James Stewart tests positive for banned substance at Seattle Supercross, provisionally suspended by FIM

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Just days after his most dominant Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship race in years, James Stewart is dealing with trouble after receiving notice that he failed a World Anti-Doping Agency drug test two months ago during the AMA Supercross season.

The FIM, one of the governing bodies behind the Monster Energy AMA Supercross series, announced Friday that Stewart tested positive for an amphetamine following the conclusion of the Seattle Supercross round on April 12th. They subsequently announced that he’s been provisionally suspended, “with effect from June 20th until further notice.”

Choosing to be proactive about the incident, Stewart’s camp actually broke the news first on Thursday night and is hoping to resolve the issue by presenting the required documentation to prove that the substance was legitimately prescribed. “The medication in question is and has been prescribed to Stewart by his physician to treat a long-term condition,” the Yoshimura Suzuki team stated in a press release. “Stewart … is willingly communicating with WADA and taking all appropriate steps to resolve this matter.”

It’s worth noting that amphetamines, often prescribed to treat ADHD, are in a separate category from PEDs such as steroids and hormones.

With a suspension levied by the FIM, Stewart’s future has become clouded, but it may not preclude him from lining up for the next round of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship in eight days since the FIM is not a sanctioning body for the outdoor series. As of now, there has been no official word on his status for the rest of the season.

Stewart currently sits third overall in 450 Class points in Lucas Oil Pro Motocross and is one of the hottest riders in the premier class after sweeping both motos at High Point last Saturday.

Jo Shimoda joins Seth Hammaker, Austin Forkner on injured list; Musquin remains out

Shimoda injured
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Bad news continues to come out of the Monster Energy / Pro Circuit Kawasaki team as they announced Jo Shimoda injured his shoulder in a practice session and will not mount up when the Monster Energy Supercross 250 East division opens in Houston, Texas on February 4. A timetable has not been given for Shimoda’s return, but a press release from the team references multiple weeks.

“I’m doing my best to focus forward on my return to racing,” said Shimoda in the release. “Our goal was to compete for the 250 Supercross Eastern Regional Championship and I know we had been doing the right work to make that happen. Unfortunately, this crash will cause me to miss the start of the season, but I still aim to be back on the track racing for wins before the end of Supercross.”

Shimoda is joined on the sidelines by teammates Seth Hammaker and Austin Forkner, who also suffered injuries in recent weeks.

The news of Hammaker’s sidelining came just two days ago. His wrist injury is sufficient to require surgery, so he too will miss multiple weeks. Hammaker was scheduled to compete in the 250 East division alongside Shimoda.

Forkner was involved in a Lap 1 crash in the 250 West season opener at Anaheim. Multiple injuries, including an ACL tear, will sideline him for the remainder of the season. He described the injury and its aftermath on Instagram.

Forkner will be relieved by Carson Mumford, but not before that rider’s wrist has healed sufficiently. He is scheduled to debut with Kawasaki in Oakland for the rescheduled Round 2 Supercross race on February 18.

Shimoda finished fourth in the 2022 Supercross 250 West division and was second in 2021 points in 250 East. In 2021, Shimoda won his first Supercross race at Salt Lake City. Last year, he scored one podium and six top-fives in nine starts.

Shimoda finished second in last year’s outdoor Lucas Oil Pro Motocross season, where he added two more SuperMotocross wins including the Unadilla Nationals that kicked off a four-race streak of first- or second-place results.

Kawasaki is not the only team facing injury. Red Bull KTM initially reported Marvin Musquin would be out for the San Diego round with a wrist injury and “maybe more”. This week it was announced he will miss this week’s Triple Crown race in Anaheim and “at least the next several rounds.”