William Yokley finished 17th overall, 14th XC1 Pro today at the Unadilla GNCC race in New Berlin, NY. There were 239 competitors in this race including 22 XC1 Pro riders.
We headed out to historic Unadilla on Thursday since it is a 16 hour trip from Kentucky. The Finger Lake region of NY is beautiful and I always look forward to coming here; the scenery is amazing. It rained a little on Friday and Saturday but the conditions were actually pretty good. The temperature was in the 60’s on race day. This track is always rough, and a tough challenge.
I got a decent start but things jammed up pretty quickly in the first few turns. I entered the woods around mid pack. The first lap, everybody was getting shuffled around and I was getting in a pretty good rhythm. My goggles got steamed up and covered with mud, in other words, useless; so I tossed them in the woods. I stopped in the pits at the end of lap 1 to get a fresh pair of Smith goggles and continued on. On the 3rd lap, I was passing a lapper in a fast section of field, and the rider hit a post and flipped into me. The impact caused me to flip as well. Once I got underway again, I noticed my front fenders were flapping around because the mounting brackets had broken due to the crash and subsequent cartwheeling.
I pitted at the end of lap 3 and got some fuel and fresh goggles. Lap 4 was going good and I was in the top 10. I ran into some problems on the final lap. My fenders had become progressively worse and were barely hanging on, when my bike quit abruptly. I thought it may be a fuse and I started removing parts and pieces to check it out. The fuse was fine. Eventually, I noticed that the dangling bodywork had caused my ignition key to be broken and switched off. I finished the lap as fast as I could, ending up in 17th overall.
I was really expecting a good finish because the bike is working great; it seems that minor things and poor luck have been working against me lately. I am not satisfied but I’m still in the top 10 in points. We move on to Yadkinville, NC in 2 weeks, and I will not give up; I expect to be on the podium there.