GNCC Racing


Tuesday, July 15, 2008 | 12:00 AM
July 5 & 6, 2008 ”“ Las Vegas Endurocross and the GEICO GNCC
The GEICO Off-Road team was spread across the country this weekend as the boys headed west to Las Vegas, NV for Round #1 of the MAXXIS Endurocross, while Jennifer was back east at Round #9 of the Can Am GNCC series. Josh McLevy pulled off the "Ironman" and raced both.

The Endurocross team consisting of JT Bennett, Ryan and Eric Rodgers, and Josh McLevy trekked over 40 hours west across the country to fabulous Las Vegas for the first round of the MAXXIS Endurocross.  The boys faced one of the toughest tracks yet as well as temperatures soaring well above 100 degrees.  Although only a few weeks out from an injury, JT Bennett threw his hand in at the Open 2 stroke and Expert classes.  After a few practices and qualifiers, JT’s legs let him know they just weren’t ready to race yet and the swelling and bleeding set back in.  JT considered continuing on, but when team rider Eric Rodgers came in with a broken rear master cylinder, JT gave up his from his bike so that Eric could continue on ”“ which proved to be a good decision for both riders.  Eric qualified for the night show for both the Open 2 stroke main event and the Expert qualifiers. Eric finished 4th in the Open 2 Stroke main and made it to the 2nd qualifier for the Expert Main, but unfortunately was stopped there.  Ryan Rodgers also qualified for the Open 2 Stroke Main and won the heat race that placed him into the evening Expert qualifiers.  Ryan took a 10th place finish in the Open 2 Stroke Main.  Unfortunately the heat and long day of multiple heats took a toll on Ryan and although he gave all he had in the Expert qualifier, he was unable to move on.  Josh McLevy fought his bike most of the afternoon, but once he got settled in, he rode well.  Josh finish 6th in the Open 2 Stroke main event, then raced time to get to the airport ”“ Josh and JT (along with Gretchen Bennett and Mark Weiland) jumped the red-eye from Vegas to Pittsburgh to pull off the “double” and get to the GEICO GNCC in Somerset, PA.

While the GEICO Endurocross team was dicing it up in Las Vegas, team ATV member, Jennifer Albright prepared herself for a rocky race and altering weather conditions including rain, winds and sunshine with temperatures in the high 70’s. Jennifer piloted her Yamaha YFZ450 to a great start.  Mistake free on lap one placed her in fourth place on the rear tires of the third place competitor. Jennifer embraced the fast but choppy course but lapped traffic would play a part in the race. Mid way through lap 2 the lead riders where all brought together in a bottle neck with Jennifer in third. In a fast portion of the course, two lapped riders crashed in front to her and left her with no way to get around. She maintained fourth position for the remainder of the day, charging in hopes of catching third. Jennifer would take the checkered flag after 6 hard fought laps. She placed 7th overall and is third in class points heading into summer break.

Josh “Ironman” McLevy, exhausted from the overnight flight and 2 hour drive from the airport, jumped back aboard his trusty GEICO bike ”“ this week a YZ450F, and took on the rocky Mountain Ridge course.  Josh grew stronger throughout the day and took a 15th place finish for the day.  Josh said it was awesome seeing everyone cheer him on as he came around each lap and that is what got him through the day.  This finish holds Josh in 15th in points going into the break.

The team would like to extend a special thanks to all of their sponsors: GEICO, MSR, MAXXIS, Lojak Yamaha, Rekluse, Gaerne, Factory Connection, SCOTT USA, Acerbis, HMF, Bel-Ray, and EBC Brakes.  And of course a huge thank you to our fans.

The GNCC series will continue on September 13 & 14th for the Moose Racing Snowshoe GNCC. The GEICO Mountain Ridge GNCC will air on the VS network on December 13th at 3:00PM (ATV) and December 20th at 3:00PM (Bikes).