by Charles Owens on 04/03/2014
By Paul Savage – TSM Editor @PaulSavageNZ
The origin of the Missouri nickname the ‘Show me’ state goes way back to a phrase uttered by congressman Willard Duncan Vandiver once upon a time. As the story goes, it’s said to be a testament to the commonsensical, slightly skeptical and competitive attitude of the state’s residents observed by the congressman.
On Saturday night, perhaps someone in St Louis pulled James Stewart aside and said: “Show me”. Came many did, and shown many were.
Stewart made it win number three in a row on Saturday night. He fought off defending champion Ryan Villopoto (Kawasaki, 2nd) and Honda’s Justin Barcia (3rd) on a hard and dusty race track.
Stewart came out of the gates third, behind Mike Alessi and Ryan Villopoto, before beginning one of his trademark runs for the front that we’ve seen over the last few weeks.
This one was executed in the form of angular jump maneuver half-way through the Main Event. The leap, right before the hairpin, landed Stewart right inside Ryan Villopoto’s turning arc on the bend. Stewart’s aerobatics stunned an unexpecting Villopoto, who did mighty well to not come straight off his Kawasaki. Unfazed, Stewart pinned the throttle and took off in front. The uneventful race didn’t allow Villopoto to re-take the lead or really even look like trying.
In his humble, yet ecstatic interview style, Stewart admitted post-race he’d “been kind of following” Villopoto in the heat race section earlier that night.
Quizzed about his passing move, the Suzuki rider said he tried to leave him [Villopoto] a bit of room and got “closer than I thought” to him on the pass.
“We’re racing for race wins here,” Stewart said.
Fans and followers will no doubt be thinking of and praying for Honda 450 rookie Wil Hahn – he crashed out in the rhythm section earlier that night, cracking his skull and breaking his humerus in the process. Word is he’s recovering well and communicating with fans via Twitter (@wilhahn23).
Kawasaki high-flyer Martin Davalos won the 250 Main ahead of Justin Bogle (2nd, Honda) and Blake Baggett (Kawasaki, 3rd).
With Stewart now dangerously close to taking Ryan Villopoto’s red leader’s plate, the upcoming race in Texas will certainly make for a great night. See you then!