Fortunately, he has a crack crew of about a half dozen to enable him to accomplish this. And every one of them whom I talked to echoed JR’s sentiments: “Being out here [on the track] Monday through Friday is the most peaceful thing. I’m out in the woods, doing what I like to do-cutting trails and riding.”In the meantime, the biggest challenge for Russell and his crew isn’t the course but rather crowd control. It’s what he spends most of his time doing during the race weekend; and with the amount of people spectating and trying to get to the far corners of the tracks, it is a time-consuming task. And he doesn’t see the numbers dropping anytime soon, especially on the ATV side, where the growth is tremendous. Russell predicted, “The day the ATV semis start showing up is going to cause a whole new set of problems in crowd control and parking.”From its humble beginnings in the early ’80s, the GNCC series now has 31 bike classes in two races, one on Sunday morning and the other with the pros in the afternoon. Add in the growing ATV side, which runs on Saturday in the same a.m./p.m. format and boasts 23 classes, and it’s an administrative nightmare. Or it could be if it weren’t for the efforts of a talented bunch of worker bees. Working in the small, compact trailer that resembles a submarine, with all the supplies needed for a weekend of racing crammed into every nook and cranny, these women handle the sign-up paperwork. The process is an assembly line-it must be in order to handle the scores of racers from Friday afternoon through Sunday morning. Carrie Jo Russell (Jeff’s wife and Rita and the late Dave Coombs’ daughter) said they are giving the preregistration a third try this year to help alleviate the prerace bottleneck. But it’s mostly still a long line before each race. Once the riders have their bar codes, the color patch for their helmet-which indicates the class and their race number-and the punch card, they are ready to visit the lone tech guy who gives them and their bikes the once-over to ensure everything is in order.That’s the visible front. Hidden away is another group in charge of scoring-they must track every rider and crank out results with amazing speed (especially to impatient journalists looking to get the final stats and dash off to the airport). The bar codes, scanners and computer no doubt make this a simpler task than decades ago.The bottom line is as with a circus-at which you show up, buy your ticket, spend a lot of money on junk food and enjoy a marvelous performance-the GNCC is the result of a small band of merry men and women who travel about the eastern half of the country for nearly half the year to put on one heck of a show. The best part about this event that looks so easy to run is you get to participate and watch your heroes afterward-unlike the Nationals, supercross and definitely the circus.