Just a few days after a controversial press release complained vociferously that he had been lied to regarding his opportunity to make the Motocross of Nations team, James Stewart and L&M Racing have announced that they will not compete in the remaining Outdoor Motocross Nationals this year. Stewart states in the press release below that, despite a third place finish in the first moto at Unadilla two weeks ago, Stewart and his team “have decided they just aren’t ready to compete in the series at the level they are accustomed to”, and Stewart states “I need more time to prepare so that I don’t put my entire career at risk by getting injured again.” We admit that reading the two press releases together leaves us more than a little bit confused.
After more than a week of training and testing since his return to racing at Unadilla, a difficult decision was reached today by James and his team to withdraw from the remainder of the 2010 AMA Pro Motocross series. Due to his abbreviated Supercross season, James, with the full support of his team, had hoped to return to the track much earlier in the National series. Thanks to a slow-healing wrist injury, however, James did not receive the medical clearance he needed until just a few short weeks prior to Unadilla.
Unfortunately, despite a sincere attempt to make a strong return to racing, the rush to do so was quite visible when the dust finally settled in upstate New York on August 14th. Though James had a good run in Moto 1, the lack of physical preparation and challenges with bike set-up forced him off the track early in Moto 2. Though they’ve had some time to make adjustments since leaving Unadilla, James and the team have decided they just aren’t ready to compete in the series at the level they are accustomed to.
“At this point, I honestly just hope my fans will understand,” James commented. “I said before that I wanted to be on the track starting with Hangtown, but the slow healing nature of my wrist injury made it impossible to do so. Watching race after race and not being a part of the series has been very difficult. All along my motivation was to get back to racing and return to the outdoor series for my fans and sponsors. And though my wrist is feeling great, it became obvious that I’m just not ready to race at that level yet. As much as I’d like to be out there, I need more time to prepare so that I don’t put my entire career at risk by getting injured again. I’d like to apologize to my fans first and foremost, as well as to the series and my sponsors for being unable to continue.”
James’ planned return to racing is now set for Anaheim 1 in January. Of all people, James knows exactly what it takes to prepare for a Supercross championship run, and he’s now digging in deep to put in the hard work required over the next few months to have a successful 2011 season!
“We had every intention of racing Southwick and beyond,” commented L&M Team Manager Larry Brooks. “But sometimes you have to see the bigger picture and make a decision based on what’s right, not on what you’d like to do at the time. We’re a Team and we have to do what we feel is best to ensure we have every opportunity to win the next Championship.”