News 18 Jan 2011

Stewart confident good starts and smart riding can win title

James Stewart was back to his best at Phoenix last Saturday night.

James Stewart was back to his best at Phoenix last Saturday night.

San Manuel/Red Bull Yamaha’s James Stewart has admitted he’ll need to continue getting good starts and riding smart in a bid to win the 2011 Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship.

The 2009 series champion won his first race in over 12 months in Phoenix last Saturday night at Chase Field Stadium, bouncing back at the very event where he suffered a fractured scaphoid at one year ago.

Seizing the holeshot later in the evening the 2009 champion was able to control the 20 lap sprint from the front and keep last week’s winner Ryan Villopoto at bay for half of the distance until the latter slipped off.

Stewart was then able to roll to the chequered flag for his fourth triumph at Chase Field.

“The track was tough and really slick tonight, it was so easy to over-ride it,” said Stewart who is the only rider to win at Phoenix in both the SX and SX Lites classes. “I wanted a good start and with the holeshot I then did my own race.

“I was confident and Ryan rode really well – we were both pushing the limits of traction out there and it was cat-and-mouse for a little while. It has been a long time since I won a race so this feels good.

“I just need to keep getting the starts and ride smart.”

Stewart is two points behind Villopoto as the championship heads for the first time to the Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles for round three this coming Saturday.