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Kailub Russell wins John Penton GNCC, Strang second | News

As racing got underway it was FMF/KTM Factory Racing’s Kailub Russell jumping off the line first to earn the $250 All Balls Racing XC1 Open Pro Holeshot Award.

During the opening lap of the John Penton GNCC, Russell would have company from his teammate Ben Kelley, who moved into the lead as they came around to timing and scoring. Russell would make the pass for the lead on the second lap, and never look back. Russell would lead the way for the remainder of the race, pushing his gap to 58 seconds by the time the checkered flag flew after three hours of intense racing. Russell earned his 66th career overall win, and continues to hold the points lead after seven rounds of racing.

Babbitt’s Online/Kawasaki’s Josh Strang was off to a top three start, and would move into second overall on the third lap of racing. Strang would push for the duration of the race, reaching almost complete exhaustion by the time the checkered flag came out. Strang continues to hold second overall in the National Championship points standings, with just 33 points separating him and Russell.

After a top five start to the day, FactoryONE Sherco’s Grant Baylor was on a mission to land on a podium finishing position for the second time this season. Baylor would put his head down and push through the dusty, hot conditions to move into third overall by lap three of racing. Baylor would continue to push, and on the last lap would come through timing and scoring just 4 seconds behind Strang. After seven rounds of racing Baylor sits fourth overall in the XC1 Open Pro standings.

FMF/KTM Factory Racing’s Benjamin Kelley came through leading the opening lap of racing in Ohio, but would soon be faced with multiple battles at what would be his second race back after recovering from his shoulder injury. Kelley continued to battle with Strang and Baylor for the first half the race, eventually settling into the fourth place position for the last couple of laps.

Husqvarna rider Tayla Jones held the early in Ohio, but would soon be faced with battles as she fell back to fourth in the class on the second lap of racing. Jones would pick up the pace, making the move past Factory Beta USA’s Rachel Gutish to overtake third place in the WXC class once again. Jones would hold onto third until she made her way across the finish line, followed by Gutish to come through in fourth.

XC1 Pro Event Results:

  1. Kailub Russell (KTM)
  2. Josh Strang (KAW)
  3. Grant Baylor (SHR)
  4. Benjamin Kelley (KTM)
  5. Jordan Ashburn (KAW)
  6. Joshua Toth (KTM)
  7. Dante Oliveira (KTM)
  8. Levi Keller (KTM)
  9. Cory Buttrick (HQV)

*Overall National Championship Standings:

  1. Kailub Russell (205)
  2. Josh Strang (172)
  3. Jordan Ashburn (111)
  4. Craig DeLong (108)
  5. Michael Witkowski (98)
  6. Jonathan Girroir (92)
  7. Grant Baylor (85)
  8. Cody Barnes (74)
  9. Liam Draper (61)
  10. Ricky Russell (59)