The racing Saturday night at the Buffalo River Race Park in Glynden, Minnesota, just east of the Fargo-Moorhead metro area on the Minnesota-North Dakota border ended in eerily similar results to Friday’s program, but that’s not to say that it was either predictable or boring.
Instead, on a more still night with hanging snowdust, the racers on the ISOC Amsoil Championship Snocross Series put on an excellent show. In the end, it was Tim Tremblay and Kody Kamm earning weekend sweeps on the half-mile track in the Pro Open and Pro Light classes, respectively. Each take points leads into next weekend’s ISOC event at Elk River, Minnesota.
Tremblay Wins Again
Based on the heat results, it seemed that Tucker Hibbert and Ross Martin may be the ones to watch in the Pro Open final at the Fargo Tractor National, but the race started with a big surprise.
No. 9 qualifier Mathieu Morin grabbed a monster holeshot on his Jimmy John’s-backed Boss Racing Ski-Doo, rocketing off the line and immediately pulling away from the pack. After one lap, he already had a two-second lead over his nearest competition.
Slotting into second place was another Quebec-native on a Ski-Doo – the No. 11 of season points leader Tim Tremblay on his Foremost Insurance-backed Warnert Racing ride. Emil Ohman ran third, followed by Robbie Malinoski and Garth Kaufman. Hibbert and Martin? They were mired deep in the pack, running eighth and ninth, respectively.
Morin was strong at the front, building the lead to 3.1 seconds on the following lap, but Tremblay took back seven-tenths on lap three. In the haze of snowdust behind them, Ohman held strong in third, though Malinoski was starting to pressure for the spot after fighting off a game Kaufman. Martin was starting to come through the pack, knifing past Hibbert, Kyle Pallin and then Brett Bender to claim sixth.
Tremblay knocked another second off the lead the following lap, and the next lap found himself on Morin’s snowflap. When Morin went too hard into a corner and drifted a bit wide, Tremblay undercut his fellow Quebecor and took the lead. At roughly the same time, Malinoski grabbed third spot on his Amsoil-backed Ski-Doo as Ohman disappeared from the standings.
Those top three spots didn’t change for the rest of the race, resulting in a Ski-Doo dominated podium. But there was still great racing in the middle of the field. That’s where Kaufman was trying hard to hold back a resurgent Martin, and while those two swapped fourth spot, a late-charting Hibbert suddenly appeared to make for a great threesome.
Martin knifed past Kaufman in one corner, then Kaufman reclaimed the spot a half-lap later. A half-lap after that, Martin made another charge. They traded lines, inside and out, but Hibbert closed on both of them by sticking to a fast outside line. Finally Martin gained the advantage on Kaufman and earned the spot for good, but before Kaufman could even react, his cousin Hibbert fired past him in pursuit of Martin. Try as he might, however, Hibbert couldn’t quite catch Martin, and they finished fourth and fifth, respectively, and in the process got within striking distance of third-place Malinoski as the checkered flag waved.
Up front, it was Tremblay 8 seconds ahead of Morin at the finish, with Saskatchewan-native Malinoski 3.3 second behind Morin. Martin (Polaris), Hibbert (Arctic Cat), Kaufman (Arctic Cat), Darin Mees (Ski-Doo), Kyle Palin (Arctic Cat) and Brett Bender (Polaris) followed.
After the race, the suddenly dominant Tremblay had completed a sweep at the Fargo Tractor national and had extended a season points lead in Pro Open over Martin and Malinoski.
“I had a pretty good start, and the whole day I struggled on my start,” Tremblay said. “In the final we made a good choice.”
He also proudly waved two flags on the podium.
“It’s all Ski-Doo guys up here, two of us from Quebec and all three from Canada,” Tremblay said. “We all have a big heart and are proud to race in the U.S. and represent Ski-Doo.”
If Morin was disappointed about losing the early lead, he didn’t show it after the race. Flashing a big toothy grin, he said, “I got an awesome start and it was an awesome race. Everything was perfect, I couldn’t ask for anything better.”
Said third-place Malinoski,” “That was a tough race. There was a lot of snowdust and the track was super fast.”
Pro Light To Kamm, Again
Kody Kamm has taken over the Pro Light class on the ISOC circuit. The Polaris racer from Kenosha, Wisconsin, had won seven of the 10 Pro Light finals this season, including a sweep in Fargo. After fighting to get to the point for the first couple of laps, Kamm grabbed the lead and then ran away from the field, posting a large victory on his Hentges Racing machine.
Joining him on the podium for the second straight night, were second-place Derek Ellis (Boss Racing Ski-Doo) and Jake Scott (Team LaVallee Polaris), followed by Brett Nastala and Travis Muller.
After the race, Kamm said part of the credit to his success goes to legendary Wisconsin-based ATV racer “Digger” Doug Gust, who first suggested to the regional MX racer Kamm that he may want to try snowmobile racing in the winter. “And now I’m a champion,” Kamm said in thanking Gust.