GNCC Racing

Quick Fill #34: This Week in GNCC

Quick Fill #34: This Week in GNCC

Thursday, November 2, 2017 | 2:30 PM
Thursday, November 2, 2017 | 2:30 PM

Welcome to Quick Fill.

Just like that, the 2017 GNCC Racing season has come to a close. Many seem to agree that the season flew by in the blink of an eye, but for others it may have seemed to drag on. Regardless of which category you fall into, 2017 was definitely one for the record books, and I mean that quite literally. History was made in both the ATV and Bike ranks, and then additionally there was history made from the UTV crowd as well. It was also a bit of an up and down season for some folks, as some usual title contenders seemed to struggle at times. Overall, it was a great season and we hope to start 2018 on a high note.

As mentioned, last weekend’s Ironman GNCC was a bit historical in all ranks. On the ATV side, Walker Fowler notched his twelfth win of the 2017 season, pushing him further ahead as the rider with the most wins in a single season. In the UTV ranks, Cody Miller claimed his second straight UTV National Championship and in doing so, earned Yamaha their first-ever GNCC UTV National Championship. Then on Sunday, Kailub Russell moved to the top of the All-Time Bike Wins list as he earned his 47th win, breaking Scott Summers previous record.

This was all on top of an already huge weekend with a ton of racers, a ton of spectators, a ton of special activities and of course, a ton of fun throughout the weekend. It’s been said many times but it definitely holds true; Ironman is the perfect way to cap off the race season. Here’s to a great 2017 and hoping to an even better 2018!

Don't forget to register for the banquet!
Don't forget to register for the banquet!

Weekly Updates (Chelsea Taylor)

Just like that, in a blink of an eye, the race season is over! Even though it was a lot colder than I would have liked this past weekend, it was still a great way to end 2017. To be honest, I was a little surprised how many riders we had come out because of the forecast, but 2,398 of you came out to race the awesome Ironman track – almost beating the record of 2,442! I actually raced Sunday with the nearly 900 bike riders in the 10AM race, which was insane! I was one of the slower ones out there, so I was constantly getting lapped but it was still fun and I really enjoyed the track especially the “hill climb” that Chris Bach encouraged me to hit. Overall, it’s always a bittersweet way to end the season on such a high note and I’ve included some direct links below if you were having a little too much fun and missed anything. 

Ironman GNCC Links: 

The rest of the photo galleries will be up by the end of the day including the youth bikes where Michael Beeler took the overall win as his youth racing career came to a close. Beeler has made multiple podium appearances this year from the second row, and his mom keyed me in that he was also tied for the youth overall in the points, but had to settle for second. 

Also, Traci Pickens secured her 10th WXC National Championship this season in a tiebreaker over Angel Knox. Knox suffered from an unfortunate mechanical issue, but speaking to the ladies before the race they both mentioned how they would be happy no matter what the outcome. You can hear exactly what they had to say in the NBC Sports Network highlight show that will be showcasing the WXC class on Sunday, December 10 at 5 p.m. 

Now that sweep is in on the last race of the season, it’s time we turn our attention to the banquets, which are just a month away and will be here before we know it! The GNCC ATV banquet will be held Friday, December 1, and the bike banquet will take place Saturday, December 2, in Morgantown, West Virginia at the Morgantown Marriott at Waterfront Place. The ATV banquet will also include UTVs and the ATV Micros, while the bike banquet will include bike micros. Adults (12+) are $40, and kids (6-11) are $20. You can reserve your seat HERE

In addition to the awards ceremony, competitors and their family members are encouraged to take part in the riders meetings scheduled throughout the weekend. The ATV pro meeting is scheduled for Friday at 2 p.m. Meetings continue Saturday morning at 9 a.m. with the ATV amateurs, again at 10 a.m. for ATV youth, followed by side-by-sides at 11 a.m. and pro bike riders at 2 p.m. The amateur bike meeting is Sunday morning at 9 a.m., with the youth bike at 10 a.m. This is when you can voice your opinion on class structure, rules, and more for the upcoming 2018 season!  

2017 was full of action! Let's take a look back.
2017 was full of action! Let's take a look back. Ken Hill

Looking Back on 2017 Part One (Jared Bolton)

I believe this is something I want to continue throughout the GNCC off-season as we take a look back at the 2017 season. We had so much happen and so much great racing that it’s impossible to recap it all at once, so I feel like a few installments of this will make for some good reading throughout the winter. We’ll start this feature off this week by going back to the very beginning of the 2017 season and we’ll progress from there. 

2017 saw a bit of a non-traditional start to the GNCC Racing season. For many, many years we’ve started the season off with round one in Florida. The last time round one didn’t take place in Florida, was back in 2004 and 2005 when the season actually kicked off down in Texas. Before that, it was all the way back in 1992 that the season did not kick off in Florida. This year things started a little different with the Big Buck GNCC moving to the front of the line as we started the season off in South Carolina. 

This actually proved to be a pretty popular change as nearly 2,000 riders showed up to race around the Big Buck Farm, making it the biggest turnout Big Buck had ever seen, and the third largest of the 2017 season. It also proved to throw a wrench at some of the riders as many guys had done their traditional training in Florida riding in the sand, but Big Buck is by and far a clay-based soil. In terms of soil, it was basically a reverse of the traditional opening rounds as we started in clay and went to sand, opposed to the normal routine of starting in sand, then going straight to clay. 

It was no big surprise to most folks as Walker Fowler came into round one as the favorite and claimed the ATV win. Jarrod McClure and Brycen Neal kind of played spoiler to guys like Adam McGill and Chris Borich as they would round out the podium in second and third, respectively. This would actually be a bit of a teaser from Brycen as he would go on to claim six additional podiums in 2017 and finish out the season second place overall. Additionally, McClure claimed four more podium finishes after Big Buck, and finished out the season in third place. 

The big surprise came on Sunday as Steward Baylor would come out swinging. He put his head down, put together one of his best rides of all-time and claim his first-ever GNCC overall win. To cap it off, he beat Kailub Russell straight up. No mechanical issue or DNF from Kailub, Steward simply was on top of his game that day and started the 2017 season off with a bang. Kailub would end up second ahead of Ryan Sipes who rounded out the podium in third. 

It would also be a banner day for Josh Toth, who would go on to have an incredibly impressive 2017 season by claiming a total of eight wins and three additional podium finishes on the way to his first-ever XC2 class championship. On top of that, he finished within the top five overall a total of four times in 2017 and finished the season fifth place overall. 

The following weekend would see the Wild Boar GNCC in Florida and an equally exciting weekend of racing. The storyline was a bit similar to round one with Walker Fowler claiming the overall win on Saturday, with Brycen Neal in second, but this time it would be Adam McGill rounding out the podium in third. However, that’s where the battle was as Neal and McGill finished just around one second apart! Wild Boar also marked the first round of UTV racing for 2017 as Cohl Secoy would claim the overall win ahead of defending champion Cody Miller and past champion Kyle Chaney, setting the tone for a tight UTV championship in 2017. 

As for the bikes, it was back to business as usual for Kailub Russell as he would claim the overall win. Of course, that win didn’t come in a dominating fashion as Thad Duvall pushed all day and would finish just around two seconds behind Kailub, giving a little teaser of what to expect through the rest of the season. Steward Baylor also stayed strong and rounded out the podium in third. 

At this point we were a mere two rounds into the 2017 season and had already seen some tight racing, close battles and one new overall bike winner. Of course, it would only get better from there and we’ll take a look at the rest of the season in the coming weeks. Be sure to check back next week as things just continue to get better from here!

Did you miss out on this shirt at Ironman? Well, you have a second chance to get one!
Did you miss out on this shirt at Ironman? Well, you have a second chance to get one!

Special Note From MotoTees!

The new GNCC "We Stand For The Flag" tee shirts were a huge hit at Ironman. In fact, they were such a huge hit that they sold out in record time! Due to the large demand for these, MotoTees has done a reprint and they are now available online! If you're interested, don't waste time as these will surely go quick once again. Available in sizes Small, Medium, Large, XL, XXL and XXXL. Get yours HERE!