A MODIFIED PRESS RELEASE
DULUTH, MN (Nov. 28, 2014) – Former Amsoil Championship Snocross, powered by Ram, champion Tim Tremblay (AMSOIL/Scheuring/Rockstar/Ski-Doo) was unstoppable atop Duluth Minnesota’s Spirit Mountain Friday night, defending his title in the one-on-one Amsoil Dominator event to open the 2014-’15 AMSOIL Championship Snocross season and collect a $10,000 check.
It was a huge statement win for the Quebec native, who has won several Pro Open races over the last three years and is a former series champion, but who is coming off a serious knee injury which shortened his season last year. Tremblay opened the season with a similar victory last year in Duluth, before his injury.
Cruising through the Dominator’s bracket-style format with wins over Arctic Cat’s Logan Christian (Rd. 1), Hentges Racing/Polaris’ Kody Kamm (Rd. 2) and Mystic/Loctite/Polaris’ Jake Scott (Rd. 3), Tremblay would tow Cody Thomsen (Arctic Cat) and Ross Martin (Judnick/Polaris) up the start hill in the final race and power home to a convincing win in the three-lap main event.
“This means a lot for me,” said Tremblay, accepting a giant check for $10,000 from Amsoil Race Program Manager Jeremy Meyer, along with a custom Dominator trophy. “I was hurt last year and I couldn’t wait to get back. So this is a great way to start the season.”
Making the finals against the Canadian Tremblay were Cody Thomsen (Arctic Cat), who got by Mike Bauer (Haala Racing/Arctic Cat) in Rd. 1, Corin Todd (Leighton/Polaris) in Rd. 2 and Martin in Rd. 3. Martin would fight his way back through the Last Chance Qualifier with a win over Scott, and started in the second row behind Tremblay and Thomsen in the main event.
Round One Highlights
The special Amsoil Dominator event is a unique, one-on-one format that takes 16 top pros, seeds them and puts them in a bracket format, ala NHRA drags, and then plays them down to a final round, with a twist.
It because obvious with the very first round, though, that it was going to be an interesting night. The first race pitted the defending ACS champion and winningest driver in the history of modern snocross against a guy better known for his exploits in extreme riding videos than his racetrack accomplishments.
After taking last year off to free ride and film, McGuire Racing/Arctic Cat’s Brett Turcotte pulled the upset of the night when he topped defending ACS champ Tucker Hibbert (Monster/Arctic Cat/Ram) in the first race of the Dominator, thanks to some paint trading and a quick decision by ISOC race officials. Turcotte led the race for the first two laps, but Hibbert stuffed his No. 68 Can under Turcotte’s ride in a tight corner on the top of teh hill. The contact forced Turcotte off of the track and then off of his sled, while Hibbert sped away.
Though the corner was the site of contact all day long, ISOC officials ruled that Hibbert’s move was excessive and DQed the champion, handing Turcotte the victory and keeping Hibbert again from winning about the only event in snocross racing where he hasn’t won the title.
“I heard a sled held wide open and he (Hibbert) bucked me off my sled,” said Turcotte.
After the DQ, the sportsman-like Hibbert posted this on his Facebook page: “In the first round of Dominator Cup racing, I made some contact with #16 Brett Turcotte while passing him in a corner. He ended up going off the track and I got disqualified. I knew there wasn’t a lot of room on the inside but never intended on him going off the track. I’m sorry to Brett and wish him the best of luck racing this weekend.”
In the other first round races, Martin nailed one of the best passes of the night when he went high, then dove down on Lincoln Lemieux (AMSOIL/Scheuring/Rockstar/Ski-Doo) on top of the hill for the lead and eventual win.
The closest race of round one was Justin Broberg (Hentges/Polaris) versus Renheim, with Renheim holding off a charging Broberg at the tape for the win. Other round one winners included: Scott over teammate Kyle Pallin (Mystic/Loctite/Polaris); Defending Dominator champ Tremblay easily over Christian; Kamm looking very fast in an easy win over Andrew Lieders (Mystic/Loctite/Polaris); Pro Open rookie Corin Todd over David Joanis (Royal Distributing/Arctic Cat); and Cody Thomsen over Mike Bauer.
Round 2 To The Final
After a couple of exciting Juniors finals, the remaining eight Pro Open sleds returned to the track to settle the competition, starting with the quarterfinals.
Round two’’s best race was between Sweden’s Adam Renheim (Boss Racing/Ski Doo) and Scott. The former Pro Lite champ Scott would get off the start first and took the lead after the opening lap, only to be caught in the bottom corner by Renheim – the only pass made on that section of the track all night. Scott would then take advantage of a slight Renheim mistake on the uphill, re-passing the Swede and rocketing into the semis.
The most anticipated round two matchup wasn’t short on drama either. Tremblay met Hentges/Polaris racer Kody Kamm. in a battle of rising stars. Tremblay used a strong shoulder-to-shoulder move to stop Kamm’s initial pass attempt on top of Spirit Mountain, then held off an insane jump attempt by Kamm that resulted in the night’s closest finish – 33/100ths of a second at the checkers.
In a third quarterfinals, Todd would lead Thomsen off the start, but cased a jump in the rhythm section, momentarily checking up. This would be all Thomsen would need to take the lead and the eventual win.
Ross Martin, meanwhile, scored a dominating victory over Turcotte and advanced easily.
After a very brief break, the final four returned to the track. In the first semi final, Thomsen pulled a monster holeshot off the start and led Martin up the hill and into the first turn, but soon had Martin snapped at his flap. Charging hard to catch Thomsen, Martin fell off his sled on the last lap and was relegated to the LCQ. After that race, Tremblay went outside/inside on the first turn and got past Scott, opening up a gap that Scott couldn’t close after the opening lap (of three).
Next, Martin shook off the semi-final crash and defeated Scott easily in the LCQ race — earning him a spot in a semi row, behind the two semi-final winners in the race for the big check and funky trophy.
In that final Tremblay got out ahead early and flew to a smooth and strong victory. Martin seemed inspired behind him, though — starting way back, he soon blitzed past Thomsen and tried to run down Tremblay, but he never got close.
Action at Spirit Mountain continues on Saturday with the opening round of the 2014-’15 AMSOIL Championship Snocross, powered by Ram, series.
Beginning with AMSOIL Championship Snocross’ season-opening round in Duluth, Minn. and running through the season finale in Lake Geneva, Wis., CBS Sports Network will air 17 one-hour programs of the ACS races.
Two quick notes: 1) You can watch the full weekend of snocross racing here on snowgoer.com on the live webcast. Click here.
2) Remember to enter the Snow Goer Fantasy Snowmobile Racing Challenge Game, presented by Amsoil. It’s easy to play, fun and free — just predict the order of Sunday’s Pro Open final’s Top 6, and earn points based on your racers on “your team” perform. Click here to play.