Yamaha YFZ450 racer Bill Ballance claimed a remarkable seventh consecutive Grand National Cross Country (GNCC) ATV championship by finishing second in the Pro race at Power Line Park in St. Clairsville, Ohio on Saturday, Oct. 7. His championship streak now matches that of Barry Hawk, Jr., the only other ATV racer with seven straight GNCC ATV titles.
At the Pro start Ballance got the holeshot aboard his YFZ450 and disappeared into the Ohio woods ahead of title rival Chris Borich and William Yokley. Needing only a podium finish to win the title, Ballance rode smart, letting a charging Brent Sturdivant and Borich past on the first lap. Borich then passed Sturdivant for the lead on lap two while Ballance followed safely in third, steadily gaining on and re-passing him on the final lap to claim second place – and the coveted GNCC title.
Adding luster to Ballance’s accomplishment, Yamaha ATV racers claimed six class victories in the 12th round of the series. The winners included Angel Atwell in the Women’s race, James Barron (Novice 29+), Tim Rabenstein (First Year Racer 25+), Joey Margueria (Sport), Kevin Logston (Junior 25+) and Dave Simmons (Senior 40+). Traci Cecco, the 2006 GNCC Women’s champion, stepped up to the 4 Stroke “A” class and finished an impressive 11th after running as high as second. Congratulations to all!