Red Bull KTM’s David Knight returned to his winning ways in the Can-Am Grand National Cross Country Series, taking the Weekend Warrior Spartan GNCC win in Sparta, Kentucky, June 10, over the Am-Pro Yamaha duo of Charlie Mullins and Barry Hawk. Mullins, winner of the previous GNCC event, battled Knight hard for most of the race but came up short at the end, which puts Knight back into the series points lead.
“I thought I’d try and gap everyone, but then I hit a rock and ended up on [my] face,” Knight said. “I was back in fourth, so I just followed them guys, used my head and cruised around behind them. They were making a couple little mistakes here and there. I then got past Charlie near a mud hole and just stayed at the same pace, and then it seemed like I started pulling away.”
Mullins looked game for the Knight challenge but admitted that he struggled a bit in the rocky, technical sections of the course. “After he [Knight] passed me I stayed in my own pace,” said Mullins. “I didn’t feel really comfortable today, the rocks messed with me. And it was really dry in the fields, and I seemed to struggle a little bit in the dry, rocky stuff.”
Hawk finished third for his fourth podium of the year, surviving a big battle with FMF Suzuki’s Jimmy Jarrett. Jarrett grabbed the Racer X Holeshot Award and led early before giving the lead to Mullins. He hung tough the rest of the day, but Hawk got him for the podium spot.
Jarrett’s teammate Glenn Kearney rounded out the top five.
In the XC Lites division, FMF Suzuki veteran Rodney Smith did it again, coming from behind to top Josh Weisenfels and Justin Williamson for the win.
“That’s kind of what it’s been like all year, as whether or not I still want it that bad,” said Smith. “But I’m having a lot of fun out here riding with these guys, and I’m still pushing.”