GNCC Racing

Quick Fill #20: This Week in GNCC

Quick Fill #20: This Week in GNCC

Thursday, May 24, 2018 | 1:05 PM
Thursday, May 24, 2018 | 1:05 PM

Welcome to Quick Fill. 

Another week has flown by and we once again approach the time to go GNCC Racing. It’s pretty exciting as we head to Millfield, Ohio for the 29th running of The John Penton GNCC. This is the oldest venue on the schedule having seen it’s first even in 1990. Now some of you may be thinking 1990 was only 28 years ago and you’re correct. However, don’t forget that when a new event is added the first year is added to the count. It gets confusing sometimes, but just trust me; this IS the 29th annual John Penton GNCC. 

To go along with such great history, our friends at MotoTees have done a little bit of a throwback theme with this year’s event t-shirts. They feature current racers Brycen Neal, Kyle Chaney and Kailub Russell, but the design around them is similar to the shirts of the early 90s. Keep reading and you'll catch a preview of them later on in this week's Quick Fill. If you think they look really cool on your electronic device, wait until you see them in person! Of course, the throwback theme doesn’t end there, as this weekend’s event logo is full of throwback themes. With the logo modeled after a Penton Motorcycle’s gas tank, it also features a vintage racer (which I like to believe is John Penton himself) and our friends at Wiseco pitched in one of their original logos to complete the throwback theme. 

All in all this is a really unique event. Not only are we honoring the roots of our sport, but we’re also welcoming a new wave of racing this weekend, as the first-ever Fantic eMTB race will take place Friday evening at 6pm. This mountain bike race is specifically for Class 1 Pedal Assist Bicycles with a motor powered speed of 20 mph and motor wattage of <=750 watts eligible only. Bicycle helmet and eye protection are required. There will be seven classes available with no pre-qualifying: Pro, Schoolboy (12-18), Junior (19-29), Vet (30-39), Senior (40-49), Masters (50+) and Women. This is really cool and something we hope will grow to be a big part of GNCC Racing. This first event is a learning experience but we’ve been hard at work to make it as great as possible. 

I’ll have the low-down on the racecourse coming up a little bit later in this week’s edition of Quick Fill. However, I will say that we’ve got some cool things in store for this weekend and it should make for some great racing. We’re going to end the intro here because there’s still a lot of work to be done before the weekend. Safe travels and we’ll see you this weekend! 

Things are heating up on the ATV side!
Things are heating up on the ATV side! Ken Hill

Catching Up With Ken (Ken Hill)

Have you ever just had one of those weeks that would never end? This is actually part two of a week that just seems to be running me over with one problem after another. Thankfully, it’s nothing real major like life endangering; just life happens kind of stuff. All that rain showed me where I needed to fix a hole in my roof and that rain must have hit the Internet folks because somehow a line got crossed and I had virtually no Internet. That’s still is not the end of the world in most cases, but when your job demands you have solid service, it sure feels like it. Oh, and on the way home from X-Factor my windshield took another rock which I heard but did not see until I turned my defrosters on heading to High Point for the ATVMX race last weekend. 

It was actually pretty cool because I watched the nice crack form dead center and move left to right! So now, Internet is fixed, roof is fixed, a new windshield is installed and in the end, the only thing really hurt by all this is my wallet. So how was your week? Now why did I mention all of this? Well simply because in the hustle and bustle of our racing world, it is the little things that add up to stress and allowing it to control our lives, which are way to short to put up with this nonsense. You just have to roll with it and that’s exactly what I am doing, letting it ride and looking forward to a weekend of racing in hopefully some good conditions. 

The John Penton is on deck and I have shot this track for what seems like forever. One think about this event is you never know what the weather is going to throw at us. I’ve seen it dusty, muddy, hot and cold, and some years all of those in the same day! It can be hot, pleasant or down right chilly as the southern Ohio weather can do what it wants and since we cant make the weather cooperate, we just have to plan for everything and more. By this time of the year, the leaves are giving some much needed shade in the woods which usually means its to dark for me to get images in a ton of good sections but thankfully other areas are more open so I to am planning for whatever comes our way. 

Speculation on who will do what is about as easy as giving a cat a bath, as this is home ground to some fast riders who all want a win on that home state dirt. Walker Fowler will be itching to move on from the mayhem that the last round brought and Brycen Neal is just dying for another win and one at this round would be a real accomplishment for him. There are just so many top riders that you could draw names from a helmet to be the winner here, like Chris Borich who has been loving his podium finishes. There’s also Jarrod McClure who would like nothing better than to grab a win to pad his resume. And everyone would like to see Fowler have an off day so they could chew into the points gap he has so I fully suspect a real brawl in the afternoon race on Saturday. And there are others who have a real chance, Cole Richardson comes to mind so you can see, it really is a stacked deck on familiar ground that sets the stage for what could be a race that you will not want to miss! 

This round will also feature the first Fantic eMTB race Friday afternoon. It is of interest to me to see how well this plays out. I have heard both sides of things, positive and negative.The cycling world is huge and in continued growth so it is a viable option for organized racing, albeit GNCC style. I was teasing Big John about having to deal with a few BMW’s coming in with a bicycle on a rack but that is not far off base. Every major town or city has some form and sometimes multiple cycling shops that may be of great assistance in getting the word out to a brand new crop of future GNCC racers and fans. Being a separate market could open up avenues of marketing and sponsorship for not only the series but for the racer as well, maybe larger corporate sponsors outside of the typical motorcycle based companies that grace our races with their fine products, service and support. So if you’ve been the negative Nancy on some of this, maybe look at it from a brand new set of glasses and how it could benefit things for all involved. 

That’s all from me this week as I start charging batteries and getting geared up for another round. With only a five-hour drive, this is a fairly close one so I won’t be so road weary when my boots hit the ground tomorrow afternoon. I may even have to don a set of those stretchy cycling pants and shirt and throw a leg over one of these updated Huffy’s to see what the fuss is all about! Ok, maybe I should stick to shooting photos, but I am excited to see this all get cranked up and rolling and hopefully I see you entered in competition, or at the very least trackside to watch and cheer on those who are diving into this style of racing for the first time! As always, may God bless you all and please be safe in all you do! 

Update From the Woods of The John Penton (Jared Bolton)
This is the part so many of you have come to read! It’s time to get a few details on this weekend’s racecourse and as I said earlier in this week’s Quick Fill, there’s no doubt that this weekend’s John Penton course is a good one. They’ve had a good bit of rain in this area and the woods have been pretty wet all week but that can be good news as it’s beginning to dry out and we have the possibility for good conditions this weekend, even if it starts out a little slick. 

When you take off from the start, you’ll be starting at the end of your lap. You’ll cross over the road and head towards the motocross track, which you will actually skip the first time by. That leads you to some open trail and grass track sections over to the one-mile mark where you jump into some slightly tighter trail. This section zig-zags back and forth a few times before popping back into trackside pitting and over to the two-mile mark. From there, you’ll skirt the field to a fun section where you’ll go uphill, downhill, back up and back down once again before a fast field section leads you to the three-mile mark. 

Those woods at the three have a mix of some tighter trail and some faster trail, with a couple of little technical spots that bring you all the way to the four-mile mark. At the four-mile mark, you’ll drop into some tighter woods and work your way to a creek section. That will bring you towards the five-mile mark but just before the five is a tough and technical creek section, which is actually lots of fun! After the five there’s another mix of faster and tighter trail all the way to the six-mile mark and it will open up just a bit before you head over to the seven-mile mark. 

Just beyond the seven-mile mark the 1PM bike races will head over to The John Penton Section. This is always popular among those who enjoy technical, tight trail and that’s exactly what it is this year! It’s going to be fun, but it’s not going to be easy. There’s almost three and a half miles of trail out there, which will make the 1PM bike race extra long, so be prepared! After that, you’ll pick up some tighter trail all the way to the eight and nine-mile marks before you pick up some faster trail back across the road towards the start. 

When you cross the road, you’ll head towards the woods and into a couple of up and down sections to the ten-mile mark. That brings you to a big field section to the 11-mile mark before you tie back in where you started. When you make it back to there, you’ll head to the pro pits, then onto the motocross track and into the finish. It’s going to be about 12.1 miles for the 1PM ATV races, and with the John Penton section added it makes the 1PM bike race 15.5 miles! Overall, this promises to be a do not miss event so make sure you’re here. Enjoy!

The John Penton Event Tees!

We mentioned these earlier, so here's your chance to take a gander at this weekend's throwback-themed event t-shirts. Don't miss out on your opportunity to grab one. Swing by the MotoTees truck this weekend and get one!


Saturday, May 26 at 2:30 p.m. be sure to tune in or set your DVR to NBCSN for Round 4, FMF Steele Creek ATV Highlight show premiere! Don't miss the ATV racing action from round four, and see what happened throughout the 2-hour race.