Red Bull Hondaâ€™s Ivan Tedesco, of Tallahassee, Fla., spoke to the Jacksonville media today about the first-ever Monster EnergyÂ® Supercross, an FIM World Championship, race that will be held at Jacksonville Municipal Stadium April 4, 2009.
Tedesco, a two-time AMA Supercross Lites champion, was joined by Bob Downey, General Manager of SMG-Jacksonville, Mike Bouda, Director of Jacksonville Sports and Entertainment Board, and Dr. Steve Augustine, of the Asterisk Mobile Medical Unit.
â€œI am really excited to have a race here because I live here in Florida now and this is the closest race I have to my hometown,â€ said Tedesco. â€œThe Southeast is not only home for me, it is home for many of the top riders. It has become the new hot bed for supercross racers. This is the place to be if you want to succeed, and we will bring supercross to the fans of Jacksonville for the first-time ever in April. Itâ€™s always neat to come to a new venue and give new fans an opportunity to watch supercross.â€
Downey, who has been instrumental in making the annual Monster JamÂ® event in February successful, looks forward to the inaugural Monster Energy Supercross race at Jacksonville Municipal Stadium.
â€œWe have worked with Feld Motor Sports on the Monster JamÂ® for years, and it has grown from a 20,000-ticket event to selling out at 70,000 fans,â€ said Downey. â€œIf we can have that success with supercross, we will be very happy. It is an extra attraction for the people of Jacksonville as well as those traveling to the event from out of town.â€
The popularity of Monster EnergyÂ® Supercross in the Southeast is at an all time high. The strong following of supercross fans and top riders from the southeast makes Jacksonville the perfect addition to the 2009 Monster EnergyÂ® Supercross schedule. The neighboring tour stop at Atlantaâ€™s Georgia Dome has surpassed the 70,000 mark for attendance. Atlanta has become the â€œAnaheim of the Eastâ€ (Anaheim, CA is the site of the first race on the Monster EnergyÂ® Supercross tour, and hosts three races annually), and Jacksonville has the opportunity to match or surpass that standing.
â€œAn event like Monster EnergyÂ® Supercross does a lot for the city of Jacksonville,â€ said Bouda. â€œYou will see the transformation of this stadium into a real supercross track on April 4, so it wonâ€™t look anything like it is today. The race should attract a lot of families and the younger crowd. That is great for us because it suits the family needs. This is an excellent fit and hopefully the race will be coming back for many years to come.â€
In a sport that features the best riders from all around the world, supercross stars Ricky Carmichael, James Stewart, Chad Reed, Tim Ferry, Davi Millsaps, Ivan Tedesco, and Grant Langston, just to name a few, call Florida home.
Located on the St. Johns River in downtown Jacksonville, the stadium plays host to some of the countryâ€™s premier entertainment events including Super Bowl XXXIX and Monster JamÂ®, which recorded a record 70,611 fans earlier this year. Jacksonville Municipal Stadium is home to the NFLâ€™s Jacksonville Jaguars.