Coastal Racing ATV Team Report: Tomahawk GNCC
ODESSA, N.Y. (June 14, 2016) - Coastal Racing/MSR/Maxxis/Waynesburg Yamaha team riders put in a hard-fought day of racing on Saturday for the 2nd Annual Tomahawk GNCC in Odessa, New York. Eli Kiger captured his fifth podium appearance of the season in the College B Class, while his XC1 Pro teammate Brycen Neal took home 7th place after being penalized two positions for a course infraction.
Neal didn't get the most favorable jump off the line as he entered the woods mid-pack off the XC1 Pro Class start. As he began to make a charge toward the front, Neal made a mistake and clipped a tree, thus sending him over the bars and onto the ground. The hard crash resulted in a bent steering flag, which caused Neal to lose substantial time on the opening lap.
Brycen Neal played catch up all afternoon after a rough opening lap. Photo: Ken Hill
As the lead pack stopped to fuel on the opening lap, the Coastal Racing crew made the choice to pit Neal on the opposite lap of the leaders, allowing the Ohio native a chance to reel in the front-runners. Neal pushed hard to pick off riders through the next few laps until he eventually made his way into the top five on the final lap.
After two-hours of hard-charging, Neal crossed the finish line in 5th place overall. However, Neal was ultimately penalized two positions in the class for taking a line that was deemed outside the 25-foot barrier that GNCC Racing allows.
"This was one of the toughest weekends I've had in a long time," Neal said. "After crashing over the bars I soldiered on all day long to work my way up to 5th. The line I chose was an honest mistake that was unintentional on my part. But I've been riding really good here lately and the bike is working better than ever so I just need to get off the line and get better starts."
Neal attacking through the New York woods. Photo: Ken Hill
Following the penalty, Neal finished 7th in the XC1 Pro Class and 8th place overall for the day, where he now sits 4th in the Overall National Championship Standings.
The College B (16-21) Class saw its largest lineup of the season as 44 riders set up for the 1 p.m. start. Coastal Racing/MSR/Maxxis/Waynesburg Yamaha's Eli Kiger rushed off the line to beat the crowd to the woods as he led the way on the opening lap.
Kiger continued to lead the first few miles of the race but his momentum soon came to a halt when he got stuck behind a bottleneck of riders blocking the trail. Kiger struggled to get through the bottleneck as several riders made their way past him for the lead battle. Kiger worked hard to reclaim his lost positions where he made his way up to 4th by the end of lap one.
Kiger powered himself into the early lead ahead of a deep field of riders. Photo: Ken Hill
Kiger climbed into the 2nd place position just before the halfway point and quickly set his sights on catching the leader in the final laps of the two-hour race. Despite a hard charge at the end of the race, Kiger wasn't able to catch the leader but the Pennsylvania native secured a close second-place finish.
"It was good to lead the first few miles until I came up on a bottleneck with riders everywhere. I think almost half the class got back around me there but I finally got going again and pushed all the way back to 2nd," Kiger said.
Kiger made a valiant charge from behind to capture 2nd place in the class. Photo: Ken Hill
After eight rounds of racing, Kiger has climbed his way into 4th place in the College B Championship Standings, only four points away from the 2nd place position.
Coastal Racing Video - Tomahawk GNCC
Coastal Racing Video - Tomahawk GNCC
Next ATV Event: GNCC Round 9 - June 24
Results from the Tomahawk GNCC - Saturday, June 11
XC1 Pro ATV Results
1. Walker Fowler
2. Chris Borich
3. Adam McGill
4. Cole Richardson
5. Jarrod McClure
6. Jay Shadron
7. Brycen Neal (YAM)
College B (16-21) ATV Results
1. Shane Pitzer
2. Eli Kiger (YAM)
3. Travis Spencer
XC1 Pro ATV Championship Standings
1. Walker Fowler (216)
2. Adam McGill (188)
3. Chris Borich (168)
4. Brycen Neal (163)
College B (16-21) ATV Championship Standings
1. Shane Pitzer (152)
2. Chandler Burner (110)
3. Frankie Egress (108)
4. Eli Kiger (106)