Las Vegas, NV
Carey Hart is one of the most recognized names in all of freestyle motocross. His father bought him his first motocross bike when he was only four years old in hopes of spending some quality time with his son. However, what had originally started as a father and son pastime quickly turned into Carey’s passion. By the time he entered his first local race as an amateur, he was hooked and by high school graduation, Carey Hart was a professional motocross rider, racing the AMA Supercross circuit.
Soon thereafter, Carey grew bored with Supercross and started riding with a group of guys who were interested in a more creative and expressive form of motocross. In 1998, the freestyle motocross movement was born with Carey leading the way. From the sport’s inception, Carey has been one of the most innovative riders in the sport. He is the inventor of the Hart Attack, and at the 2000 Gravity Games Carey etched his name in the record books as the first rider ever to complete a back flip on a 250cc motorcycle. The back flip catapulted Carey, and Freestyle Motocross as a whole, to an entirely new level. The stunt got the world’s attention; it was even featured on Ripley’s Believe It or Not!
Carey has traveled the globe on a quest to put freestyle motocross on the map.
His popularity has helped increase exposure for the sport of Freestyle Motocross. He has been featured in nationwide ad campaigns for Ford and Mountain Dew as well as in such print publications such as Paper Magazine, Teen People, EXPN The Magazine, Rolling Stone, and has graced the covers of numerous motocross magazines. Carey has also starred on The Late Show with David Letterman, appeared on The Today Show and has starred in ESPN/Touchstone Pictures’ IMAX film, Ultimate X and has cameo appearances in Columbia Pictures’ XXX and Touchstone Pictures’ Charlie’s Angels II and in the VH1 reality show The Surreal Life.
In 2004 Carey’s passion for tattoos turned into a business venture. Hart & Huntington Tattoo Company opened its doors in the prestigious Palms Casino, Las Vegas. This move lead to another TV opportunity for Carey when the A&E network decided to follow him and the workings of the shop in their own reality show: INKED. Since then, three more Hart and Huntington Tattoo shops have opened: Honolulu, Niagara Falls, and Orlando at Universal CityWalk. In 2009 the H&H shop relocated to The Hard Rock Hotel. Carey also expanded the brand, making a quality clothing line based on the designs of the talented artists that work at Hart and Huntington Tattoo Company. The line can be found at all of the tattoo shops, online, as well as at some major retailers.
In addition to these business ventures, he still dedicates significant time to one of his biggest passions, his Supercross team. Carey funds one of the most popular and lifestyle-driven privateer teams to hit Supercross. In 2011, Carey welcomed a new title sponsor Dodge Motorsports who entered the Supercross space for the first time. Carey took his team to a whole new level for the 2012 Supercross season by doubling it’s size of talented riders at a time when most teams are down scaling.
Earning the first annual R.A.D. Lifetime achievement award for his impact on freestyle motocross, this Las Vegas native is determined to ride until he stops having fun and hopefully for us, that’s not anytime soon.
In October 2012, Carey announced the formation of RCH Racing and that he and the odge/Sycuan Casino Racing team would be joining forces with Ricky Carmichael and factory support from Suzuki and Yoshimura research and development. In Carey’s words, the partnership with Ricky and Suzuki was the next step in growing his race program that started out as an idea on a napkin in 2007. “This is a really exciting time to be teaming up with Ricky. His resume speaks volumes and his ability to work with riders and build champions is priceless. Ricky was the pivotal piece to bringing Suzuki to our team and now that we have a long term relationship with them on a factory level I feel that we have all of the pieces to go out and win a championship. We are ready to be on the podium and winning races.”
The GOAT: the Greatest Of All Time. That’s really all that needs to be
said about Carmichael. He got his first taste of professional motocross in
1996, showing signs of his upcoming greatness, and earned the AMA Motocross
Rookie of the Year award. He didn’t slow down in 1997, earning a few Eastern
Region 125cc Supercross race wins, as well as dominating the 125cc National
Motocross Championship Series aboard his Pro Circuit Kawasaki, capturing his
first professional championship.
The following year saw much of the same from Carmichael. He won every
round of the 125cc Eastern Region Supercross championship and won the 125cc
Mazda Truck Motocross National championship with eight overall wins. Carmichael
entered the AMA 250cc Supercross Series for the first time in his career in
1999, but had a tough time getting acclimated to the bigger bike and tougher
competition. He returned to the 125cc bike for the AMA Motocross Nationals and
won his third consecutive championship in the class, his final championship for
Mitch Payton’s Pro Circuit Kawasaki team.
Carmichael rode a 250cc machine for the entirety of the 2000 season. He
earned his first 250cc Supercross win at Daytona and had an additional five
podium finishes. Always a stronger outdoor rider, Carmichael immediately
dominated the AMA 250cc U.S. Motocross Championship, winning nine overalls and
easily winning the series championship. He was a key part of the Motocross des
Nations team, bringing the title back to the U.S. alongside teammates Ryan
Hughes and Travis Pastrana. Carmichael only added to his stellar career in
2001. After adding a new trainer to his program, he was able to dethrone Jeremy
McGrath as the AMA 250cc Supercross Champion, and once again captured the 250cc
Motocross Championship aboard his Team Chevy Trucks Kawasaki.
In 2002, Carmichael switched to Team Honda before dominating the AMA
Supercross Championship, and set a record that can never be broken in AMA 250cc
National Motocross racing: he won every moto he entered that season, going 24
for 24, and earning the first perfect season in U.S. motocross history. The
2003 season saw Carmichael once again win both the AMA Supercross championship
as well as the AMA National Motocross championship. In his final season aboard
a Factory American Honda in 2004, Carmichael matched his perfect season in the
AMA Motocross National series, once again winning all 24 motos of the season,
but this time on a four-stroke CRF450R, instead of the two-stroke CR250R two
Carmichael made the switch to the Factory Makita Suzuki team for the 2005
season. He once again controlled every series that season, winning both the AMA
Supercross and Motocross championships, along with the U.S. Open of Supercross
and the Motocross des Nations. The 2006 season marked Carmichael’s last full
year of motocross racing before stepping into semi, and then full, retirement.
He once again won the AMA Supercross and Motocross championships, and again
captained Team USA to another Motocross des Nations victory. The AMA recognized
his achievements by naming him the Athlete of the Year for a record fifth time.
Carmichael went into semi-retirement in 2007, but was arguably still the
fastest rider on the track in the races he entered, including winning all six
overalls in the six AMA Motocross Championship races he entered. Those six wins
brought his combined SX/MX career win total to a record 150. He bid farewell to
professional motocross racing by leading Team USA to another Motocross des
Nations victory in Budds Creek, Maryland and winning the final race he entered.
Carmichael, who had achieved all there was to accomplish on two wheels,
looked to four wheels for his newest challenge. He became interested in NASCAR
through a family friend and Cup Driver Clint Bowyer. “I met Clint through his
brother who raced motorcycles,” explained Carmichael. “His brother was really
good. I was a couple of years younger than his older brother and around the
same age as Clint. We went to a race a long time ago and ended up parking next
to them and became friends. He used to race motocross and got to be 15 and said
‘Man, I am going to try racing cars’. I just watched him work his way up
through the ranks.”
But Carmichael’s interest in auto racing didn’t come to fruition until
his semi-retirement from Motocross at the conclusion of the 2006 season and
partial 2007 season. Ricky spent the next 4 year competing on the four wheel