During the early weeks of the COVID-19 shutdown this past spring, I decided it was finally time to tackle a long-overdue project: the history of the “pre-Loretta Lynn’s” AMA Youth and Amateur Nationals. I did a couple of features here for Racer X, as well as starting a year-by-year run through each event. Along the way I got reacquainted with some old friends and amateur legends like Ferrell McCollough, Troy Bradshaw, the Bigelow brothers, Hammerin’ Hank” Moree, and of course David Bailey (’78 champion) and Mark Barnett (’75). I also got to meet some amazing racers from yesteryear for the first time, including Michigan’s Denny Bentley, California’s Eric McKenna, and Tennessee’s own Gene McCay, who came out for both the AMA Amateur National and the first-ever Loretta Lynn’s Pro Motocross.
Sexton’s case was a little different. His injury was a broken collarbone, which will likely heal by the end of January. But the 2019 Monster Energy AMA 250SX East Region Champion was slated to race for GEICO Honda in the West Region, starting on January 4. Fortunately, he should be ready to go for the East Region; unlike then-premier-class guys like Emig, Carmichael, and Musquin, Sexton’s December crash won’t wreck his whole supercross season.
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