At Snow Week and later Snow Goer magazine, we’ve put together fictional odds for the World Championship race for many years. Here’s the text from this year’s Tip Sheet, based on results from Saturday’s qualifying. It tells you who made the final, our odds and a comment on each racer. Special notes: Two more racers will qualify for the final in a Sunday LCQ race: challengers include Gary Moyle, who burned down in a semi final; Nick VanStrydonk, who’s sled quit while leading; and Jacques Villeneuve, who came back from a first-lap tangle to run some of the fastest laps of the weekend, but fell short of qualifying by a couple of sled lengths. Enjoy:
Racers have been dreaming of this day all year. They’ve been honing their skills, tweaking their sleds and training for their moment to shine in this, the 47th running of the Eagle River World Championship Snowmobile Derby. There are so many potential great stories here today, but only one racer will leave this event as the World Champion.
- Will PJ Wanderscheid race away from the pole and become the first four-time World Champion at this historic event?
- Will Dustin Wahl become the third member of the Wahl family to have his name engraved on Snow Goer Cup – the traveling trophy that honors the only true world champions in snowmobile racing?
- Will two-time defending champion Bryan Bewcyk find some speed today and become the first person to win three in a row?
- Will Dan Fenhaus become the second Fenhaus to hoist the Cup, or will lightning fast Matt Schulz win with the help of ’93 champ Al Fenhaus?
- Will two-time champ Mike Houle return to victory lane, this time as the sled builder behind Malcolm Chartier or Joel Diamond’s efforts?
- Will three-time champ Jacques Villeneuve and/or two-timer Gary Moyle qualify through today’s Last Chance Qualifier and challenge from the back row.
Only time will tell on each of these, but for now, here are Snow Goer Magazine’s fictional odds for the racers who have already qualified for the World Championship race, along with odds for two other big finals on the flip side of this sheet: Pure Stock 600 and Pro Open snocross. Side bets among fans are encouraged!
- PJ Wanderscheid, #28 Sauk Centre, MN Cat Three-time Champ was unstoppable Friday night, great in long races. 2-1
- Matt Schulz, #38 Wausau, WI Pol Fastest in time trials and ran away with his heat; a rising star. 3-1
- Dustin Wahl, #74 Greenbush, MN Pol Freaky-fast racer who’s big and strong, and has sled to win. 4-1
- Malcolm Chartier, #33 Marine City, MI Doo Second run at world title, has Mike Houle in his corner. 4-1
- Bryan Bewcyk, #39 Winnipeg, MB Doo Champ in ’08 and ’09 was so-so Saturday, but knows how to win. 5-1
- Brandon Johnson, #22 Greenbush, MN Pol Young Wahl Bros. racer has the right sled, could surprise. 7-1
- Dan Fenhaus, #10 Wausau, WI Cat Last year’s runner up looks to improve one spot. Won semi-final. 7-1
- Joel Diamond, #02 Lapeer, MI Pol Enduro crossover now dedicated to sprint racing, shouldn’t tire. 8-1
- Spencer Graf, #97 Kewaskum, WI Doo At 16, he’s the youngest racer, but he won last weekend at Plymouth. 10-1
- Jason Lavallee, #66 Drummondville, Que. Doo Samson Racing driver earned last spot in final. A longshot. 11-1