For the 1986 season, he was offered a job with the Honda team by team manager and five time former world champion Roger De Coster. He battled his Honda team-mate David Bailey throughout the 1986 season, coming away with the 250 title and the Supercross crown. During this season Johnson and Bailey were part of one of the most epic battles in Supercross history at the Anaheim stadium. He finished second to Bailey in the 500 class.
Johnson would dominate the 1987 season, winning both the 250 and 500 crowns.
In '87 Rick also won what is considered one of Supercross history's greatest races in the Super Bowl Of Motorcross at the L.A. Coliseum. After crashing in the first corner Johnson came back from near dead last to pass Jeff Ward and Guy Cooper on the last lap to squeeze the win. He followed this performance by adding the 1988 Supercross and 500 titles to his name.