When the 2022 Lucas Oil Motocross season returns to action on May 28 at Fox Raceway in Pala, Calif., one of motorcycle racing’s legends, Ryan Dungey, will come out of retirement and ride his famous number 5 to challenge the pack.
Dungey has unfinished business after being kicked out of the 2016 motocross campaign with a season-ending injury just three rounds into the year. He returned to Supercross action the following season and won his third straight SX title, but given the start of his final motocross season, he must have felt he had a good shot at winning the MX championship as well.
In 2016, Dungey finished second at Hangtown in Rancho Cordova, Calif., won at Glen Helen in San Bernadino, Calif., and finished second again at Round 3 at Thunder Valley in Lakewood, Colo. before to be put aside.
“I’m really delighted to have the opportunity to race the first two outdoor rounds for Red Bull KTM,” Dungey said in a statement. “I had a lot of success with KTM in my last years of racing and it’s exciting to go back and race for the same team with a lot of great people.
“I have a lot of confidence with the team, which breeds confidence sitting on the line knowing I have good people behind me and we have a great dirt bike under us. It’s a stacked class and it’s been a while since I’ve been online with them, but I’m glad to be back on the doorstep.
Dungey will join Cooper Webb and Aaron Plessinger at Red Bull KTM Factory Racing along with Italian MXGP rider Antonio Cairoli. Dungey won two of his three MX titles with Red Bull in 2012 and 2015.
“We knew the 50th anniversary season of the world’s most prestigious motocross championship was destined to be one for the ages, but nothing could have prepared us for the competitive return of two of motocross’ most prolific champions in Ryan Dungey. and Antonio Cairoli,” said Davey Coombs, President of MX Sports Pro Racing. “When Ryan retired in 2017, he certainly felt like he still had a lot left in the tank, so it was bittersweet to see him walk away in his prime.
“While a return to action has always been something we hoped for, today’s announcement is unprecedented, and we can’t wait to see two ageless legends of the sport go head-to-head with their older counterparts. youngsters this summer. Seeing No. 5 and No. 222 together on the track will truly be one of the standout moments of the series.
— Pro Motocross (@ProMotocross) April 29, 2022
The team has not announced the length of Dungey’s 2022 campaign, only committing to the first two rounds for both riders.
He certainly has nothing left to prove, but when Dungey returns to Pro Motocross, it will be with the goal of adding to his legacy. When he retired in 2017, he came away with a third-best 46 career wins and a second-best 91 podium finishes. In addition to his titles with Red Bull, Dungey also won the 2010 championship a year after winning the 250 class.
Dungey, 32, will be joined by another veteran. Last week, Red Bull announced that Cairoli, 36, will make his Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship debut in the opening two rounds of the season after winning nine FIM Motocross World Championships.
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