It was a great night for the JE Pistons-powered Pro Circuit Racing Team at Atlanta Supercross. Check out all the details on the East/West Showdown domination here.
Official release from JE Pistons.
East met west Saturday night at Mercedes-Benz Stadium for the first of two Monster Energy AMA Supercross 250SX Class East/West Showdowns and, when the checkered flag waved, it was another win for the JE Pistons-equipped Pro Circuit Racing team.
The highly anticipated race marked the first time Adam Cianciarulo and Austin Forkner raced each other this season with both riders having three wins and the point lead in each of their respective Regional 250SX Classes coming into the Atlanta Supercross.
After the checkered flag flew to close out the first half of the 2019 season, it was Cianciarulo who was standing tall on the top step of the podium. Still, Forkner didn’t disappoint and came away from Atlanta with a solid third-place effort, awarding team owner Mitch Payton with a pair of podiums on the night.
"What a night,” exclaimed Cianciarulo, who picked up this third East/West Showdown win. “It felt good to be back on the bike and being able to race with all of my teammates this weekend. This win feels so good, especially when you consider how stacked the competition was. I’m proud of my teammates and our success, it’s just a testament to how good our KX250 is this season and how dialed the entire Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki team has it. We put in so much work so it’s great to see it pay off. We’ll keep it going for the next few weeks and get ourselves ready for Seattle."
The win was Cianciarulo’s fourth of the year and 10th of his career. At the same time, The Port Orange, Fla., native extended his Western Regional 250SX Class lead to 15 points over second-place as the division heads into a two-week break before returning to action in Seattle.
Forkner, who opened the Eastern Regional 250SX Class season with three straight wins, looked as though he planned to make it four in a row. The Richards, Mo., native was noticeably fast in his qualifying session before going on to win his heat race. Forkner looked like he had plenty in the tank when the gate dropped after he snagged the holeshot and led the 22-rider field through the first corner.
He led the first 11 laps until Cianciarulo made a clean pass just after the halfway mark. While the rider of the No. 24 Kawasaki KX250 fought hard to reel his teammate back in, he ended up losing one more spot and was credited with a third-place finish by night’s end. Still, the 20-year-old held on to his points lead in the Eastern Region and will carry the red number plate into Daytona this weekend.
“It was fun being able to race with the West Coast riders this weekend, and it definitely provided a unique challenge out there,” explained Forkner. “I’m pumped to get another heat win and podium finish under our belts and maintain the points lead heading into Daytona. I had a few tip overs in practice today, so my main goal tonight was to ride consistently and be patient going into the night show. It’s not another win but we’ll take it!”
Monster Energy AMA Supercross travels to the World Center of Racing this weekend for the Daytona Supercross. The 10th of 17 races on the 2019 schedule will be televised live on NBCSN Saturday, March 9 beginning at 7:30 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, 4:30 p.m. Pacific.