22 year old Cullin Park burst on the AMA Supercross scene in 2022. The young rookie landed himself with a ride on the Phoenix Honda team and had an impressive showing and earned the Rookie of the Year award. Now heading into his 3rd year of Supercross, as well as with the same, the Floridian has his sights set on the the top 5. We got a chance to talk to Cullin about this coming season, his new teammate and even a little World Supercross.
Hey Cullin! Year 3 of Supercross is coming up for you. You have had some good rides and some you probably wish to forget the past two years. Rookie of the year in 2022, 9th overall in 2023. How do you feel about your first two years of your pro career?
You know, it’s been 2 years of steady building. Let’s be honest, my rookie year was nothing to write home about. Got a couple top 10’s but definitely nothing flashy. Last year I took a big jump compared to my rookie year. It was good, I was a consistent top 10 guy, but now we are approaching year 3 and it’s time to make another jump. This one might be harder, but its something I know I can tackle. I’m getting excited!
Back with Phoenix Honda for the 4th year (1 year in arenacross). Do you think this helps you to progress to the next level being familiar with the bike and team?
Yeah I think so. As much as I am progressing, so is the team. We have new people apart of the team this year and with that it’s only elevating everyone involved. The expectations are higher and that’s something I like. Its a pressure every rider strives for I would think, or at least I do. If there’s expectations that means you and the people around you know where you belong.
Although it is the same team, there are quite a few major changes to your program for this year. A new teammate, a new training program and even more support from Honda and the guys at Factory Connection. Let’s start with your new teammate, Dylan Ferrandis. Have you spent much time with him? How is it being around a guy that has won multiple titles and what do you look to gain from him?
Honestly, I haven’t spent a ton of time with him just yet. We spent a week together in California and it was great. He was pushing me in ways that I need. I’m really stoked to have him as a teammate now. He’s been super open to helping me and now I’ll be riding with him more down in Florida, which I am super stoked about. Being around a 4 time champ everyday and a guy with that much wisdom and experience is only going to help me.
Next, we can discuss your new training program. You have been a part of the Moto Sandbox with Ken Roczen, Chase Sexton, Kyle Chisholm and more for a few years, as well as up at Club MX with those guys. But now are switching it up a bit. Where you heading? What was the reason for leaving such a proven program?
Yeah so I am actually going to start riding at the dog pound, which is the Lawrence brothers place. I wanted to be around those guys as well as Dylan. I think change is good. I’m originally from Florida so I wanted to move back to where I am from and try a new program. The team was super on board with it all which made it really easy and I’m grateful for that. I ‘ll be starting next week so I’m super stoked. You can’t keep doing the same thing and expect a different result. I’m stoked to be around super fast guys and I’m hoping to learn as much as I can!
From what it sounds like, with the addition of Dylan Ferrandis, the Pheonix Honda team has got a bit more support from HRC as well as now having the Factory Connection (Former Geico Honda) guys stepping up to help. Is the bike going to be even better this year? Do you think the bike is good enough to run with the factory teams now?
Our bike is definitely going to be better from last year I’d say. The Phoenix Honda team is doing a great job this off season and having Ziggy apart of the team has been great. He has me super comfortable on my bike. My bike is good enough to run with anyone, it’s up to me now.
We have seen you get better and better with each round, earning a 7th in Detroit in 2023. What are your goals and expectations for the coming season?
I want to break inside the top 5 this year. That’s the goal, that’s the plan. I know it’s a big jump, but it’s something I know I am capable of.
Let’s switch it up a little bit. At the end of the 2023 Supercross season, you got the offer to race World Supercross for the HEP Suzuki team. How was that experience for you?
Man, I had a great time honestly. The PMG Suzuki team took me in with open arms and treated me like family right away. Working with Larry Brooks, Dustin, Aaron, Matt and my mechanic Landon was great. It’s really cool to say I got to race my dirt bike in England, Abu Dhabi and Australia too. I wish we could have raced all 6 races like the original plan of the series but that was out of our control. I had a lot of fun learning the Suzuki. It’s so much different then the Honda, but ultimately made me a better rider learning the different characteristics.
As we mentioned earlier, your teammates were some of the guys you had been training with for a couple years already, Ken Roczen and Kyle Chisholm. Do you think having those guys around made it a better, more comfortable experience for you?
Yeah I would say so for sure. They were super open to helping me with any questions or guidance they had to offer. Whether it was bike set up or line choices on the track. Being around those guys was kind of a pinch me situation. I’ve been watching those guys for so long and to be teammates with them was really cool for myself and something I’ll cherish. I’ll definitely take what I learned and apply it for my future.
Do you already have a plan to race WSX in 2024? Or what are you plans after the Supercross season ends?
No, this year I’ll be racing 450 Pro Motocross with the Phoenix Honda team which I am really excited about. Obviously, I’m pretty big on the 250 so I think the 450 will really suit me come outdoors. I’m looking forward to doing motos with my teammate on the 450 as well.
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