450 Words: SeattleMonday, April 30, 2007 | 1:41 PM
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There were a few doubts along the way, but for the most part, James Stewart’s rise from amateur motocross phenom to Amp’d Mobile AMA Supercross Champion seemed predestined for quite some time. He was branded quite a few things, from Baby Chicken to Bubba to “The Tiger Woods of Motocross,” and of course, “the fastest guy on the track.”
And he has delivered on all of the promises. Yeah there were a few bumps in the road, but right now you’re looking at the rider with the most AMA 125 MX and Supercross wins ever, and he’s way ahead of anyone’s supercross win total for his age.
So yeah, Stewart has hit some snags (the Toronto SX last December comes to mind), but for the most part he has delivered, and now he’s the champion of the biggest series in our sport. The James Stewart era has begun, and get ready to like it. He’s young, remember, so he’ll probably be here for a long time.
That should be a good thing. Yes, deep, stacked fields of competition sound great, but we’ve spent most of the season celebrating the memory of a rider who dominated racing for 10 years and is called the Greatest Of All Time. Dominance creates headlines, and Stewart is going to do that in mainstream America for as long as he keeps on winning.
Can he? It looks like it. Seattle posed the most difficult track of the season thanks to a massive collection of ruts, and every single rider seemed to either crash, stall or almost crash and stall throughout the main. Except Stewart. He’s been erratic at times, but he looked awfully smart, smooth and in control throughout this one, even though he was riding on a track that breeded mistakes. Maybe all of those crashes are just a brief part of his history, and the rest of the ride will be paved in gold. The sport won’t be doing too badly if that happens.
Hey, while we’re on the subject of age, congrats to 19-year-old Davi Millsaps for finally showing signs of his old self with a strong runner-up ride, and 29-year-old Kevin Windham for showing it’s not always a young man’s sport (although even K-Dub gives up a few years to Mr. Manning).
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Check out 10,000 MILES FROM HOMEin our Latest issue of Racer X available now.
Australian Dean Ferris hopes to follow in the footsteps of some of his legendary countrymen. Now contesting the FIM Grand Prix series, he made a huge impression at the Motocross of Nations. Page 138.