The popular East Coast Snocross (ECS) race circuit, an outgrowth of the former Rock Maple Racing series, has changed hands again, although it is staying within the snowmobile racing family.
Kurt Gagne, a Massachusetts-based businessman and current snowmobile race team owner, has purchased the circuit, which typically hosts about a dozen races in between New York and Maine in the U.S. Northeast as well as a couple of events in Quebec. Even if you don’t live in the East, though, this circuit should be on your radar. It has been the training ground for dozens of the top international snocross racing stars — including Chris Vincent in the mid 1990s to TJ Gulla in the 2000 to Jake Scott today, plus many, many more.
Below is the press release from the East Coast Snocross organization:
Regional snocross circuit changes hands after four good years; new owner planning bright future for East Coast Snocross
CHESHIRE, Conn. (May 16, 2014) – Officials at East Coast Snocross (ECS) have announced the sale of the snowmobile racing sanctioning body. The series was launched in May of 2010 when New York native Eric Scott and Connecticut businessman Bob Roscoe purchased the former Rock Maple Racing circuit from New Hampshire native Chuck Minasalli.
Kurt Gagne, a race-savvy businessman from Clarksburg, Mass., has purchased ECS and is making a commitment to carry our sport forward with pride, energy and a eye towards the future.
After four good years of competition, the time had come for both Scott and Roscoe to move on. Eric’s son Jake now competes in the Pro class on the ISOC national circuit for Levi LaVallee, while Bob’s son Connor will be headed off to college this fall. Both men had (and still have) a deep passion for snocross, and helped the sport evolve a great deal during their tenure.
“Eric and I were very proud to own and operate the series for four seasons,” Roscoe said. “I am going to miss being involved after 12 years of snocross with my son. Eric and I want to thank our staff, valued sponsors and the racers for supporting ECS during our four-year run. We both wish Kurt the very best in the future, and feel confident the series is in good hands. We’re pleased ECS can live on.”
Gagne, proprietor of Gagne Mechanical Corp., in Clarksburg, Mass., has been involved in the sport for several years as a team owner. His love for snocross runs deep, his business skills are sharp and he knows what it will take to keep this series thriving in the years ahead.
“I’m excited about the opportunity to promote snocross and carry this highly-respected series into a bright future,” Gagne said. “East Coast Snocross has some great teams and racers; athletes who run strong even against the national teams in ISOC. I’ll take great pride in working to expose this sport to new faces, to keep it healthy and growing, and to draw in new racers.
“We’ll be placing a big effort on our 120cc program and Junior racing, simply because those young riders are the future of snocross. Our Pro and Pro Lite racing will always be tops, yet we’ll strive to build numbers across the board. It’s going to be a busy off-season, but one I am going to enjoy.”
The sport of snowmobile snocross came to New England back in 1991-92, when former VAST president Don Finck, his wife Nancy and a partner formed Rock Maple Racing. They ran the series for 11 winters before selling it to Minisalli following the 2001-02 season. RMR lived a long life, yet ECS ushered the sport into a new era. Today, another chapter begins with Kurt Gagne at the helm.
East Coast Snocross, presented by AMSOIL and Woody’s Traction, is the eastern affiliate of International Series of Champions (ISOC), the national sanctioning body for snocross. ECS strives to maintain a regional circuit intended to keep grass-roots snocross racing healthy in this part of the Snowbelt, while also cultivating new talent for tomorrow’s factory-backed Pro teams.