James Stewart made it three in a row tonight in Houston, and closed within nine points of series points leader Chad Reed. The L&M Racing/San Manuel Yamaha rider started near the front of the pack, but unlike last weekend in Anaheim, he wasted little time taking over the lead.
Ryan Villopoto had a good jump on you at the start of the main, but you wasted little time taking control…
I don’t know if he got the holeshot or not, but he got out front and took off. I was laughing because he took off and started to get things going. I was able to make a pass on him, but he got me back. I was able to square him up in a turn and finally move around him. The good thing, though, is that we’re trying and getting better. We’re not quite there yet, but I gotta thank everybody for all their hard work.
Where were you catching RV?
I was catching him a little bit all over the track. When I passed him in the whoop section, I just flew through there and went on the inside to show him a wheel. It was definitely a good main event.
You gained a few points on Chad [Reed] tonight.
The series is definitely a long one, so I have three wins in four tries, which isn’t too bad. It’s funny how you win three out of four races, but you’re still down by nine points (laughs). I need to keep cranking away, but Chad is definitely making things difficult. I need to do my best to stay on the podium every single weekend.
What do you feel like you need to do in order to take it up a notch?
I need to keep on winning races. I was pretty strong all day, and I made sure to keep stringing together consistent laps in the main event. I need to keep doing my work every weekend. No matter who is leading the points, everybody is trying to beat me, so I need to keep my game tight and stay focused. Hopefully we’ll get improving on the bike and that’ll show.
The track is a little different than most. A lot of riders weren’t too fond of that S section…
Yeah. That start was crazy! There was so much bumping and smacking going on. I hit somebody and then somebody hit me in the next corner (laughs). I got hit in the heat race, too. I think certain parts of the track were decent, but it did get a little one-lined in some spots. You just need to take your time and make things happen.
You’ve been testing a lot, so how different is your bike tonight compared to A1?
Well, I think you guys can see. I didn’t ride like this at Anaheim 1 or at Phoenix for that matter. I’m riding well now, but we need to keep on going. I’m not quite there, but we’re a lot better now than we were at Anaheim 1. We need to keep clicking away. Three wins in a row after what happened at A1, I didn’t think this would happen. Everything is going great so far.
Are you finally going to be able to relax this week and play some golf?
(Laughs) Nah. I still have testing to do. If I can gain all that time just by testing than we still have some work to do. Man, if I win a few more then we’ll go golfing.