BLAST FROM THE PAST: BRAD LACKEY 1982 WORLD 500CC CHAMPION

Bad Brad Lackey was a catalyst to the growth of American Motocross in the late 60’s with his California CZ days where he was known for the peace dove on his crossbar. Brad was looked the part with rock n’ roller looks and an attitude that appeared non-chalant, but in reality was brutally focused on the goal of being the best rider on the planet. His competition was intense, mainly coming from the Europeans who dominated the sport. Roger DeCoster, Ake Jonsson, Heikki Mikkola and Gerrit Wolsink had blistering speed, years of training and were bred to handle the brutal double 45-minute moto format. Brad signed with Kawasaki in 1972, went on to win the 500 Nationals and placed top American at the Trans-AMA series. The next year Brad started his quest for a World Championship, which took nearly ten years when he won the 500 Championship in 1982. Racing a Suzuki, Brad developed a team around him that dealt with his fitness, his machines ability to be competitive against the efforts of Factory Yamaha, Honda, Kawasaki and he used suspension that no one on the planet was using. Steve Simons had developed the first Upside down fork and this not only changed the face of front motocross suspension forever, it helped him win the world championship making him the first 500cc American to beat the Europeans at the game they invented.

Comments are closed.