On Sunday, the eighth round of the 2015 AMSOIL Grand National Cross Country Series presented by Maxxis, an AMA National Championship, embarked upon Sunday Creek Raceway in Millfield, Ohio for the 26th annual running of the Wiseco John Penton GNCC. Reigning XC1 Pro Class Champion Kailub Russell led the three-hour race from start to finish en route to his seventh win of the season.

Husqvarna’s Josh Strang was on the gas as the green flag flew, grabbing the $250 All Balls Racing XC1 Holeshot Award. Factory FMF/KTM’s Kailub Russell was close in tow coming into the second corner and made his way into the lead during the opening lap.

Husqvarna’s Ryan Sipes, who had raced the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on Saturday in Blountville, Tennessee, followed the FMF/KTM rider on lap one along with Rockstar Energy Husqvarna’s Andrew DeLong and Yamaha’s Grant Baylor. 

Russell’s gap steadily increased on Sipes throughout the six-lap event, where he would end up finishing one minute and 37 seconds ahead of Sipes.

The exciting battle came just behind Russell and Sipes as Grant Baylor and Thad DuVall made a charge through the pack. DuVall had battled with DeLong on laps two through four before making the pass stick during lap five.

DuVall set his sights on Baylor during the last two laps, pressuring him all the way to the checkers. As they headed towards the checkers through the motocross track, Baylor covered his lines and crossed the finish one second ahead of DuVall.

As Baylor and DuVall pulled away on the final lap, DeLong crossed the finish line for fifth on the day. Not far behind DeLong, Yamaha’s Jordan Ashburn would capture the sixth place position, followed by KTM’s Steward Baylor in seventh.

Honda’s Chris Bach came in eighth while Honda’s Takeshi Koikeda came in ninth. Chris Douglas rounded out the top 10 in XC1, while Adam Bonneur just missed the top 10 with 11th place position.

Strang had grabbed the holeshot and ran towards the front of the pack early in the race, but his shoulder did not hold up for the entire six laps.

In XC2 Pro Lites, Husqvarna’s Craig DeLong took the $100 Hot Cams Holeshot Award and headed into the woods first. As the XC2 riders came through the motocross track and towards the finish on lap one Ryan Lojak lead the way followed by Ricky Russell and Nick Davis. Russell took the lead on lap two and ran up front until pressure came from Davis and Jason Thomas.

Davis led during lap four and held on to capture his third victory of the season. Thomas finished the race 21 seconds behind Davis earning second place followed by Russell in third.

XC2 rookie, DeLong crossdc the line in fourth followed by Callan May who earned his best finish of the season with a fifth place.

Lojak suffered a mechanical issue, and lost valuable time as he pitted to try and fix his brakes for nearly five minutes. Lojak was unsuccessful in fixing the problem, causing him to ride very cautiously for the next three laps and fall back to 14th in XC2. 

Anthony Stone captured his third consecutive win in the 250 A class. Stone also earned 18th overall, which is he best overall finish this season, and the $125 American Kargo Top Amateur Award.

Factory FMF/KTM’s Kacy Martinez grabbed another win in the WXC Class, followed by the Yamaha duo of Becca Sheets finishing second and Jessica Patterson rounding out the podium in third. These girls also grabbed the top three overall positions in the morning bike race.

XC1 Event Results:

Kailub Russell (KTM)

Ryan Sipes (HSQ)

Grant Baylor (YAM)

Thad DuVall (HSQ)

Andrew DeLong (HSQ)

Jordan Ashburn (YAM)

Steward Baylor (KTM)

Chris Bach (HON)

Takeshi Koikeda (HON)

Chris Douglas (KTM)

*Overall National Championship Standings:

Kailub Russell (235)

Grant Baylor (147)

Chris Bach (126)

Ryan Sipes (122)

Thad DuVall (120)

Josh Strang (118)

Jordan Ashburn (89)

Jason Thomas (87)

Ricky Russell (70)

Craig DeLong (67)

*Indicates that the Overall National Championship Standings will determine the 2015 National Champion.

XC2 Event Results:

Nick Davis (HSQ)

Jason Thomas (KTM)

Ricky Russell (YAM)

Craig DeLong (HSQ)

Callan May (YAM)

Cory Buttrick (BET)

Ian Blythe (KTM)

Jesse Groemm (BET)

Michael Witkowski (KTM)

Austin Lee (YAM)

XC2 Series Standings:

Jason Thomas (192)

Ricky Russell (140)

Craig DeLong (139)

Layne Michael (127)

Trevor Bollinger (118)

Nick Davis (117)

Cory Buttrick (109)

Tegan Temple (99)

Austin Lee (88)

Callan May (81)