It took four races but Toyota/JGRMX/Yamaha's James Stewart finally put it all together to record his first win of the 2012 Monster Energy AMA Supercross Series, an FIM Championship in front of 46,017 fans at the O.co Coliseum in Oakland, California.
James Stewart became the fourth different winner of the 2012 Supercross Series on the fourth different brand.
In the Lites class, GEICO Honda's Eli Tomac became the first multiple winner of 2012 in either class after taking the win ahead of Red Bull KTM's Marvin Musquin and Monster Energy Yamaha's Zach Osborne, who made the podium for the second time in a row.
In the Supercross class (450), Chad Reed, on the TwoTwo Motorsports/Bel-Ray Honda, grabbed the holeshot right in front of Stewart, and not far behind them was opening-round winner Ryan Villopoto, on the Monster Energy Kawasaki. The three riders eventually engaged in a close battle, with Reed holding them both off...until the 10th lap. That's when Stewart made his move and got around Reed and, from there, he slowly inched his way away from last week's winner, Reed.
Chad Reed led for about half the race before giving way to Stewart. He finished second.
Stewart is now the fourth different winner in four rounds.
Reed now had Villopoto on his back but didn't fold. Instead, he pulled a few bikelengths on Villopoto and took the checkered flag in second place.
Villopoto settled for third, followed by Red Bull KTM's Ryan Dungey, who was about 17th after the first turn, and Supercross.com Honda's Andrew Short, who was mixing it up with the leaders for much of the race.
"I would like to dedicate this win to my mechanic, Mark 'Tex' Adams, who passed away this week," said Stewart. "I got in a rhythm out there tonight and put together a great race. I had a tough couple of races this year, and tonight I got it done."
Ryan Villopoto could catch Reed and took third.
Reed and Dungey are now tied for the points lead.
The win was also the first for the tire manufacturer Pirelli.
There were plenty of crashes in the Lites main. Martin Davalos, on the Rockstar Energy Suzuki, grabbed the holeshot but soon lost the lead to Tomac, who then rode away from the pack.
"This is my best season ever," said Tomac. "Our team worked really hard to give me a great bike, and I made the most of it. I now have a nice lead going into Anaheim."
Eli Tomac ran away with the Lites win.
Dean Wilson, Cole Seely and Jason Anderson, who had worked his way into second, all went down during the course of the race.
Musquin rode a strong 15 laps, finishing second after making many passes to get there. He crossed the finish line about 12 seconds behind Tomac.
Osborne held on for third, followed by Ryan Sipes and Matt Moss.
Davalos slipped back to ninth, Wilson 10th and Seely 11th.
Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki's Tyla Rattray did not ride the Lites main after having crashed earlier in the night and was knocked out. According to his team manager Mitch Payton, he suffered a concussion but is otherwise okay.
Zach Osborne got on the podium for the second time in a row.
1. James Stewart (Yam)
2. Chad Reed (Hon)
3. Ryan Villopoto (Kaw)
4. Ryan Dungey (KTM)
5. Andrew Short (Hon)
6. Kevin Windham (Hon)
7. Davi Millsaps (Yam)
8. Jake Weimer (Kaw)
9. Justin Brayton (Hon)
10. Josh Hansen (Kaw)
1. Eli Tomac (Hon)
2. Marvin Musquin (KTM)
3. Zach Osborne (Yam)
4. Ryan Sipes (Yam)
5. Matt Moss (KTM)
6. Travis Baker (Hon)
7. Nico Izzi (Yam)
8. Max Anstie (Hon)
9. Martin Davalos (Suz)
10. Dean Wilson (Kaw)