It’s no secret there is a changing of the guard taking place in the world of XC1 ATVs. The “Young Guns” are starting to see consistent top five results race after race. Rumors are floating around about some of the veteran riders considering retirement at the end of this season, if not within the next few seasons. One of those Young Guns is John Glauda Jr. The former XC2 Champion has finally started finding his groove in his Pro career. Coming off his first podium finish, he enters this weekend’s Hoosier GNCC with more confidence than ever. And if you’re one of the veteran riders, you’re happy to see his success, but you’ve got be thinking, “Here we go again, as if Hart and Feehan weren’t enough to worry about, here comes John Glauda too.”
GNCCRacing.com: John, thanks for joining me today. To get us started let’s go way back to the beginning. What got you started riding and eventually racing GNCC?
John Glauda Jr.: I started riding when I was 4 years old. It was an excuse for my Dad to start riding again. He got me a Suzuki 50 and I rode the wheels off it. My first race was in 2007. It was a D6 at Rausch Creek. It was super rocky just like where I rode in New Jersey. Chris Borich was there on his Honda and he still had the #2 plate. It was my Dad’s first race also and I think Chris lapped my dad twice. Haha! My first GNCC was in 2008 at Steele Creek. It was just my dad and me. I was a nervous wreck. When Ricky dropped the green flag I just sat there. Finally, another mom came over and calmed me down. Then I took off and the rest is history.
Fast forward to this season. You’re sitting fourth in points and coming off your first podium finish with a third in round five. What’s clicking for you this year?
We changed my suspension a little bit at the beginning of the season and I am also loving these new GBC Pro tires. I have also been riding a lot more than I have ever before. And leading for a few laps at Ironman, the final race of last year, it really boosted my confidence.
What did you off-season look like as far as training and preparing for this year?
I spent a bunch of time riding at Decker Training Facility in northern Florida. I really liked the place. My brother James spent a little bit of time down there with me also. I was also able to ride a bit at home and work out a bunch.
You, Devon, and Hunter are all considered the “Young Guns” in the Pro class. The “changing of the guard” seems to be happening since summer break last season. It starts with those consistent 4th and 5th place finishes, flirting with podiums. Then you get the first podium and suddenly you’ve got the confidence and know-how to run up there consistently. What’s it like having this kind of success against guys you’ve looked up to as a youth rider like Adam McGill, Jared McClure, Walker Fowler and Chris Borich?
You’re right, I have looked up to these guys my whole racing career. I always said as a kid I was going to be a Pro ATV racer. So now it is kind of surreal racing against them. I am also having a blast doing so. It is honestly the most fun I have had racing, even though it is a lot of work.
What are you goals this season as a rider? I’m assuming you’ve already checked a few boxes.
My goals for the 2022 season were too consistently be in the top five and be on the podium a bunch. Now with me sitting so close to Devon in points, I am really shooting for a Top 3.
Let’s talk life outside of racing. When you’re not racing or training, what do you like to do for fun?
I am into diesel trucks. Now that it is starting to get nice out, I enjoy going on the lake and riding my stand up. I also enjoy skiing in the winter. Just hanging out with my friends and trying to stay out of trouble.
You’ve got a huge family. Everyone seems to be involved in some way. Give us the rundown, who’s racing, who’s doing photography, who’s there supporting the family on race day?
I am really fortunate to have my whole family as involved as they are in racing. Even though it can get really hectic on race day. We kind of got it down to a science now and it is a pretty strict schedule on race day. It has actually allowed my Dad to be able to spin a few laps at Tiger Run this year. He’s wanting to do a few more races this year. Honestly my dad is the man behind it all. We wouldn’t be able to do any of this without him. It’s a lot of moving parts for three full time racers. My mom hasn’t been feeling too well, but she has been able to be at most of the races on race day this year. It really helps a lot when she is there helping and supporting us. James has really stepped it up this year and has gotten a lot faster. We were talking about it recently and it is really crazy that there is two Glauda’s in the top 20 overall. Honestly, I think Landon, the youngest, is going to be the fastest. He went riding with me a couple weeks ago and decided to hit a jump I told him not too. So, he has two broken wrists now and is hoping to be back racing at Mason Dixon. We have been having 90 battles in my backyard which I believe has helped Landon a lot this year. It is really awesome that my sister has gotten into photography at the races. She has been doing an awesome job and is just as busy as us on race day. Anyone needing photos on Saturday give Jami G Photography a shout. Last but not least, Matt Pierce. We probably couldn’t do this all without him.
You got a girlfriend? Or is racing the only relationship you need right now? 😉
Really just focused on racing right now lol.
As you look at the rest of the season’s schedule, I gotta think you’ve got some favorite tracks picked out. Ones you know you can get up front battling for podiums. Where are you most looking forward to racing?
I grew up riding up north in the rocks. So, I am a big fan of the Mountaineer and Snowshoe. But I really enjoy the faster track of The Hoosier/Ironman also. It now means a lot more to me because of Matthew (Blankenship).
Who are the people and sponsors you’d like to thank?
I want to thank my parents, my brothers and sister, Matt Pierce at Pierce Performance, Levi Coen, GBC Tires, Custom Axis Racing Shocks, Action Offroad, Fly Racing, Waynesburg Yamaha, Maxima Racing Oils, Precision Racing, CrossFit Weddington, Fourwerx, Acerbis, Scott goggles, ODI grips, Tireballs, BNR Motorsports, Guts Racing, Evans Powersports, DP Brakes, Atlas Brace, Renthal, Alpine Stars, SSI Decals, IMS Products, Gregs ATV, Grenade Coating, Colton Buck, and God for keeping me safe.