The 2018 AMSOIL Grand National Cross Country series heads to Mount Morris, Pennsylvania this weekend for the Mason-Dixon GNCC at Mathews Farm.
Round 11 of the 2018 AMA National Championship marks the return of GNCC Racing to the Mathews Farm property for the first time since 2003 when some guys called Thad Duvall and Kailub Russell were both in the Youth division! Duvall won the overall with Russell finishing 11th.
FMF/KTM Factory Racing’s Kailub Russell is set to battle with the rest of the XC1 Open Pro field for his eighth win of the season. After earning the overall win at Snowshoe and extending his points lead, Russell currently has a 54-point gap over second place heading into the last three rounds of the 2018 GNCC season.
However, Rockstar Energy/Factory Husqvarna Racing’s Thad Duvall, who currently sits second, is looking for redemption after battling for the win at round nine before a crash that ultimately injured his wrist.
JCR Honda’s Trevor Bollinger has been having a standout season so far, with three podium finishes and top 10 results at the first nine rounds. Bollinger even battled for a win at the Tomahawk round in New York. This weekend Trevor will be one to keep an eye on since his speed easily makes him capable of running at the front of the pack. This is also an all-new event so the overall could be anyone’s to claim.
Currently sitting fourth in points is Tely Energy Racing/KTM’s Steward Baylor Jr., who had a strong start to the season by finishing on the podium at the first three rounds. After riding with an injured knee at the last round in June, Steward is looking for a fresh start to the second half of the GNCC season this Sunday.
Rockstar Energy/Factory Husqvarna Racing’s Josh Strang heads into the last three rounds fifth overall. After a rough race at Snowshoe, Strang is looking to battle for his second podium finish of the season.
AmPro Yamaha’s Ricky Russell sits eighth overall, hoping for some good luck late this season. Ricky has had an up-and-down season with bad luck hindering his riding abilities early in the season.
Hailing from Fairmont, West Virginia is XC1 Open Pro and KR4/Husqvarna rider, Layne Michael. Currently Michael sits in ninth overall after a rough start, but this Sunday he will be aiming to put his head down and battle for a top five finish with his family and friends cheering him on.
Leading the way in the XC2 250 Pro class is Trail Jesters/KTM Racing’s Ben Kelley. With four wins already, Kelley is hoping to earn his fifth this Sunday while extending his points lead. Sitting 13-points behind Kelley is FMF/KTM Factory Racing Josh Toth. While Toth has earned five wins this season, he is hoping to gain valuable points in defending his XC2 250 Pro National Championship.
Coastal Racing/Husqvarna’s Pascal Rauchenecker sits third in the XC2 250 Pro standings and will be looking to earn his first win of the 2018 season. Rauchenecker’s teammate, Craig Delong is a Pennsylvania native and currently sits fourth in the class. Delong has been a top contender all season long and is aiming to earn his first win of the season in his home state.
FMF/Maxxis/RPM KTM Jesse Ansley comes into the Mason-Dixon GNCC first in the FMF XC3 125 Pro-Am class. Ansley has earned four wins thus far in the season, but this Sunday afternoon he will be battling through the woods of West Virginia and Pennsylvania to take home his fifth win of the season. Sitting second is Raines Riding University/Atlas Sales Yamaha’s Jason Raines. While only having one win under his belt, Raines is aiming to change that this weekend.
Hailing from Waynesburg, Pennsylvania, a mere 25 minutes north of Mount Morris, is Coastal Racing/Husqvarna’s Alex Teagarden. Competing in the FMF XC3 125 Pro-Am class this season, Teagarden holds third place in the points standings. Teagarden has taken the class win three times this season and is aiming to earn his fourth in front of his hometown family and friends this weekend.
This event will also play host to GNCC's Fantic eMTB race on Friday September 28 at 6pm Fantic eMTB Racing will feature seven classes, with no pre-qualifying: Pro, Schoolboy (12-18), Junior (19-29), Vet (30-39), Senior (40-49), Masters (50+) and Women. Class 1 Pedal Assist Bicycles with a motor-powered speed of 20 mph and motor wattage of <=750 watts eligible only. Bicycle helmet and eye protection are required.
The bikes will take to the woods of Pennsylvania and West Virginia on Sunday, September 30, following the same race schedule of youth racing action starting the day off at 8am, women and amateur riders’ race at 10am and the pros and top amateurs at 1pm.
The 1pm pro races will be broadcast LIVE on the Internet via RacerTV both days. A highlight show featuring the event will air on NBC Sports Network on Saturday, November 10 at 3pm.
For more information on the GNCC series visit: gnccracing.comPhoto Credit: Ken Hill/GNCC archive