Anderson Leads Monster Energy Kawasaki to Top Finishes in Indianapolis

2023-03-13 03:01
Round 9 of the Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship brought the world’s elite supercross racers to the racing capital of the world in Indianapolis, Indiana, where Monster Energy Kawasaki teammates Jason Anderson and Adam Cianciarulo secured fifth and sixth-place finishes on one of the most challenging tracks of the season. In the 250SX Class, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Chris Blose outperformed his previous career-best finish with a sixth-place result.

Qualifying sessions for the 450SX Class began with both Kawasaki KX™450SR riders first to tackle the quickly deteriorating Indianapolis race course. The No.9 of Cianciarulo wasted no time finding the race lines as he placed near the top of the leaderboard early on in practice. Meanwhile, Anderson showed patience as he studied the opposition’s line selection before setting his own fast lap. When qualifying sessions concluded, the No.21 of Anderson clocked the third fastest lap (45.623) while Cianciarulo qualified eighth overall with a 46.087 lap time.

As the gate dropped on 450SX Heat 1, Cianciarulo utilized the power of his KX450SR to launch off the line and reach the first turn in second. Facing immediate pressure, Cianciarulo then deployed a defensive effort to keep his opponents behind. Cianciarulo held strong to second place during the opening lap but, ultimately, shuffled back to third. Once in third, the Florida-born rider settled into a comfortable pace and built a sizeable gap ahead of fourth en route to finishing the race in third place.

The second 450SX heat race of the night saw green up front again as Anderson also executed a second-place start. A slight miscalculation in line selection during the opening laps saw the No.21 shuffle back to fourth before immediately mounting a charge toward the front. As racing progressed, Anderson steadily closed the gap on third and, despite extremely deep ruts, displayed his elite speed through the whoops as he flew past the defending supercross champion to take control of third where he would finish the heat.

When the gate dropped on the 450SX Main Event, Cianciarulo rounded the first turn in third while his teammate Anderson raced close behind in sixth. Cianciarulo, who recently returned to racing after sitting out two rounds, immediately capitalized on a superb start to position himself second on the opening lap. Like his heat race performance, the No.9 spent the opening laps running with the championship contenders before settling into fifth of the challenging track. Meanwhile, Anderson jockeyed for track position until he built a comfortable gap and honed in on his teammate in fifth. A multiple-lap battle between the Kawasaki teammates brought the crowd inside Lucas Oil Stadium to their feet as the No.9 withstood Anderson’s multiple pass attempts. On Lap 12, Anderson's world-class whoop speed again proved to be the deciding factor as he blitzed past his teammate for fifth. Keen on securing a season-best finish, Cianciarulo displayed impressive race craft as he strung together consistent laps to hold the defending supercross champion at bay through to the finish. When the checkered flag flew, Anderson crossed the line to secure his fourth consecutive top-five result, and Cianciarulo finished an impressive sixth.

“Overall, I think we had another decent weekend as a team. The track here in Indianapolis was extremely rutted and one of the most challenging tracks this season. After a good qualifying result and heat race, I had my goal set on securing another podium, but I couldn’t find my rhythm until later in the main event. Still, a fifth-place finish is a solid result and, on a night where all the top guys were a little off, it gives us valuable championship points as we continue to try to break into the top-three in the points standings.”

- Jason Anderson

“It feels good to be back racing under the lights. Electing to sit out the last couple of rounds was a difficult decision. I'm so grateful to have a team that fully supports me and ensures my health is 100% before returning. As for my performance, I can honestly say I am proud of how I rode, especially on a rough track like tonight. I proved to everyone, including myself, that I still have what it takes to mix it up with the lead group for the entire duration of a main event race. Now we can focus on improving during the week and keeping the momentum rolling in Detroit."

- Adam Cianciarulo

At the start of 250SX qualifying, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Blose employed his usual plan of attack, utilizing the open track and temporarily set the third fastest lap during the first qualifying session before finishing sixth quickest. In the second and final 250SX qualifying session of the day, Blose set a blistering 46.821 lap time, which qualified him fourth overall and locked-in his spot in the first 250SX heat race of the night.

When the gate dropped on 250SX Heat 1, Blose rocketed off the line to earn his first holeshot of the season and take lead of the race. Out front, the crafty veteran was faced with immense pressure but showed his resilience as he held on strong to the lead during the opening laps. Despite his best efforts to retain the lead, the No.57 dropped back to second before the halfway point. With little racing remaining, Blose rode a comfortable pace through to the finish and crossed the finish line in second place.

In the 250SX Main Event, Blose again launched his KX™250 off the line to a spectacular start and emerged from the first turn in second. The No.57 quickly shuffled back to eighth during the early stages of the race as he searched for lines on the rapidly deteriorating track. Never one to give up, Blose used his creativity on-track to maneuver by lapped traffic and catch the riders ahead. Through a combination of unique line selection and determination, Blose raced his way up to sixth by the last lap to earn a season-best result.

“Tonight was a fun race. Getting to lead my heat race was a great experience and shows how far the team and I have come in just a short amount of time. The main event started on the right foot, but with the ruts getting deeper by each lap, I had difficulty stringing together consistent laps early in the race. Thankfully I found a few different lines by the halfway mark that allowed me to bypass the lapped traffic and make up a few positions to finish with a season-best sixth place. I had to work hard for this one, but with a little more practice on the bike, I strongly believe we can battle with the top-five guys.”

- Chris Blose


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