GNCC Racing

Quick Fill #15: This Week in GNCC

Quick Fill #15: This Week in GNCC

Thursday, April 29, 2021 | 12:00 PM
Thursday, April 29, 2021 | 12:00 PM

Welcome to Quick Fill. 

Well, it’s time to go racing once again! We’re rolling head first into this weekend’s Hoosier GNCC and boy is it shaping up to be a great time. This is a pretty unique situation as this marks the first time we’ll ever go racing at Ironman Raceway this early in the season. Now, keep in mind this is not THE Ironman, so don’t expect everything to be exactly the same. In fact, expect a lot of different things. The course layout is a little different, the pit and vendor layout is a little different, the leaves are green, and there’s just a very different feel overall throughout the facility. 

This promises to be a fun change and for a lot of folks it’s an opportunity to see Ironman Raceway as you’ve never seen it before. Now, let’s talk some of the details. First, the finish line is moved over by where tech inspection usually is sort of close to the cell tower in the pits. That means tech inspection is also in a different location, in the pit area heading over to the starting line, which actually is in the usual place. The Shaver Family, who owns the property, actually hasn’t planted the big field where we usually have the start and long field section, so we’ll be able to use it this time around. 

In sort of a cool twist, we’re actually using the same route through that field as last year’s Ironman because it’s actually been ripped since that event and will feel sort of like a prepped motocross track. We also did that so it’s easier for the Shaver Family to get that field planted as quickly as possible once we have everything cleaned up. Instead of adding a bunch of different turns and different areas that could churn up the dirt, using that same route will make things easier to fix after the event and let them get it planted. That’s just about the only section you’ll ride that is “just like” the Ironman.

Now, the part that some folks might be disappointed to hear but we’re not using Ironman Hill for this event. In order to save the hill for many years to come, we want to keep as little traffic on it so it doesn’t eventually become impassible. Also, that is iconic to THE Ironman there’s something about using it just to use it in a different event that really would take away some of the prestige and majestic qualities of that section. So, we’ll save that for THE Ironman.

Now let’s talk about the course. At the start, you’ll be starting around the seven-mile mark. You’ll head into the woods and actually go down Twin Hills and follow that valley towards Ironman Hill. This brings you past the eight-mile mark before crossing back and forth across the road through some really fun rolling valleys. When you cross back over the road, you’re headed to the nine-mile mark, through some faster trail and drop down Jimmy Hill and work your way through part of the Monster Mile, which zigzags back and forth through the bottom of that valley. 

That brings you across the creek next to the motocross starting gate, up into the first turn of the motocross track before turning backwards and heading to the track exit gate of the motocross. This is actually the only motocross section we’ll run this time around as we’ll save it for the Ironman as well. When you cross back into the woods you’ll pass the ten-mile mark before crossing the back of the motocross pro pits and into the woods again. This brings you in and out of a couple of woods and field sections that includes a couple of small creek crossings. After crossing the road by the cell tower, the bike races will split off and run a section to the 11-mile mark, which ties back in on the other side of the cell tower. This section is a little tighter and twistier before tying back into the ATV course and heading to the finish. Out of the finish you’ll run around a quick piece of trackside pitting before heading into a good section of woods. 

We’re staying out of those field sections out by the main highway and road in as they’ve started working on planting those, but you’ll still run the grassy field section that leads you back towards the motocross track. This section has the one-mile mark in it and will bring you back across by the back of the motocross track. Just behind the motocross start there’s an optional hill climb that will save you a few seconds before zigzagging through some tighter woods to the two-mile mark. Just past the two you’ll head into another section of the Monster Mile that has some really fun, flowing trail through the bottom of that valley.

You’ll head out of the valley and stay in the woods for quite a while as you’ll ride through some gently rolling up and down sections, tighter trail and open trail all the way to the three-mile mark, and that continues a good little ways after the three as well. You’ll finally pick up another field section that transfers you across to another woods section on the backside of the property. This brings you past the four-mile mark, then alongside the creek before crossing under the bridge by Ironman Hill. You’ll turn at the bridge as a little psych-out like you’re headed towards the hill but you’ll never cross the creek and continue onto another trail to the five-mile mark. 

Things tighten up a hair after the five and you’ll be doing a lot of turning for a while. This continues all the way to the six-mile mark where you’ll head out into the big field section, then into the pro pits. The exit of pro pits will be a bit different, as you’ll actually head all the way around the pond, out into the gravel and then head back to the field. Normally this would be the road you’d use to get over towards the start but there’s an additional fence in there that separates the pro pits from the way people will use to get back and forth to the start.

Once you head back into the woods, there’s a fast section that drops down into the valley and then up a pretty fun hillclimb that is this week’s FMF Powerpoint. This will tie you back into where you started, and that will be a full lap around Ironman Raceway for the Hoosier. It’s an 11.5 mile course with the pro pits and that bike section added in, which will make things closer to 10.7 for the PM ATVs.

This is a do-not miss event! It’s a lot different than THE Ironman and we’ve used a lot of trails that haven’t been used in a few years and pieced together as much as possible in different sequence that what we would normally see. That’s going to do it for this week’s edition of Quick Fill. Good luck this weekend and we’ll see you at the Hoosier!

Photo: Shan Moore
Photo: Shan Moore

Catching up with Ken Hill

Where do I even begin this week? Disappointed ranks up there pretty high in the way I am feeling as I sit here Thursday morning and mull over whether or not to even attempt the trip out to this weekend’s race. I am feeling better, doing more and can feel the healing but it’s just not enough. The doctors told me 6 to 8 weeks before I would feel like I was getting better and here I sit at the 5 week mark highly agitated that I am nit back to doing what I do! The ride alone causes pain and I surely do not want to or need to go backwards in this stuff. A small cough still buckles my knees and a sneeze the other day I couldn’t prevent had me sitting down for a spell.

My wife keeps reminding me that I have zero choice in how fast I heal, and I had better continue to heed their advice, the advice from friends and her insistence that my days of pushing through things is over, period, end of story else I suffer her wrath. Ok, I get it, I understand the time needed to heal but all that does zilch to help with the mental side of this however I use the memories of injuries many have you have suffered and how I watched you push through pain just so you could be out there racing, but I just can’t push through it this time. I am limited with what drugs they can use due to my liver issue or even how they can treat me for other things so in the big picture there are things I must adhere to and I don’t really see any way to speed things up. Waiting has never been a strong suit of mine as many of you know however, as my wife bellows, “You will deal with it and like it!” So that’s where I stand at the moment, looking over as I type this at the wife as she glares back knowing I could disobey every commonsense thing I have been told and roll out or tuck my pride away for one more round and really heal so I am over this thing and can look forward to the remainder of the season.

The bad part is that when the schedule was released earlier this season, I was pretty content with it. Between the GNCC and ATVMX series, there were portions of the schedule that allowed a breather and coming into the season far less than 100% I was needing that. All my ducks were lined up and I was looking to watching some great races in both series at a comfortable pace. I actually chuckled so many months ago thinking that someone upstairs must have known I needed a break and tailor made this year just for me! Boy was I wrong but the path we seek sometimes isn’t the one we set out on, and I would at least like to be on the path than sitting around doing so many little chores to just keep my sanity!

One advantage of this is being able to watch via social media how the weekend shapes up. From the posts that tell the world Johnny C class racer is ready to rip right up to a prerace post by a seasoned pro commenting about a wide range of topics surrounding the event. Sometimes the nervousness shines through for both ends of the spectrum

As long as internet here stays good, I will be watching you all to do my best to stay in tune with things. I again apologize for missing this round, but I am pretty sure most in the position to work with me as well as those I work for would say I’m making the right decision. I am going to miss seeing the Shavers as their company is as good as it gets as well as the chats with all of you throughout the weekend. Thanks to a friend I will have work to do as he provides me with images to send out and I know the series itself will be covered which makes this decision a bit easier to swallow even though it’s quite the bitter pill. Good luck to everyone, may the good Lord continue to bless us all!

International Female Ride Day

International Female Ride Day is May 1st and a synchronized ride day for women motorcycle riders and women powersport enthusiasts. Referred to as a "movement" by its participants, its call to action, "Just Ride!"