News 14 May 2024

Retiring Cianciarulo bids farewell to Supercross

With one final ride in Salt Lake City, Adam Cianciarulo’s professional racing career has concluded.

An emotional final weekend in Adam Cianciarulo’s racing career concluded with waves to the crowd as he rode out of a stadium for the final time. Salt Lake City marked the end to Cianciarulo’s 12-year professional racing career as the industry and fans bid farewell to the likeable Floridian.

In his final race, Cianciarulo ran at the edge of the top 10 for a while before slipping back to finish P20. Cianciarulo has been dealing with a nerve issue in his hand for years which has led to his retirement and likely contributed to his rough final race. Result aside, Cianciarulo was visibly touched by the reception in the moment and echoed those sentiments after the race.

Image: Octopi Media.

“I couldn’t have asked for a better weekend to bring this chapter to an end,” said Cianciarulo. “The support I’ve received from my friends, the fans, my competitors, and the industry as a whole has been overwhelming in the best way, and it means the world to my family and me. Thank you all for allowing me to be a small part of your lives over the years, it’s been an honor. I look forward to living more outwardly—contributing to others, and this sport, to the best of my ability. Of course, I will keep you all updated as I chase new dreams and figure out what exactly I’m painting on this blank canvas in front of me.

Cianciarulo’s career is one that will be filled with “what ifs”. One of the most successful amateur racers ever, Cianciarulo won in his 250SX debut and looked like he was going to live up to all the hype. What followed was an unfortunate run of injuries that aimed to derail his career early. He fought back to battle for championships and eventually claim the 2019 AMA Pro Motocross 250 class championship.

He nearly won his first ever 450SX race as well, leading some laps in the main event before settling for second place behind 2020 Anaheim 1 winner Justin Barcia. Few could have predicted right then that he’d never win a 450SX main event, but that’s the unfortunate reality. He made a run at the 450 class championship in AMA Pro Motocross as a rookie, battling Zach Osborne to the very end, but that would end up being the last time we really saw the best AC. Nerve damage in his hand has severely hindered his ability to race at the highest level, and numerous surgeries did not fix the issue.

Image: Octopi Media.

The silver lining though is that Cianciarulo perhaps has an even brighter future post-racing career. Already having his own podcast, Cianciarulo figures to fit right in as a leading personality in the sport for years to come whether it’s through continued success with his podcast, or even into a broadcast position.

“Time is crazy,” said Cianciarulo. “Time goes by so quickly. I felt like I’ve always had that as not necessarily something I think about, but I’ve always known that. I have put my entire life into this, and I made it pretty damn far and I did a lot of really cool things. I do want to see where else I have value as a human and where else I can contribute. I just want to experience life through a different lens. As much as the injury and this that or the other thing, a big part of it too is that I’m 27 but I’ve been taking this dead serious like a job since I was six or seven years old. So in a way, it’s kind of like I’m 30 or 32 really. I always imagined myself retiring a little bit young, maybe a little before 30. This might be a year or two before I would have thought, but it wouldn’t be too much longer anyway. I’m excited to just put my best foot forward and I love learning in all different aspects of life. This requires so much of your attention and there’s a lot of time away from family. Just less of a balanced lifestyle, social life, and all those things. I’m 27, not 22, I’m not looking forward to partying my ass off or anything. But in terms of spending more time with my family and friends, I have two nieces now, my grandparents are getting older. It really is exciting. As much as I’m going to miss it, it is exciting.”

Time will tell what lies ahead for AC, but he can certainly look back at his career now with pride knowing he made it to the top of the sport. And while it’s goodbye for now, we’ll certainly be seeing Cianciarulo again soon.

Image: Octopi Media.