July 30, 2007

Oh no! Stewart injured at Washougal...

Here's the update from Steve Bruhn's Weekend Window. It appears that James Stewart fell while running third (!) in the second moto, and was pinned under his bike for a while. He was able to stand up, but he was out of the race.

Stewart's mishap, among other unforeseen circumstances, allowed his Monster Kawasaki team mate Tim Ferry to take his first National win in, well, quite a few years. Good job, Timmy!

And please get well, James Stewart.

July 22, 2007

James Stewart: Heart Like a Lion

Holy cow. An injured James Stewart was able to summon up his inner reserves of... well, I don't know what... and pulled of what was probably the biggest win of his career. Stewart went 4-2 and it was good enough for the overall victory at the Thunder Valley track in Colorado.

Stewart's Monster Energy Kawasaki team mate, Tim Ferry, was able to salvage an 11th place in the first moto by winning the second moto, good enough for second overall. And Red Bull KTM's Mike Alessi took the third and final spot on the podium.

But it was Stewart who stole the show. Only a week after having to be carried off the track at Unadilla, James came out on Sunday morning and cruised through the first practice session... and then laid down the wood in the second session, setting fastest qualifying time. He took off with the lead in the first moto and led for most of the race, but then started to fade. By the time the checkers flew, James was passed by Davi Milsaps, Andrew Short and Mike Alessi.

I missed most of the second moto, so be sure to check out the Racer X post-show for the whole rundown.

James, I gotta give it up to you. Good job!

July 17, 2007

James Stewart says he'll be ready to race Thunder Valley

“Each day I feel better and better,”... ” My mobility has gotten a lot better and I think if it continues going this way, I will be ready for this weekend.” James Stewart said this, as reported in this press statement from the Monster Energy Kawasaki team, via Racer X Online.

Earlier reports of his crash (like this one by Guy B at Vital MX), which occurred only three laps into Sunday morning practice at Unadilla, noted that Stewart had to be carried "...off of the track on a backboard and to the local hospital to be checked out."

"Checked out" in this case meant getting a CAT scan. Maybe even two, according to this report at Racer X... apparently at some point James intended to get another CAT scan and a second opinion. What does it mean, if anything, that both the Racer X and Vital MX stories characterized the first hospital as "local?" Not a thing, I'm sure, but... if being "local" to the Unadilla facility means the hospital delivers substandard healthcare, then I'd probably get a second opinion myself. (To be fair, I must note that the Kawasaki press release simply referred to the place as a "hospital")

So, James is "sore" but getting better, and is currently under daily therapy to "... ease the muscle tension in his neck and back." He'll see how he feels in Saturday practice before he makes his final decision. Oh, how the internet will feed on this practice angle... I have no time for indulging that silly conversation.

One thing I've noticed about the official report is that they have managed to avoid the "c" word... well, I'm going to say it: concussion. I guess there's really no need for one to mention any injuries one did not actually incur. I could be reading too much into it; I actually hope that's the case, but...

What happened to the second opinion? You know what (I'm talking to James here... )? If you can afford more than one Ferrari, you can afford a second opinion. Of course, the point is not to amass multiple opinions, it's about getting expert medical care. I'm just saying, a single motocross race, even one where you have a realistic chance of picking up 50 championship points and getting one step closer to that huge, ginormous goal of you-know-what, well... it's just not worth losing mobility for life. Just to name one possible consequence.

I'm just saying, it's okay to sit out another round, James. Think about that before you even suit up on Saturday... your health is your responsibility, and yours alone.

July 11, 2007

I have to hand it to Villopoto

Ryan Villopoto has surprised me, I must admit. I truly thought that he would be playing catch-up to former MX2 World Champion Ben Townley, but instead, Townley has his hands full trying to keep up with Ryan!

Townley got off to a great start, winning the opening round. But Ryan hung tough in the points and finally uncorked it all at Budds Creek, storming to a dominant two-win performance. And his race at Red Bud was just as emphatic.

Ryan Villopoto, you are indeed the man. Keep up the good work!

July 01, 2007

An unbelievable battle at Red Bud

Ricky Carmichael and James Stewart finished 1-2 overall, again, but that simple fact does not begin to tell the story. It truly was a battle royale, with both rider pushing the other into making critical mistakes. James took the moto one win after RC nearly fell in a turn, and then Ricky took the decisive second moto win, and overall, after James endo'd in another rutted turn.

I saw the first motos live on Motocross.com, for the second week in a row, and I have to tell ya, they are doing a great job!