James Bubba Stewart To Leave Joe Gibbs’ JGRMX To Race For Team Factory Suzuki
In August of 2011, Chronic MX first reported that James Stewart was possibly testing factory Suzukis back at his Florida compound. We heard numerous reports from trustworthy insiders that Stewart was seriously considering a factory ride with Team Suzuki for 2012. Bubba, however, soon announced his decision to ride for Joe Gibbs’ Team JGRMX Yamaha instead of Suzuki …claiming the decision was a win-win for both him and team JGR. That choice seemed to make good sense. Well, unfortunately Bubba’s 2012 Supercross debut with JGRMX didn’t go as planned. Bubba’s results and enthusiasm on the JGR team seemed unimpressive. Serious tension began mounting between both team JGR and Stewart. Without even earning a top five overall finish for the 2012 supercross season, rumors of Bubba’s future once again swirled …this time claiming that Stewart and Gibbs might split. Insiders claimed Stewart was seeking a new ride…again. They were right. JGR announced today the end of their contract with James Stewart. The relationship between Stewart and Joe Gibbs Racing has officially ended. The team issued this statement, just hours after the Vegas Supercross: “Effective immediately, JGRMX and James Stewart have mutually agreed to release Stewart from his contract for all Racing and Media Relations responsibilities. We wish to thank James for his contributions and wish him the very best for the future.”
Reuniting with his past mechanic, Jeremy Albrecht, along with the opportunity to race NASCAR, were just some of the reasons Stewart chose the JGR team. Stewart, however, complained about numerous issues from the start of the 2012 season. One such complaint was about his Yamaha YZ 450′s handling. Ironically, his teammate Davi Millsaps, rode the same Team JGR YZ450F to a second overall finish in the 2012 Supercross Series.
Stewart announced departing team JGRMX to ride for Yoshimura Factory Suzuki via his twitter account, stating “Change means that what was before wasn’t perfect. People want things to be better.” Stewart sure seems to have stirred up a lot of controversy over the last few years. Crashes, injuries, comebacks, intense emotions, flashes of unmatched speed, an arrest, and now a departure from yet another pro motocross team. Obviously, many fans are disappointed with Bubba’s overall results, including Stewart himself. It will be very interesting to see how he does on Team Yoshimura Suzuki. There’s a constant debate between loyal fans and angry bashers … but most people agree that Stewart’s latest results simply don’t reflect his amazing talent and speed. Bubba has never been able to match the same domination he had aboard his Factory Kawasaki. He did have a new TV show, an increase in fame, a few amazing comeback rides, and a 2009 Supercross title on his San Manuel Yamaha…but he definitely has not been ‘unstoppable’. A brand new change to team factory Yoshimura Suzuki could end up being a good thing for the motocross legend. It certainly worked for both Carmichael and Dungey, but those were quite different circumstances. Ironically, team JGRMX just posted it’s best ever supercross results with Davi Millsaps’ 2nd overall in 2012. Add the talented Kyle Regal as Stewart’s replacement, and JGRMX still has a lot to smile about and many more potential wins to look forward to.
James Bubba Stewart will most likely show up to the starting gate at Hangtown, the first race of the 2012 Outdoor Motocross national Championship, on his new Team Yoshimura’s Red Bull Factory Suzuki RMZ 450. Personally, we are over the ‘Stewart drama’ and just want him to get back to great motocross racing. We would love to finally see Bubba ride the outdoor nationals again. There is nothing worse than politics and drama getting in the way of good motocross racing. Seeing Stewart race the outdoors, no matter what color his bike, is much better than having to watch his reality shows or listen to his depressing post race interviews. Let’s hope a decision to ride for Team Red Bull Suzuki can get him back to where he belongs …on the podium. Congratulations to Team JGR for posting its best season results! Cheers, Chronic MX.
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