In front of a packed house at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California, the most highly anticipated race of any AMA Supercross season - the Anaheim 1 series opener - went off without a hitch, and Red Bull’s James Stewart finished third after a hard-fought battle from the back of the pack.
After retiring from the 2010 series early due to a career-threatening wrist injury, a podium at A1 was exactly what JS7 needed to kick off 2011 with confidence. Here’s how the night unfolded…
SUPERCROSS QUALIFYING HEATS
- After rounding turn one in the fifth spot to start Heat #2, San Manuel/Yamaha/Red Bull’s James Stewart methodically picked his way through the pack to take over the lead by the end of lap five. The rest was history, as JS7 motored on to an impressive heat win.
- In his debut ride as a part of the Red Bull-backed San Manuel Yamaha squad, Kyle Regal qualified eighth in Supercross Heat #1.
- Red Bull KTM’s Andrew Short qualified seventh out of Heat #2 in his first-ever race aboard the orange machine.
- Mike Alessi and his Red Bull KTM made a last-lap pass to grab the final transfer spot to the main event out of Heat #2.
- Stewart’s heat (Heat #2) was nearly ten seconds quicker than Heat #1.
SUPERCROSS MAIN EVENT
- When the gates dropped, Stewart got pinched off heading into turn one, and eventually rounded the opening lap in the 12th spot.
- By the midway point, Stewart had worked his way into fourth place.
- On the final lap, James closed the gap on the second-place rider (defending champ Ryan Dungey) to within two seconds, but was unable to challenge for the position before the wave of the checkers.
- In his first Supercross since Anaheim 2 last year, JS7 finished an impressive third place to kick of the 2011 racing season.
- Stewart set the fastest lap time in the main event by almost a full second.
- Andrew Short battled to a top-ten finish aboard his Red Bull KTM.
SUPERCROSS LITES QUALIFYING HEATS
- Red Bull-backed Troy Lee Honda’s Travis Baker finished third in Lites Heat #2 to easily qualify for the main event.
- After a gnarly practice crash earlier in the day, Red Bull KTM’s rookie sensation from Germany, Ken Roczen, struggled to find his groove on the opening laps of Heat #2, but managed to pilot his orange steed to an impressive fourth-place finish by the end.
- Troy Lee Honda’s Christian Craig finished second in the LCQ to snatch the last qualifying position for the Lites main event.
SUPERCROSS LITES MAIN EVENT
- Cole Seely rode a smooth and steady race aboard his Red Bull-fueled Troy Lee Honda to finish the night in fifth.
- After getting buried in the pack heading into turn one, Roczen had his work cut out for him as he began his charge from just outside the top-ten.
- Showing a ton of heart in his first-ever American Supercross, Roczen finished seventh overall.
- Travis Baker finished the day in eighth.
SUPERCROSS LITES RESULTS
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