GNCC Racing

William Yokley Sparta Race Report

Tuesday, June 3, 2008 | 12:00 AM

The Sparton GNCC Race Report

Sparta, Kentucky, May 31, 2008

William Yokley finished 3rd Overall today in a hot KY race.  There were 216 total entries with 22 XC1 Pro Riders.  Team Rider Mark Notman finished 17th Overall and 4th in the 26 rider XC2 Pro Am Class.

Another podium for William!


With rain in the forecast, I thought it was going to be another one of those days in the mud with lots of bottlenecks and frustrations.  But the rain went around for once and we had perfect track conditions for the day.  It was a scorcher though, with the temps in the 90’s and high humidity.  I was pounding the waters like they were going out of style in preparation for a hard run.

When the green flag flew, my Honda started immediately; what an advantage to have one that cranks for a change!  I was off to a 3rd place start going into the woods; I couldn’t have been more pleased with my position with this being a mostly tight, technical track with limited passing opportunities.  Brandon Sommers was leading the pack on lap 1 and made a mistake, allowing Bill Ballance and I to get around.  Later in the lap, Bill blew by a turn and I was able to take the lead.  With Adam McGill hot on my tail, I had to keep my head down and play it smart.  I lost the lead going up a hill, but regained it when McGill tagged a tree.  He passed me again in a field section and pulled away a little bit.  Toward the end of the 2nd lap, I was able to pick the pace up and get back on his heels as we made our pit stops.  With a great stop, thanks to my crew, I led once again.  I led most of the next lap; everyone was running hard and I knew it going to be an interesting day.  Ballance caught up to me as I began to have some rear brake issues; sometimes they would work and sometimes not.  I tried to keep it smooth and not mess up, but Bill took a better line through a mud hole and passed me.  After a couple of miles, he started inching away, leaving Brandon Sommers and me battling for 2nd.

I was able to hold off Brandon until about 2 miles from the finish.  I came into a turn a little hot and threw the bike sideways; my wheel actually dug in and tried to wreck me.  I did save it but Brandon got by; we battled to the finish and I did get side by side a couple of times, but in the end I finished up a close 3rd.  Congratulations to Bill and Brandon for a good ride, and to all the fans who were cheering me on.

My teammate Mark Notman got off to a great start going into the woods in 3rd.  He got into a good rhythm and halfway through the 1st lap moved into 2nd, and started pushing for the leader.  Mark started getting arm pump and started having trouble holding on, so he slowed the pace and tried to work it out.  He got passed for 2nd but his arm pump was gone, so he tried to pick the pace up and battle back.  The 4th place rider was right on him on the last lap as he tried to stay cool and make no mistakes.  He was passed as they were battling through some lappers, and finished just short of the podium in 4th place in the XC2 Pro Am class and 17th overall.  All in all it was a good points day.

The National Guard Yokley Racing Team had a good weekend.  It was hot and humid, and fitness played a large part of the success.  I want to throw a big thanks out to Marc Spataro and Moto Pro Training for all his help and guidance.  Marc has developed a fitness program for Mark Notman and me that has allowed us to push hard all day, no matter what the conditions.  I want to keep him a secret, but that wouldn’t be fair!  I also want to thank the KY National Guard for their neat displays, support, and providing the Color Guard presentations; without the Guard’s support, I would not be where I am.  We go to Yadkinville, NC in 3 weeks, and it should be good and hot there.  I can’t wait and I’ll see you there.