San Diego Practice Report

February 11, 2006 6:01pm

Here’s the scoop on Amp’d Mobile Supercross from San Diego: James Stewart is putting Anaheim 3’s disaster behind him and putting in the fastest laps in practice. However, this has been the story basically all year, but when it comes to race time, Ricky Carmichael has been able to do what he has to do to win races. But Stewart seemed unfazed by his rough ride last weekend – he was still all smiles this morning during the track walk, and quick to point out that 11 races remain in this series.

A few questions have centered around James’ suspension setup, which Carmichael criticized as too stiff last weekend. A talk with Jeremy Albrecht, Stewart’s mechanic, revealed that Kawasaki has indeed been softening the KX450’s suspension each week, which helps in corners and prevents the front-end washouts. But that’s not the reason they’re softening it. According to J-Bone, they run the suspension stiff because it helps in the whoops, but as the tracks (and specifically the whoops) are getting easier, you don’t need to run your suspension as stiff. So there are some changes there.

Chad Reed ended up second on time in the first practice and third on time in session two. Reed should be comfortable on this track – he’s won here the last three times they have raced. And he needs one bad tonight, because Carmichael is started to slip away from him in the standings.

As for RC, he looks solid as always.

The track here isn’t too tough, as there are several obstacles on the original track blueprint that have been eliminated here. A jump section after the second triple, for example, is now an easy section of rollers. There doesn’t appear to be anything a certain rider can do different than the others to make up time.

The only rider who is doing anything different is actually Lites rider Grant Langston, who is manualing a jump before the first triple and gaining a little time. Langston is well out front in Lites lap times.

That’s all from San Diego. Be sure to listen to the webcast tonight at 7 p.m. PST on and watch the show tomorrow on CBS at noon eastern time and 9 a.m. PST. Please listen to the webcast or my feelings will be hurt.