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Sports Then and Now



Ricky Carmichael: Motocross Legend 12

Posted on July 18, 2014 by Martin Banks

Ricky Carmichael has taken a nontraditional path to the NASCAR circuit; he got there by absolutely dominating the motocross world. Born in 1979 in Clearwater, Florida, he first began racing motocross at a very young age. His parents were either very supportive of him or very nearly criminally negligent of him because he began racing at the incredible age of 5.

ricly

For the next ten years, he owned the American amateur races; as he went on to win an astonishing 67 titles. That’s nearly seven titles per year from age 5-15. Then in 1996 he decided to stop beating up on all the poor amateur racers and made the jump to pro racing. You know how sometimes there’s a bit of a learning curve when an athlete turns pro? You always hear people talking about college quarterbacks being stunned their rookie years by the speed of the NFL and so on. Well, there was no such harsh transition for Ricky Carmichael. In 1996 he won the AMA Motocross Rookie of the Year Award racing for the Kawasaki team.

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  • Vintage Athlete of the Month

    • Rusty Staub: A Man For All Ages
      April 8, 2024 | 1:26 pm
      Rusty Staub

      The Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month is a former major league baseball player who came into the game as a teenager and stayed until he was in his 40s. In between, Rusty Staub put up a solid career that was primarily spent on expansion or rebuilding teams.

      Originally signed by the Colt .45s at age 17, he made his major league debut as a 19-year old rookie and became only the second player in the modern era to play in more than 150 games as a teenager.

      Though he hit only .224 splitting time between first base and rightfield, Staub did start building a foundation that would turn him into an All-Star by 1967 when he finished fifth in the league with a .333 batting average.

      Read more »

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