Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Malcolm Stewart is on a roll in 2022 after capturing his third-consecutive top-five finish in the 450SX class at Round 4 of the AMA Supercross Championship in Anaheim, California. Teammate Jalek Swoll had a break-through ride on Saturday, delivering another top-five result for the team in the 250SX Western division.
Stewart was smooth and steady all night, keeping his FC 450 Rockstar Edition in the mix from start to finish. In 450SX Heat 1, Stewart grabbed a fifth-place start he maintained a good pace through the checkers to secure a fifth-place transfer into the Main Event.
In the main, Stewart had a great jump off the start and he challenged the leader early on from the second-place position. He continued to fight up front for the first few laps before settling into fourth mid-way through the race. He kept the intensity high for all 20 laps of the Main Event, bringing it home for a strong fifth-place finish in Anaheim.
“We were struggling a little bit in practice but we really turned the night around once the gate dropped for racing,” Stewart said. “In the Main Event, I got a really good start – we're slowly starting to get these starts now and I'm really excited about that. I know that we're P5 but we're still in the fight and we'll be ready to go for Phoenix – it's the Triple Crown baby! I'm excited for this one, it's one of my favorite races and it’s always a good time. I love the stadium and just love the vibes there, so I'm really looking forward to it.”
It was a positive night for team rider Dean Wilson, who rode his way to a season-best finish in the 450SX Main Event. With a sixth-place start in 450SX Heat 2, Wilson sat just outside the top-five battle for most of the race. With two laps to go, he passed into sixth and maintained a steady pace into the final lap and he fought down to the final turns to ultimately finish seventh.
In the Main Event, Wilson put himself into a great position off the start as he battled inside the top-five early on. He dropped back to eighth by the end of the first lap and from there he bounced around inside the top-10. Settling into ninth later in the race, Wilson kept a good pace through the checkers to secure his best finish of the season in ninth.
"My night was definitely an improvement,” Wilson said. “I just have to keep trying to improve each week and work on my riding, especially my starts. I wouldn't say I'm totally happy with the result, but it was a solid Main Event and I’m looking forward to the Triple Crown next weekend!"
In the 250SX division, Swoll got off to a fourth-place start in Heat 1 and he charged his way up to third by lap three. He overtook second-place on the second-to-last lap but he was passed back just before the finish, ultimately securing third in the heat.
In the Main Event, Swoll had a great jump off the line and he immediately went to work battling for a top-five position. He experienced an issue that caused him to drop back to as far as seventh but he kept on charging to put himself in a favorable position late in the race. With two laps to go, he was able to capitalize on some mistakes and ultimately secure his first top-five finish of the season after being sidelined at the first two rounds due to injury.
“It was a what-could-have-been night for me but it was still a step in the right direction,” Swoll said. “I felt really good but a freak accident happened and I was getting covered in gas, which is not ideal. It is what it is. I’m going to put it behind me, take the positives and carry it into the week of training and we should be back ready to compete for one of those top-three spots next weekend.”
Round 5: February 5 – Glendale SX – Glendale, Arizona
Round 4 Results: Anaheim 2 SX
1. Eli Tomac (YAM)
2. Jason Anderson (KAW)
3. Chase Sexton (HON)
5. Malcolm Stewart – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
9. Dean Wilson – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
250SX West Results
1. Christian Craig (YAM)
2. Michael Mosiman
3. Hunter Lawrence (HON)
5. Jalek Swoll – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing
450SX Rider Point Standings
1. Eli Tomac – 85 points
2. Chase Sexton – 79 points
3. Jason Anderson – 77 points
6. Malcolm Stewart – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 70 points
11. Dean Wilson – Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing – 47 points
250SX West Rider Point Standings
1. Christian Craig – 73 points
2. Hunter Lawrence – 67 points
3. Michael Mosiman – 62 points