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  • Celebrity Drive: Brian Deegan, Motocross Legend

Celebrity Drive: Brian Deegan, Motocross Legend

Two-Wheel Superstar Turns to Four-Wheel Racing and his Big Ford Truck

K.S. Wang
Mar 25, 2011
Quick Stats: Brian Deegan
Daily Driver: 2010 Ford F-250 (Brian's rating: 9 on a scale of 1 to 10)
Other cars: see below
Favorite road trip: in Colorado
Car he learned to drive in: 1974 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme
First car bought: 1974 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme
Photo 2/13   |   2010 Ford F 250 Front Three Quarters Brian Deegan
Motocross racer Brian Deegan, who still has the competitive bug, has been turning to four-wheel racing such as rallying in the X Games and off-road racing in the Lucas Oil Off Road series with his Metal Mulisha team.
Metal Mulisha is Deegan's lifestyle brand, which generates more than $30 million in revenue. He outfitted his own 2010 Ford F-250 with Metal Mulisha off-road wheels. "I have my own Metal Mulisha lift kits, so we did a lift," he says, sitting in the backyard at his team's race shop. "It looks clean and it's all flat gray. I had it wrapped gunmetal gray because I think it looks better. It fits the whole Metal Mulisha image-all black and flat colors. And it had the Mulisha skulls in flat black."
Photo 3/13   |   2010 Ford F 250 Front Three Quarters
Deegan rates his daily driver a 9. "For what I use it for, for pulling trailers, it works really good," he says. "I have a Range Rover and an Escalade too, so the truck could be a little more fancy inside. But other than that it's good."
He uses the F-250 to haul his dirt bikes when he wants to go to the track. "I grew up racing motocross and I will always go to a motocross track and ride just for fun. At my house, I have a freestyle park, supercross track, motocross track, and foam pit to practice tricks in. I have a truck track here, too."
Photo 4/13   |   Brian Deegan Race Car
2010 Range Rover
Rating: 9
It gets a 9 rating from him because he says it's not great for off-roading. "It has all the anti-lock crap on it, so when you start sliding, everything starts locking up," he says. "I know people who've had a lot of problems with them. I haven't had any problems. The thing's super nice inside. But off-roading they're not really as good as they should be. They could be a little better off-road."
Photo 5/13   |   2010 Cadillac Escalade 2010 Land Rover Range Rover Group
2009 Cadillac Escalade
Rating: 7
"It's a decent car for what it costs," Deegan says. "I like that they have a lot of power, they're pretty fast, they have a lot of torque. "I hate how the suspension in it is super soft and sways around a lot. I think that's a standard Cadillac feel."
Photo 6/13   |   2009 Cadillac Escalade Front Three Quarters
He says it could have been built a littler sturdier. "On the outside, the door dents super easy. The whole body isn't that solid. My Range Rover doesn't have any dents on it because it's such a thick body on it. Cadillacs, you barely touch the car and it dents because it's just a cheaper-built car. My wife likes those cars. That's what she's had for the last how many years. We are trading them out and getting new ones."
Car he learned to drive in
Deegan grew up in Omaha, and has been riding dirt bikes since he was 8. When it came time to learn how to drive he bought a 1974 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme for $500.
Photo 7/13   |   2010 Ford F 250 Brian Deegan
"I remember it had a V-8 and we used to just floor it in neutral and drop it in drive and burn out forever," he laughs. When he bought his first car, he still wasn't making much from racing. "I just bought a junker. It was all I could afford at the time," he says.
While he now lives in car-centric SoCal, at that time all he cared about was having a car. "I really wanted to drive something. I didn't care what it was and in school not many people had cars. So it was cool just to have one," he says. " I think California kids, for their first car, they want something nice. It was different in my day-just driving what you could get. We thrashed the thing. I had that Oldsmobile for a week until I crashed it into a tree because I was trying to do hill climbs in it. And I ended up buying a VW Rabbit truck."
Photo 8/13   |   Brian Deegan Backflip Vertical
He bought the Rabbit pickup for $800, which became his daily driver in high school. "I had an Earl Scheib paint job on it for $99," he says. The Rabbit had a manual tranny, which took him a few hours to get used to.
Upon graduating high school, turning pro, and landing a spot on the Honda team, he bought his first new car, a Ford F-150.
Photo 9/13   |   Metal Mulisha Truck Side Static
Favorite road trip
Deegan's favorite place to drive is through the mountains of Colorado and I-80. "That's a pretty cool drive," he says. "It's scenic, there's a lot of old mines and waterfalls and some cool stuff off the road."
He used to drive himself to races in the F-150. "I've driven all over the United States because I used to race the nationals and they were all over the United States. So I've been to every state. When we first started going to race, we used a Dodge van. That's when I was amateur, Pro/Am. When I got on the race team, they brought the bikes out in an 18-wheeler." The Dodge van belonged to his dad.
Photo 10/13   |   Metal Mulisha Truck Side
"Once I started flying to the races we'd get rental cars," he says. "We'd basically go jump the rental cars. We'd try to jump the cars wherever we could find spots. That was pretty fun."
He would scout out areas in parks or out in the woods and off dirt roads in his rental car. "We'd try to have fun. We had this Pathfinder and we found a motocross track and we started racing around the track and ended up rolling it over a bunch of times. We got up and drove away. It was smashed," he laughs. "We owned that one."
Photo 11/13   |   Brian Deegan Vertical
Auto racing
Deegan found it easy to transition to the world of four-wheel racing. "I've had a long career, broke over 20 bones, lost a spleen, a lot of near-death crashes on a dirt bike, so I needed to do something safer and rally car was in X Games," he says. "You're in a roll cage, so I thought, 'Let me try that.' I ended up doing good at it."
Racing off-road trucks felt like racing dirt bikes for Deegan. "But you're in a four-wheel race truck and a roll cage, so I started doing that too," he says. "I ended up winning the championship in the Lucas Oil series my first year." He is currently racing in the Lucas Oil Off Road series and plans to return to this year's X Games with the Ford factory team in a Ford Fiesta.
Photo 12/13   |   Metal Mulisha Race Car Side
"I like X Games. It's a short race, it's like motocross, and it's primetime TV, and that's what I want to do," he says. "It's fun." He also has a toy line and last year made his foray into NASCAR. Deegan also recently signed with sponsor Makita.
He says Metal Mulisha is always doing something new for the fans. "It's a lifestyle brand and it's something that started back in the late '90s through action sports and X Games and we just put a name on our crew," he says. "It's really a group of guys who ride dirt bikes who are the rebels of the sport and off of it spawned the clothing, the toys, and the off-road kits."
Photo 13/13   |   Metal Mulisha Race Car Front
For more information please visit www.metalmulisha.com



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