MORGANTOWN, W.Va.—This weekend, October 24-25, the 2020 Grand National Cross Country (GNCC) Series presented by Specialized, an AMA National Championship, heads to Indiana for the penultimate round at Ironman Raceway in Crawfordsville. The motorsports-crazed town sits just one hour Northwest of Indianapolis and will host the 26th Annual Yamaha Racing Ironman GNCC.
On Saturday in the XC1 class Action Off-Road/Tely Energy Racing/Kenda’s Cole Richardson will look to keep his momentum rolling after earning the overall win at the previous round. Unfortunately, WFR/GBC/Fly Racing/Yamaha’s Walker Fowler broke the news yesterday that he would not be lining up for Ironman, which will give another XC1 competitor the opportunity to land a podium finish.
CST/Houser Racing/Waynesburg Yamaha’s Brycen Neal has been having a great year, earning two overall wins in Ohio. However, Neal will look to earn the round 12 win at Ironman on Saturday afternoon. JMR/GBC/Elka/Moose Racing’s Jarrod McClure battled at Ironman last year, earning a podium finish, and this year he will aim to battle at the front once again. McGill Mafia/Obor Tires/LSR/Moose Racing’s Adam McGill currently sits fifth in the points and holds one overall win this season. This weekend McGill will be eager to battle for his second overall win of the season.
The XC2 Pro-Am National Championship is still up for grabs this weekend. The battle continues between Action Off-Road/Maxxis/Demaree Motorsports Austin Abney and LanMills XC/WFR/Magna1 Lubricants Drew Landers. Abney continues to lead the way and could have the ability to clinch the championship in his home state of Indiana. Landers will try to remain in the hunt and earn the class win taking the championship battle down to the last round.
Pirate MX Powersports/OBOR Tire Branden Owens remains third in the XC2 points standings, and after he earned the win at round 8, he is hoping to battle for his second class win of the season.
Then on Sunday the world’s fastest off-road motorcycle racers will take to the woods of Indiana. The newly crowned eight-time GNCC National Champion, FMF/KTM Factory Racing’s Kailub Russell is set to lineup at what will be his last Ironman GNCC as a full-time professional racer. At the beginning of the season Russell announced that the 2020 season would mark his final XC1 season.
Babbitt’s Online/Monster Energy/Kawasaki’s Josh Strang continues to hold onto second in the points coming into the weekend. Strang earned an overall win earlier in the season, and he will be looking to capture another one before the season comes to an end in November. Strang’s teammate Jordan Ashburn has been remains third coming into the penultimate round. Ashburn is hoping to battle at the front and earn an overall podium finish this Sunday.
FactoryONE Sherco’s Grant Baylor has landed on the podium three times this season, and he is looking to add a fourth time to his results as the 2020 season nears the end. His other brother, AmPro Yamaha’s Steward Baylor came back at round nine and has earned three-straight wins. Baylor is looking to keep his momentum rolling into this weekend’s Ironman GNCC where he will aim to take the overall win.
Returning to racing at the previous round was Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Thad Duvall. Duvall returned after a knee injury forced him to miss majority of the 2020 season. Duvall also missed Ironman’s GNCC last season and is hoping to battle at the front of the back to possibly earn the overall win.
Another battle is shaping up in the XC2 250 Pro class between Trail Jesters KTM’s Jonathan Girroir, Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Craig Delong and AmPro Yamaha’s Michael Witkowski. Currently leading the way is Girroir, but Delong and Witkowski have their sights set on battling at the front of the XC2 group.
The three-way battle looks to go down to the last round of racing, but this weekend Girroir will be aiming to clinch the win and earn valuable points towards winning the championship. Delong and Witkowski are looking to stop Girroir by battling for the lead.
At the previous round, Moose Racing/Carolina KTM/XC Gear’s Zack Hayes wrapped up the FMF XC3 125 Pro-Am National Championship, but he will still look to earn the class win this weekend. Raines Riding University/Fly Racing/Yamaha's Jason Raines fights for second place in the standings as he hopes to earn another class win by the end of the season. Canyon Motorsports/FXR/JDP Suspension Michael Delosa was missing from the previous round, but if he can make it to this weekend’s Ironman GNCC he will aim to once again land on the podium.
New for 2020, racers and fans have the opportunity to purchase their admission tickets in advance ONLINE. Tickets online will be sold at a discounted rate of $20 for Adult (12+) and $10 Kids (6-11). Fees at the gate will be $25 for Adult (12+) and $15 for Kids (6-11). If you plan to arrive on Thursday, October 23 there will be a $10 fee per adult admission. You can purchase your Thursday admission ticket in advance online as well under the $30 Adult General Admission ticket. Children 5 and under are free. All admission tickets include pro pit access, live entertainment and special events access.
Four-wheeled ATVs will compete throughout the day on Saturday, October 24. Youth ATV racing begins at 8 a.m., followed by Micro ATVs at 9:15 a.m. and Micro bike racing at 10 a.m., then the amateurs, 4x4 pro and women at 10:30 a.m., and the pros and top amateurs’ race at 1:30 p.m. On Sunday, October 25, the motorcycles will take to the woods of Indiana following the race schedule of youth racing action starting the day off at 8 a.m., women and amateur riders’ race at 10 a.m. and the pros and top amateurs will start at 1 p.m.
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For more information on the GNCC series, visit the official website at www.gnccracing.com or call (304) 284-0084. Join the conversation on the series Facebook page, follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and be sure to always hashtag #GNCC.
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