Salminen Wins John Penton GNCC

Kit Palmer | May 16, 2005

Juha Salminen recorded his third win in a row and the fifth of the year after winning the Wiseco John Penton GNCC in Millfield, Ohio, yesterday. The factory KTM rider jumped out to an early lead and rode off to victory with more than a three-minute cushion over fellow KTM rider Robbie Jenks.

“I’m still working hard at this, but honestly, it was easy today,” Salminen said.

Ohio’s own Jenks enjoyed one of his best GNCC finishes with his first podium of the year.

“This is my hometown track and it was awesome today,” Jenks said. “The fans, they kept me motivated.”

Finishing third was former hare scrambles champ Doug Blackwell on the SCR Suzuki. For Blackwell, his first podium finish of the year was long overdue.

“I’ve been struggling so hard this year, I didn’t even know if I still wanted to go racing,” Blackwell said. “Things haven’t been working out like I hoped.”

Am-Pro Yamaha’s Barry Hawk Jr. finished fourth, while FMF/’s Steve Hatch rounded out the top five overall.

Many of the stars of the series struggled in Ohio. Suzuki’s Fred Andrews finished a distant eighth, while his teammate Glenn Kearney finished 18th after crashing in the first turn and had to make a stop in the pits for repairs. Am-Pro Yamaha’s Jason Raines took the checkered flag in 12th, while KTM rider Shane Watts pulled out of the race near the midway point.

After seven of 13 rounds, Salminen holds a commanding points lead over Hawk, 196-123. Kearney is third with 121.

Kit Palmer | Off-Road Editor

Kit Palmer started his career at Cycle News in 1984 and he’s been testing dirt and streetbikes every since – plus covering any event that uses some form of a knobby tire. He’s also our resident motorcycle mileage man with a commute of 120 miles a day.