Off the track Motocross legends – Mister Motocross – Vincent Tesoriero

Off the track Motocross legends – Mister Motocross – Vincent Tesoriero

Mister Motocross Promoter Vincent Tesoriero

australian off-the-track motocross legends
Vince Tesoriero Mr Motocross Promoter - Portrait with Mr MX posters
1979 Mr Motocross - Graeme Smythe and Pelle Granquist joint winners in opening round at Broadford
Mr Motocross Poster 1985

Photos: [Left]  Vincent Tesoriero – the man behind the iconic Mister Motocross series in the seventies and eighties, [Centre] motocross legends Graeme Smythe (WA) and Swedish expatriate Pelle Granquist posing with a carboard cut-out of the the muscle ripped Mr. MX super hero after tying in the opening 1979 round at Broadford in Victoria, and [Right] the 1985 Mr. MX promotional poster, with the series posters becoming collector items for motocross fans and riders.

Vincent Tesoriero - the mastermind behind the iconic Mister Motocross series in the seventies and eighties

AMX History pays tribute to motocross promoter Vincent Tesoriero, inducting him into the “Off the Track Legends Section” on the 50th Anniversary of the Mister Motocross (Mr. MX) series, which began on 9 June 1974.

Vince was the brains trust and energy behind the iconic national series that ran between 1974 and 1988, under his direction.

The Sydney advertising guru and his creative team created the Mr. MX series, which quickly grew to legendary status and, over the decade that followed, changed the mainstream perception of how people viewed men riding dirt bikes.

Mr. MX gave motocross in this country the proverbial “shot in the arm”. The series gained immediate attention from television and newspapers attracting thousands of spectators to each round. Thanks to Vince and his team, the Mr. MX series also attracted the sponsors so necessary to enable an event of such magnitude to be created and it was well received by the riders and fans.

As part of the sponsorship deals, riders were required to do media promotions prior to every round across the country, improving the professionalism of the sport and making the riders household names across the country.

MR MX Trophy and Muscle Man poster

Photo:  Australia’s most prestigious motocross trophy – the bronze  Mr. MX ribbed muscleman trophy on display, which was awarded to all the winning riders.

The Advertising Professional's background

Advertisement - Milledge Yamaha Team Mike Landman and Trevor FLood 1-2 Australian 125cc Championships
Dale Britton - Rat Racing ad

Advertising professional Vince Tesoriero was a part owner of Forcefield Promotions – one of Sydney’s biggest advertising agencies in the 1970s. Together, in partnership with his creative team, they produced Yamaha advertisements for many years.

Prior to establishing the inaugural Mr. MX series in 1974, Vince started the Castrol Six Hour road race.
He was connected with motorcycling for years, firstly as a participant, and then as Australia’s first full-time paid motorcycle club secretary – for the Willoughby Club in the early seventies.

He would also go to promote Australia’s biggest touring car race – the Bathurst 1000, held annually at Mount Panorama in New South Wales.

Not only did Vince organise big sponsorship deals for the Mr. MX series, which continued to grow each year its early year, he also organised sponsorship packages for the leading riders. Over the years, the major sponsors included – Castrol, Just Juice, Toshiba, Golden Breed, Grace Bros, Procycles, Pepsi Cola and many others.

Then in the eighties, he established the famous Rat Racing motocross gear brand which, due to its individual beautiful designs, was worn by all of the leading riders with nobody getting paid to wear them.

Coming from an advertising agency, Vince became such a brilliant race promoter. He knew about marketing, designs, liaising with the media, creating a spectacular and entertaining race format and building a brand for the top riders by incorporating them in the promotions.

Consequently, the riders became household names across the country and thousands of spectators flocked to all rounds to see their heroes in action – the likes of Stephen Gall, Anthony Gunter, the Flood brothers (Gary and Trevor), Ray Vandenberg, Trevor Wiliams, Jeff Leisk, Craig Dack, Glen Bell and many more.

Photos: [Top]  Vince Tesoriero’s advertising company Forcefield  Promotions produce many advertisements for Yamaha in the 1970s; and [Right]  During the 1980s Vince established the very successful Rat Racing brand, with the Nation’s top riders all wearing this gear without being paid.

Vince's legacy lives on today

Vince packaged motocross racing in a way that it was presented to the public as a legitimate spectator sport attracting significant television coverage and raising the profile of motocross (and riders) right across the country.

At a time when motocross championships were run over two long 20 or 30 minute races with 2 laps, Vince introduced a fast and furious 4 x 6 lap format (3 in 1974) back-to-back races, which were very appealing to the spectators and making the racing very cut throat, attracting even more media attention.

Between heats, the action on the start line was furious as mechanics and helpers struggled to make repairs and adjustments in the few minutes available. This was the first time mechanics and helpers had had attention focused on them, and it was the beginning of the heyday of motocross stars trouping around the countryside with an entourage of mechanics and tuners.

Winning the Mr. MX title in the 1970s to 1990s was arguably the most prestigious title in Australian motocross history – even more than the National Championships, which between 1953 and 1991 were held over one weekend.

The multi-round National series paved the way for our existing Penrite Pro MX Motocross Championship series now held throughout the country.

1976 Golden Breed Managing Director John Arnold presents Mr Motocross winner Anthony Gunter with his big cheque
Penrite AMX Legends Poster

Photos: [Top]  Anthony Gunter  (NSW, Suzuki) wins his first of three Mr. MXZ titles,  pictured here at Amaroo Park at the final round in 1976 with Geoff Worrell (NSW, Suzuki) and Stephen Gall (NSW, Yamaha);  Vince Tesoriero’s legacy lives on through the current Penrite Pro MX Australian Championships.

Mister Motocross videos

1978 Mr. Motocross series review, won by Stephen Gall

1983 Mr. Motocross, won by Ray Vandenberg  | MotorsportArchives.Com | SBS, Rosco Holden

1987 Mr. Motocross Highlights Gillman, SA | MotorsportArchives.Com

1988 Mr. Motocross series, won by Craig Dack | Motomizz8

1990 Mr. Motocross series , won by Craig Dack | Caric Video Motorsport | Motomizz8 

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