GNCC Racing

Quick Fill #30: This Week in GNCC

Quick Fill #30: This Week in GNCC

Thursday, August 23, 2018 | 12:00 PM
Thursday, August 23, 2018 | 12:00 PM

Welcome to Quick Fill. 

While we typically try to focus each week’s edition of Quick Fill on positive happenings within the GNCC Racing world, sometimes we do have some very unfortunate news to report. This has proven to be a tough week for the GNCC Racing Nation as we’ve learned of the passing of two folks closely tied with our racing community. GNCC Youth bike racer, Cody Stickley, was tragically lost this past weekend. It’s impossible to put into words how terrible the loss of such a young and promising soul could be, but we did issue a PR yesterday. You can read that HERE

Another loss we’ve come to learn is that of John Jarrett. John was the father of former XC1 bike competitor, Jimmy Jarrett. Additionally, John worked as part of our track crew for many years, working hard in the woods even into his 70s. Known for his incredibly hard work ethic, sense of humor and a fear of snakes, John was a huge asset to our crew. Godspeed Cody and John. We’ll see you down the trail. 

Now, let’s talk racing. We’re officially reaching the point where summer break begins to wind down and everyone prepares to get back into the swing of GNCC Racing. We’re now just a hair over three weeks away from returning to racing with the new Black Sky GNCC in New York. Rob Johnson is the property owner at Black Sky, and he’s super excited for the GNCC Racing Nation to visit his family farm. Expect terrain a little bit similar to the Tomahawk GNCC, but this property is a bit smaller so be prepared for a slightly shorter race course than what we have at Tomahawk, which could lead to some close racing. 

The parking at the new Black Sky event will be a little tighter than some events we visit, but it’s all very usable. So please be courteous when you pick a camping spot and don’t be afraid to get closer than normal to your neighbors. Doing so will help maximize the space we do have available so we’re not having to send folks to an overflow parking field during the hours where ATV riders are leaving and more bike riders are coming in. While the property isn’t very large, it’s still a bit bigger than what we used at Unadilla, so this should be a pretty fun event and we’re ready for all the action. 

We’ll follow that up with another “new” event, as we’ll head to Mount Morris, PA for the Mason-Dixon GNCC. Now, that term new is used a little loosely as these two properties both hosted GNCC events in the past, but now they’ll be combined into one for an awesome event! The new Mason-Dixon event consists of the old Mathews Farm GNCC property and of course the famous High Point Raceway property. Parking, pitting, vendors, plus the start and finish areas will all be located on the Mathews Farm property and the course will meander its way from the Mathews Farm property in Pennsylvania, across the state line into West Virginia, and back into Pennsylvania where it will head across the street to High Point Raceway. 

If you’re a bike racer, you’ll also have a very unique opportunity to get a sneak peek at the High Point property the weekend before, as we’ll be hosting the 28th annual DC Vet Homecoming. As usual we’ll have our GP-style Moto-X Country event taking place on Saturday. The course will start on the motocross track, run a portion of motocross before heading into a big section of flowing European-style grass track, then into woods, back into grass track and into another section of woods before it pops out on the motocross track once again. 

Portions of this course will be used for the Mason-Dixon GNCC the following weekend, so this is a very unique chance to see what you have in store when it comes time to go GNCC Racing. We’ll follow that up with the tradition motocross racing on Sunday and of course the weekend is full of some other off-track activities as well. It’s worth making an entire weekend out of it, even if you’re not a keen motocrosser. We typically cut out the large jump on the backside of the track to make the course as vet friendly as possible for that weekend. I actually raced Sunday’s motocross last year, which was the first time I had raced motocross in nearly 10 years, and I had an absolute blast! Keep checking out as we’ll be updating as we finalize all the details. 

This weekend we actually head to Ironman for the final round of the 2018 Pro Motocross season. So while it’s Pro Motocross, it’s taking place on some familiar ground for the GNCC Racing Nation, and it’s going to be interesting to see how the 450 class championship unfolds. Last weekend’s event at Budds Creek proved to be an excellent weekend for the GNCC Racing Nation as Aaron Plessinger wrapped up the 250 class title. For those who may not be GNCC historians or new to the world of GNCC, Aaron comes from a GNCC background and spent many of his youth racing years in GNCC. It came natural as Aaron’s dad, Scott, claimed the 1994 and 1995 GNCC National Championships. 

That’s going to do it for my end this week. Ken Hill is back with some of his updates and we’ll be back next week with a full edition of Quick Fill where we’ll talk about some championship scenarios in multiple classes for these final four rounds. Until then, enjoy your weekend! 

Westley Wolfe put in a great ride at the Loretta Lynn's round of ATV Motocross, coming away with the ATV Pro class holeshot in moto one and ending the weekend fifth overall.
Westley Wolfe put in a great ride at the Loretta Lynn's round of ATV Motocross, coming away with the ATV Pro class holeshot in moto one and ending the weekend fifth overall. Ken Hill

Catching Up With Ken Hill (Ken Hill)

It appears I survived Loretta Lynn's as well as everyone else, mainly due to one of the coolest weeks at the ranch on record. No rain and temperatures in the low 80 with mild humidity. I must say that it was a welcome treat for everyone involved. Usually my shoes are soaking wet from sweat, however I found myself turning off the air conditioning several evenings! The racing was solid all week and then we backed that race up with the final round of the ATVMX series where the weather was a little warmer, but still not that bad. 

Most of you know Westley Wolfe from his success in the GNCC series. Westley also competes in the AMA ATV Pro class at ATV Motocross events and had a break out ride at the ranch. Launching off the gate in the first moto, Wolfe took the holeshot and was a powerhouse up front as he led several of the first few laps. It was awesome to see, as I know he has been working hard this year. To leave the final round with some huge positives has to have him feeling really good about the 2019 season. His success may be overshadowed by the emotional turn of events as Chad Wienen and Joel Hetrick fought for the championship but the statement Westley made better have some folks up front worried. 

Beyond the big show and then the ATV Motocross race, not much else has been happening as we all catch our breath and get ready to head back to GNCC Racing. I keep up with a lot of you through social media and I see most of you have used the summer break to compete at numerous other events and it has been fun watching those. It has also been fun to see new additions to some families and seeing them enjoy all that comes with being a new parent is great as well. This fall should provide some fun as the new babies are put on display and then the real fun begins; watching them go from an arm full of joy to a muddy toddler crawling around and then on to the walking and talking stage, then finally riding with dad to the line. 

You could win every race you enter but that feeling of showing off your first-born can never be equaled or replaced. We may get caught up in the smaller things of the day but the family connection is incredibly strong in the racing community and in my opinion it probably is the reason we have enjoyed the success of the series. Each year at Loretta Lynn’s I watch Davey Coombs hustle about doing every job imaginable. Picking up trash, moving straw bales, you name it and he has done it. His passion for all things moto is, well, I don’t really have the words to describe it but it is inspiring to witness each year. 

Looking back at Loretta’s, I saw a gathering of folks on the announcers tower at Loretta's so I headed up there to get the low down on what ever issue had arisen. I quickly saw everyone gathered around an iPod broadcasting the Unadilla round of Pro Motocross. Everyone was sure pulling for Kailub to do well and he did exactly that in moto one. While a hard crash in moto two kept him from performing at his full potential, a solid 13th overall is very impressive. It was a bummer to hear he wouldn’t be contesting the last two rounds, but hopefully we see him get another shot at the Pro Motocross scene soon. 

That is about all from me this week as I have a ton of things to get done. Our gardens have been horrible this year thanks to weather that has been more conducive to growing rice than tomatoes! We did get really good news about my wife’s father and he can stop taking radiation as it appears to be under control and of course we are awaiting the birth of our first grandchild in early September. The due date is kind of up in the air but if it’s like everything else that has happened to us all, he will pop out as Rodney yells “10 SECONDS” when we are at the Black Sky round! In any event, I know I will have tons of support if I need it and I thank all of you for your continued prayers for our family. Until next time, God bless you all and be safe in all you do!