This Week in Yamaha History:  Hurricane Warning in Dallas

This Week in Yamaha History: Hurricane Warning in Dallas

February 16, 2012 9:30am
Any rider who is making big money in Monster Energy Supercross has Bob “Hurricane” Hannah to thank. Really, anyone who is making any kind of money at all working in this industry should thank him, too. This sport would not be where it is if not for Hannah’s exploits in the 1970s. He played the role as the first supercross superstar to perfection, and launched the popularity of stadium racing into a climb that hasn’t stopped since.

The Hurricane first touched down in earnest in 1977, when Bob scored the first two wins of the season in Atlanta and Daytona. Veterans Jimmy Ellis and Tony DiStefano then reeled victories to keep Hannah in sight, but at round five in Dallas, Hannah won again, launching a three-race win streak to signal a changing of the guard in the sport. He’d go on to win the next three supercross titles, and probably would have garnered more if not for a freak waterskiing accident that knocked him out of the 1980 season.

With this year’s tour rolling into Dallas, it’s a fitting time to salute the Hurricane’s first win in town, which took place in '77 while riding a YZ250. And that’s this week in Yamaha Supercross History!

Hannah in '77
Photo from the Dick Miller archives