A new generation of younger riders has been floating to the top of the GNCC series, and today was KTM rider Mike Lafferty’s day in the sun, as the National Enduro champ led from start to finish in Cross Anchor, South Carolina, to claim his first career GNCC victory.
Warm temperatures and sunny skies were the order of the day, as FMF Suzuki's Rodney Smith grabbed the holeshot, with Lafferty and Yamaha rider Robbie Jenks close behind. Smith soon bobbled, letting Lafferty and Jenks get by and take off. Lafferty pulled out a 20-second lead on Smith, and Yamaha riders Barry Hawk and Jason Raines. As the lead duo settled in to a good pace, Raines came to the front, while Smith and Hawk suffered from crashes on the third lap of a six-lap race.
Lafferty led the way out of the pits after refueling about 10 seconds ahead of Jenks and Raines, who in turn had put about a minute and a half on FMF Suzuki's Mike Keidrowski in forth. Heading out on the final lap, Lafferty still held the front spot, followed closely by Raines, and Jenks had run away from the pack by about two-and-a half minutes. A couple of mudholes came into play when Raines stumbled in the first one, letting Lafferty go and Jenks get close; then at the second one, it happened again, and Lafferty pulled completely away while Jenks also got by. The top few maintained the same order to the finish.
Lafferty's win moved him to within four points of Raines for the series points lead.
Results: 1. Mike Lafferty (KTM); 2. Robbie Jenks (Yam); 3. Jason Raines (Yam); 4. Mike Kiedrowski (Suz); 5. Fred Andrews (Kaw); 6. Barry Hawk (Yam); 7. Rodney Smith (Suz); 8. Randy Hawkins (Yam); 9. Cole Calkins (Kaw); 10. Doug Blackwell (Hon).