Morgantown, W. Va. -- On Monday night, March 2, the popular Moose Racing Mechanic's Challenge will again determine the fastest wrench and rider combination in the Can-Am Grand National Cross Country Series. The special event will take place after the free Parts Unlimited dinner, held during the opening round of the 2009 GNCC tour, the Parts Unlimited River Ranch GNCC in Lake Wales, Florida.
"We want to recognize the true talent behind the scenes, because GNCC races are often won and lost in the pits," said Parts Unlimited's Rob Buydos, who will organize the event. "I know that some top mechanics have been practicing this event in search of the lucrative cash prize."
Each rider will begin with a dead engine start, GNCC style, before blasting down a straightaway, stopping and putting his bike on a stand. From there, a mechanic must remove the bike's rear wheel, run around to the other side of the bike, and then bolt the wheel back up. The rider then restarts the bike and blasts back toward the start area to stop the watch. A special time bonus will be given to anyone who can do a front "stoppie" and transition the bike onto the stand at the finish.
"Last year we ran the event on sand, but this year we will run on paved pits, so I think the chances of someone pulling off the elusive stoppie onto the stand are very good," says Buydos. "We will also add a special twist, an additional challenge, that we'll announce at the event."
The cash purse will be generated through fan donations during the Parts Unlimited dinner. Last year's Florida purse hit $600, and the Am-Pro Yamaha tandem of Jason and Darryl Raines snagged the prize. Team Raines will attempt to defend their crown against the winner of the Moose Mechanic's Challenge from last year's Ironman GNCC in Indiana, Joey Mauer and Jason "UK" Thomas of the Monster Energy/Andrews Yamaha team. Jimmy Jarrett and mechanic Jimmy Woodford of the GEICO/JG Racing Kawasaki team has committed to the event as well, with several other pro entries expected.
The event takes place at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, after the free Parts Unlimited dinner for racers concludes. Dinner begins at 5:30 p.m., just after Monday practice concludes at 5 p.m.
The Parts Unlimited River Ranch GNCC features a full four-day GNCC schedule, with ATVs practicing on Saturday, February 28, and racing on Sunday, March 1. Bike riders practice on Monday, March 2, and race on Tuesday, March 3. On race days, the pro-events begin at 1 p.m. Two-day passes, which included full pit access, cost $15, and tickets are available at the gate. For more information on the event, go to www.gnccracing.com
About GNCC Racing: The Can-Am Grand National Cross Country series is America's premier off-road racing series. Founded in 1973, the 13-round championship is produced exclusively by Racer Productions. Cross-country racing is one of the most physically demanding sports in the world. The grueling three-hour GNCC races lead as many as 1,800 riders through tracks ranging in length from eight to 12 miles. With varied terrain, including hills, woods, mud, dirt, rocks and motocross sections, GNCC events are tests of both survival and speed. Riders compete for more than $3 million in prize money, which draws talent from all over the U.S., Europe, Australia and New Zealand. GNCC Racing is televised and airs every Saturday and Thursday on the Versus Network. For more information, please visit www.gnccracing.com.
About Racer Productions: A West Virginia-based motorcycle and ATV event production company, Racer Productions has been a leader in the off-road racing industry for more than 30 years. It's repertoire of events includes the 13-round Can-Am Grand National Cross Country Series, held since 1973; The Kawasaki/Monster Energy High Point National in Mount Morris, Pa., held since 1977; The ATV Dirt Days at Loretta Lynn's Ranch in Hurricane Mills, Tenn., held since 1985; The U.S. World Motocross Gran Prix at Steel City Raceway in Delmont, Pa. in 1987; The Monster Energy/Kawasaki Steel City National, held since 1988; The ATV Stampede National Motocross at High Point Raceway, held since 1994; The AMA Pro ATV Open at Steel City in 2007; as well as numerous other amateur motocross events. In addition, Racer Productions staffs the prestigious Air Nautiques/AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship at Loretta Lynn's Ranch, held since 1982. For more information, please visit www.racerproductions.com.