COOPER WEBB

Morehead City native Cooper Webb will get back on the motorbike in completion on Saturday, Aug. 15 to begin the nine-round 2020 Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship. (Motocross Action Magazine photo)

MORGANTOWN, W. Va. — Cooper Webb and the rest of the riders in the 2020 Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship will be able to hit the track again in 20 days.

The Morehead City native and his fellow riders will take part in a nine-round schedule to complete the series, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing. A typical season last 17 rounds.

Webb has tallied three straight top-10 season finishes in the 450MX class after winning the 250MX championship in 2016. He took eighth in 2017, followed by ninth in 2018 and sixth last season.

The season is scheduled to begin Saturday, Aug. 15, with the inaugural professional event at famed Loretta Lynn’s Ranch in Hurricane Mills, Tenn. The next eight rounds will take place at well-known venues, ranging from Washougal MX Park in Washington to Spring Creek MX Park in Millville, Minn. The 2020 series will also feature the first-ever pro motocross doubleheader at RedBud MX in Buchanan, Mich.

“While we continue to navigate through these challenging and continuously evolving times of the coronavirus pandemic, we are confident that we’ve developed the framework for a high-caliber championship schedule that can be successfully implemented,” said Roy Janson, MX Sports Pro Racing Competition director.

The first half of the season will open with five consecutive rounds.

Following the debut of the Loretta Lynn’s National, the schedule will then travel to the scenic Pacific Northwest for the Washougal National on Saturday, Aug. 22, before heading to the greater Indianapolis area for the Ironman National on Saturday, Aug. 29.

From there, Michigan’s legendary RedBud MX will give way to the season’s lone off weekend after it hosts a pair of races around the Labor Day holiday on Saturday, Sept. 5 and Tuesday, Sept 8.

Racing will resume with the Spring Creek National in Minn. on Saturday, Sept. 19, before heading to Florida for the WW Ranch National on Saturday, Sept. 26.

The penultimate round of the championship will take place in Colorado with the Thunder Valley National on Saturday, Oct. 3 before crowning a pair of champions in Southern California at the season-ending Fox Raceway National on Saturday, Oct. 10.

“Needless to say, it’s been a tumultuous year for everyone, and I think we’re on Plan ‘W’ by now,” said Davey Coombs, president of MX Sports Pro Racing. “We know the motocross community is as passionate about this championship as we are, as it’s the lifeblood of the sport, and it’s been our goal to bring everyone, from riders to fans alike, the series they deserve. We’re confident that this schedule will accomplish that, and we look forward to providing the joy and sense of normalcy that American motocross can bring during these incredibly uncertain times.”

All events on the 2020 schedule will adhere to social distancing guidelines and health management protocols.

Each round will be conducted in accordance with local and state ordinances, as identified between the event organizer and local officials.

The paddock will be closed to the general public, with access limited to properly credentialed parties only and facemasks required at all times. Handwashing stations and hand sanitizer stands will be placed throughout the venues, and personal hygiene education signage will be prominent.

Select events will feature limited spectator capacity, while others will be held exclusively for participants, professional and amateur, with attendance limited to crewmembers and family.

“Although we respect the unpredictability of scheduling any live events during these uncertain times and are sensitive to the hardships many people are going through, we remain committed to making our best effort to host the world’s most prestigious motocross championship,” Janson said. “We will conduct these events in a safe environment by implementing several policies, all in an effort to control as many variables as possible.”

The Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship was set to begin in May and then pushed to June before another postponement.

The season opening Hangtown Classic set for May in California was canceled in March. It is the first time in 52 years the race hasn’t been held.

Many of the riders in the series also ride in the Monster Energy AMA Supercross, which was halted for 85 days at the outset of the pandemic and then finished with seven rounds of racing in a three-week span. All of those races were held in Salt Lake City, Utah, without fans.

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