News 26 Jan 2010

AMA SX: Hill and Stewart podium for Yamaha at Anaheim


LandM San Manuel Yamaha pair, Josh Hill and James Stewart, gave the new YZ450F a double podium appearance respectively at Angel Stadium, Anaheim in Los Angeles for the third round of seventeen in the AMA Supercross/FIM World SX Championship. On the second visit of three to the venue in California, Hill took his second rostrum result in as many weeks with the runner-up position behind Ryan Dungey. Reigning champion Stewart nursed a sore right hand – a consequence of his Heat race fall last week in Phoenix – to take third place and rise to fifth in the standings.

After continuous rainfall during the week on the west coast there were fears that the latest instalment of the Anaheim trilogy would be a muddy one. However some decent track prep and effective use of covers provided a reasonably tacky surface for the riders.

Stewart’s hand seemed to bother him in practice but he was able to make the most of a bright start to lead the first quarter of the Main Event. Team-mate Hill was not far away and powered into the lead by lap seven. Dungey was the quickest rider on the track and battled with Hill entering the final five laps. The youngster was denied his second career SX triumph but his runner-up slot, some three seconds ahead of Stewart, means that he is now second in the series. Stewart is still chasing his 38th AMA Supercross victory after his initial success at Anaheim several weeks ago. The 24 year old is currently 22 points adrift of Dungey, and left the arena promptly after finishing the Main Event.

‘I don’t know if I wasn’t breathing in the beginning or what but that pace was ridiculous and I couldn’t do it for 20 laps,’ remarked Hill, who lies 15 points behind Dungey. ‘By the time Dungey passed me, I had nothing left. I’m pretty bummed because with James hurt, I know I have a limited time to get up there and start winning. Hopefully next week.’
Paulin in LA

Yamaha Monster Energy Motocross Team’s Gautier Paulin negotiated his third and final AMA Supercross West Coast Lites outing and was able to leave LA with 6th place; his highest finish to-date on the YZ250F as the best Yamaha rider that evening. The Frenchman, who had been schooled by AMA winner and fellow countryman David Vuillemin in the US, will now return to Europe to fully prepare for his FIM Motocross World Championship MX2-GP title assault.

‘I had a big crash in the whoops and David had been telling me to not be so timid in them, so it felt good in my last supercross this year to put in my best finish in the Main,’ he said. ‘I think I could have done better but it was my best by far. Hopefully, if I can come back next year, it won’t be so new to me then.’ British rookie Max Anstie was right behind Paulin with 7th place; the best Indoor classification so far for the teenager.

Round four takes place next Saturday at the ATandT Park in San Francisco.