The second half of the seventies and the first half of the eighties are generally considered as the golden age of Motocross, particularly in the 500cc class in which all the Japanese manufacturers were involved – some more than others. Big names were hired by the factories, such as André Malherbe, Graham Noyce and later Dave Thorpe (Honda), Roger de Coster, Harry Everts, André Vromans and Brad Lackey (Suzuki), Heikki Mikkola and Hakan Carlqvist (Yamaha). After a first World title in the 250cc class in 1979 riding a Husqvarna, Swede Hakan Carlqvist was hired by Yamaha to race – and win - in the 500cc. Well, it took some time. In 1980 and 1981 Belgian André Malherbe took both titles. In 1982, after various years chasing the title, North-American Brad Lackey finally made it, in a totally crazy season’s final. Carlqvist finished respectively 3rd, 3rd and 8th having suffered various injuries. The 1983 season turned out to be a duel between Carlqvist and Malherbe from the start to the end. Carlqvist took the title on his YZ 490 Yamaha, with just seven points ahead of Malherbe. In 1984, the Swede (picture, with n° 1) kept on fighting but could not beat the Belgian who took his third title. But the paddock was already changing. Factory teams would withdraw one after the other, and soon the main class in Motocross would become the 250cc.