. The Dromo One indoor facility. 90 go-cart drivers. All the 2003 Yamaha race team members. A full day of driving. Fun. Fun. Fun!

After 466 laps – over three hours and 20 minutes of action, the winning team is ….. Hackers and Hawkers!

1st Place – Team 6 – Hackers & Hawkers

Members – Hacking, Hawkins, Hawk, Coe , Duke, Burks, Rounds, Satoh, Dawson, Tresser

2nd Place – Team 1 – Aussie Invasion

Reed, Anderson, Basher, Olsen, Hinz, Palmer, Hartvickson, Mackino, Starr, Hultner

3rd Place – Team 4 – Master Something

Buckmaster, Negishi, Carruthers, Jones, Dubach, Jonnum, D. Hofmaster, Chung, Stark, Westover

4th Place – Team 7 – The Demons

Disalvo, Demuth, Swarts, Yost, Johnson, Ringlien, McCarty, Disalvo, Wolf, Haney

5th Place – Team 8 – The Squirrels

Sellards, Lawrence, Quinn, Brown, Dye, Bragg, Guerra, Matthes, T. Hofmaster, McMahn

6th Place – Team 3 – Get Lapped

Ferry, Raines, McGee, Willardson, Dunn, Perry, Edge, Haines, Fulkerson, Wardell

7th Place – Team 2 – Victory

Vuillemin, Voss, Rousseau, Caouette, Faught, Brooks, Baker, Monte, Powers, Ward

8th Place – Team 9 – Tabasco

Tedesco, Underwood, Alderton, Giberson, Tolleson, Wallenburg, Lewis, Suganuma, Kula, Kanagee

9th Place – Team 5 – Go.. Pe..

Gobert, Pearson, Patrick, Carter, Ramirez, Graves, Groce, Lambert, Banister, Gueller

Click on the thumbnail to view the larger images

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Craig Anderson, YOT, direct from Australia

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Brad Bannister of Yamaha, Rick Johnson

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The ‘chalkboard’. Oh my!

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David Vuillemin – getting ready for the track

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The Dromo One facility – very close to Anaheim Stadium

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Aaron Gobert – member of Yamaha’s 2003 Road Racing

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Jennifer & Megan helped make this happen

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Areancross Champ Josh Demuth waiting to go

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Dirt Rider Editor-In-Chief Ken Faught swept the billiards competition, winning almost $578,000!

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Paul Carruthers, Rick Johnson

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Randy Hawkins, choosing start positions

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Reed, Wey, and others talk

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How many people remember ‘The Dog’? RJ’s helmet

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Brock Sellards prepares

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Yamaha of Troy – Sellards, Anderson, Tedesco

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Mr. Bob Starr of Yamaha knows how to ‘cook’!

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Track overview

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Heath Voss

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More track

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The ‘winners circle’

Josh Demuth, Arenacross Champ Interview

Josh Demuth, Arenacross Champ Interview

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Rick Johnson, Josh Demuth

Rick: Josh, everything has been going very well for you. You are the defending arenacross champion, and you are currently leading the point standings again. Is this what you expected, or is it even better than you expected?

Josh: It’s even better than I expected. I was just hoping to come out and stay healthy and consistent. Our team is incredible – Shogun Motorsports and Yamaha. Things are going well!

Rick: Is your plan for 2003 the same as this past season – capture the arenacross title, and then do some supercross?

Josh: Yes, we will do the entire arenacross series, and then five supercross rounds. After that I’m going to either do the Canadian National MX Series, or the AMA Four-Stroke Series.

Rick: We’ve seen some ‘older’ guys take on arenacross in their ‘later’ years (like Denny Stephenson and Buddy Antunez), but you are a much younger guy. Do you want to move on to supercross eventually, or do you like the niche you have created?

Josh: I want to keep a good balance in life, especially with racing. I’m happy with where I’m at currently, and I like the people. It’s a lot of fun, and I make a living for me and my wife and family. It’s hard to leave something like that.

At the same time, every rider wants to become a supercross champion. I know I still do. So that’s a goal for me to still go after. Hopefully I can use arenacross as a stepping stone to supercross.

Rick: When we met two years ago, you were ‘hit and miss’. You were always one of the fastest guys on the track, but not always making the best results. What was the catalyst for the big change in your results? What made you go from fast and inconsistent to fast and consistent?

Josh: My mechanic Jacky. He helps me keep my head on straight. I used to have a short temper, but not so much anymore. Jacky helps me to make positive things out of negatives. He’s a big help.

And of course there is my wife. I met my wife, and then she has helped calm me down a lot.

And I met Brian O’Rourke, who is our pit pastor at the races. He’s been a big part of my life now as well.

Rick: You have God and Christ in your life now. What has that done? Does it give you a better temperament? Does it help give your life purpose as to what you are doing?

Josh: It’s helped in many ways, but more so with my overall outlook on everything. Racing is not everything in life. Other things in life are important, such as family. For me, having faith in God, and doing things with my family, makes the racing all that much easier now. I’ve become a better racer, and a better person.

Europe, 1980

Europe, 1980

Names like De Coster, Malherbe, Lackey, and Carlqvist. 500 Grand Prix Motocross photos from the historic Citadelle circuit in Namur, Belgium, and the beautiful grass track in Ettlebruck, Luxembourg.

James Stewart and Travis Pastrana were not born yet. And Ricky Carmichael was eight months old. These are photos of our sport’s history. Click on thumbnails to view larger images.

by Lex

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Roger De Coster – Namur, on the pavement

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Hakan Carlqvist from Sweden

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Brad Lackey trying to become the first American World Champion

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Brad looking good on grass

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Andre Malherbe – winning his first 500 title

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Classic Lackey, Malherbe, De Coster duel at the Citadelle

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Lackey, Malherbe, De Coster

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Roger’s last professional race was Luxembourg. He dominated both motos!

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Roger practicing starts in Luxembourg

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Andre Vromans from Belgium

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Gerrit Wolsink and Andre Malherbe on grass

Three days of Bercy

Three days of Bercy

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There is no other supercross event quite like Bercy. It’s the Crown Jewel of European supercross. They were the first to bring together all the top stars from the USA and the Grand Prix circuit. It’s three nights of action, and entertainment.

Overall individual standings for Bercy 2002 combining all three days of racing:

1. Grant Langston – KTM – 2/2/1

2. Chris Gosselaar – HON – 1/9/6

3. Travis Preston – HON – 4/1/12

4. Josh Hansen – YAM – 6/3/9

5. Billy Laninovich – KTM – 12/6/4

6. Brock Sellards – YAM – 15/8/3

7. Ivan Tedesco – YAM – 3/4/20

8. Andy Short – SUZ – 9/18/2

9. Joachim Rodrigues – KTM – 14/10/5

10. Rodrig Thain – HUS – 7/5/19

11. Edgar Torronterras – YAM – 19/7/7

12. Steve Boniface – KTM – 5/11/20

13. Eric Sorby – KAW – 16/13/10

14. Craig Anderson – YAM – 19/12/11

15. Stephane DeMartis – YAM – 8/14/20

The team scoring had the USA first, Rest of the World second, and France third.

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Chris ‘The Goose’ Gosselaar!

The first night of racing saw Chris ‘Le Goose’ Gosselaar winning the Finale.

Friday night Main Event:

1. Chris Gosselaar – HON

2. Grant Langston – KTM

3. Ivan Tedesco – YAM

4. Travis Preston – HON

5. Steve Boniface – KTM

6. Josh Hansen – YAM

7. Rodrig Thain – HUS

8. Stephane DeMartis – YAM

9. Andy Short – SUZ

10. Rui Goncalves – YAM

11. Pascal Leuret – KTM

12. Billy Laninovich – KTM

13. Serge Guidetty – YAM

14. Joachim Rodrigues – KTM

15. Brock Sellards – YAM

16. Eric Sorby – KAW

17. Matt Walker – KAW

18. Ryan Morais – SUZ

The next night of racing saw Travis Preston winning the Finale.

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Travis Preston

Saturday night Main Event:

1. Travis Preston – HON

2. Grant Langston – KTM

3. Josh Hansen – YAM

4. Ivan Tedesco – YAM

5. Rodrig Thain – HUS

6. Billy Laninovich – KTM

7. Edgar Torronterras – YAM

8. Brock Sellards – YAM

9. Chris Gosselaar – HON

10. Joachim Rodrigues – KTM

11. Steve Boniface – KTM

12. Craig Anderson – YAM

13. Eric Sorby – KAW

14. Stephane DeMartis – YAM

15. David Pingree – SUZ

16. Serge Guidetty – YAM

17. Mickael Maschio – KAW

18. Andy Short – SUZ

Grant Langston capped of the weekend by winning the Day 3 Finale.

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Short, Langston, Sellards

Sunday Main Event:

1. Grant Langston – KTM

2. Andy Short – SUZ

3. Brock Sellards – YAM

4. Billy Laninovich – KTM

5. Joachim Rodrigues – KTM

6. Chris Gosselaar – HON

7. Edgar Torronterras – YAM

8. Marc Ristori – HON

9. Josh Hansen – YAM

10. Eric Sorby – KAW

11. Craig Anderson – YAM

12. Travis Preston – HON

13. Raphael Beaudouin – SUZ

14. Serge Guidetty – YAM

15. Antoine Meo – KAW

16. Christophe Pourcel – KAW

17. Jeff Dement – YAM

18. Rodrig Thain – HUS

Here’s a link for more info on the Bercy Supercross!

Special thanks to Xavier Audouard, and Chris



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