Rider-turned-manager looking for big things out of team at Oakland supercross event 

click to enlarge The best supercross riders in the world will come to Oakland on Saturday. - COURTESY HOPPENWORLD.COM
  • Courtesy Hoppenworld.com
  • The best supercross riders in the world will come to Oakland on Saturday.
For 16 years, Steve Lamson — one of the most renowned motocross riders of his and any generation — sacrificed his body atop the motorbike in the name of love, speed and sport.

But riding fast takes its toll.

“I was pretty beat-up,” said the 42-year-old Lamson, who quit the pro circuit eight years ago.

Back and neck issues, all a direct result from his riding, can do that.

“I didn’t want to get hurt no more,” Lamson said.

And today, he’s not.

The Sacramento native and two-time AMA motocross national champion-turned-manager will see action this Saturday as his Yamalube Star Yamaha Racing team continues its West Coast Monster Energy AMA Supercross swing at O.co Coliseum in Oakland — where 1.5 million pounds of added dirt have transformed the stadium into a dirt track.

And having only managed his three-rider team since September, Lamson likes his chances.

“We’ve got pretty good chances of winning a championship,” Lamson said of West Coast rider Cooper Webb and East Coasters Jeremy Martin and Anthony Rodriguez. Webb placed second last week in Anaheim in the 250SX and heading into the fourth race of the season this weekend, currently is sitting third in the standings.

“This kid Cooper Webb is pretty damn legit,” said Lamson, recognizing some familiar qualities in the 18-year-old. “He’s a kid that just wants to go out there and win. That’s what he was pretty much born and raised to do.”

And so was Lamson.

He was 5 years old when his father, John, first put him on a BMX, and 10 when he landed his first motorbike.

So, on dirt tracks from Dixon to Hollister to Marysville to Sacramento, Lamson perfected his adored craft. And by 18, he was good enough to go pro.

“Having the heart to do it, and to do it the right way, and it’s painful to do it the right way,” said Lamson, whose broken femur during his rookie season wasn’t enough to turn him away.

“Sometimes it’s not fun. But the benefit that you get out of it makes it all worthwhile.”

And his career has been pretty worthwhile.

“It was pretty cool,” Lamson said. “I just had some good finishes and had that opportunity and I took every advantage of everything I could to do what I always dreamed to do, and that was making a career out of it.”

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