Tag Archives: Snowmobiles

Team Arctic Honors 50th Anniversary Eagle River World Championships Snowmobile Derby

Past and Future Champions Commemorate Derby Weekend

1969 World Champ Roger Janssen at 2013 Eagle River Derby. Photo by	 ArcticInsider.com

Team Arctic honored the tradition and history of the 50th Anniversary Eagle River World Championship Snowmobile Derby with excellent finishes by its cadre of oval racers as well as the company’s appreciation of its past champions.

Armed with the formidable duo of four-time World Champion P.J. Wanderscheid and two-time World Champion Gary Moyle in the Champ 440 class, Team Arctic was in good position to notch its 11th Championship crown. And when Moyle logged the fastest qualifying time, the possibility of another win looked even better.

But the history of the World Championship is full of twists, turns and upsets. The 50th edition was no different, with Moyle and Wanderscheid delivering excellent performances (despite Wanderscheid competing with a broken ankle, heavily bruised shoulder and ribs, plus pneumonia), taking fifth and ninth respectively.

Commenting on his ninth place finish, Wanderscheid acknowledged both his injuries and the tough visibility of the final: “I always knew that injuries would affect me. My plan in the final was to go for it if I was out front, but play it safe if I was in the pack simply because [with the injuries] I knew I couldn’t recover sled if it got away from me. After the first restart I was always behind a few sleds and, with the snow dust sticking to my face shield, I played it safe in traffic.”

Moyle had his own challenges in the Champ final: “Starting on the back row of the final, I moved up to seventh before the maintenance break that separates the first 10 laps from the final 20 laps,” said Moyle. “At that point a suspension adjustment we’d planned to make wasn’t possible due to a frozen component, leaving us with less suspension travel than we needed for the big bumps that formed. So to finish fifth overall was the best that we could have hoped for given the circumstances.”

In addition to the spectacular racing, special ceremonies during Derby weekend commemorated past World Champions, including Team Arctic racers: Roger Janssen (1969), Bob Elsner (1979), Jim Dimmerman (1984), Wanderscheid (2002, 2003, 2006, 2011); Larry Day (2004); and Moyle (2005, 2007). Arctic Cat congratulates these great champions and all the racers who have competed at Eagle River over the past five decades.

Several of Team Arctic’s cross-country contingent competed at the CORPowersports event in Hayward, Wis., notching eight wins, three class sweeps and victory in both Pro classes. Wes Selby recorded his first-ever victory in Pro class cross-country competition, winning Pro Distance and Pro Sprint ahead of Zach Herfindahl.

Team Arctic’s national-level cross-country and snocross programs resume January 26 – 27, 2013, at the USXC event in Oslo, Minn., and the ESPN Winter X Games in Aspen, Colo.

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Team Arctic Conquers Cross-Country, Snocross and Hillclimb

Twenty-Nine Victories in Warroad XC; Pro Open Victory at ERX National Snocross; and Six Wins at the RMSHA Hillclimb in Afton, Wyo.

Leaving nothing but table scraps for the competition, Team Arctic marched through last weekend claiming 29 class victories in two days of USCC cross-country, a huge win in Pro Open at the ISOC snocross national in Elk River, Minn., and six victories at the RMSHA hillclimb in Afton, Wyo.

The all-conquering cross-country performance unfolded in Warroad, Minn., during the final weekend of USCC competition during the 2012 season. With two separate events during the weekend, Team Arctic had double the opportunity to dominate.

The Arctic Cat/Christian Bros. Racing juggernaut continued their claim in Pro class competition, with Brian Dick and D.J. Ekre claiming Pro 600 and Pro Open on Saturday, followed by Ekre winning Pro 600 on Sunday. Ryan Simons was on the podium in all four events during the weekend to claim his second consecutive USCC Pro 600 Championship, while Ekre took the Open Class Championship.

In addition to conquering the pro classes, Team Arctic unleashed an all-class beating of historic proportions. Eight Team Arctic racers scored multiple class wins, while there were 19 different winners. And of the 29 total class victories during the weekend, 14 were full podium sweeps by Team Arctic.

“We’ve been highly-successful in USCC cross-country racing for many years, but the team’s performance in Warroad reached a new level,” said Mike Kloety, Team Arctic Race Manager. “I believe the word “dominate” gets used a little too loosely sometimes, but it’s the only way to describe winning 30 out of 39 total races. Arctic Cat is immensely proud of all our racers, crew and the USCC staff for a truly outstanding season of competition.”

While the cross-country team was conquering Warroad, Team Arctic’s Tucker Hibbert returned to the top of the ISOC Pro snocross podium with a win in Elk River, Minn. Hibbert led the strongest performance of the season at Elk River, with Team Arctic Pro’s taking five of the top-8 positions. Other Team Arctic winners in Elk River included Tyler Adams, Trent Wittwer, Ryley Bester, Ethan Aune and Evan Christian.

Team Arctic’s hillclimb contingent captured six class victories at the RMSHA event in Afton, Wyo. Proving the ability of the M8 HCR in the ProClimb chassis with wins in the big-inch classes were Kyle Tapio (with two wins), Nels Tapio and Trace Tupper. They were joined on the top step of the podium by Sid Archibald and David McClure.

The All-New Arctic Cat 2012 Sno Pro 600 Race Sled

Thief River Falls, Minn. (9/10/11) – The official start to winter kicked off today at the largest snowmobile event in the world – Haydays.  Thousands of loyal Team Arctic race fans were treated to the first unveiling of the all-new 2012 Arctic Cat Sno Pro 600 race sled.

70’s fashion Icon, Cat Girl unveiled the all-new 2012 Sno Pro 600 and conducted a walk-around with Performance Product Team Manager Troy Halvorson. Halvorson said the all-new Sno Pro 600 will build upon last season’s winning success and the success of the recently introduced ProCross chassis. Key highlights include:

  • All new ProCross Race chassis – Stronger and lighter than 2011 Sno Pro 600
  • 600R race engine with 40mm Mikuni rack style TM carbs w/TPS
  • Front Arctic Race Suspension (ARS) – with Fox Float X Evol Shox
  • All-new Race Slide Action rear suspension equipped with Fox Racing Shox
  • 1.7-in. Snocross track or 1.25-in. Cobra 2-ply Cross Country track
  • Arctic Drive System (ADS) with magnesium chaincase and all-new Torque Overloading Sensing (TOS) bottom sprocket
  • Torque Control Link (TCL) – Links the drive to driven clutch
  • Radial Master Cylinder brake system
  • 5 gallon Snocross or 12 gallon Cross Country fuel tank

“Racing has been a strong cornerstone of Arctic Cat’s heritage and brand. An arena we have consistently used for testing and development.  It’s our commitment to race the ProCross chassis and show the world that our consumers can buy the same snowmobile to conquer the world’s toughest terrain,” said Brad Darling, GM Snow Division.

Defending his ISOC Pro Points Championship Title, Tucker Hibbert will race the full season aboard the all-new 2012 Sno Pro 600 as well as compete for his sixth-consecutive ESPN Winter X Games gold medal. If he wins, Hibbert will become the only athlete in the history of Winter X to six-peat. Hibbert has competed every year since 2000 and currently holds 10 medals, six of which are gold.

Arctic Cat CEO Claude Jordan stated, “Our talented engineers have built our best Sno Pro race sled to date, and that says a lot considering we won every major race or championship title last season. It’s going to be a tough year for our competition, but an even better year for our Team Arctic race fans!”

About Arctic Cat and Tucker Hibbert

Arctic Cat Inc., based in Thief River Falls, Minn., designs, engineers, manufactures and markets all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and snowmobiles under the Arctic Cat® brand name, as well as related parts, garments and accessories.  Its common stock is traded on the Nasdaq National Market under the ticker symbol “ACAT.”  More information regarding the all-new 2012 Sno Pro 600,  and other Arctic Cat products please log on to www.arcticcat.com or visit your local dealer. For more information on Tucker Hibbert, please log on to www.tucker-hibbert.com.

Tucker Hibbert Takes 3rd at FIM Snowcross World Championship

Photo by Erik Ahman.

Hibbert Overcomes Challenge for Third at FIM Snowcross World Championship

Tucker Hibbert wrapped-up a record-breaking snowmobile season Saturday in Finland with a third place finish at the FIM Snowcross World Championship. Hibbert consistently turned the fastest lap times of the day on the rough course in Tuuri but a drive belt failure in the second of three races took him out of contention for the overall win.
Hibbert went 1-16-1 in the three-race format to finish third behind Sweden’s Emil Ohman and Petter Narsa. The first 20-rider, 15-minute race, Hibbert had a dead-last start and put on an impressive charge to take the lead with only minutes to go.
He lined up for the second race confident and pulled a top-three start. Five minutes in, he moved into first but immediately knew something was wrong. Pieces of his drive belt began to break and fly off under the hood. Within moments, the belt completely shredded and he was forced to walk away from his snowmobile. He was not allowed to change the belt during the race because he was unable to get the snowmobile to the designated work area.
Hibbert entered the third and final race knowing the Championship was out of reach but was determined to win. He got a mid-pack start and quickly moved to the front. By the end of the race, he pulled a 27-second gap on second place Ohman, giving him enough points for third overall.
Once Hibbert returns to the U.S., he will shift his focus to preparing for select 450 AMA Pro Motocross Championship events.

FIM Snowcross World Championship Results – Tucker Hibbert
Race 1: 1st
Race 2: 16th
Race 3: 1st
Overall: 55 points – 3rd

Tucker Hibbert – #1 Monster Energy/Arctic Cat-
“I’m really excited about my performance at the World Championship. I don’t think I have ever felt so in control and confident in a race. Blowing a belt in the second race was disappointing but stuff like that happens – it’s racing. I can’t remember the last time I was taken out of a race because of a mechanical problem and that’s a testament to how solid my Monster Energy/Arctic Cat is and the talent of the crew working on the machine. It’s hard not winning the overall but honestly, I couldn’t be prouder of what we (the team) accomplished. We worked hard to get to this event and have no regrets.
Just like last year in Sweden, I was overwhelmed by the kindness and support of everyone in Finland. The European racing community is fired up about snowmobile racing. It’s cool to see so many countries come together to compete. The growth of the sport and level of the competition just keeps rising. The future of snowmobile racing is looking good.
This has been a long year for the Monster Energy/Arctic Cat crew and myself. Racing the full national series plus Winter X Games and the World Championship was a new experience for this team. Although I didn’t win the World Championship, I’m walking away from this season healthy and happy. I’m looking forward to a little rest then diving into preparing to race a few AMA Motocross events in the 450 class.”

Team Arctic Rules Red Lake USCC Cross-Country

20 Class Wins, 10 Podium Sweeps and Twice the Usual Beatings

Team Arctic cross-country racers took advantage of a two-race USCC weekend in Red Lake, Minn., notching 20 class victories and 10 podium sweeps while inflicting twice the usual beating upon the competition.

For the second weekend in a row, Team Arctic’s D.J. Ekre and Ryan Greening captained the corps, with Ekre winning Pro Stock and Pro Open while Greening snatched 3-of-4 Semi Pro wins. Ekre’s Arctic/Christian Bros. Racing teammates Garth Kaufman, Ryan Simons and Zach Pattyn occupied plenty of Pro podium real estate, while Chad Kyllo and Spencer Kadlec did the same in the Semi Pro class

Jon Arneson, Bryce Buchanan and Luke Perreault also scored double-wins during the weekend, adding to their hefty hardware haul this season.

“Ekre has definitely found his sweet spot for speed these past couple weeks,” said Mike Kloety, Team Arctic Race Manager. “After bad luck plagued the start of his race season, he’s hungry for more wins while Ryan Simons is riding to maintain his lead in the championship points race.

“Plus Ryan Greening has been literally unbeatable in the Semi Pro 600 class so far this season, and we’ve seen a slew of Expert and Sport racers take turns winning the 85-hp classes. With two races remaining, Team Arctic racers appear ready to top most of the USCC class championships.”

The next race in the USCC circuit is March 12 in Warroad, Minn. Go to USCC for more information.

Thirty-Two Win Weekend for Team Arctic

On Top in Eastern/Canadian Snocross and Western Hillclimbs

It’s the middle of the race season, and Team Arctic snocross and hillclimb racers delivered a 32-win weekend that makes the competition wish winter was over.  Leading the victory lap parade in snocross were Tucker Hibbert and Cody Thomsen, each winning a class at the ISOC Eastern National in Farmington, NY.

Hibbert’s win in Pro Open marked his 62nd career Pro class win, and overshadowed the troubles that derailed his efforts in Pro Stock, in which he finished fifth. Pro teammates Garth Kaufman, Logan Christian and Dan Ebert found additional speed in Farmington, with Kaufman taking a second in Pro Stock, while Christian and Ebert each notched a fourth place.

Factory Team Arctic standout Cody Thomsen continued his season-long onslaught of the Semi Pro class, winning one final, taking a second in the other and leaving New York with a commanding points lead.

While Team Arctic snocrossers were winning in Farmington, the hillclimb team set the high mark with 13 wins at the RMSHA season-opener in Bear Lake, Idaho.

It was a familiar family of names who once again proved the superiority of the M Series, as Chance Buckallew, Amy Zollinger, Kyle Tapio and Bryant Ropelato each won multiple events, including Kyle and Bryant’s King titles. They were joined in the winner’s circle by Nels Tapio, Todd Tupper, Taylor Siemers and Casey Morley, giving Arctic Cat the top spot in more than half of the class finals.

At the Soo International 500 enduro in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., Team Arctic’s Isaac Wolfgang was oh-so-close to notching his first victory, finishing in the runner-up position just five seconds out of first.

“This was one of those weekends where Team Arctic racers won all-over the North American map in all forms of competition,” said Mike Kloety, Race Manager. “While we didn’t win every time we hit the track, notching 32 wins tells the story of our racers, crews and snowmobiles, while highlighting the strength of our program.”

Team Arctic Crushes I-500 Cross-Country

BRIAN DICK LEADS TEAM ARCTIC’S I-500 CROSS-COUNTRY-CRUSH

Arctic Cat Racers Dominate by Winning 15 of 18 Classes

Neither brutally-cold temperatures, record-breaking snow depth, nor the contagion of previous hard-luck could sway Brian Dick’s date with I-500 destiny. Piloting his Sno Pro 600 with unmatched speed and poise, Dick stamped his authority on the weather-shortened USCC Red Lake I-500 cross-country, leading a Team Arctic-sweep of the top-4 Pros and 15 of 18 class wins.

Dick set the fastest time on the first two (of three) days, ahead of his Arctic Cat/Christian Bros. Racing teammates Ryan Simons, Zach Pattyn and Cory Davis. Falling snow and 30 mph winds created near white-out conditions on the final day, forcing USCC officials to cancel the third leg. With a four-minute, 34-second lead over Simons, the reigning USCC Pro Champion claimed his first I-500 victory after a decade of near-misses.

“Brian has suffered multiple gut-wrenching losses in this race over the years,” said Team Arctic Race Manager, Mike Kloety. “To see him finally win brings great pride and satisfaction to his family, fans and even his fellow racers.”

Indeed, when officials announced they’d cancelled the third leg, a steady stream of racers waited to shake hands with Dick, an Arctic Cat engineer and one of the people instrumental in designing the Sno Pro race sled. First in line was his father, Paul, who has competed in more I-500 races than any other competitor (and who took fourth in this year’s event).

In addition to Dick’s wins in Pro 600 and Pro Open, Team Arctic racers won 13 other classes at the I-500. Ryan Greening turned in two blistering-fast times to win the Semi Pro Stock and Improved classes by nearly 14 minutes. Jolene Bute continues to set cross-country records, taking her sixth career I-500 win in the Women’s class.

Team Arctic racers continue to dominate the 85-hp classes, with Tyler Johnsrud leading an Arctic Cat-sweep of the top-13 in Expert 85, and Jordan Holm leading a Cat-sweep of the top-five finishers in Trophy 85.

And in the first-ever I-500 Vintage class, Joey Hallstrom won ahead of former Team Arctic legend (and two-time I-500 winner) Brian Nelson, with Joey Potucek taking third, all three aboard 1979 Arctic Cat el tigre Cross-Country Cats.

“This year’s I-500 will long be remembered as one of the most difficult,” said Kloety, “With cold temperatures, snow dust and brutally-rough conditions from the deep snow. To win 15 of 18 classes reflects the determination of our racers and crews, and the commitment we’ve made to support cross-country racing.”

The next race on the Team Arctic race calendar is the ESPN Winter X Games in Aspen, Colo., Jan. 30.


Hibbert Continues Win Streak at Utah’s Piranha X Western National

For the second consecutive year, fans filled Sandy, Utah’s Rio Tinto Stadium to watch the world’s top snocross racers battle on a snow covered soccer field. Aboard his Monster Energy/Arctic Cat, Tucker Hibbert navigated a tight, unpredictable race course Saturday night at the AMSOIL Championship Snocross Series’ Piranha X Western National to take his third pro sweep of the season.

For the first time this season, the track was built with natural snow. Qualifying rounds acted as testing grounds for Hibbert and his crew to prepare his sled for the inconsistent track conditions.
In the 25-lap, 15-rider Pro Super Stock final Hibbert came out of the first corner clean and in sixth place. By lap five, he made his way into third and began a heated battle for the lead. The top three riders brought the crowd to its feet by entering corners three wide and aggressively swapping positions multiple times. On lap 14, Hibbert made a clean pass for the lead and pulled away for the win.

Later Saturday night, Hibbert had a fourth place start in the 15-rider Pro Open final. On lap 11 of the 25-lap main event, Hibbert took the lead and rode unchallenged for his sixth victory of the season. The event will be highlighted by a one-hour VERSUS broadcast Sunday, Jan. 23 at 3 p.m. EST.

Hibbert is now in New York City for his first in studio appearance on ABC’s Good Morning America. His interview is scheduled for Monday, Jan. 10 during the 8 o’clock hour. Later this week will set up camp in Colorado to test for ESPN Winter X Games 15 where he will be racing for his tenth overall and fifth-consecutive snocross gold medal. Watch the event live on EPSN Sunday, Jan. 30.

Tucker Hibbert – Piranha X Western National Results

Pro Super Stock
Round 1: 1st
Round 2: 2nd
Final: 1st

Pro Open
Round 1: 1st
Round 2: 2nd
Final: 1st

Team Arctic Storms Through Grafton USCC Opener

Arctic Cat Racers Win 12 of 18 Classes with 11 Podium Sweeps

A winter storm blew into Grafton, ND, prior to the start of the United States Cross-Country (USCC) season opener, leaving a rough, cold and rugged cross-country race for those competitors who braved closed roads to get there. And with Arctic Cat’s unmatched support of all classes, Team Arctic racers won 12 classes – sweeping all top-3 podium positions in 11 of them – and sent a powerful reminder which brand will dominate for the rest of the season.

“Arctic Cat supports cross-country racing because our racers are passionate about it, our company learns from it and our customers benefit from it,” said Team Arctic Race Manager, Mike Kloety. “Despite a storm that literally shut down travel in this region of the country, Grafton saw nearly 200 entries. And Team Arctic dominated by winning 12 of 18 classes.”

D.J. Ekre, Ryan Simons and Brian Dick served notice about who were the fastest pros of the weekend when they swept the Pro Open class early in the day; however, in the Pro 600 class each suffered the fickle fate of cross-country’s classic drama. Dick went out with a tweaked suspension component, Ekre battled multiple goggle changes due to fogging and Simons went from a 10-second lead to a 14-second deficit following a last lap crash.

A similar fate befell Chad Kyllo, Ryan Greening and Cole Nymann in the Semi Pro 600 final. After sweeping the top-3 positions in the Improved class early in the day, the trio suffered slush and ice build-up under their sleds’ hoods, slowing their speed considerably and preventing a second Semi Pro class sweep for the day.

Despite these setbacks, Team Arctic proved their overall dominance from top-to-bottom. Aboard his Sno Pro 500, Bryce Buchanan led a top-10 sweep of the Expert 85 class and a top-six sweep of Expert 85 Improved. Underlining the dominance of the Sno Pro 500, C.J. VandePutte led a top-eight sweep of Sport 85, Luke Perreault led a top-seven sweep of Trail and Jay Lura capped the top-six-sweep of Junior 10-13.

The next race on the USCC circuit is Jan. 15 in Grand Forks, ND. Go to www.usccracing.com for more information.

Team Arctic Hits The Jackpot at Fargo National SnoCross

Eight-of-12 Class Wins and a Sweep of Pro and Semi Pro

Team Arctic rolled into Fargo, ND, for the Dakota Magic Casino Snocross, hit the jackpot and rolled away with the lion’s share of hardware on the second stop of the ISOC National Tour. After taking eight of 12 class wins, including every Pro and Semi Pro final, Team Arctic racers and crew proved the only magic in Fargo was the classic Arctic Cat Black Magic.

Tucker Hibbert continued his one man wrecking-ball approach to the Pro Class, with similar come-from-behind dramatics that brought Arctic Cat fans to their feet. Racing his Arctic Cat/Monster Energy Sno Pro 600s, Hibbert led a cache of Team Arctic Pros that accounted for nine-of-15 finalists in Pro Stock, and seven-of-15 in Open. He’s now four-for-four on the season.

Factory Team Arctic teammates Cody Thomsen and Kyle Pallin put on a clinic in the Semi Pro Stock classes at Fargo. In the first race, Thomsen started in the back row, chased down a fast-starting Pallin, got around him and took the highly-dramatic win. But Pallin would not be denied, and in the second Semi Pro final he again nailed the holeshot and simply checked-out, taking his first win of the season and Arctic’s third (of four) in this highly-competitive class.

Carly Davis returned to the top-step of the podium in the Pro Am Women’s class, putting her Christian Bros. Racing Arctic Cat at the sharp end of the field for the first time this season. Proving the depth of the Team Arctic race program, Jesse Hendrickson won the Sport Stock final, while Travis Kern won the Junior 14-15 class.

“Our riders had one of those amazing weekends, where we either won or finished on the podium in nearly every class,” said Mike Kloety, Team Arctic Race Manager. “Sure we love to see wins from top-class racers like Hibbert, Thomsen, Pallin and Davis, but it’s extra-satisfying when our Sport and Junior racers get some of the glory. Taking eight of 12 finals illustrates the strength of our Sno Pro 600, the talent of our racers and the dedication of their crews.

“At the first National in Duluth, we noticed our sleds needed help with the 50-percent-throttle rule for the Junior classes. Steve Houle from Speedwerx jumped in and, with the help of Russ Ebert and the great folks up at ERX Motor Park, made significant improvements. We saw the result of that effort at Fargo, and with more testing I suspect this package will only get better.”

The next race in the ISOC National Tour is at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah, on Jan. 8. Go to www.isocracing for more information.