At the beginning of this year's Amp'd Mobile AMA Supercross Series most believed that the championship would be decided by the 'big three' of Ricky Carmichael, Chad Reed and James Stewart - but could only dream that the title would come down to the season finale.

But it has done just that and this Saturday night Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas will play host to one of the most exciting final races in the 30-plus year history of AMA Supercross, the world's premier Supercross series.

Suzuki's reigning champion Carmichael and Yamaha's former champion Reed are tied at the top of the points going into the final race. Not since 1985 when Broc Glover and Jeff Ward came to the final round equal in points has the series been so close.

But if that isn't enough, the hottest rider in the series, Kawasaki's James Stewart, has worked his way back into the championship picture with four wins in the last five rounds to pull within just five points of the series leaders!

The season has been a rollercoaster ride for the big three. Carmichael, Reed and Stewart have all led the series at some point and each has suffered wild swings in the standings due to crashes and/or mechanical problems.

Carmichael built up a lead in the series midseason, but has gone winless in the last five rounds. A crash at Texas Stadium last month resulted in a sixth-place finish, allowing Reed and Stewart to close in on the defending champ. Carmichael said he is proud of his season no matter what happens in Las Vegas.

"Win or not in Las Vegas all of us should be proud of the season we've had," Carmichael said of himself and his two rivals. "I'm happy to be a part of one of, if not the best, championship battle in Supercross. All I can do is go out and do my best in Las Vegas. Lately my best hasn't been good enough, but I'm going to try to find a little extra next weekend in order to win this championship."

Reed's story this year has been one of perseverance. He separated his shoulder in March, but toughed it out and rode through the pain and now finds himself tied coming into the finale.

"I never gave up," said Reed, the 2004 AMA Supercross champion and defending Las Vegas winner. "I fought through injury and now I have a chance in Las Vegas. I'm looking forward to it. It's going to be fun. We all know what we have to do and it's going to be live on TV. It doesn't get any better than that."

At mid-season Stewart looked to be out of the title chase, but he's had one of the strongest second-half charges in the history of the series. His victory this past Saturday on a muddy Qwest Field in Seattle came in spite of suffering a hard crash in practice and made Stewart the most-winning rider this season, with seven AMA victories. The win also moved him into a position to have a good opportunity to win the title.

"That's what we do," Stewart said of his practice fall fightback. "We're racers and have to come back from tough obstacles. If I win in Las Vegas and the other guys slip up I've got a good chance. Even if I don't win the title I'm going to go out and give it a good fight. I've got one goal in Las Vegas and that's to win."

Meanwhile, Stewart already has one hand on the less prestigious World Supercross GP crown - for which points are decided by the AMA events (with the exception of Daytona) plus two season opening rounds in Canada - after building a 12-point lead over reigning champion Carmichael heading into Vegas, with Reed a further 9-points behind.

In addition to the AMA Supercross and World Supercross GP championships being decided in Las Vegas, the night will also see the best Lites riders from the East and West come together for the annual Dave Coombs Sr. Memorial East/West Lites Shootout.

Grant Langston is fresh off winning the West title last week in Seattle riding a Monster Energy Drink Pro Circuit Kawasaki. He is slated to face East champ Davi Millsaps, who rides for Honda. This will mark the 10th year of the East/West Shootout. East riders lead the series with five wins to four for the West. Millsaps is a former winner of the race.