RedBud celebrating 50th anniversary

Published 9:45 am Friday, June 23, 2023

BUCHANAN — Happy anniversary RedBud.

America’s longest consecutive-running professional motocross race — the RedBud MX National will celebrate its 50th anniversary when the AMA Pro Motocross Championship comes to Buchanan July 1 for the biggest race on the circuit.

RedBud MX started as the dream of the late Gene Ritchie, who turned a piece of land just outside Buchanan into the premier motocross track in the United States. Since its early days, RedBud has grown in size and stature, hosting some of the biggest motocross races in the country and the world.

The Ritchie family has carried on the legacy, which features the annual national race each July Fourth weekend, as well as twice hosting the racing world for the Motocross of Nations. RedBud is the only track in America to hold the event twice — in 2018 and 2022.

For its 50th anniversary, RedBud is teaming with one of the premier names in exhausts to present the 2023 national event — Flying Machine Factory and Intense Cycles.

The sound that FMF exhausts make is unmistakable. The “Brrrraaappp” has been heard screaming around the RedBud track for five decades.

“Legend has it Donnie Emler (FMF founder) tested his pipes by riding bikes behind his shop in a t-shirt and flip-flops back in the day; he preferred that to a Dyno,” said Tim Ritchie. “I can’t be sure it’s fact, but I believe it. They don’t make guys like Donnie anymore. He’s from the same mold as guys like my dad (Gene), Ward Robinson (Unadilla founder), Ralph Huffman (Washougal founder) and Big Dave Coombs (High Point founder). Donnie took his passion and turned it into a company that’s a half century strong and still thriving. That’s something we look at in awe, and appreciate so deeply.”

Ritchie said it was an honor to add the FMF logo to the RedBud National for the 50th anniversary.

“From early-on contingency programs to the current FMF Privateer Power Award, plus amateur and pro rider and series sponsorships, FMF has always been a company that reinvested in the sport,” he said.

“RedBud has been an iconic American staple for the MX community for 50 years — and what better way to celebrate by teaming up as the title sponsor of their historic race,” said Don Emler, owner and founder of FMF. “We look forward to seeing the sport’s best athletes and fans July 1st for the FMF RedBud Pro Motocross Championship.”

Eli Tomac captured the 450cc title last year, while Jo Shimoda made history in 2022 by becoming the first Japanese-born rider to win the 250cc class.

Tomac would return to RedBud in September to join forces with Justin Cooper and Chae Sexton to end the United State’s 11-year drought by winning the Motocross of National title.

Tickets are available at