One of the most anticipated rookies to make his 450 debut will be Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Adam Cianciarulo. The kid, who’s not a kid anymore, has overcome a lot in his career to emerge as the 2019 250 Class National Pro Motocross Champion and he’s making the jump up to the big bikes for 2020.
If you want to listen to the whole thing, check out Pulpmxshow.com.
(Note: This conversation has been lightly edited to make some sense, by the way. Show #400 got out of control at times. )
Steve Matthes: Okay, AC is going to 450s next year. I want to go around the table. One piece of advice for Adam for 450 supercross, first year.
Adam Cianciarulo: Please tell me something super generic and cliché like “be patient.”
Nick Wey: Handful of throttle and dump the clutch. We all would love to see a good loop-out.
Ryan Villopoto: I’ve done that before.
AC: A lot of people have been telling me to be patient. I’m not going to overcompensate. I feel like I’m going to continue to be a little bit sketchy!
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Wow. 400 @pulpmxshow are in the books. Truly honored that the current national champion who just started testing on a 450, my friend who’s wide open w kids & coaching said rider, a guy flew in from Idaho and one of the best to ever throw a leg over a bike actually all took the time to come into the studio and help celebrate with us. These guys all share a bond from a long time ago and I know they’ll be friends forever. That led me to think they would be a terrific foursome to get on a four and a half hour show. And they were! Good times indeed and thanks for listening everyone. Most of all, thanks for coming up @adamcianciarulo @nickwey27 @jakeweimer12 and @ryanvillopoto! Thanks @polarglobal and @karcherme for the free stuff! I really appreciate it and thanks to @kristenv2 @_nicoleweimer and @nicole_m_wey for sharing their husbands with all of us!
SM: Yeah, you are who you are.
NW: Adam’s Adam.
AC: I really like dirt bikes, and it’s a long season. It should play in my favor.
RV: Just respect it. He’s a bigger dude. He’s way bigger than I was when I turned pro, or even went 450.
AC: No, dude. In 2009 you were a little bulky.
RV: Not big around. I still won more races than probably you will the first year.
AC: Two? You don’t think I got two [wins]?
RV: Talk to me afterwards.
Jake Weimer: In ’10 he [RV] was a hefty fellow.
AC: And he won, like, seven races. He was the first person ever to win seven races wearing a size 38.
RV: Calm down. It was maybe a size 34.
SM: So, Jake. One piece of advice for Adam, 450 supercross.
AC: I’m looking forward to this. He’s going to give me something good.
JW: So we’re going deep?
AC: Yeah. Give me something. I know it’s hard following RV’s rebuttal, but give me something.
JW: That’s a little tough, but okay. Here’s where I would go. I feel like Adam is in a good place because he had such a struggle to finally get what he was after. So I feel like he has that in front of him. [The] 450 is tough. It’s harder. It is harder. It’s tough. I have had these conversations because I’m buddies with Adam. I think he knows what’s coming, so that’s good.
RV: You don’t really know, though.
JW: One piece of advice that I would say is I think the most important thing to succeed, especially on a 450, is to find balance, because it’s such a long season. You don’t have time off. Balance. Find balance. You have to have the balance to succeed and the balance of life, and it all intersects. To find a place where you’re happy.
AC: I get it. I know what you’re saying.
NW: That’s strong advice, for sure. One-hundred percent.
AC: Absolutely. I totally understand that. Obviously I’ve never done it before, but even at the end of a 250 season, it can feel long if you’re not enjoying the stuff you’re doing during the week. That sounds pretty cliché, but I know what you mean.
JW: People that are listening probably don’t understand this. So the outdoors season which Adam just won, it’s the same for 250 or 450. Big, big difference doing a 17 [round supercross] series, which doesn’t seem like maybe much just talking about it, but it’s a big difference to add on to the next half of the series. It is a big, big, big adjustment.
AC: I feel like you would have to—and this is just stuff obviously I think about. It’s almost like you have to get into more of a flow. This is what we’re doing every weekend. In the 250 you wrap your head around the first five races and you’re like, “Okay. Let’s lock in and let’s do this.” I’m going to the track every day and I’m getting everything out of it, because guess what? I got four weekends off after San Diego. But it’s almost like you have to find a spot where you’re being productive and you’re getting better, but at the same time keep the days during the week light enough to where you feel like you can sustain over the course of the year.
RV: You’ve built up a little bit of tolerance, though. So the first deal you do six races.
JW: I have one word that I would tell Adam. Find sustainability.
SM: I think Adam… I don’t know him that well, of course, but I think I know him well enough where he lives and dies with his weekend results. It’s so much to him, good or bad.
AC: It’s less. Way less than the last couple years.
SM: Okay. That’s good because in supercross 17 in a row, you’ve got to wipe it fresh. You’d be laying there feeling like shit all week about some St. Louis result. Well, guess what? You’re in Detroit now or whatever.
JW: Which is what you can’t do. Sustainability. Figure out a way that you can be happy with yourself. That’s what’s going to give you longevity. That’s what’s going to help you win titles.
AC: Ultimately, you have to I think—now I’m giving my own advice. I guess what my theory would be, would be you kind of have to judge yourself based on… It’s super cliché, but just doing your best all the time. You know what I mean? Getting the most out of it. If something happens, you’re in the wrong place, wrong time and you mess up, don’t beat yourself up until Thursday.
RV: Bottom line is all these riders out today, tomorrow, Motocross [of] Nations, supercross, motocross, none of these guys want to lose. They’re all putting their f****** heart out on the line all the time.
SM: All those years, Nick, that you raced 450 supercross, podiumed, eight million top tens. So many. Did you take the attitude of, eff it? I can’t worry about last week, good or bad?
NW: No. I think most all racers maybe—Ryan’s obviously an exception. He’s not different. He went through times where he had a hard time, but more times than not he reached his goal, I guess is what I mean. So I think the biggest thing is just losing focus on your ultimate goal and what you think you’re capable of, because things get so confusing as to what the team’s goal is for you. They’re sales pitching you on, that fourth was sweet, when your teammate won or whatever. So then you have your gear guy, you have all these other people influencing you, but sometimes people who don’t reach their ultimate goal get a little bit confused. People are a little bit complacent for you. When Jake was on the team with Ryan and Ryan won, they weren’t like, “Yeah, Jake. What do we got to do Monday to have you beat Ryan?”
JW: I have a question.
NW: So basically you have to have enough focus in yourself. Because for me too, you come into the big bike class and you’re like, okay. You have these goals of, “I need to kind of learn and do better,” because nobody’s going to come in there and be like, “I’m going to beat so-and-so at first.” Where Adam’s goal needs to be, “I’m coming here to win. I don’t know what to tell you. I’m coming to win, and then if I don’t I’m going to keep learning from the mistakes I made, and then that’s the only goal I have.”
JW: Let me alley-oop this thing.
NW: That was right, though, Jake?
JW: One-hundred percent. Let me alley-oop it. You’re right. What would you guys, all of you sitting here, say about my 450 outdoor career? Success or failure?
NW: Did you try your hardest?
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#Repost @pulpmxshow with @get_repost ・・・ No show tonight! We’re still cleaning the studio from last week’s...whatever that was. Here’s a little clip where we ask about the correlation between redheads and championships. @jakeweimer12 has some thoughts. Don’t forget, full show is available on YouTube if you need to relive last week’s “magic”. 4:16:30 is the timestamp if you want to hear the full breakdown. No gingers were harmed in the making of this video.
AC: It depends on the perspective, I guess. Knowing you, I would say it’s a success in the fact that you tried your best, but I also think you were capable of doing more.
NW: Exactly. For us to say, “Hey, Jake, you reached your absolute limit of what you could do,” no. But if you tried your absolute best every time, then how can you be bummed?
RV: He tried his absolute best, but what really made an impact on me was, I was like, wow. This was a big deal. Jake rode a lot of manufacturers. He rode Factory Kawasaki. He rode [for] Mitch, and then he rode RCH and then Honda, JGR then Honda. He goes, “That was the hardest bike to ride.” So that was kind of a big deal. [I thought] If it [the bike] was good for me, it was good for him. That doesn’t mean it was good for him. We should have done a lot of things to make his deal better. But what if his was better than what I already had? There was a lot of tests but…
NW: Totally, but that’s racing. That’s why some people have a little bit more support and then all of a sudden they have a little bit more self-confidence, and then they can keep trying to obtain their ultimate goal. It’s not easy.
JW: Let me sink this thing in the hoop. So, failure, success. You say, well you tried hard. Okay. So then…
RV: Trying hard? Everybody tries hard.
NW: Who are we to sit here and tell you you’re a failure, Jake? That’s not our place to say.
JW: I get that, but you guys know me. But then I was thinking about it not that long ago. I rode four years of outdoors. Three years I did the whole season outdoors. My overall finishes—I would have told you it was a failure. A complete failure. Not good.
SM: Really? Because you got fifth one year, I know. Or sixth.
JW: Sixth, third, sixth.
SM: That’s good.
JW: In my mind, unless I look at the results, not good. Like, oh my God, we’re going to work on the farm. For real. But that’s my point. As a racer and how cut-throat this deal is…
SM: How much you live and die with it.
JW: My rookie year, I was hurt for six months, or five months, whatever it was. Sixth overall outdoors, and it was a failure to me.
AC: Like you say, you live and die by the results. I don’t know if it’s just this sport or all sports. I think all sports have a tendency to be like that, but especially this sport. It’s the fact that a lot of the people that were around in terms of team guys, gear guys, this and that, they came up to the sport and they think the same way. So you live and die by it. You’re surrounded by people that have also at one time, or maybe still do live or die by some type of results. So it’s almost like a thing you do to yourself, almost. You put so much value on the results when it’s really not that big of a deal. Yes, it’s what we work at, but at the end of the day, it’s not that big of a deal.