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Russell Seeks Fifth Straight at Gusher

MORGANTOWN, W.Va.- The 2013 AMSOIL Grand National Cross Country Series makes its debut in Northwest Pennsylvania this weekend, September 21 and 22, for the inaugural running of the Car-Mate Gusher GNCC. Taking place on the property of Foxburg's picturesque RiverStone Estate, Round 11 of the 13-race series will showcase all-new terrain with freshly cut trail alongside the wild and scenic Allegheny and Clarion Rivers.

In addition to the excitement and anticipation of this first time event, all attention will be turned to the racetrack Sunday afternoon as the battle continues to unfold for the coveted 2013 National Championship. Only two points separate Factory FMF/KTM teammates Kailub Russell and Charlie Mullins in the overall standings as the series heads into unexplored territory for the eleventh round of racing. As the 2011 XC1 Pro Champion, Mullins has experience on his side but the two-time XC2 Pro Lites Champion, Russell, has his sights set on his first career XC1 crown this season. Russell holds the points lead heading into Sunday's race, with an impressive four-race winning streak behind him.

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Kailub Russell (557) enters Round 11 with a four-race winning streak behind him.
Photo: Ken Hill

Perhaps the unfamiliar course will provide a more even playing field for additional competition to arise, including Rocky Mountain ATV/MC's Josh Strang. While Strang isn't contesting the title this season, the 2010 XC1 Champion could be a factor in how the final three rounds play out. Last round, Strang's come-from-behind performance put the Australian native right in the middle of the lead battle between Russell and Mullins on the final lap. After a hard-fought battle to the end, the trio finished within three seconds of one another.

Nytro Handguards/B.R.E KTM's Chris Bach holds the third place position in the overall standings as the only rider to finish inside the top ten overall through each of the first ten rounds of racing. With two podium finishes this season, the Indiana native is looking to finish atop the podium this Sunday in Pennsylvania. Shenandoah Honda/USWE-Sports.com's Thad DuVall dropped a position in the point standings after running into wheel issues at the last round, finishing 16th overall for the day. DuVall now sits three points behind Strang for fifth place in the overall standings.

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Strang (80) turned it up a notch last round, giving Mullins (112) and Russell a run for their money.
Photo: Ken Hill

In the XC2 Pro Lites class, F.A.R Husqvarna's Andrew Delong made a full return from injury last round as he captured his fourth win, the most of the class, in New York. Delong missed two rounds as a result of injury, thus removing the Pennsylvania native from the championship battle. However, Delong will be a leading factor in the final three rounds as KTM Support rider Grant Baylor looks to maintain his points lead over reigning XC2 Champion Jason Thomas.

Heading into Round 11, Baylor holds a 37-point lead over Thomas in the championship standings where the championship is his to lose. In his rookie season, the 16-year-old Baylor has captured three XC2 wins through the first ten rounds, while Thomas has just one win. With nine total hours of racing left to go this season, the class championship will come down to the very end.

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Andrew Delong looks to be fully recovered from injury and back in the XC2 mix.
Photo: Ken Hill

Four-wheeled ATVs will compete throughout the day on Saturday, September 21 and motorcycles will race on Sunday, September 22. Local riders are invited to race the event as well, the entry fee is $40 and riders can sign up at the track.

Spectator passes run $15 for the full weekend, with pro pit access and pro autographs at no additional charge. On both Saturday and Sunday, youth riders race at 8 a.m., amateurs and Women race at 10 a.m., and the top amateurs and the pros race at 1 p.m. For more information and directions to the event, please visit www.gnccracing.com.

Previous Round Results and Championship Standings

Can-Am Unadilla GNCC
Unadilla Raceway - New Berlin, Ny.
Round 10 of 13
Sunday, September 8

XC1 Event Results:

  1. Kailub Russell (KTM)
  2. Charlie Mullins (KTM)
  3. Josh Strang (KAW)
  4. Rory Mead (KTM)
  5. Jordan Ashburn (YAM)
  6. Jonathan Girroir (KTM)
  7. Chris Bach (KTM)
  8. Ricky Russell (YAM)
  9. Thad DuVall (HON)
  10. Takeshi Koikeda (HON)

Overall National Championship Standings:

  1. Kailub Russell (250)
  2. Charlie Mullins (248)
  3. Chris Bach (163)
  4. Josh Strang (143)
  5. Thad DuVall (140)
  6. Paul Whibley (127)
  7. Grant Baylor (119)
  8. Jordan Ashburn (106)
  9. Jason Thomas (106)
  10. Andrew DeLong (77)

XC2 Event Results:

  1. Andrew DeLong (HSQ)
  2. Zach Osborne (HON)
  3. Scott Grills (KAW)
  4. Grant Baylor (KTM)
  5. Shane Hufford Jr (KTM)
  6. Jesse Groemm (KTM)
  7. Ian Blythe (KTM)
  8. Jason Klammer (KTM)
  9. Layne Michael (KTM)
  10. Sam Evans (KTM)

XC2 Series Standings:

  1. Grant Baylor (227)
  2. Jason Thomas (190)
  3. Andrew DeLong (151)
  4. Shane Hufford Jr (131)
  5. Layne Michael (104)
  6. AJ Stewart (102)
  7. Travis Coy (98)
  8. Scott Grills (97)
  9. Zach Nolan (96)
  10. Michael McGinnis (92)
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