Ryan Dungey Announces Retirement

10 months ago | Words: MX Sports Pro Racing | Photos: Red Bull KTM / Simon Cudby

Following a surprise announcement on Tuesday at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California, Team Red Bull KTM Factory Racing rider, and multi-time Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Champion, Ryan Dungey has retired from competition. Just 10 days removed from capturing the hardest-fought title of his career in the AMA/FIM Supercross World Championship, Dungey made the formal decision to step away from racing in front of family, friends, his team, and the media.

One of 10 riders in the history of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship to earn a title in both the 250 Class and 450 Class, Dungey’s legacy in the sport is undeniable. Since moving into the premier 450 Class during the 2010 season, Dungey has compiled one of the most impressive resumes the sport has ever seen. He became the first rider in history to win both the AMA/FIM Supercross and AMA Pro Motocross championships as a rookie (2010), and over the course of the past seven seasons Dungey has amassed three championships, 39 overall wins, and 69 podium finishes over the course of 75 starts.

“It’s hard to believe that this day has come but after a lot of thinking and praying over the last several months, today I announce my retirement from racing professional supercross and motocross. This decision has not been an easy one. I’ve achieved more than I ever could have imagined or dreamed of and for all of this I am incredibly humbled and honoured,” said Dungey. “I’ve gone as hard as I can for as long as I can but the reality is that our sport is tough, the seasons are long and it takes a huge amount of sacrifice, hard work and discipline to stay on top. Physically I feel that I’m in the best shape of my life, race craft-wise I’m in the best shape of my life and I have the equipment to win, there’s no doubt about that. However, this year I have struggled mentally.

“I have always raced because I love it and want so badly to win, but this season was just different for me. Getting my head into the game each week just wasn’t the same and lining up and being able to focus like I always had in the past was just different. I never thought I would get to a place where I had to talk myself into starting a race but that’s how it was for me – and the truth is that bothers me a lot. I could easily take the paycheck and just race to finish but that’s not who I am and not how I want to race, nor be remembered. I said on the podium in Las Vegas a week and a half ago that this championship win meant the most out of all my supercross titles because the truth is, I had to fight the hardest for this one. Not necessarily because of the battles on the track, though those were good and tough, but because I had to mentally push myself like never before to get it done. And to come out on top and hold onto the championship title for the third year in a row is an unbelievable blessing that I’m incredibly proud of.”

From 2010-2015, Dungey finished either first or second in the final championship standings and never missed a single moto. He failed to earn a podium result just six times during that stretch, effectively making him one of the most consistent riders the sport has ever seen. It’s that foundation of consistency that has defined Dungey’s entire career, so when he suffered multiple fractures in his neck following a crash last season at Thunder Valley (and still finished third despite the injury) and was forced to miss the Nationals for the first time, no one expected he would never line up on the gate in the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship again.

Currently, Dungey is statistically the second-most-successful rider in Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship history, sitting behind only “The GOAT” himself Ricky Carmichael. However, at just 27 years of age, Dungey is hanging up his helmet and boots for good, bringing an end to one of the most impressive careers the sport has ever seen. Away from the track, Dungey embraced the role of being an ambassador and the proverbial face of the sport, receiving numerous honours and doing all he can to give back.

“Words can’t really express how bittersweet it was to receive this news today as Ryan is still in the prime of his career and without a doubt has more championship-winning seasons still left in the tank,” said MX Sports Pro Racing President Davey Coombs. “Nevertheless, he’s accomplished everything there is to achieve in the sport, and even more so when you look beyond the race track. He has nothing left to prove and his legacy has long been cemented as one of the all-time greats. We have nothing but gratitude for what he’s given to the sport, serving as a true ambassador and leader, and wish him the best of luck as he enters the next phase of his life alongside his wife, Lindsay. Hopefully it’s not the last time we see him at the races.”

Ryan Dungey’s List of Accomplishments

  • 2007 AMA Supercross/Motocross Rookie of the Year
  • 2009 AMA Supercross Western Regional 250SX Class Champion
  • 2009 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross 250 Class Champion
  • 2009 Motocross of Nations Champion
  • 2010 AMA/FIM Supercross World Champion
  • 2010 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross 450 Class Champion
  • 2010 Motocross of Nations Champion
  • 2010 AMA Athlete of the Year
  • 2011 Motocross of Nations Champion
  • 2012 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross 450 Class Champion
  • 2015 AMA/FIM Supercross World Champion
  • 2015 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross 450 Class Champion
  • 2016 AMA/FIM Supercross World Champion
  • 2017 AMA/FIM Supercross World Champion
  • 92 Career AMA Wins (combined 250cc & 450cc in supercross and motocross)
  • 46 Career AMA/FIM Supercross Main Event Wins (combined 250SX & 450SX)
  • 46 Career AMA Pro Motocross Overall Wins (combined 250 Class & 450 Class)
  • 6th on the All-Time AMA/FIM Supercross 450SX Wins List (34 Wins)
  • 2nd on the All-Time AMA Pro Motocross 450 Class Wins List (39 Wins)
  • 3rd on the All-Time AMA/FIM Supercross 450SX Podiums List (101 Podiums)
  • 2nd on the All-Time AMA Pro Motocross 450 Class Podiums List (69 Podiums)
  • Two-Time ESPY Award Winner – Best Male Action Sport Athlete
  • First Motocross Racer to be Featured in ESPN The Magazine’s “Body Issue”
  • First Motocross Athlete to Appear on a Wheaties Box

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