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Team Green | 9/23/2013
Monster Energy Kawasaki Battles Up Front in Ontario
Monster Energy Kawasaki Battles Up Front in Ontario
Irvine, Calif. (September 23, 2013) – Round 3 of the AMA EnduroCross series provided close racing at Citizens Business Banks Arena in Ontario on Saturday. Following the summer filled with international travel for X Games Enduro X, Monster Energy Kawasaki returned to the U.S. hungry for the podium. After laying down the fastest lap time in practice, Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Taylor Robert backed it up with the fastest qualifying hot lap. Robert transferred to the main event with a second place in his heat, but a back-row start forced him to come through the field to finish fourth. Justin Soulé was smooth and consistent all day on his KX™250F qualifying sixth fastest and transferring to the main with a third place finish. Soulé battled for position up front early to finish ninth.
Falling Short
Robert was all smiles in Ontario throughout the day of practice and qualifying. He was on top of the board every time he hit the track and was poised to return to the top step of the podium like he did at X Games Germany. During the hot lap qualifying, the Arizona native rode a flawless lap which placed him on top of the board. The racing was so intense that the top three rider’s hot laps were all within the same tenth of a second. Robert rode smart and smooth in his heat for the main, but his night went sour when they lined up for the second set of hot laps to determine gate pick for the main event. After nailing the rock pile and jumping clear over the log matrix and water hole, Robert was cruising to a great time when he lost the front end just before the checkered. The crash left him with last gate pick and forced him to start from the back row. Undeterred he pushed his way through the pack and finished fourth.

“I really felt like I had a win in me tonight,” said Robert. “There was a group of us on another level today and I think we could have had a really good race for the fans had I been up there off the start. We’ve only three rounds in so we’ll get them at the next one.”
Soulé was excited for the EnduroCross series to start back up again after the summer break. Last year, he was on the podium in Ontario and knew what he had to do in order to repeat. Soulé was his typical self, attacking the hot lap, but riding within his means and placed an impressive sixth fastest time. He got pushed wide off the start of the heat race, but was able to work his way into third to qualify directly to the main event. The first corner sent the field into the rock garden, which gave multiple riders issues all evening especially when they all come together. Soulé kept himself upright to finish ninth.

“It’s frustrating to know where I was last year,” said Soulé. “I know I’m capable of the podium, but just didn’t have the aggression off the start. I know what I need to work on for the next round so I’m looking forward to Denver.”
Team USA
After finishing up in Ontario on Saturday night, Robert was on an early flight Sunday morning to the 2013 FIM International Six Days of Enduro (ISDE) in Italy. This year’s ISDE takes place on the Mediterranean island of Sardinia off the coast of Italy. Robert will be joined by five of the best off –road riders in the world to comprise the six-man Trophy Team and look to take home the gold medal for their country. Racing kicks off September 30th.
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