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Kawasaki Battles to Fifth Consecutive Win in Indianapolis

 

Round 9 took place at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis in sub-zero temperatures. Enduring not only the cold, but the toughest track this season, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki's Adam Cianciarulo fought to take his second career victory ahead of teammate Martin Davalos.

 

Both riders overcame crashes to take the top two spots on the podium while Blake Baggett came through the field to finish fifth. In the 450SX class, Monster Energy Kawasaki's Ryan Villopoto crashed off the start and climbed back to salvage fourth place and extend his points lead to 23, while Dean Wilson made his 450SX class debut with a top-10 finish in 10th.

 

After capturing his first career win two weeks prior in Dallas, Cianciarulo cemented his place at the top of the field and extended his points lead with his second win of the season in Indy. The points leader continued the consistency he has shown so far this season and qualified on top of the board.

 

Cianciarulo won his heat race on a fresh track that would not resemble what he faced in the main event. He got off the start behind his teammate Davalos, and they began to gap the pack. On lap six he inherited the lead as Davalos went down, but the battle with the track continued. Cianciarulo fought the deteriorating track and despite a crash of his own he took the checkered flag.

 

“The track tonight was gnarly,” said Cianciarulo. “It was survival out there and I was lucky to keep it in control for most of the race. I got a great start and that's what made the difference.”

 

One week following his first career supercross win, Davalos wasted no time getting out front and leading the pack. Davalos had the competition handled but the track was the one who got the better of him. The soft Indiana dirt quickly fell apart as the 15 laps of the main event went on and on Lap 7, Davalos lost traction on the lack of dirt and went off track. He quickly recovered and was able to fight back to second place.

 

“Sometimes it's out of your control,” said Davalos. “The track got the best of me but we all had to ride the same track and I'm happy I was able to recover and still put my Kawasaki on the podium.”

 

Reigning champion, Villopoto worked all day to master the evolving track, but ultimately his main event was one of survival and salvation. Off the start, the field came together which resulted in the champ hitting the deck. Determined to fight back, he charged and attacked the diminishing track and was able to fight his way back to fourth place.

 

“The track tonight was extremely difficult,” said Villopoto. “I found myself on the ground but if you're going to be on the ground it makes it better when the rider you're in the points battle with is there as well. We ended up extending our points lead and we're looking forward to Daytona next week.”

For the second week in a row Baggett had to carve his way through the field. Baggett found himself outside of the top-10 on the first lap and searched for alternative lines on the rutted track to reach fifth place by the checkered flag. Baggett falls to fourth overall in the points standings.

 

“We took a lot of time to practice starts this week,” said Baggett. “I felt really confident in them but we got pinched off the line and I had to shut off. I know with a good start I can win one of these. We'll stay focused and look forward to the next round at Daytona.”