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Can-Am Grand National Cross Country Series

GNCC Racing
Borich Wins Another Thriller Against Ballance at Steel Creek GNCC
Bryan Cook grabs podium with third

Pro Start
Pro Start

Morganton, NC – The Killer B’s battled it out again, but this time East Coast ATV’s Chris Borich came out on top over Yamaha’s Bill Ballance at the FMF Steele Creek GNCC. The win served notice that the chase for the 2007 Can-Am Grand National Cross Country Title isn’t over.

“We had a good battle out there,” said Borich. “I got the holeshot, and I felt good. I hit a tree and ended up getting stuck in some mud. I had to change my gloves, and I fell pretty far behind Bill. Then Cook and Bithell caught up, and we hooked up and started charging. We were cranking through the woods. Right before the last lap, I got around Bill in a field. I held it for the whole last lap.”

Chris Borich
Chris Borich

“Well, it’s one of those things where sometimes it’s harder to hang onto the lead than it is to stay in second,” said Ballance. “When you’re out front, you can try to build up a good gap, but the lappers are going to slow you down. You have to work a lot harder because they don’t know you’re coming when you’re in the lead. I had built up about 15 seconds or so on them, but I didn’t think it would be enough.”

Cook logged his best ride of the year on his Excel Motorsports/DeRisi/Pirelli machine to grab third, and Bithell came in right after on his LTERacing.com Honda. Fifth went to Monster Energy/Kawasaki’s William Yokley, who had to overcome another poor start.

After bad starts in the first two races, Borich rectified the problem by nailing the ITP Holeshot on his Honda. “We figured out we had a problem with the head,” said Borich. “The valves didn’t seal all the way, so we got a new head from Curtis Sparks, and it starts right up. I also think I was down on power before. Now I’ve got everything working good.”

The XC2 Pro Am class, amazingly, delivered the same three podium finishers in the same order of the first two GNCC rounds. GT Thunder/Yamaha’s Brandon Sommers led Ryan Lane and Don Ockerman across the line for his third-straight win.

Bill Ballance, Chris Borich and Bryan Cook.
Bill Ballance, Chris Borich and Bryan Cook.

In the two-hour GNCC morning race, Yamaha’s Traci Cecco captured yet another overall win, with Polaris riders Stephanie Parton (Womens Class) and John Gallagher (Super Senior) in second and third. U2 class rider Mike Benson was fourth overall and top Utility rider on his Four-Stroke Tech KFX700. Can-Am’s Michael Swift won the 4x4 Limited class, Can-Am’s Scott Kilby won the 4x4 Open class, and Honda privateer David Reese won the 4x4 Lites class.

The Can-Am GNCC Series continues in two weeks with the Pirelli Big Buck GNCC in Union, South Carolina. For more information, check out www.gnccracing.com.

PHOTOS BY DAVID SCEARCE: daveelec1@charter.net

About GNCC Racing:
The AMA/ATVA-sanctioned Can-Am Grand National Cross Country series is America’s premier off-road racing series. The 13-round series is produced exclusively by Racer Productions. Cross-country racing is one of the most physically demanding sports in the world. The nearly three-hour long GNCC races lead as many as 1,800 riders through tracks ranging from eight to twelve miles in length. GNCC Racing airs weekly television shows on Versus (formerly Outdoor Life Network) every Saturday at 3 p.m. and Thursday at 4 p.m. beginning on April 14. With varied terrain including hills, woods, mud, dirt, rocks and motocross sections, GNCC events are tests of both survival and speed. GNCC featured sponsors include BRP Can-Am, Parts Unlimited, Moose, Maxxis, Pirelli, Wiseco, Acerbis, Elka, Geico, Klotz, FMF, ITP and Weekend Warrior, and riders compete for over $3 million in series prizes and contingency money. Associate sponsors include Alpinestars, Cometic, EK Chain, HiPer Technology, Laegers, Motion Pro, Moose Utility Division, Powersport Grafx, Pro Clean, Race Tools, REM, Scott, Thor, Tire Balls, Twin Air, Weekend Warrior, and MotoTee’s. Media Sponsors include Racer X Illustrated, ATV Rider, ATV Sport, ATVRiders.com, Dirt Rider and ATV Insider. For more information log on to www.GNCCRacing.com.

Results: FMF Steele Creek GNCC
Morganton, NC
March 24, 2007

XC1 Pro

1. Chris Borich (Hon)
2. Bill Ballance (Yam)
3. Bryan Cook (Hon)
4. Chris Bithell (Hon)
5. William Yokley (Kaw)
6. Taylor Kiser (Yam)
7. Matt Smiley (Hon)
8. Adam McGill (Hon)
9. Chris Jenks (Hon)
10. Duane Johnson (Hon)

XC2 Pro Am

1. Brandon Sommers (Yam)
2. Ryan Lane (Hon)
3. Don Ockerman (Hon)

2007 Can-Am GNCC Overall Series Standings

1. Bill Ballance 85/2 wins
2. Chris Borich 80/1 win
3. Taylor Kiser 54
4. Chris Bithell 52
5. William Yokley 47
6. Bryan Cook 44
7. Brandon Sommers 42
8. Chris Jenks 34
9. Brandon Ballance 30
10. Matt Smiley 28


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