Chicken and Waffles: 3/29/2011

It’s back! Yes, the former weekly update of all sorts of moto stuff is back. For this who never saw it before, Chicken and Waffles was a weekly feature for a while last summer. The name is derived from the dish, chicken and waffles. I named this weekly article after that because it’s always about a bunch of random stuff stuck together… Kind of like how chicken and waffles are two random food items stuck together in one dish.

Before we jump in, I also want to mention that this article may be taking a slightly new direction as well. Before it was strictly new from the offroad and moto world. Well, now I’m sticking with the news but I’m also getting into true rambling and will be making some random comments on stuff. Consider it similar to BROtocross, except his site is way cooler and I could never come up with some of that stuff. So let’s stop the introduction here and jump right in. No, you’re not in the ATL and I’m not Gladys Knight but this IS Chicken and Waffles.

This past weekend saw the return of the GNCC series to what I’m calling the Most Unpredictable GNCC Event. That’s right, Steele Creek was back and in true Steele Creek form, it made for a heck of a story. By now, most of you have already heard how the race went down, but in case you didn’t, I posted a race report on Offroad Junkies, so check it out for all the details on the actual race.

In a nutshell, the top 7 or so ran really close together for a couple of laps before Josh Strang and Charlie Mullins checked out, which resulted in a battle between the two of them for the win. That battle came down to the wire. In the final few turns, Mullins lead Strang. Strang kept trying, and in a couple of corners it looked as if he was going to make the pass but Mullins managed to hang on… Until the final turn that is. Mullins’ front end washed out just feet from the finish allowing Strang to ride by and take the win.

That’s just another one that goes down in the book of “Crazy Stuff From Steele Creek”. It seems like there’s something every year that can make it into that book. There’s just something about that race that always provides an epic moment. Plus, what kind of crap luck is that for Mullins? He even said that he only made 1 mistake all day, and that was the one.

The win also turned the points lead over to Josh Strang. Additionally, the win made it 3 in a row for Strang at Steele Creek. There’s only ever been 1 rider to win Steele Creek 3 times, and that’s none other than 5-Time GNCC Champ, Rodney Smith. He won it in 02, 03 and 04.

Heading into Big Buck, Strang holds down a 3 point lead. Another interesting fact is that, much like Steele Creek, Strang has also won Big Buck the past two years. Therefore, if he wins again, that’s another race that he will make 3 in a row.

The bad news out of Steele Creek was that Thad Duvall had a pretty nasty crash and ended up with a broken wrist, dislocated hip and badly bruised femur. Judging by Facebook he’s starting to recover pretty well but it looks like he’ll miss some racing for sure. Best of luck Thad!

More of the interesting things from Steele Creek was that bad luck plagued two of the top three XC2 riders. Jesse Robinson and Steward Baylor both suffered mechanical issues. This left the door wide open for Jason Thomas to take the win. As for the rest of the podium, a couple of new faces made it up. National Enduro regulars Andrew Delong and Brad Bakken ended up with 2nd and 3rd place.

Now some of you might wonder what my Steele Creek experience was like? Well, like all races, I had a blast. The spots I was shooting from were pretty cool and gave me a good look at the race. I had some issues getting to them on time during the first few laps because of all the traffic and spectators on the road in and out, but eventually I got it figured out and made them on time. One odd thing was that the banners at my spots seemed to mysteriously disappear half way through the race. I guess someone ended up with some extra souvenirs. It was also cool to have a GNCC not too far from home and also get to see my buddies from the local series’ out there. Big Buck will be even better as I’m sure it will attract not only my NC buddies but also SC and GA buddies. Looking forward to it!

Now onto one of the biggest things to hit the moto world in a while. You guessed it, the James Stewart arrest. Just in case you haven’t heard yet, James Stewart was arrested for impersonating a police officer. Yeah, I couldn’t make that up. Check the details here. Alright, I’ve made a few comments about this on Facebook and Twitter. My basic opinion is that I can’t believe he could do something so stupid. Plus, what are the chances of him pulling over 2 undercover officers? I’m sorry James, but… HAHAHAHAHAHA! I seriously can’t believe this happened. I could go on and on about how dumb this is but it will all blow over soon enough, and there’s already been enough buzz about it, therefore it would be pointless. One thing I will say is… Fastest man on the planet? More like dumbest.

Looking forward to this weekend we’ve got quite a few events going on. Not a whole lot in the National scale of things but there’s a ton of local races here in the Southeast. The big event of the weekend will be the National Enduro in Texas. Russell Bobbitt is still holding down the points lead in that series, and as the series makes it’s way to Texas, he and the other top riders will definitely be hungry for a good ride. Defending champ Charlie Mullins will be one of those hungry riders as he obviously wants to defend his title. Then of course the other front runners in the form of Cory Buttrick, Mike Lafferty, Nick Fahringer and others will be in the hunt. There’s no doubt it will be a race to keep an eye on.

In the local scene, there’s a Mid-East race in Morganton, NC on Saturday. Then Sunday will play host to a NCHSA race in Taylorsville, NC plus SORCS in Conasauga, TN and FTR in Gatorback, FL. No Virginia races this weekend, so you guys need to come check out one of the other series. For you folks up north, well, I wouldn’t know because none of you asked to have your series added to the 2011 Offroad Calendar. It’s not too late though! If you want it on there, just email me at jbolton@isdeteamusa.com and I’ll add your series to the list.

That’s going to do it for this week. If you have any cool stories from Steele Creek, or any from a race this coming weekend, just let me know and I’ll share them here.

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