William Yokley (Polaris / Coastal / CST / National Guard / Yoshimura / Yokley Racing) opened the Grand National Cross Country (GNCC) series UTV season with a win at the Maxxis General GNCC. Yokley finished first overall and first in the XC1 Modified Class. Team driver Scott Kiger finished fourth overall and fourth in the same class. A total of 46 side-by-sides were competing in the race, including 22 XC1 Modified teams. Yokley’s guest passenger was his wife Tina, and Scott’s passenger was Tyler King.
The 2013 GNCC Side by Side season started out well for the team in Georgia. After a successful 2012 season, the team spent the winter building new race machines and fine tuning the new 2013 Polaris RZR XP-900s.
The General GNCC featured red Georgia clay soil, tight, technical woods sections linked by high-speed open fields. It was 75 degrees, sunny and windy, and the course was very dusty, especially in the fields. The shorter than usual three-mile track made for some tight racing.
New for this season is a dead engine start, and the field lined up in rows of five. When the flag dropped, Yokley’s machine did not immediately fire and he was last going into the woods. Kiger got a good start and ran up front most of the race. The track was short and the leaders encountered lapped machines on the second lap, so traffic played an important part of the race. Yokley worked his way up to where he was near the lead when he heavily rear-ended a disabled machine in the blinding dust. He was fortunately able to continue once he got unhooked, thank goodness for a strong front bumper!
The running positions were continually shuffled on the last few laps. Yokley made a pass for the lead about a mile from the finish, with Kiger in fourth place. All the front runners were nose to tail at the finish. The next event for the team is the Big Buck GNCC in Union, SC on April 20.
Yokley Side by Side Racing Team Sponsors: Polaris Industries, Coastal Racing, CST, Army National Guard, Yoshimura, Holz Racing Products, OMF, Walker Evans, Fluidyne, Beard Seats, Tireballs, SustainU, and Big Country Powersports.