" "
Kailub Russell to retire at the end of 2020 GNCC season 

U.S. KTM Factory Racing rider Kailub Russell announces 2020 will be his final year in GNCC Racing. 


Seven-time GNCC champion Kailub Russell has announced he’s stepping away from professional racing by the end of the 2020 racing season. Heading into his 10th season in the Gran National Cross Country Series, Russell insists he is very much aiming to clinch his eight consecutive title this year and bow out with style. 

“It’s tough to walk away from all I have ever known. Unlike most though, I can say that I have given my absolute best as a racer and not left any stone unturned throughout my GNCC career,” explained Russell. 

“While the 2020 season marks my 10th and final year as an XC1 competitor, I’m just as ambitious and motivated for my last as I was my first.”

Russell’s accomplishments during his career are a force to be reckoned with: most overall GNCC bike wins in history at 60, second on the series all-time championship list with seven consecutive XC1 Pro titles, two-time member of the winning U.S. ISDE Trophy team, two-time Full Gas Sprint Enduro Pro Champion and 2015 AMA Enduro Pro Champion. 

ISDE 2020 Team USA 1200

What will be on Russell’s plans when he steps out of racing is unknown, he doesn’t expand further beyond saying: “Racing has taken a toll on my mind and body throughout my lifetime but it has opened more doors and opportunities than I could have ever dreamt about. I’m going to continue racing until the end of 2021 at least, but with a limited race schedule as I transition into the next chapter of life.”

The KTM and USA ISDE Team Manager, Antti Kallonen says: “Kailub has had an absolutely stunning career in racing GNCC and he still continues to push forward in his winning ways but everything has its end and the time is coming with Kailub. Looking back as he starts his 10th year in the GNCC XC1 class, it is truly remarkable what he has accomplished as a rider but also what he has brought to the team and KTM over all these years and we look forward to his final year for him to produce yet his best performance in his career.”

Photo Credit: Enduro21/Andrea Belluschi + Ken Hill
igor aguada bio resized
Igor Aguado
Enduro21 Junior Editor