'Little' Brother Goes Big
We couldn't have been more pumped when we heard that Malcolm Stewart had signed for Troy Lee Designs and on a 450 no less. Not only is the team one of the best in the paddock, but we'll finally get to see Malcolm on a bike that we've long since believed to be his destiny. It's pretty obvious he's a huge dude (just stand near him) so for him to be lining up at Hangtown, against his brother had added an extra storyline to an already exciting class. We caught up with Malcolm to discuss all of the above, as he gets ready for D-Day…
You're looking pretty good on that new bike and in all that new gear, tell us about the switch to TLD...
The team's good. It feels good to jump up to the big boy class, even though this is my first time riding a 450. The team came up to me on Saturday at Las Vegas, after Christian Craig got hurt and asked if I wanted to fill a spot so I sure “sure” as obviously, everyone knows that JDR is folding for outdoors. I like outdoors anyway so I jumped on the bike and rode it Wednesday at Milestone and that was kind of like a make-it or break-it deal but everything checked out OK so now I'm just looking forward to Sacramento and hopefully finish out the season and maybe something down the road for a following year with them.
Do you feel more comfortable on the 450s, as on the 250 you seem to pushing so close to the limit, so does the bigger bike help your riding?
I mean it's a definitely a big change, but it's definitely a easier to ride as I am probably the biggest dude out there in the Lites class. I haven't rode a 450 in three years believe it or not and now ever since I jumped on it, I like it and I don't want to go back down. I'm definitely stoked on the 450 and riding outdoors, it's a good test and a good chance to get my feet wet too.
What's it like to know that you're going to be racing against your brother now?
I always raced him anyway even when we practised, well I always tried to race him anyway, so I think in my mind it's going to feel the same. We're just going to take off from the gate at the same time, that's the difference. Other riders out there are out there to race too, it's not just my brother but it's definitely one of my dreams that have come true to race my brother at Hangtown so I'm happy about that.
Last couple of years you've shown a lot of progress and put some good things together, so do you feel like it's been a successful couple of years at JDR and that it's helped you move closer towards your goal?
JDR definitely supported me all the way through and the last two years with them was great. Unfortunately they folded for outdoors but TLD picked me up and these guys are good, I've seen their progress, they definitely want to win and that's a good attitude to have around the team. It just brings your confidence up too as Seely has won on their bike, so it's not like they can't win on it, the bike has the potential to win on, so definitely it's a good confidence builder for me.
What's your goals for Hangtown and beyond, looking towards the end of the season as well?
The goals for Hangtown is top 10 and to do the best I can to be honest with you. I haven't really put that much time so there shouldn't be any pressure for me and I can just go out there and do the best I can and build from there each and every weekend.
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