The first question about James Stewart entering the 250 class concerns his ability to run the pace set by Ricky Carmichael and Chad Reed this year. After completing his first dry heat race in Orlando last weekend, Stewart answered that question about as clearly as he could — he smoked Ricky Carmichael.
In the main event, Stewart was pulling away from both Carmichael and Reed before he crashed in the whoops. He got up to finish on the podium in third place, but he leaves the second question unanswered. That is, can he run that pace for a 20-lap main event without crashing?
I suspect Stewart will get over the jitters so common when moving up to the 250 class. When he does, it might be bad news for Reed and Carmichael.