ODESSA, New York (May 10, 2015) – Dry and dusty conditions for the inaugural Dunlop Tomahawk GNCC didn’t stop N-Fab/AmPro/Maxxis/Lonestar Yamaha’s Walker Fowler from claiming his third overall XC1 Pro ATV class win in round six of the 2015 AMSOIL Grand National Cross Country presented by Maxxis, an AMA National Championship, while JCR Honda’s Chris Bach emerged with his first-ever career GNCC overall win in the XC1 Pro Bike class.
In XC1 Pro ATV racing, Fowler’s win did not come without a challenge from a number of his fellow competitors.
When the green flag flew, Bithell Racing/Maxxis/Precision’s Chris Bithell jumped out front to claim the holeshot and the early lead. Championship points leader CST/PirateMX.com/LSR/DeRisi/Tireblocks/SG’s Adam McGill took over the lead on lap two while Fowler worked his way through the pack. Coming from as far behind as eighth place on the opening lap, Fowler took the lead on lap four while McGill held on to finish the day in second place.
JMR/ATVRiders.com Jarrod McClure came away with his third podium finish of the year, rounding out the overall podium in third place. After suffering a crash on the final lap of the race, previous round winner Chris Bithell was able to claim fourth place. Fasttrax/Wolf Racing’s Brian Wolf had another impressive ride, finishing fifth overall. BNR/GBC-backed Kevin Yoho finished a season best sixth place ahead of Maxxis/B. Neal Motorsport’s Brycen Neal. Showhauler/Maxxis/Cycle Barn’s Landon Wolfe finished eighth, ahead of Maxxis/BNR/Moose rider Josh Merritt in ninth and Coastal/Waynesburg Yamaha’s Jay Shadron in tenth.
Team Maxxis’ Chris Borich looked to be in contention for the overall win throughout the entire race until he experienced mechanical issues less than two miles from the finish on the last lap. Borich was able to get his machine back on the track to finish the race in 12th place.
In XC1 Pro Bike racing, JCR Holda’s Chris Bach fought hard for the win, coming from as far behind as sixth place in the opening lap.
“I just kept telling myself to relax and not let it get to me,” said Bach “I’ve never led one of these for very long, much less half the race.”
When the green flag dropped, it was Husqvarna Canada/Parts Canada-backed rider Tyler Medaglia who shot off the start to claim the holeshot. Medaglia’s day, however, ended early due to an ankle injury. Rocky Mountain ATV/MC KR4/FAR Race Team’s Thad DuVall soon found himself in the number one spot, with AirGroup/Rockstar Energy/Husqvarna’s Ryan Sipes and Factory FMF/KTM’s Kailub Russell in tow.
DuVall ran into brake troubles not once, but twice. After pitting and taking some time to fix the problems, his day was ultimately cut short after a third brake failure resulted in a hard crash. Russell claimed the lead on lap two, but soon faced pressure from Bach and Sipes. Russell finished in second place, ending his season-long winning streak with Sipes rounding out the podium with a third-place finish.
“It was definitely a man’s track; it was rough out there,” said Russell “I’m pretty disappointed. It’s not the end of the world even though I got second.”
N-Fab AmPro Yamaha’s Grant Baylor, who finished fourth, put in an impressive ride, battling up front and even leading portions of the race. Rockstar Energy Husqvarna’s Andrew DeLong finished fifth and HR Motorsports/Honda’s Takeshi Koikeda finished sixth. Maxxis/FLY/Factory Connection rider Chris Douglas had his best finish of the season in seventh place, while Funmart Cycle/FLY/RidePG.com’s Adam Bonneur also had his best finish of the season in eighth. Rockstar Energy Husqvarna’s Josh Strang got off to an excellent start, challenging Tyler Medaglia for the holeshot. However, Strang quickly faded through the pack, ultimately only completing three laps of the six-lap race.
The 2015 AMSOIL Grand National Cross Country Series resumes May 23 and 24 with the Rocky Mountain ATV/MC Mountaineer Run in Masontown, W.Va. For more information on the series, visit www.gnccracing.com.