Stewart: 8th at Phoenix AMA Supercross

2012 AMA Supercross

James "Bubba" Stewart followed up sixth at the 2012 AMA Supercross season opener (Anaheim I) with an eighth-place finish at Chase Field, Phoenix, Saturday evening.

This was after the Joe Gibbs Racing Yamaha pilot crashed while battling his way through the field towards the front. But Phoenix Supercross didn’t start this way for Stewart.

JGRMX’s Stewart, who was not up to 100-percent health Saturday, set the quickest time in the first qualification aboard the YZ450F, and followed that with a dominant win in his heat race.

But during the main, he began outside the top five, and rapidly began making up postitions.

Yamaha says Stewart’s pace would have "easily pulled him into contention for the podium behind escaping leader and eventual winner Ryan Dungey (Red Bull KTM) but he lost control of the front end in the sandy section and lost valuable time."

Coy Gibbs (JGRMX Team Owner) says: "James wasn’t really feeling all that good today. He skipped second practice because he felt sick and didn’t want to wear himself down for the racing, which we thought was a good idea, but that was a tough main event. The start wasn’t very good, and then to have a fall in the sand there, it was just too much to come through the pack in a field like this."

As for Stewart’s teammate, Davi Millsaps also crashed, but eventually finished in 13th. Dungey won Phoenix Supercross, followed by Kawasaki’s Jake Weimer and the reigning Supercross champion, Ryan Villopoto (Monster Energy Kawasaki).

The 2012 AMA Supercross Championship heads to Dodgers Stadium in Los Angeles Saturday for Round 3 of 17.