The Christmas decorations are up, race fans! The turkey has been eaten and you’d be lucky to find a slice of pie left in our fridge.
We’re fresh off a Thanksgiving weekend full of AMSOIL Championship Snocross racing in Duluth, Minn., where there was no shortage of excitement throughout the weekend.
Before I dive into all the action, let’s take a peek at what Team AMSOIL was thinking going into the weekend.
Friday – Makita Dominates
Literally. A pair of Warnert Racing Ski-Doos made the finals Friday night of the AMSOIL DOMINATOR race. In the end, Adam Renheim, from Sweden, took the $10,000 payout and coveted handmade trophy built from snowmobile parts. Throughout the remainder of the weekend, at least one Warnert sled made the podium for both Pro and Pro Lite finals.
In other Friday night news, Judnick Motorsports’ Carson Alread came from behind to land atop the podium in the ever-competitive Sport class.
Saturday – Young Guns
Riding high after a second-place points finish in the Sport class last season, Ryley Bester entered his first Pro Lite final as the top rookie to qualify. Charging into the torturous first turn, Bester never looked back, winning the first Pro Lite race in which he ever competed.
At last year’s AMSOIL Duluth National, Elias Ishoel was noticeably absent from the start line. But he returned to Duluth this year with avengeance. And, after making the semifinals Friday night in the AMSOIL DOMINATOR, the #200 sled stole the lead from Lincoln Lemieux in the last three laps to take the checkered flag.
Sunday concluded the weekend with the final round of racing. In the Pro heats, the daunting first turn that had been haunting riders all weekend continued its dirty work. Former Scheuring Speed Sports teammates Lincoln Lemieux and Tim Tremblay competed for the holeshot only to get tangled in the aforementioned turn. Lemieux was pushed off the course as he fought to free himself from the fracas. Words were exchanged at the end of the round and lines were drawn. In the final, Lemieux took the holeshot and never looked back, leading for all 18 laps and eventually taking the top spot on the podium. A fitting way to celebrate his 27th birthday.
Probably the best advice given on the weekend came from the three riders who made the 120 Champ podium. The sportsmanship between these young athletes is admirable. Check out what they had to say.
Who will be atop the leaderboard this season? In my opinion, those Ski-Doo sleds are pretty fast and are going to be tough to beat. But, with Tucker Hibbert enjoying life off the track this season, it really is any rider’s series to win.
AMSOIL Championship Snocross now heads to Jackson Hole, Wyo., Dec. 7-8.
We’ll see you at the races!