GNCC Racing

X-Factor Whitetails GNCC Women’s Race Report

X-Factor Whitetails GNCC Women’s Race Report

Tuesday, May 22, 2018 | 9:50 AM
Tuesday, May 22, 2018 | 9:50 AM


(304) 284-0084
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X-Factor Whitetails GNCC Women’s Race Report
Pickens and Jones Victorious in Indiana

PERU, Ind. (May 22, 2018) – Round six of the 2018 AMSOIL Grand National Cross Country (GNCC) Series, an AMA National Championship took place on Saturday, April 21st and Sunday, April 22nd. This marked the second running of the X-Factor Whitetails GNCC in Peru, Indiana. The X-Factor hunting preserve sits on over 1,200 acres of forest and fields. The ranch, and the GNCC round are named after the record-breaking deer that sent shockwaves through the world of whitetails, X Factor. The course is a faster one, with sweeping grass tracks and fast, flowing woods sections. Though Indiana is not well-known for massive hills there are some short but steep ones, along with several creek crossings and occasional exposed roots that add a little bit of technicality to the course.

Sadiee Gorrell grabbed her third-consecutive holeshot at round six.
Sadiee Gorrell grabbed her third-consecutive holeshot at round six. Ken Hill

Though many remember the mud fest of 2017, Mother Nature was much kinder to the racers as they returned for this year’s event. For Saturday’s morning ATV race it was mostly overcast skies with some intermittent light rain, which actually improved the somewhat dry track conditions. For Sunday’s morning bike race, the fields were hard-packed and somewhat dusty, while conditions were nearly perfect in the wooded trails. Around 60 female racers competed at the X-Factor Whitetails GNCC; where Traci Pickens was back on top in the ATV WXC class, and Tayla Jones took home win number five in the bike WXC class.

Like in the last two ATV races, Sadiee Gorrell grabbed got the holeshot. Despite briefly getting caught up in the mud, she maintained the lead throughout the first lap, coming in with Traci Pickens not far behind. Katelyn Osburn got stuck in a creek section and lost some time, but she managed to come through the barrels in third with a two second lead over Sadie Welch. Likewise, Megan Shepherd, who started the race in second, got stuck in a mud hole and dropped back to sixth. After a mid pack start, problems on a hill climb pushed Jaida Phillips back into seventh place.

Sadie Welch earned her first WXC podium finish at X-Factor Whitetails GNCC.
Sadie Welch earned her first WXC podium finish at X-Factor Whitetails GNCC. Ken Hill

Pickens came through in the lead on the second lap, and Osburn made a pass on Gorrell in the field section just before the scoring zone. The two of them came through relatively close together, and both were not far off Pickens. Unfortunately, Gorrell suffered a mechanical problem on the third lap and was unable to finish. This moved Welch up into third place, and Shepherd, who was still recovering from her first lap mistake, had been steadily gaining ground on the lead pack. It was a bad day for mechanical problems, as she too would be unable to finish the race. Her misfortune allowed Kara Short to take fourth and moved Phillips into fifth.

Meanwhile Osburn, who took the win at Camp Coker Bullet, had passed Pickens on a hill climb and the two were engaged in a heated battle for the win. Osburn went into the last lap with Pickens right on her tail - only two-tenths of a second separated the riders. They continued to exchange the lead throughout the last lap. Pickens would come out on top after Osburn tagged a tree, though the two still finished within sight of each other. Pickens told us “Today was a perfect day for racing… Kate [Osburn] battled all day wheel-to-wheel, exchanging the lead several times.” Osburn agreed “Yeah, it was a fun battle, especially going back and forth the whole last lap!” Traci also mentioned that she was very proud of Welch for taking home her first-ever WXC podium. Welch finished third, and was very excited, saying “Traci was the first person to hug me after the race. She has been my role model since I was six years old, and it was amazing being on the box next to her!”

Traci Pickens came away with her fourth WXC ATV win of the season on Saturday, April 21st. 
Traci Pickens came away with her fourth WXC ATV win of the season on Saturday, April 21st.  Ken Hill

Morgan Johnson was back to her winning ways this weekend, taking her fifth win out of six races in the Girls ATV youth class. Alexis Keys and Andrea Rodgers rounded out the podium. Meanwhile, Hannah Hunter came out on top this weekend in the Women’s ATV class. Hannah Hunter also took her fifth win out of six races, while Stephanie Wray Parks finished second and Sydney Sams finished third.

In the micro ATV race, Khyler Davis took 4th in the Micro XC1 class while Raelynn Dickerson took took 7th in the 50 Jr. class. Three girls competed in the micro bike race: Isabel Boorom, Breanna Kerr and Hailey Grounds. 

Holeshot queen Mackenzie Tricker was again the first off the line in the WXC bike division. Reigning champion Tayla Jones passed her in short order though, taking over the lead within the first few corners. Around the three-mile marker she took a dive in the mulch pit, allowing both Tricker and Becca Sheets by. Within that first lap Jones again retook the lead, and began to pull ahead. Tricker and Sheets came into the scoring zone practically on top of each other, with Brooke Cosner not far behind. 

Mackenzie Tricker took the holeshot in Indiana, and earned second place in the WXC bike division.
Mackenzie Tricker took the holeshot in Indiana, and earned second place in the WXC bike division. Ken Hill

The rest of the pack was nearly two minutes down, with Eden Netelkos coming though in fifth, with Shelby Rolen, Shyann Phelps and Felicia Robichaud close behind. For the next two laps, the gap between the top four riders remained virtually the same, with Jones making marginal gains and Cosner moving slightly closer to Tricker, who had fallen back to third place behind Sheets. At some point on the fourth lap Sheets went down hard in one of the field sections, breaking her jaw in two places, which prematurely ended her race. That same lap, Phelps moved into fourth, passing Netelkos who moved back a position to fifth, which is where both of them would finish out their day.

Going into the last lap, Jones had extended her lead to a comfortable forty-plus second gap, and took home the win with no challenges that final lap. Jones told us, “After passing Kenz [Tricker] and Becca [Sheets] back a few miles after the mulch pit, I just tried to ride my own race. The track was fun ad I am glad to get another win in the books.” On the other hand, Tricker was facing plenty of challenges. She told us that she “ended up running out of fuel out the last field section and lucked into rolling up to a random gas can. I filled my bike up and pulled onto the track tight in front of Cosner. It was a sprint to the finish, but I was able to hold second.” Cosner was happy to finally make it onto the podium after a season-long drought and a large number of fourth-place finishes. She said, “I had a great day! I actually stuck with the front girls all-day and got in a few fun battles. I just didn't have it for Kenz [Tricker] in that last field section, but I'll take third!”

Tayla Jones earned her fifth win of the season on Sunday, April 22nd.
Tayla Jones earned her fifth win of the season on Sunday, April 22nd. Ken Hill

Jocelyn Barnes took the Girls (8-15) bike class win at the X-Factor Whitetails, breaking the four-race winning streak of second-place finisher Prestin Raines. Haley Phillips took her first podium of the season with a third place finish. In the Women’s Class, Annelisa Davis was back on the center of the podium, and took her first win of the season. Alli Phillips won the Women’s C class and finished an impressive 98th overall in the morning bike race, which had 329 entries.

The 2018 AMSOIL Grand National Cross Country Series resumes May 26 and 27 in Millfield, Ohio with the Weisco John Penton GNCC. ATV and UTV racing will take place on Saturday and bike racing will take place on Sunday.

Tayla Jones (center), Mackenzie Tricker (left) and Brooke Cosner (right) rounded out the WXC bike podium on Sunday morning.
Tayla Jones (center), Mackenzie Tricker (left) and Brooke Cosner (right) rounded out the WXC bike podium on Sunday morning. Ken Hill

For more information on the GNCC series, visit the official website at or call (304) 284-0084. Join the conversation on the series Facebook page, follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and be sure to always hashtag #GNCC.

X-Factor Whitetails GNCC
Peru, Indiana
Round 6 of 13
May 12 and 13 

ATV WXC Pro Event Results:

  1. Traci Pickens (YAM) GBC / Yamaha / Fly Racing
  2. Katelyn Osburn (HON) Spider Graphix
  3. Sadie Welch (HON)
  4. Kara Short (HON) Veterans Family Racing
  5. Jaida Phillips (YAM) GBC/Rekluse
  6. Megan Shepherd (HON) Stewart Boys Racing
  7. Sadiee Gorrell (YAM) Maxxis / Fivesixo Graphics / Custom Axis / Pierce Performance
  8. Andrea Berger (YAM)

ATV WXC National Championship Standings:

  1. Traci Pickens (170)
  2. Katelyn Osburn (135)
  3. Sadiee Gorrell (104)
  4. Megan Shepherd (96)
  5. Jaida Phillips (92)
  6. Kara Short (82)
  7. Alicia McCormick (82)
  8. Angel Knox (46)
  9. Sadie Welch (37)
  10. Morgan Solesbee (14)

Bike WXC Pro Event Results:

  1. Tayla Jones (HQV) KR4 / Husqvarna
  2. Mackenzie Tricker (KTM) Trail Jesters / Bonanza Plumbing / KTM
  3. Brooke Cosner (YAM) Tely Energy
  4. Shyann Phelps (KTM) Racer’s Edge / Mike Beeler
  5. Eden Netelkos (KTM) Garden of Eden Racing
  6. Shelby Rolen (SUZ) Suzuki RM Army / Iron Pony Motorsports / FMF
  7. Korie Steede (GAS) GasGas / FAR
  8. Becca Sheets (KTM) Fly / Maxxis / Seat Concepts / KTM
  9. Felicia Robichaud (YAM) 

Bike WXC Pro National Championship Standings:

  1. Tayla Jones (175)
  2. Becca Sheets (143)
  3. Brooke Cosner (106)
  4. Mackenzie Tricker (97)
  5. Shyann Phelps (88)
  6. Rachel Gutish (86)
  7. Eden Netelkos (85)
  8. Korie Steede (74)
  9. Shelby Rolen (55)
  10. Felicia Robichaud (26) 

About GNCC Racing:

The AMSOIL Grand National Cross Country Series (“GNCC”) is America's premier off-road racing series, featuring motorcycles, ATVs and Side-by-Sides, for men, women and children of all ages. Founded in 1975, the 13-round championship is produced exclusively by Racer Productions. Cross-country racing is one of the most physically demanding sports in the world. The grueling three-hour GNCC races lead as many as 2,400 riders through trails ranging in length from 8 to 12 miles. With varied terrain, including hills, woods, mud, dirt, rocks and motocross sections, GNCC events are tests of both survival and speed, drawing talent from all over the United States, Central America, South America, Europe, Japan, Australia and New Zealand. GNCC Racing is televised on NBC Sports and For more information, visit

About the American Motorcyclist Association:

Founded in 1924, the AMA is a not-for-profit member-based association whose mission is to promote the motorcycle lifestyle and protect the future of motorcycling. As the world's largest motorcycling rights and event sanctioning organization, the AMA advocates for riders' interests at all levels of government and sanctions thousands of competition and recreational events every year. The AMA also provides money-saving discounts on products and services for its members. Through the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in Pickerington, Ohio, the AMA honors the heroes and heritage of motorcycling. For more information, visit Not a member? Join the AMA today: