The Top 10 Supercross Racers of All-Time contributor Steve Cox gives us his take on the top 10 supercross racers of all-time.

Stanton-A-12-15-20169. Jeff Stanton
1989, 1990, 1992 AMA 250cc (Premier Class) Supercross Champion
Premier-Class Wins: 17
Most Premier-Class Wins in a Season: 5 (1989)

Jeff Stanton might be the least-discussed, least-touted multi-time champ in the history of motocross and supercross racing.

Stanton was everything Damon Bradshaw wasn’t: traditional, predictable, and able to handle loads of pressure. Stanton came out of Michigan as a Yamaha support racer in the 1980s, specializing in racing the 500cc MX Nationals, but he got a chance with Team Honda in 1989 and was teamed up with defending 250cc Supercross Champion Ricky Johnson on the red machines. Prior to the 1989 SX season, Stanton’s best SX finish was second in the muddy 1987 Daytona Supercross (itself an anomaly of a race, still to date the only SX race won by a true privateer, Rick Ryan). Outside of that, Stanton only had one top-five finish to his name in his first two years of racing supercross.

After spending the off-season training and practicing with legendary superstar Johnson, Stanton didn’t stay under the radar long in 1989. Although Johnson was on a tear early in the championship, winning the first five races of the series, Stanton beat Johnson to win his first-ever main event at round six in Atlanta. After Johnson suffered what would end up being a career-ending wrist injury at the first outdoor motocross of the season a couple of weeks later, Stanton owned the 1989 AMA Supercross title, then repeated his performance in 1990. Although Stanton failed to win the title in 1991–his new teammate Jean-Michel Bayle did the honors–Stanton hung tough in 1992 to gut out a win at the final supercross of the year in Los Angeles, winning the championship for the third time by three points over young Bradshaw, who seemed to buckle under the pressure and finish third in the main event (behind Suzuki’s Guy “Airtime” Cooper).

Jeff Stanton was the model of determination. His tenure with the Honda factory team netted three AMA Supercross titles.
Jeff Stanton was the model of determination. His tenure with the Honda factory team netted three AMA Supercross titles.

With Bayle leaving the sport to go road racing, and Bradshaw crushed after coming so close to the title in 1992, Stanton had high hopes of getting his fourth championship in 1993. Although he was almost always on the podium, or very close to it, Stanton’s only win of the year came at the series finale in Las Vegas, which was well after his new rookie teammate, Jeremy McGrath, clinched the title for Big Red. Stanton retired after the 1994 season.