Ken Roczen might hold a commanding lead in the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross series, but Ryan Dungey is still winning the exposure war, despite the fact that he’s out with a cracked C-6 vertebra.
Today, ESPN announced that Dungey will appear in the 2016 Body Issue of ESPN The Magazine. The eighth annual issue features 19 athletes in (safe for work) nude poses. Dungey is the first 450 Supercross champion to pose in the issue.
Despite his absence, the sport of motocross owes Red Bull KTM’s Dungey yet another mainstream exposure high five. The past 12 months have been huge, starting with Dungey’s win at the ESPYs for Best Male Action Sports Athlete on July 15, 2015. He then won the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, appeared on SportsCenter, delivered coffee to ESPN anchor Lindsay Czarniak, became the first motocross athlete on the Wheaties box and won the 2016 Monster Energy Supercross Championship, his first successful title defense. Dungey is also a likely candidate for another ESPY nomination for Best Male Action Sports Athlete, which is expected to be announced this week. The ESPY Awards are July 13.
Dungey isn’t the first motorcycle rider to appear in the Body Issue, but he is the first current active racer. Travis Pastrana was featured with his wife, skateboarder Lyn-z Adams Hawkins Pastrana in 2014, and female motocross rider Tarah Gieger was featured in 2013.
Photos will be released on July 6 on ESPN.com and the magazine will appear on newsstands July 8.