Walker Fowler gave defending AMSOIL Grand National Cross Country ATV Champion Chris Borich a good battle, but when the checkered flag fell at the VP Racing Fuels Big Buck GNCC ATV race in South Carolina on Saturday, Borich once again emerged victorious, claiming his 70th career win and his seventh Big Buck win in eight years.
The Big Buck GNCC was round four of the 2014 AMSOIL Grand National Cross Country Series presented by Maxxis, an AMA National Championship, and it showcased yet another exciting last-lap battle between Fowler and Borich as the duo exchanged the lead several times throughout the two-hour race. Borich kicked off the afternoon by grabbing the $250 Twin Air/DeRisi Racing XC1 Holeshot Award as he led the pack into the woods on the opening lap. Fowler then took over the lead for the next three laps but Borich kept himself within one second of Fowler. The duo raced wheel-to-wheel until the final lap when Borich made a mistake and crashed.
“On the last lap I ended up clipping a tree and he [Fowler] gapped me a good 30 seconds,” Borich said. “I just knew I had to put the hammer on him, and I finally caught up,” Borich said.
But then Fowler ran into his own problems when he got stuck behind a lapped rider. Borich made up the time and also made his way back into the lead position. From there, Fowler wasn’t able to make up the lost ground on Borich.
“At the end there, Borich made a mistake and I tried to take advantage and get as far in front of him as I could but it didn’t end up going that way,” Fowler said. “I can’t buy any luck, and lapped riders just aren’t helping me this year. But I’m happy to leave here healthy and safe.”
Borich’s win was his third in the four AMSOIL GNCC rounds held thus far in 2014, and he now holds a six-race win streak at the Big Buck GNCC.
“This track is pretty sweet to me, it fits my style of riding and it has a good flow,” Borich said. “The track was awesome and it was a lot of fun riding with Walker and just having fun out there.”
RacingPowersports.com/CST Tires/PirateMX.com’s Adam McGill and DWT Racing’s Jarrod McClure battled back and forth for third place for most of the race, but neither man would wind up on the podium. Even after receiving a 30-second penalty on the opening lap for starting his machine early, Precision/Maxxis Tires Chris Bithell Bithell caught and passed McClure for fourth place on lap three, then reeled-in McGill and passed him for third place on the final lap.
“I have to thank the fans for keeping me going out there because it took a lot out of me,” Bithell said. “It really helps us out to charge that hard, I couldn’t do it without everyone cheering me on out there.”
McClure secured a fifth place position, just ahead of GT Thunder/Maxxis/Howser Racing’s Josh Merritt in sixth. DeRisi Racing/Team Woodhead’s Braden Henthorn came in seventh, while GT Thunder-backed Brian Wolf took eighth and Dave Bayless Motorsports/Dirtworks/DC Cycles Brycen Neal and Maxxis/FLY Racing/ATV Innovations Landon Wolfe rounded out the top 10.
In the XC2 Pro Am Class, SICC Racing’s Marshal Goings captured his second consecutive victory in South Carolina. Martin Christofferson put in a season-best finish of second place in the class, while AJ Koontz rounded out the podium. N-Fab AmPro Yamaha’s Cole Richardson ran into mechanical issues that kept him from competing on Saturday. Richardson maintains the points lead heading into Round 5.
Pennsylvania’s Daryk Pitzer topped the College A (16-21) Class, while putting in an impressive 20th place overall finish to earn the Top Amateur Award at the Big Buck. Maryland’s Westley Wolfe earned his first $125 GT Thunder Amateur Overall Award of the season after outlasting his Schoolboy A/B competition and topping the morning overall podium. Ohio’s Cody Collier came in second and 4×4 Pro winner Jordan Phillips rounded out the overall podium.
The Can-Am X-Team’s Phillips also became the first repeat winner of the season in the 4×4 Pro Class, claiming his second win of the year. His Can-Am X-Team teammate Kevin Trantham came in second, while ATV Parts Plus/Can-Am’s Bryan Buckhannon rounded out the 4×4 Pro podium.
Defending Women’s Class champ Kylie Ahart topped WXC Premier Women’s Class podium, followed by Pennsylvania’s Quincy Cunningham and multi-time Women’s Class champ Angel “Atwell” Knox in second and third place.
In the Youth division, Florida’s Brandon Frazier continued his undefeated record in the 90 Open (12-15) Class with his fourth consecutive overall win. West Virginia’s Carter Kerens earned second overall, while North Carolina’s Davis Brinson rounded out the overall podium.
The 2014 AMSOIL Grand National Cross Country Series resumes April 26 and 27 with the Dunlop Limestone 100 GNCC. For more information on the series, visit www.gnccracing.com.
2014 AMSOIL Grand National Cross Country Series presented by Maxxis
VP Racing Fuels Big Buck GNCC
Union, South Carolina
Results: April 12, 2014 (Round 4 of 13)
1. Chris Borich-Suz
2. Walker Fowler-Yam
3. Chris Bithell-Suz
4. Adam McGill-Hon
5. Jarrod McClure-Hon
6. Josh Merritt-Yam
7. Braden Henthorn-Hon
8. Brian Wolf-Hon
9. Brycen Neal-Hon
10. Landon Wolfe-Hon
AMSOIL GNCC ATV Overall National Championship Standings (After 4 of 13 rounds)*
1. Chris Borich-111/3 wins
2. Walker Fowler-82/1win
3. Jarrod McClure-73
4. Chris Bithell-64
5. Adam McGill-64
6. Cole Richardson-47
7. Braden Henthorn-47
8. Brycen Neal-40
9. Landon Wolfe-38
10. Johnny Gallagher-35
*Indicates that the Overall National Championship Standings will determine the 2014 National Champion.
1. Marshal Goings-Hon
2. Martin Christofferson-Hon
3. Thomas Koontz-Yam
4. Fred Marley-Hon
5. Brody Livengood-Yam
6. James Green-Hon
7. Randy Hamilton-Hon
8. Jonathan Fugate-Hon
9. Blake Kramer-Yam
10. Brad Aman-Hon
XC2 Series Points Standings (After 4 of 13 rounds)
1. Fred Marley-85
2. Cole Richardson-85
3. Martin Christofferson-74
4. Thomas Koontz-67
5. Marshal Goings-65
6. James Green-56
7. Randy Hamilton-53
8. Brody Livengood-51
9. Blake Kramer-50
10. Jonathan Fugate-45