Updated: February 19, 2003, 1:48 PM ETBy By Chris Palmer, ESPN The Magazine
The orange groves and perfectly still lakes of central Florida seem a world away from the noisy, halogen-lit stadiums of Supercross. Behind the gates of his driveway, James "Bubba" Stewart isn't worried about sponsors stealing his time or rivals stealing his secrets. And he's not worried about all that other stuff that he's missed by being the greatest two-wheelin' prodigy ever to fly over dirt. On his family's 40-acre swath of green near Haines City, Bubba's only concern is suplexing the family dog. The Stewarts' black Lab, Trigger, has wandered into Bubba's personal space and is nipping at his boots. A moment later, Bubba is rolling around the driveway in full race gear, pretending he's on the losing end of a vicious dogfight. Mock screams of "Noooo!" go unnoticed by his dad, Big James, who's in the garage breaking down a Kawasaki, and his mom, Sonya, who's taking out the garbage.