With his 49th career win, Yoshimura Suzuki’s James Stewart is now second on the all-time Supercross win list. PHOTOGRAPHY BY LUKE LOVREK
Yoshimura Suzuki’s James Stewart looked liked the Steward of old as he made a spectacular comeback in tonight’s Monster Energy AMA Supercross main event in Toronto, Canada, and the Rogers Centre to secure his fourth win of the season. Stewart fought back from a bad start that had him buried way back in the pack to take the lead from Muscle Milk Honda’s Justin Barcia with five laps to go.
The win also goes down in the record books as the 49th of Stewart’s career, moving him ahead of the “GOAT” Ricky Carmichael and into second in the all time wins list behind Jeremy McGrath with 72.
“That was probably one of my best races ever, I’m speechless,” Stewart said. “I’m so happy. To break Ricky’s [Carmichael] record and to do it like that. Man, that says a lot.”
Stewart also now has the most wins of the 2014 season.
Joining Stewart on the podium was Barcia in second and Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey in third.
Series points leader Ryan Villopoto made a valiant effort to finish sixth in spite of fighting an illness that had him in the hospital earlier in the day. The Monster Energy Kawasaki rider’s first time on the track at race speed was the heat race. Despite not riding practice or timed qualifying, Villopoto was allowed to compete in the night’s program by using his provisional, which is given to any rider in the top 10 in the season points standing. Villopoto finished ninth in his heat and had to make it into the main through the semi with a second-place finish.
Villopoto’s efforts helped him maintain his comfortable points cushion, which dropped a bit but is still 25 points ahead of Dungey and 39 ahead of Stewart with five rounds to go.
“We made the best of a bad scenario [today],” said Villopoto. “I woke up in a lot of pain this morning and the Asterisk Mobile Medical Crew thought it was best I [go to the hospital] to get checked out. I got out of the hospital and was lucky to make it in time for the night show. We salvaged a lot of points and I’ll go to the doctor back [home] in California to make sure we’re ready for St. Louis next weekend.”
JGR Yamaha’s Justin Brayton finished fourth ahead of Dungey’s teammate Ken Roczen. Roczen led the race early before being passed by Barcia a few laps in and he held onto second for most of the race until Stewart got passed him in whoops.
Privateer Weston Peick continued to impress with another great effort against the factory riders in seventh.
TwoTwo Motorsports fill-in rider Dean Wilson finished eighth in what will be his last ride with the team before moving back to the 250s. Wilson will now return to his usual Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki Team to get ready for the return of the West 250 Supercross Series in a few weeks at Seattle.
Finishing in ninth was RCH Racing’s Josh Hill who was the lone rider for the team, as his teammate Broc Trickle was out due to injury earlier in the day.
Rounding out the top 10 was BTO MotorSports/KTM’s Matt Goerke.
Toronto AMA 450 Supercross Results - March 22, 2014
1. James Stewart (Suzuki)
2. Justin Barcia (Honda)
3. Ryan Dungey (KTM)
4. Justin Brayton (Yamaha)
5. Ken Roczen (KTM)
6. Ryan Villopoto (Kawasaki)
7. Weston Peick (Suzuki)
8. Dean Wilson (Kawasaki)
9. Josh Hill (Suzuki)
10. Matt Goerke (KTM)
450 SX Points Standings (After 12 of 17 rounds)
1. Ryan Villopoto 246
2. Ryan Dungey 221
3. James Stewart 207
4. Ken Roczen 197
5. Justin Brayton 185
6. Justin Barcia 56
7. Andrew Short 153
8. Broc Tickle 126
9. Wil Hahn 122
10. Chad Reed 111