AMA-SX: Stewart edges Reed

Dungey also victorious in Phoenix

By Motorcycle.Com Staff, Jan. 13, 2009
James Stewart edged out rival Chad Reed by half a second in the second round of the 2009 AMA Supercross series.

The San Manuel Yamaha rider bounced back from a disappointing first round to win in front of 46,566 spectators in Chase Field in Phoenix, Ariz. on Jan. 11. Stewart was knocked out of the season opener in Anaheim, Calif. after first coming into contact with Reed and then getting hit by Kevin Windham while trying to restart.

“My goal was to try to win the race and I was able to do that, so it was good,” says Stewart. “I just wanted to ride better than I did last week.”

James Stewart was flying high in Phoenix.
Ryan Dungey took advantage of a Jake Weimer crash to win in the Lites class.

Rookie Josh Grant of Joe Gibbs Yamaha, the surprise winner in Anaheim, continued to impress by taking the holeshot in Phoenix with Stewart in second and Reed third. Before the end of the first lap, however, Stewart had assumed the lead. By the third lap, Grant was passed by Reed, who raced for Rockstar Makita Suzuki.

Reed followed close behind Stewart for the rest of the race but was unable to pass. Stewart earned his first Supercross win with Yamaha, beating Reed by 0.591 seconds. Grant came in third for his second podium finish

In the Supercross Lites race, Rockstar Makita Suzuki’s Ryan Dungey earned his first win of the season to assume the Western Region lead.

Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Jake Weimer maintained his momentum from his victory in Anaheim to take the holeshot and lead the opening six laps in Phoenix. A mistake in a section of sand took Weimer down and gave Dungey a lead he would not relinquish.

“After I saw Jake crash, I knew there were plenty of laps left so I needed to be smart and consistent,” says Dungey. “I’m happy to move into the points lead as we head back to Anaheim next weekend.”

Weimer did remount to enter a three-way battle with teammate Ryan Morais and KTM’s Justin Brayton for the remaining two podium positions. Brayton came out ahead for his first KTM podium.

“I’ve been working so hard for this podium finish,” says Brayton. “KTM has had my back for a few years now and I am happy to finally get this finish for them. My patience finally paid off and I am really happy with my finish and look forward to the rest of this season.”  

Defending champion Jason Lawrence of Troy Racing failed to qualify after getting caught in another rider’s crash in the first qualifying heat and again in the last chance qualifier.

The 2009 AMA Supercross season returns to Anaheim Jan. 17 for round three.