Stewart Wins A Thriller At Washougal

Kit Palmer | July 30, 2006

Kawasaki’s James Stewart (7) took advantage of a late-race crash by Ricky Carmichael (4) in the second moto to win before a crowd of 27,442 at the Unbound Energy National at Washougal Motocross Park, which was round eight of the 12-race Toyota AMA Motocross Championship, presented by FMF. Honda’s Andrew Short was the AMA Motocross Lites winner.

Stewart, who is currently battling injuries sustained earlier in the season, namely a sore shoulder and hand, took home the overall win with a 2-1 moto finish and returned to the top of the podium, earning his second overall win of the season on his Jeremy Albrecht-tuned KX450F. Makita Suzuki’s Carmichael wound up second overall with a 1-2 finish and saw his six-race win streak come to an end, but his points lead remains the same, 76 ahead of Yamaha’s Chad Reed, who was third today with 3-3 moto finishes.

After seeing Carmichael come from behind to win the first moto, Stewart again saw an early lead slip away when Carmichael whittled away an 11-second deficit and made a pass late in moto two. However, with less than two laps to go, Carmichael made an uncharacteristic mistake and fell, handing the lead and the overall win to Stewart.

“It feels good to be back…it was a hard road to get here,” said Stewart, who has missed five motos due to crashes and injuries. “I think the last three months I’ve ridden three weeks [due to injuries] and I told myself that I’m [going out there] for the team and for the fans. Once he got by me I was trying to keep him close. With a couple laps to go, fortunately I was able to take advantage.”

Short (29) picked up his second win of the season with a 1-1 sweep of the motos. Honda’s Josh Grant was second overall with a 2-3. KTM’s Mike Alessi finished third (3-4) and took over the top spot in the AMA Motocross Lites point standings. Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto, who is a local favorite from Poulsbo, Washington, relinquished his series lead after a bike failure in the first moto left him with a 40-2, good for sixth overall.

After three consecutive weekends of racing, the Toyota AMA Motocross Championship, presented by FMF, takes a week off before heading to Millville, Minnesota, on July 30, for the Honda Spring Creek National.

Kit Palmer | Off-Road Editor

Kit Palmer started his career at Cycle News in 1984 and he’s been testing dirt and streetbikes every since – plus covering any event that uses some form of a knobby tire. He’s also our resident motorcycle mileage man with a commute of 120 miles a day.