A year ago, the Scheuring Speed Sport race team showed up at Spirit Mountain with some dinged up riders, but left with some incredible bragging rights after the season-opening round of the ISOC Amsoil Championship Series at Duluth, Minnesota. Team leader Robbie Malinoski won both Pro Open finals, while his teammates Tim Tremblay and Darrin Mees claimed three of the remaining four podium spots on the weekend.
In fact, the only thing the team didn’t dominate last year was the specialty Amsoil Dominator race created by their primary sponsor on Friday night. Well, it’s a new year, and the Scheuring crew is out to right that wrong.
Tonight in Duluth, Tremblay guided his No. 11 Ski-Doo to victory in the bracket-style event, earning a huge $10,000 check and stating to the snocross world that this group is back for more. The race occurred before a sizable crowd on a beautiful, wintery night high above Lake Superior at the city’s only ski hill.
Racing continues throughout the weekend – time will tell whether the Scheuring group can repeat its dominance in the less lucrative but far-more-important (from a season points perspective) opening two rounds, which will be webcast Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon live here on snowgosite.wpengine.com.
Early Bracket Shakedown
The specialty Amsoil Dominator event takes 16 top Pro Open drivers and pits them off against one another in one-on-one, two-lap showdowns. The winner moves on, the loser heads for the trailer.
Aside from the monstrous first prize – a $10,000 check – this is also the first time each season that the Pros face off against one another on a formal race track, so it attracts a lot of attention.
Polaris racer Ross Martin has won the check from Amsoil the last two years, but it immediately became apparent that there would be a new winner of the bracket event this year when Martin lost to Cat racer Cody Thomsen in the first round.
Also in the first round, Logan Christian defeated David Joanis, Tim Tremblay took out Iain Hayden, Kyle Pallin defeated Danny Poirier, Tucker Hibbert eliminated Johan Lidman, Justin Broberg ended Darrin Mees’ night, Petter Narsa upset Kody Kamm and Robbie Malinoski sent the sport’s most popular driver, Levi LaVallee, packing.
That left eight drivers for the quarterfinals, the first of which pitted Cat superstar Tucker Hibbert against Justin Broberg on a Polaris. Hibbert grabbed the early lead but appeared to carry too much speed into the corner at the bottom of the hill, caught an edge and tipped over. Broberg gleefully took advantage of this rare Hibbert mistake and advanced. Next, Cat teammates Thomsen and Christian got into a paint swapping duel which was settled when Thomsen cut directly in front of Christian coming out of a tight corner and forced Christian to check up momentarily. Thomsen then sped to a victory.
Next was Malinoski (Scheuring Ski-Doo) vs. Narsa (Boss Racing Ski-Doo). Malinoski grabbed the holeshot but Narsa poked his nose in front momentarily during the first lap. Malinoski responded with a strong second lap and won going away. Then, Tremblay (Ski-Doo) took on Pallin (Polaris). Pallin got the holeshot but Tremblay showed superior speed and might on the uphill and opened a big lead en route to an easy looking victory.
The Final Four
The $10,000 check would be written to one of the remaining four drivers, but in a new twist this year, three drivers would actually advance to the final.
First, Malinoski raced Broberg and won by a wide margin, despite Broberg’s slight holeshot. Malinoski cut under Broberg at the top of the hill and never looked back.
Then, Tremblay and Thomsen put on a lesson in hard racing, clacking body panels a couple of times as Thomsen aggressively looked for a way around the tall, strong Quebecois. It was a spirited effort, but Tremblay won the heat and advanced.
Thomsen’s night was not over, however. His lap times were faster than those of Broberg, so he earned a special, provisional third spot in the final. He and his Cat would start several feel behind the matching black Amsoil/Ford Trucks/Rock Star Energy-backed Ski-Doos of Scheuring racers in the two lap final.
Route To $10k
Tremblay and Malinoski lined up side-by-side for the final – wearing identical jackets and bibs and driving identical sleds. Yeah, they are teammates, but this was a run for a winner-takes-all $10,000 check, with no season points implications on the line, so you could throw that teammate thing right out the window. Or, at least, that’s what Thomsen had to be hoping for. If the two black sleds started rubbing in a corner, Thomsen would be looking for a line past both of them.
Such aggression never materialized. Tremblay grabbed the slight holeshot and then gained an advantage coming out of turn one. Malinoski tried finding a different line on the mogul-filled course that might give him the speed and traction to get to the point, but he never found one. After two very quick laps, Tremblay flew past a waving checkered flag while celebratory flames shot out of a finish line display. Malinoski stayed close in second and Thomsen never challenged from third.After the race, Tremblay was presented a big check from the team’s primary and longtime sponsor, Amsoil.
“It feels awesome to get the win tonight,” Tremblay said during a post race interview. “It was very, very close between me and Robbie. I knew he was right behind me. It’s all about the start and I got the holeshot.”
Look for complete coverage of the remaining ISOC race this weekend on snowgosite.wpengine.com, including the simulcast during racing hours found at this link.
In other action, Travis Kern of Palicade, Minnesota, won the Sport final Friday night on his No. 201 Arctic Cat in a crowded class that featured 78 entries. Eddie Neurrbauer of Union Grove, Wisconsin, claimed second on a Ski-Doo, followed by Leo Patenaude of Hartland, Vermont. Of the 15 drivers that made it to the final, there were drivers from 7 U.S. states, one Canadian province and the country of Norway – and remember, this is just the Sport class.
Jay Lura of Hawley, Minnesota, won the Amateur class on his Cat, followed by the Polaris of Todd Smith and the Arctic Cat of Luke Hommerding. AJ Stoffle of Craig, Colorado, won the Junior 16-17 class on a Ski-Doo ahead of Ryan Trout and Aibin Lundquist. That same Lundquist had bumped up into the class, though – he won the Junior 14-15 class on his BK Motorsports Arctic Cat. Daniel Benham was second, with Trout third.
BELOW is the recap from the ISOC race circui
Canada’s Tim Tremblay wins the third annual AMSOIL Dominator!
The Scheuring Speed Sports racer tops teammate Robbie Malinoski and Christian Bros./Arctic Cat’s Cody Thomsen
Contact: Pat Schutte
PR Director, ISOC Racing
Minneapolis (Nov. 29, 2013) – The sport of snocross’ most thrilling one-off promotional race of the year – the third annual AMSOIL Dominator – kicked off the opening round of the 2013-’14 AMSOIL Championship Snocross, powered by Ram on Friday. And taking top honors in the Dominator with a ‘dominating’ performance was former AMSOIL Championship Snocross Pro Open champ Tim Tremblay (Scheuring Speed Sports/Rockstar/Ski-Doo).
Tremblay would use a powerful start in the new three-man final format, beating Scheuring Speed Sports teammate Malinoski out of the Air Force Fly Zone turn and leading both he and Cody Thomsen (Christian Brothers/Arctic Cat) through the checkers in the two-lap main event.
“It feels awesome to get the win. It was really, really close between me and Robbie, but I was all about the start and I was able to get the holeshot,” said Tremblay, proudly hoisting a check for a cool $10,000 while being presented with a custom trophy from AMSOIL’s Jeremy Meyer as fireworks filled the sky above Spirit Mountain.
The opening round of the AMSOIL Dominator would come to a quick end for two-time defending champion Ross Martin (Polaris) as he lost control of his sled, allowing Thomsen the easy pass to the quarterfinals. Others making it through round one to the quarterfinals were defending AMSOIL Championship Snocross Pro Open champion Tucker Hibbert (Monster Energy/Arctic Cat/Ram), Justin Broberg (Hentges Racing/Polaris), Petter Narsa (Jimmy John’s/Ski-Doo), Logan Christian (Christian Brothers/Arctic Cat), Kyle Pallin (LaVallee Racing/Polaris), along with Tremblay and Malinoski.
In the quarterfinals the consensus pre-race favorite, Hibbert, cased the landing on the uphill double leading into the Air Force Fly Zone and got pitched over the front of his sled. Unfazed, Hibbert still managed to complete the two-lap quarterfinal race – which was won by Broberg.
The highlight of the quarterfinals, and quite possibly the night, was the battle between Arctic Cat teammates Thomsen and Christian. The two traded the lead multiple times on the first lap before Thomsen threw his sled on the edge coming off the AMSOIL finish line jump and railed the inside of the turn – nearly right over the top of Christian’s skis. Thomsen would recover quickly (from nearly putting his sled on its side) as Christian was forced to check up. Thomsen parlayed the move into the lead over Christian coming out of the corner and ran ‘er home to the checkers.
Malinoski and Narsa would match each other bar-to-bar in the opening moments of their quarterfinal race, with Malinoski taking the lead from Narsa on the back side of the AMSOIL finish line. Then, after a quick start from holeshot artist Pallin, Tremblay took the lead in the last quarterfinal round on the uphill double and raced to the checkers.
Setting the stage for the finals, Malinoski and Broberg went at in hard in the opening semifinal round, banging into each other on two occasions before Malinoski was able to get out in front, running clean through the checkers to make the finals. Tremblay would see a good run from Thomsen through the Air Force Fly Zone – with the two nearly coming together – before Tremblay put the hammer down through the downhill section and brought his Ski-Doo home with a convincing win – and a ticket to the finals. Based on his fastest lap time of the two semifinal losers, Thomsen would get a spot in the finals, but had to line up behind Tremblay and Malinoski and was not a factor in the last race.
Action gets underway Saturday at Spirit Mountain with the opening round of the 2013-’14 AMSOIL Championship Snocross, powered by Ram. Action gets underway at 9 a.m. Tickets for the event are available at the gate, $27 for adults, $22 for youths and seniors and children five and under are free. For more information call 1-800-4-DULUTH or link to www.visitduluth.com
2013-’14 AMSOIL Championship Snocross, powered by Ram
1 – Nov. 29-Dec. 1 Duluth, Minnesota
2 – Dec. 6-7 Bessemer, Michigan
3 – Jan. 3-5 Shakopee, Minnesota
4 – Jan. 31-Feb.1 Deadwood, South Dakota
5 – Feb. 7-8 Salamanca, New York
6 – Feb. 21-22 Mt. Pleasant, Mich.
7 – March 7-8 Fargo, N.D.
8 – March 14-16 Lake Geneva, Wisconsin
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 16 half-hour programs of the ACS races.
Photos courtesy of Lissa Marsolek/ISOC
About ISOC Racing
The International Series of Champions (ISOC) is the premier snowmobile race sanctioning organization in North America and sanctions national AMSOIL Championship Snocross, in addition to affiliating with nine regional circuits. Visit www.isocracing.com for more information, fan and racer memberships, schedule details and more.