Could James “Bubba” Stewart ride for Factory Team Suzuki in 2012?
Initial report 8/29/2011. Updates below. Could James ” Bubba” Stewart ride for Factory Team Suzuki in 2012? That’s a question and rumor that seems to be buzzing around local Floridian turf lately. I am certainly not sure if there is any truth to it … but after hearing the rumor numerous times…and once again while at a motocrosser’s private compound yesterday (just 30 minutes away from JS7′s home), I cant help but start taking note. It certainly doesnt seem too far fetched a rumor. James Bubba Stewart is no doubt a legendary icon in the world of motocross racing. The fastest dirt bike rider in the world has stirred quite a lot of controversy within the last 24 months. Victory, defeat, crashes, injury, comebacks, emotions, flashes of unmatched speed, and an arrest, all dot bubba’s recent timeline. Unfortunately many have been slightly disappointed in Bubba’s overall results recently, including himself … simply because those results don’t reflect his amazing raw talent and speed, nor his past accomplishments. After an undefeated season aboard his Factory Kawasaki…Bubba has since been unable to meet that same height of success. Sure he has had a new TV show, a huge increase in fame, amazing comeback rides, and a 2009 Supercross title on his San Manuel Yamaha…but he definitely has not been ’unstoppable’ on his Yamaha like he was in the past on his Kawasakis. So what’s in the future now? Well, Larry Brooks was released from the San Manuel Yamaha team earlier this year, while James was stuck in a sea of bad luck. Wrist injury, an arrest, and a hard time adjusting to the new YZ chassis, have been a downer around the JS7 camp. Some claim an overall lack of focus. So, a brand new change could end up being a really good thing for the motocross legend. Could we finally be fortunate enough to have the favorite MX champion back on the outdoor circuit? We already know that Ryan Dungey’s contract will be ending this year…yet Suzuki hasn’t announced a replacement for those big shoes to fill? Villopoto is Kawasaki’s man again in 2012, and Team Honda seems locked with existing pro talent into 2012. Meanwhile, as discussed in an earlier Chronic MX post, KTM may likely crown Dungey as its newest team rider for 2012…so it seems reasonable to think that Suzuki could be one of the teams that James would choose if a change occurred. Team Suzuki’s mechanic, Mike Gosselaar, is one of the winning-est mechanics in the industry. Gosselaar matched with Stewart would be a potent combination. It worked well for Carmichael and Dungey in their quest for success…and the match up could work for James Stewart too. I doubt I could ever get used to Jame’s riding a yellow bike…but seeing his younger brother Malcolm on one already, is a start. I guess we will just have to wait and see what happens.
Update as of 9/30/2011…just out! It looks like Mike Gosselar may now actually be wrenching for Chad Reed’s Two Two Motorsports, while a ‘reorganization’ of some sort is taking place at Factory Team Suzuki. Meanwhile the rumors are still swirling about James Stewart riding a Suzuki in 2012… however it seems that it may turn out to be a joint venture between Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR Motorsports) and Suzuki! It will be exciting to finally hear an announcement!
Update as of 10/18/2011…Just in: thanks to one of our fans, an apparent insider named “mudman”, it seems that JGR is indeed planning to work with JS7 in 2012 as mentioned as a possibility. “Mudman” however comments to us that Bubba will remain on his Yamaha and not go to Suzuki! No one can confirm this…but I am sure some sort of announcement will be coming soon…read more about this update here:
Update as of 4/17/2012 …Seems like there’s surprise friction back at the JGRMX camp. Bubba isnt breaking records as expected, nor is any laughter in their pits. The JGR team’s results havent been too spectacular. Millsaps has actually proven the glimmer of hope. Davi’s having solid rides and podium finishes, showing solid momentum. But where’s Js7? …
Update as of 05/04/2012 …It is confirmed that James Bubba Stewart will show up to the starting gate at Hangtown on a Team Yoshimura Factory Suzuki! Looks like bubba might not be ready for NASCAR afterall! He has split from JGR and signed a mutual release. See the full details by clicking the link below. We may finally get to see Bubba ride the outdoors again, like that #7 Kawasaki railing those berms! Only this time he will be on a yellow bike. Seeing Bubba at the outdoors no matter what color the bike, is much better than watching his reality shows. I’m ready for him to get back to business.
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