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AMA Pro Racing to Investigate Fuel Situation

PICKERINGTON, Ohio (February 28, 2006) – AMA Pro Racing announced today that it will launch a special investigation into the fuel situation surrounding the Amp’d Mobile AMA Supercross Series.

On Friday, Feb. 24, Ricky Carmichael was penalized 25 points for using illegal fuel at round six of the series at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, Calif., on Feb. 11.

As part of a routine post race technical inspection at the end of the San Diego event, the fuel from Carmichael’s motorcycle, along with seven others, was tested. The fuel from Carmichael’s motorcycle was found to be out of compliance with the rules and the Team Makita Suzuki rider was assessed a 25 point penalty. The fuel from the other seven competitor’s motorcycles was determined to be within the rules. The list of riders whose fuel was tested includes Mike Alessi, Grant Langston, Jeremy McGrath, Nate Ramsey, Chad Reed, Andrew Short and James Stewart.

AMA Pro Racing has required the use of unleaded fuel in AMA Supercross and AMA Motocross competition since the 2004 racing season.

In making the announcement that a special investigation will be launched, AMA CEO Patti DiPietro noted that while a fuel penalty is not an appealable offense, there is enough evidence in this case to warrant an investigation. 

“Our goal here is to get to the bottom of this ongoing fuel situation,” said DiPietro. “The rule on unleaded fuel is clear cut. If the lead content in fuel exceeds 0.005 g/l (grams per litre) it is illegal for competition. This is an objective, easily defined measurement that has been in place for three racing seasons. What concerns us here is that we keep finding fuel that is outside of the rule limits. We expect our competitors to take every possible step to ensure that their equipment is completely within the limits of the rules, but to penalize a competitor for an offense that is completely beyond his or his team’s control is not our purpose.

“Furthermore, it is not our intention to have a ruling influence the outcome of the series unless completely and absolutely warranted. This investigation will objectively determine all of the facts surrounding this issue.”

DiPietro stated that an outside consultant will be contracted to conduct the investigation. It is expected that teams as well as fuel suppliers, among others, will be interviewed in this process. The finding and recommendations of the consultant will be the foundation for any further action to be taken by AMA Pro Racing officials.

Until the outcome of the investigation is determined, Carmichael’s penalty stands.

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