World's Largest Off Road Racing Series Visits Snowshoe Mountain
Can-Am GNCC Series Readies for Start of Fall Swing
SNOWSHOE, W. Va. (September 10, 2008) -- The Can-Am Grand National Cross Country (GNCC) kicks off its Fall Swing this Saturday and Sunday at Snowshoe Mountain. America's largest off-road racing series will feature top riders on off-road motorcycles and ATVs at Snowshoe's all-new race course.
Spectator passes are $15 for the full weekend, which includes access to the Pro pits and the Pro autograph session. On both Saturday and Sunday, youth riders race at 8 a.m., beginner riders race at 10 a.m., and the top amateurs and the Pros race at 1 p.m. For more information on the racing series, check out the official series website at www.GNCCRacing.comor call 304-284-0084. For more information on Snowshoe Resort, please check out www.snowshoemtn.com.
The race through the rugged slopes of Snowshoe serves as Round 10 of the 13-stop Can-Am Grand National Cross Country tour, with many racers expecting the toughest racing conditions they have faced all season. Nearly 1,500 competitors from all over the world will compete, with several thousand spectators lining the facility to catch the action.
This year's event marks the second-consecutive year in which the GNCC Series has competed at Snowshoe. To further add excitement to the competition, and to make the venue even more fan friendly, the race course has been completely redesigned.
"We had a lot of feedback from racers and fans after last season's event and we have responded," said Event Director Tim Cotter. "GNCC Trail Boss Jeff Russell and his experienced team have spent many hours creating what we think is one of the most demanding and exciting tracks on the circuit."
In addition to full days of racing on both Saturday and Sunday, the race weekend also includes a golf tournament to benefit RiderDown Foundation on Friday, as well as a large midway, great food, as well as other activities for the entire family.
"Each GNCC race is a unique expression of what we like to call a 'Racing Festival,'" said Cotter. "No other ski resort holds a dirt bike or ATV race of this magnitude. Snowshoe’s hotels, shops and restaurants will house racers and spectators, with the victory podium assembled at the center of the Snowshoe Village. Surrounding that, the track features 12 miles of trails that wind up and down the ski slopes, with a ski chair lift shuttling fans down to remote sections of the track.
"This is truly a marquee event," concluded Cotter.
Racing action has been fierce this season, and with a long summer break under their belts, the riders will be hungry to get back on track.
Current GNCC Champion David Knight has brought international intrigue to the series from his home in Isle of Man, UK. For Sunday’s dirt bike race, Knight will face pressure from New Zealand’s Paul Whibley and Australia’s Josh Strang, who have each won races and sit second and third in points, respectively. The American racers, including Pennsylvania’s Barry Hawk, Ohio’s Charlie Mullins and New York’s Nathan Kanney, have logged consistent finishes all year and expect to contend for victory at Snowshoe.
In the ATV class, legendary Kentucky ATV rider Bill Ballance has turned the tables on his younger competition, showing that veteran poise easily trumps youthful exuberance. Ballance has won three races in a row to snag the Series’ points lead, a place he'd like to keep as GNCC racing moves into fall. As Ballance fights for his record-breaking ninth GNCC Championship, West Virginia’s own Adam McGill is ready to challenge and his home state advantage will be strong at Snowshoe.
McGill led the standings early in the season before falling into a slump, one he hopes to break here. In addition to the Pro ATV racers, top amateur and 4X4 riders will compete.
What: The Can-Am Grand National Cross Country Series is the largest off-road racing series in the nation. The top pro racers make a lucrative living in the sport, reigning in six-figure salaries and endorsements, as well as a share of a $130,000 prize purse and more than $3 million in contingency and bonus money. GNCC events also offer classes for amateur riders of all skill and experience levels. Four-wheeled ATVs will compete throughout the day on Saturday, September 13, and dirt bikes will race on Sunday, September 14. Riders can sign up at the track. The amateur racer entry fee is $40.survival and speed.
When: September 13 and 14, 2008
Where: Snowshoe Mountain Resort
Who: The Can-Am GNCC Series pits the best of the best in off-road racing against each other. More than 1,500 amateur racers are expected to compete on custom-built dirt bikes and four-wheeled ATVs. Top pro motorcycle riders include David Knight, Barry Hawk, Jr., Charles Mullins, Jimmy Jarrett and Shane Watts. ATV pro riders include Bill Ballance, Chris Borich, Chris Bithell, Matt Smiley and Adam McGill.
Note: Media members wishing to cover the event should contact Justin Anderson at 704-589-2100.