Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing Team aims for AMA Pro Motocross success

The 2024 AMA Pro Motocross Championship beckons for the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing Team, fresh from RJ Hampshire's title-winning achievements in the 250SX West division of AMA Supercross and with the motivation to maintain that momentum into the great outdoors. Round 1 will take place in Pala, California, this Saturday.

Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing will arrive at the Fox Raceway National with Hampshire to be joined by newcomer Casey Cochran in the 250MX category, while Spaniard Guillem Farres continues to recover from a broken femur sustained in February. The 450MX ranks will see Malcolm Stewart rejoined by Christian Craig in time for the Pro Motocross season.

Hampshire lines up as a legitimate title threat in the 250MX category with experience on his side at 28 years of age, certain to benefit from his knowledge gained in the stadiums on his way to a first-career professional championship victory. He has claimed four overall wins during his career, now aiming to deliver in a similar fashion to what he managed during the Supercross series.

"We're super excited leading into the outdoors," explained Hampshire. "Coming off the west coast championship in Supercross, we all want to carry that momentum into the new season and we have a lot to look forward to. We have a really good base, and I feel like we're going to be in a good position right off the bat this season, so I look forward to getting back racing at Pala for the opener."

Still only at the age of 17, Cochran is a multiple-time AMA Amateur National Motocross Champion as a result of his success at Loretta Lynn's prior to turning pro full-time for 2024. After lining up at two rounds last season, it's expected that he will gain a wealth of experience throughout the 11 rounds this year, and has the potential to make an impact as the season progresses equipped with the Husqvarna Motorcycles FC 250 Rockstar Edition.

"Coming into my first season outdoors, I'm super excited for the full 11 rounds this year," Cochran commented. "Hopefully we can be in there racing with some good guys, while getting some good experience and results along the way. I've got a good team behind me and am feeling good on the bike, so I'm looking forward to getting out there and competing, showing everyone what we can do in my rookie year. Let's go!"

While Hampshire and Cochran will fly to flag in the 250 Class to commence the 2024 series, a vast amount of attention will be directed Stewart's way in 450MX. Injuries have meant that he's only made minimal appearances outdoors in recent years, but that's not causing him to lower his outlook on the eve of the upcoming season ahead. Instead, he's looking to keep improving his results, as he did in the closing stages of the 450SX.

"I'm very excited, very motivated, after having all of last season off of racing," Stewart said. "For me, I'm thankful to continue being able to race, and to build on what we did in Supercross. I'm looking forward to the outdoors and also building into SMX later this year – all racing is good racing over here! I'm ready to line up, enjoy it, and see what we can do."

California native Christian Craig – who previously resided in the Temecula region during the majority of his career – is back on his Husqvarna Motorcycles FC 450 Rockstar Edition following issues with a re-aggravated elbow injury that sidelined him toward the end of February. Like teammate Stewart, Craig missed the entire outdoor season last year, but is excited to be returning in time for the season-opener.

"I'm excited to get this outdoor season started," Craig explained. "Unfortunately, we won't be coming in with a lot of time on the bike after dealing with this elbow injury for a while, but nonetheless I'm looking forward to getting some gate drops and building throughout the season. The bike is in a good spot already, so let's get the season going!"

Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing Team Manager, Nathan Ramsey, added: "Making the transition from Supercross into Pro Motocross with the one weekend off in between is pretty tight, but obviously we have some good momentum, and we've squeezed in some motocross testing along the way. I feel really good about the season ahead and I think it will be one of those things, if we can start the season on a high note, hopefully we can keep that up and be consistent through the long season to fight for the championship in the end. RJ is in a good spot, Malcolm is excited too, Casey as our rookie coming in has been riding good as well, plus we're excited to have Christian back, coming off an injury. The goal for him is to get started and build as the series goes on into the middle stages of the season, which is also when we are hoping to see Guillem back at the races."

The first round of 11 scheduled will begin this Saturday, May 25th, in Southern California, before travelling the country and arriving in Indiana at the end of August, where champions will be crowned in the 2024 AMA Pro Motocross Championship across the 450MX and 250MX categories.