Andy Jefferson raced Husky’s in the
1980s and works there now.
BETTING ON A TRAILBLAZER
I have a bet with a friend of mine
that James Stewart is not the first
black rider to make a name for
himself in motocross; however, I am
at a loss as to how to win the bet,
because I don’t know the answer.
Yes, I know that I’m an idiot for
making a bet without an inkling
of what I’m talking about, but
that’s how I do it when I bet on
basketball. Can you help me?
James Stewart is by far the most
famous black motocross racer in
history, but he isn’t the first African
American to stand out in motocross.
Thirty years ago Andy Jefferson
was the fastest African American in
the sport. And believe us when we
say that the motocross world was
different in 1982 than it is today.
Mimicking the culture of the time,
the motocross world wasn’t as open
and inclusive as it is today. Andy
Jefferson’s family didn’t have a lot of
money, and sponsorships for young
racers weren’t plentiful, especially
not for a young black kid from the
hardscrabble high-desert town of
Adelanto, California. Andy never got
the call for a factory ride, but Pro
Circuit’s Mitch Payton believed in
Andy and helped him throughout
his career. During his time on the
Pro Circuit team, Andy finished in
the top 10 at several Nationals and
became the first black racer to make
an AMA Supercross main event.
Andy did it twice—at the 1982 San
Diego and L.A. Coliseum races. A
knee injury in 1984 put an end to
his National career. Today, Andy
Jefferson still races locally and works
full-time at Husqvarna. ;
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