Jeff Emig knows his way around Las Vegas: He won his first 250
Supercross main event here on a peculiar Saturday night in 1995, then
clinched the ’97 AMA Supercross title in Sin City while riding for Team
Kawasaki. He also won the last big race of his career, the 1999 U.S.
Open of Supercross, on an FMF-backed privateer Yamaha. Finally, he
retired in Vegas, holding four major titles, 37 AMA National/SX wins,
and three victorious rides for Team USA at the Motocross des Nations.
With all that in mind, Racer X Online asked Fro to give us his take on
the 2006 Amp’d Mobile AMA Supercross Championship and the three men in
title contention. Here’s what Jeff had to say.
Jeff Emig photo courtesy of Moto Verte
Everyone in the motorcycle-racing world has their eyes on Las Vegas this weekend. An unprecedented points race in our sport’s premier championship has Ricky Carmichael and Chad Reed tied, with James Stewart only five points back. Most years, by the time we get to Vegas, the points race is pretty secure for the champion, but not this year—even the 250F classes had great points races.
James Stewart has definitely shown the most speed late in the season. I think he has been the most improved rider this year. James rides in a way that big mistakes are going to cost him, but that's how he goes so fast! You can’t have it both ways: You either ride tight and safe or loose and dangerous. I guess the key is to find a balance that wins the championship. With the spectacular get-offs we have seen from James this season—Daytona and Anaheim 3 come to mind—it is amazing he is still in the championship.
If James ends up on top, it will be because of his amazing speed and the beginning of what I'm sure will be a string of supercross championships. If Reed wins, it will be an amazing story of what can happen if you never give up and how you can put yourself in a position to have luck go your way (and we all need that now and then). And if RC wins, well, it will be the greatest challenge of his career, only fitting for our sports winningest rider ever.
So no matter how it plays out on Saturday night in Las Vegas, just remember all three of these guys are champions and we are all very lucky to witness this epic battle.