Snowshoe, W. Va. (June 24, 2012) The Snowshoe GNCC proved to be the toughest stop yet on the 2012 Can-Am Grand National Cross Country Series as racers endured almost 20-miles of the roughest terrain West Virginia has to offer. The XC1 points battle quickly heated up when New Zealand’s Rory Mead secured his second victory of the season, while Kailub Russell and Paul Whibley tightened the championship chase to just one point after eight rounds of racing.

WMR/KTM’s Rory Mead has a knack for technical terrain and the treacherous obstacles of Snowshoe Mountain offered Mead the opportunity to put his skills to the test. It was Factory FMF/KTM’s Kailub Russell who got out front early in Lap 1 but Mead eventually put his KTM 300-XC two-stroke machine out front and practically never looked back.

The battle for third place in the XC1 class came between AmPro Yamaha teammates Jordan Ashburn and Paul Whibley, but amidst the unique starting procedure, the front-runners were more diverse than usual. At the Snowshoe GNCC, racers line up in rows of five in accordance with their previous point standings and the official scores are based off adjusted lap times. As a result, XC2 Pro Lites racer Jason Thomas put his KR4 Performance-backed KTM into the physical battle with Whibley and Ashburn. Thomas ultimately bested Whibley by less than one-tenth of a second for third overall.

Park City, Ky. (April 30, 2012) – New Zealand’s Rory Mead (right) came into round five of the Can-Am Grand National Cross Country Series as a silent sleeper, especially since he’s shown the ability to conquer courses with a heavy technical aspect. The Can-Am Mammoth GNCC pumped up the potential to throw some curve balls into the overall points race with a unique “old school” GNCC course that accompanied some of the most grueling obstacles this circuit has seen in a long time. Trail Boss Jeff Russell and his crew cut around 10 miles of fresh trail at the all-new Park Mammoth Resort in Park City, Kentucky and it was anyone’s game on the overall win, especially from the XC1 Pro division.

WMR/KTM’s Rory Mead got out front right away after following fellow kiwi Paul Whibley on the first lap. Whibley once again grabbed the $250 Holeshot Award aboard his AmPro Yamaha YZF450 and battled with Mead early on, but it wasn’t long before defending champ Charlie Mullins made his way through the pack from a bad start. Whibley and Factory FMF/KTM’s Mullins went back and fourth throughout the three-hour race, battling hard for the second place position. At times, the veteran duo would catch up to the leader and then Mead used the KTM 300 two-stroke to his advantage as he gained time in the tight rocky sections of the course. Mead’s win at The Mammoth marked the first overall win on a two-stroke since Nate Kanney’s performance at the 2008 Ironman. This was a big feat both for Mead and his two-stroke machine.