Arriving atop the 4,848-foot peak of Snowshoe Mountain it would be easy for one to allow the breathtaking views and lush accommodations to give the perception that Round 9 of the GNCC series would be a vacation. However, the terrain that lurks just below the tree line rivals some of the toughest on earth, and has earned the Snowshoe GNCC the moniker “America’s Toughest Race.”
Starting off a record-setting weekend for GBC was BNR’s Rob Smith who used the superior traction of his Dirt Commanders to best not only the U2 class but the entire field of more than 260 morning racers. Smith earned the triple honor of U2 class winner, Utility Overall winner, and Morning Overall winner! This was Rob’s first ever Overall win, but we expect to see many more in the near future.
Bryan Buckhannon hit the track with one goal in mind: to wrap up his 2013 4×4 Open championship. Buckhannon grabbed his ninth straight win, which was more than enough to clinch the title. Forrest Whorton put in a stellar ride to grab his fourth consecutive 4×4 Senior class win, bringing his total to six on the season and bringing him one step closer to defending his class championship. Adding to the class win tally on the day were Ryan Smith in the 4×4 Novice division and Kirkland Vest in the 16-19 C class.
The afternoon pro race was an eye-opening display for many in attendance with 5 of the top-10 Overall racers mounted on GBC tires, more than any other brand. Leading the way for GBC, Kevin Yoho ran in podium position throughout much of the event and finished a career-best 4th place in XC1 competition. Jeff Pickens proved that the rocks and slick conditions were no match for his XC-Masters, putting up an impressive 6th place finish. Johnny Gallagher came in close behind Pickens to finish 7th on the day, with home state hero Gabe Phillips ending up in 8th.
Jay Shadron was the talk of the day after earning the College A class win, Top Amateur Honors, and a very impressive 6th in the Afternoon Overall aboard his XC-Master equipped Yamaha.
Other standout finishes by GBC racers included: Kara Merritt 2nd (Women’s); Scott Day 2nd (4×4 Lites); Walt Schumacher 2nd (Junior B); Cory Blinkiewicz 3rd (Vet A); Shane Pitzer 4th (Schoolboy Novice); Randy Hamilton 4th (XC2); Kevin McKeown 4th (College A); Nathan Hornacek 4th (Junior A).
GNCC Racing returns to action after the summer break at the famed Unadilla MX facility September 7-8 in New Berlin, NY. Be sure to check in on your favorite GBC racers’ progress by following us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.