FLASHBACK FRIDAY | DEWAYNE JONES | LIVING IN THE SHADOWS

In the annals of professional motocross, Dewayne Jones has more in common with racers Ron Pomeroy, Mike Tripes, Ron DeSoto, Jeff Alessi, Tyler Villopoto and Ron Sun than his brother Gary Jones. Dewayne lived in the shadow of his brother as much as the brothers listed above paled in comparison to brothers Jim Pomeroy, Marty Tripes, John DeSoto, Mike Alessi, Ryan Villopoto and Chuck Sun. 

Dewayne was part of the greatest family act in American motocross. The Jones gang started racing years before the AMA National series was started and became a powerful force at the sport’s inception. Younger brother Gary won four 250 National Championships, while father Don was not only the team manager but ran the family racing business.

Dewayne was part of the greatest family act in American motocross. The Jones gang started racing years before the AMA National series was started and became a powerful force at the sport’s inception. Younger brother Gary won four 250 National Championships, while father Don was not only the team manager but ran the family racing business. But Dewayne was no slouch. He had factory rides at Team Yamaha, Team Honda and Team Can-Am. Unfortunately, his best chance to shine came in 1975 after teammate and brother Gary broke his leg at Daytona. Without a team leader, Dewayne and Can-Am teammates Jimmy Ellis, Mike Runyard and Buck Murphy were suddenly thrust into the limelight. Dewayne, who had finished in the top 10 in AMA points in 1973 (but was hurt in 1974), was set to have his best year ever when a wrist injury brought his season to a halt. By the time Gary and Dewayne were healed up, the family had a falling out with Can-Am. Gary and Don embarked on an effort to build their own motorcycle brand, Ammex, but Dewayne did not join them. He ended his Pro racing career at 26 years old.

There is no doubt that Dewayne was the black sheep of the Jones gang. He always played second fiddle to his brother Gary. But, he didn’t play second fiddle to very many other riders on the AMA National circuit in the early ’70s. Dewayne’s best finish was second in the 1973 Lake Whitney 250 National (his brother Gary was first). Dwayne finished in the top 10 in 46 percent of the AMA Nationals he entered. Dewayne specialized in the 250 class, but raced one AMA 125 National and scored a top 10 at the 1974 Hangtown Classic.

Following in the footsteps of his father, Dewayne started Dewayne Jones Pro Suspension and continued racing, although focusing on road race, dirt track and Supermoto. Dewayne battled cancer for five years before getting a clean bill of health in 2015. It appeared that Dwayne had beaten cancer, but it returned in early 2016, this time taking his life. He was 65 years old.

You might also like