The 49th year of the AMA Grand National Cross Country Series concluded with the biggest single race in off-road history,
the Ironman GNCC.
WORDS: DAVEY COOMBS
PHOTOS: KEN HILL
The riders start gathering in what used to be a cornfield on the outskirts of Crawfordsville, Indiana, lining up side by side, each class behind its own long, straight line of chalk. Unless it’s the Sportmen’s B division, which is actually multiple rows because there are several hundred of them. There’s a class for pretty much everyone, too. Big bikes, little bikes, electric minis, ATVs—even electric bicycles. They don’t all race together though, but rather spread over the weekend, according to various skill and/or age groups. The eMTBs race on Friday evening, the ATVs and youth minicycles on Saturday, and the motorcycles on Sunday. It’s a lot of riders—2,834 of them, all together, a record for a single AMA competition—that will participate in the Ironman GNCC. The last batch of riders, Sunday afternoon’s three-hour motorcycle finale, will bring to a close the 49th season of the AMA Grand National Cross Country Series. After nearly five decades in existence, the GNCC Series has grown from its very humble beginnings in West Virginia into the biggest off-road motorcycling championship of all.
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