DL Racing: Chasing The Soo 2.0

There's nothing like unwrapping some new buggies to put a smile on a guy's face.

For DL Motorsports and team owner Don LaBean, two must be a lucky number. Or at least he’s hoping it is. You see, 2012 will mark DL Racing’s second attempt at wining the Soo I-500, the team will run two sleds and they have two new riders. Yeah, you could say two is a pretty critical digit for Don and the team right about now.

With the 44th Soo I-500 a little over a month away, the DL Racing crew has already been hard at it for a few months getting everything situated for this year’s race. From taking delivery of new buggies, meeting with sponsors, attending Haydays, and making the plan to not enter 1 but 2 (2!) sleds in the SOO I-500 this year, there’s definitely been a lot going on.

“After a pretty successful launch into enduro racing last season, why not expand and put two sleds in every race” Says owner Don LaBean “We have the resources, man power, and a list of sponsors that totally support our team. The biggest hurdle for us this year was sorting through the resumes from racers who wanted to be a part of our team this season.”

All new and shiny, they almost look ready to ride.

DL Racing will have the same three riders back on board with the team this season, but with a few changes. With two sleds, Justin Tate will be switching over to the new No. 28 sled, while Shane Felegy and Joey Fjerstad will team up to ride the No. 29.

The team will also welcome Soo veteran and multi-time champion Jeff Leuenberger. Jeff brings a ton of knowledge and strategy to the team and a few new helping hands to pit row. Jeff will throw a leg over the No. 28 with Justin this season.

Also new to the team will be Grant Lynch. Grant spent a fair amount of time last season bouncing between cross-country racing as well as racing the Soo I-500. The DL Racing team is expecting big things from him this year.

The shop has been buzzing with activity getting sleds ready to race.

Not quite. The DL crew goes to work immediately, tearing down the sleds to the bare chassis to get them ready for the Soo.

“Sleds have been delivered and completely disassembled already, said LaBean, “The front ends have been tweaked and modified from what we learned last year and some subtle changes have been made to make adjustability a little easier.”

With the race looming just a month away it makes what little test time is left really critical.

“ The team is working really hard to make sure we are ready for the first test session in a few weeks and we plan on holding nothing back with either sled come the Soo,” said LaBean.

Stay tuned to sledracer.com for more updates from DL Racing and Chasing the Soo 2.0

Sponsors: DL Racing, Woody’s, Polaris, Tiede2 Motorsports, Wahl Bros., Camoplast, Fox Shocks, Fly Racing, HMK, Klotz, Straightline Performance, XLT Engineering, EVS, 139 Design and Weiss Equipment.

Cutting into the brand new tunnel? I can't watch! A Soo sled is a different animal and the list of mods needed to endure (and win) 500 laps on an ice oval is long. And yes, some require a steady hand with a cutting wheel.

Returning Team Members:
Don LaBean – Owner
Rick Tiede – Sponsorship Coordinator
Larry Tiede- Crew

Rich Felegy- Crew
Bill Foner- Crew

Dana Hribek- Crew
Shawn Rosenbrock- Crew

Colby Campbell- Crew
Brad Weaver- Crew

Mike Floyd- Crew

Red Bull: New Year. No Limits. Countdown Has Begun

Photo: Chris Tedesco/Red Bull

Santa Monica, Calif. (December 26, 2011) – Testing is complete. The ramp installation has begun at the event site. The motorcycle and snowmobile are tuned and ready. Robbie Maddison and Levi LaVallee got to spend time at home with their families and enjoy the holidays. Now it’s back to business and the task at hand – breaking the world record for motorcycle and snowmobile distance jumping at Red Bull: New Year. No Limits. The event will air live from San Diego, Calif., on Saturday, December 31 at approximately 11 p.m. ET / 8 p.m. PT on ESPN, ESPNHD and ESPN3, immediately following the Chick-Fil-A Bowl.

LaVallee, a 29-year-old native of Longville, Minn., will jump his snowmobile alongside Maddison, a 30-year-old Aussie now living in Temecula, Calif., who will pilot his motorcycle as both athletes simultaneously jump over 300 feet of water from the North park to the South park at the Embarcadero Marina Park in the downtown area of San Diego Bay. LaVallee will attempt to break his own record of 361 feet and Maddison will be aiming to eclipse the current record of 391 feet.

On-site viewing will be free to spectators at both parks. Gates will open to the public at 6 p.m. PT.

“The big one is right around the corner now,” said Maddison. “My bike has been totally dismantled and reassembled, Joe Gibbs Racing rebuilt my engine and all the final parts and adjustments are about done. I’m excited for Red Bull: New Year. No Limits. A new world record is the perfect way to start a new year!”

“I’m thrilled because we finished testing and everything went really well and ended on a positive note,” said LaVallee. “So I’m ready, a bit nervous, but extremely excited for Saturday night.”

WORLD-CLASS ATHLETES
Maddison boasts an accomplished freestyle motocross career, with an X Games silver medal in 2010 in Moto X Best Trick and two wins on the Red Bull X-Fighters World Tour (Calgary 2009 and Madrid 2010). He also has a successful history of record-breaking achievements and globally captivating feats. Among them are backflipping across the Tower Bridge in London and clearing the Corinth Canal in Greece, to go with his previous New Year’s Eve successes, beginning in 2007 when he jumped his motorcycle 322 feet over a football field in Las Vegas and followed it up in 2008 by jumping onto – and off – the 96-foot-tall Arc De Triomphe at Paris Las Vegas.

LaVallee is a seven-time Winter X Games medalist (four golds) and champion snocross racer. He has fully recovered from a crash while training for the same event last year, just hours after shattering the world record with a leap of 361 feet on a snowmobile. He is widely known for becoming the first person to double backflip a snowmobile in 2009 at Winter X Games. Despite the temperate climate in San Diego, have no fear; LaVallee will use artificial turf on his run-up path, which will provide the necessary grip for his snowmobile’s track to ensure maximum speed as he hits the take-off ramp.

Red Bull’s annual New Year’s Eve celebration highlights extraordinary athletes pushing their physical, mental and technical limits to break boundaries and records. Leading up to their big night, LaVallee and Maddison have worked with Red Bull’s athlete performance experts, physicists and engineers, in addition to their core teams, in an effort to get the most out of their bodies and machines. Valuable information has been attained with the goal of integration into future technological development.

After last year’s unfortunate cancellation, this will be the fourth Red Bull: New Year. No Limits. event in the last five years. In 2008, the year Maddison went up and off the Arc de Triomphe, Rhys Millen backflipped an off-road truck. In 2009, Travis Pastrana jumped his rally car a staggering 269 feet over water, landing on a barge in Long Beach’s Rainbow Harbor.

Mystik Lubricants, title sponsor of LaVallee’s race team, is excited to partner with Red Bull in showing support for Levi during his quest to break his distance jump record in San Diego on New Year’s Eve.

For Red Bull: New Year. No Limits. event details and videos, visit www.redbullnewyearnolimits.com.

Daredevil Snowmobiler Roars Into National Spotlight

Photo: Chris Tedesco/Red Bull

The central Minnesota town of Longville has only about 150 residents, but it’s famous for at least two things.

It’s the turtle racing capital of the world.

And it’s the home of Levi LaVallee.

LaVallee is a championship pro snowmobile racer, but that’s not why he was on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” last week or why he’s going to be on “Good Morning America” this week.

Read the rest here.

2012 SHOF Inductees

Joey Hallstrom

Joey Hallstrom
DATE OF INDUCTION: February 18, 2012
CAREER SPAN: 1979 – Present
BRANDS REPRESENTED: Arctic Cat
AGE AT INDUCTION: 51

Combining a deep passion for the sport with the competitive heart of a racer, Joey Hallstrom built the Team Arctic Racing Program into a winning powerhouse; helped launch the iconic Jeep 500 cross-country race; and strongly influenced several pioneering Arctic Cat snowmobiles. The many accomplishments during his 25-plus-year career at Arctic Cat reflect his strong vision, persuasiveness and force of will.

An independent Arctic Cat terrain racer beginning in the late 1978, Hallstrom’s career with a reborn-Arctic Cat began first as a racer then as Race Manager in 1987. Recognizing the talent of racers and technicians and leveraging both in equal measure, Hallstrom built Team Arctic into a dominant force whose success defined the 1990s. Recognizing Arctic Cat’s need for race-focused snowmobiles, Hallstrom strongly influenced the creation of the iconic 1990 EXT Special and the legendary ZRs. He was intent to grow the sport of racing, spearheading the “boy racer” Jag Special in 1990 and launching a unique program that offered beginners the opportunity to freely compete on such machines in snocross. He dedicated similar support to Formula III and Mod class oval racing by commissioning small production runs of such chassis by T/S Racing beginning in 1989.

Hallstrom’s vision to grow the sport included helping launch the Jeep 500 cross-country snowmobile race in 1987 and initiated the first NHRA snowmobile asphalt drag exhibition in 1994. He played key roles at magazine photo shoots and helped produce two books on Arctic Cat’s history. Hallstrom transitioned to Arctic Cat Product Manager in 1999, where he continues to influence the success of Arctic Cat snowmobiles now and in the future.

Toni Haikonen

Toni Haikonen
DATE OF INDUCTION: February 18, 2012
CAREER SPAN: 1983 – 2002
BRANDS REPRESENTED: Ski-Doo, Polaris, Lynx, Arctic Cat
AGE AT INDUCTION: 41

An international racing legend whose raw talent intersected with the rebirth of North American snocross, Toni Haikonen catapult himself and the sport into new heights beginning in the mid-1990s. Haikonen’s fluid style and blazing speed would produce historic wins at nearly every venue, while his easy-to-like personality made him fan favorite throughout the world.

With a snocross career that began at age 12, Haikonen scored a Finnish National Championship, Scandinavian Championship and hundreds of victories prior to his introduction to North American snocross in 1993. His success in the U.S. earned him a sponsored ride with Ski-Doo/FAST beginning in 1994. In a history-making night at Canterbury Park in Shakopee, Minn., in 1995, Haikonen began double-jumping the course’s massive jumps to score a monumental victory that simultaneously launched the high-flying era of snocross.

In 1998 Haikonen notched another historic first by winning the inaugural ESPN Winter X Games snocross in Crested Butte, Colo., setting the stage for another period of snocross popularity. During his eight years of racing in North America, Haikonen scored dozens of National snocross wins, European Snocross Championships, MRP Championships and was a top finisher in select cross-country events. His last victory came in 2000, and he retired from the sport after the 2002 season.

Marcel Fontaine

Marcel Fontaine
DATE OF INDUCTION: February 18, 2012
CAREER SPAN: 1970 – Present
BRANDS REPRESENTED: All
AGE AT INDUCTION: 63

From racer to mechanic to race director, Marcel Fontaine lived, loved and dedicated himself to the sport of snowmobile racing for more than four decades. Most often cited for his undying passion for oval racing in Quebec, Fontaine masterfully guided Eastern Canadian oval racing for 30 years. His influence extended to nearly all forms of competition as he added snocross, drags, hillcross and watercross to his palette of offerings, while simultaneously building both relationships and coalitions that have preserved and expanded snowmobile racing during good times and bad.

An oval racer from 1970-1976, Fontaine would transition to mechanic, then to race director for CCMQ beginning in 1983. It was as a race director and sanctioning body that Fontaine would fulfill his greatest achievements and lasting contributions. He founded SCM and Eastern Pro Tour, worked with ISR and Quebec race rules committees and raised the professionalism of snowmobile competition throughout North America. In particular, Fontaine’s efforts to improve safety and fairness made him a standout race director who was recognized by racers, peers and industry as one of the great leaders of the sport.

Fontaine’s honest embrace of the snowmobile racing world as his “family” fostered a deeply loyal base of competitors and officials, and his unyielding professionalism leaves a legacy of success that will be felt for future generations of competitors.

Larry Bosacki

Larry Bosacki
DATE OF INDUCTION: February xx, 2012
CAREER SPAN: 1967 – Present
BRANDS REPRESENTED: All
AGE AT INDUCTION: 79

By embracing and nurturing the sport of snowmobiling during its formative years, civic-minded people like Larry Bosacki transformed winter recreation and the Wisconsin north woods. The third-generation owner of Bosacki’s Boathouse eatery on Minocqua Lake in the town of Minocqua, Larry understood that the fledgling sport was about people, experiences and hospitality. For more than three decades Larry gave from his business and himself to foster those key elements.

By partnering with snowmobile clubs, grooming local spur trails at his own expense and promoting snowmobile tourism at every turn, Bosacki helped grow the winter economies of an entire region. To expand his local business and the opportunity to ride, he operated a Ski-Daddler dealership from his boathouse in the late 1960s. Bosacki also leveraged his many statewide political relationships to help forge important trail accesses and routes that would come to define the north woods snowmobile experience. Two breakthrough efforts included saving railroad trestle bridges for snowmobile trail use, as well as spearheading the first dedicated snowmobile trail crossing of an active railroad track.

His love of snowmobile competition took many forms, including supporting and working on several race teams, and helping launch (and fund) the Snowmobile Hall of Fame. Bosacki’s accomplishments over three decades are testament to the power of people who act locally.

Ice Oval Testing In December

Any place to test or ride these days is a pretty hot commodity. The past two weekends there have been a ton of guys ripping around the race track in Strathcona, Minn. The track is maintained by a guy named Armand Westlund and is right in the middle of town. So much so, the guys had to wait til church was out on Sunday before they could fire up the sleds. We hung out with Joey Fjerstad and Shane Felegy as they put down some laps. Follow along as we run through some of the photos from the weekend.

Testing starts early. Here Joey Fjerstad waits for his chance to ride while Shane Felegy's sled is prepped by Bill Foner.

Joey fires up his sled. He runs a Felegy engine and a Wahl chassis.

Gotta warm it up a little before you hit the track.

Crew member Andy Fjerstad comes out to help get the sled rolling.

And its off to spin some laps. The Wahl team was there along with a handful of various other racers. There were enough riders there so the track started to get some braking bumps - real testing!

Felegy's new champ, built by Rick Bates, the guy wearing the Polaris jacket. Rick's been out in California helping Levi LaVallee test for his distance jump set for New Year's Eve. The guy in the Woody's hoodie is Rich Felegy.

While Shane raced the Soo last year, he took the year off from Champ racing because this sled wasn't finished in time. It's a huge process to shake down a totally new chassis, but these are three highly-experienced minds.

Shane was comfortable on the sled right out of the box. It was a very positive test session and the team set to work trying to make it go faster. This is a one-off sled, but Bates has jigs for all the parts and is working on spares so the team is ready for its debut in Amherst, WI.

Jordan Wahl waits for his turn to ride. He's the newest member of the Wahl Racing team. He can rip too - he set top speed at Beausejour laying down a 104.9mph number on the radar.

Hey, there's Brandon Johnson, Jordan Wahl's teammate. He's messing with the clutch on his No.22 Champ.

Here's a look at the track in Strathcona. Armand maintains this track out of love for the sport. They have some vintage races every year here too. That's Rick Bates, Rich Felegy and Bill Foner (with the camera) watching Shane spin test laps.

While it might sound fun and glamorous, testing is really just plain work. Most of the time is spent swapping parts and taking the same things apart over and over.

There are lots of trips to and from the trailer.

And lots of working on the sled with numb fingers.

For the rider there's usually a lot of hurry up and wait. Oh, see that ADHUE logo? They stepped up support for the JF16 program this year so some thanks has to go out to them.

It was certainly busy on the pond! Oh, and see that vintage racer? Those are no joke. That's pretty much the stepping stone to the Champ class these days. It's the only thing close in the power-to-weight department.

Bill Foner messes with Felegy's sled. Felegy is supported by Aggressive Hydraulics, DL Racing, Woody's, HMK and Apparelfreaks.com.

Another look at the sled. It's certainly different!

I might be biased but that hood looks pretty darn good...

A look under the hood of Joey's sled as Andy Fjerstad makes some changes. Those Champs are amazing machines.

And the long drive home. Careful with those peppers, Joey!

Levi LaVallee Set To Appear On Jay Leno Show

Photo: Chris Tedesco/Red Bull

LONGVILLE, Minn., December 13, 2011 – Snowmobile star Levi LaVallee will be a guest on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno this Wednesday, December 14 at 11:35 p.m. ET/PT (10:35 p.m. CT) on NBC.

Levi will follow comedian Louis C.K., starting off on the couch and an interview with Jay Leno, and then proceeding to become the first person to jump a snowmobile in the Tonight Show’s illustrious history.

Levi will be jumping his snowmobile alongside fellow Red Bull athlete Robbie Maddison and his motorcycle at Red Bull: New Year. No Limits. on Saturday, December 31 in San Diego, live on ESPN. Both athletes are aiming to break the distance jumping world records in their respective disciplines. Levi holds the existing snowmobile record at 361’ and Robbie is looking to take back his record by exceeding 391’.

Photo: Chris Tedesco/Red Bull

For more information, visit www.redbullnewyearnolimits.com

Here is the latest pre-event video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VIEOjR5hGjI&list=UUblfuW_4rakIf2h6aqANefA&feature=plcp

Christian Brothers Racing Dealt Three Podiums At Blackjack Nats

Garth Kaufman

Fertile, Minn. (December 12, 2011) – The Christian Brothers Racing team traveled to Bessemer, Michigan, for Round 2 of 8 on the ISOC National snocross series. The two-day Blackjack National was held at Blackjack Resort, a ski hill just outside the town of Bessemer, and featured a challenging, V-shaped track cut into the side of resort’s ski hill. Coming into the event the Christian Brothers team was looking to build on momentum it had gained at the opening race two weeks earlier and during testing with its new Arctic Cat Sno Pro 600 snowmobiles leading up to the Blackjack National.

During the week leading up to the race the team suffered a setback when Pro rider Logan Christian made the decision to sit out the event to let his knee heal up. Christian underwent off-season surgery to repair a knee injury sustained while racing motocross. That left Garth Kaufman and Cory Davis to carry the flag for the team in the Pro Open class while D.J. Ekre joined the team to race Pro AM Vet 30+ and Evan Christian rode in Champ 120 and Transition 8-12 Limited.

Kaufman and Davis struggled in Saturday’s Pro Open racing and both riders landed in the LCQ. Only Kaufman transferred and he posted a 12th place finish in the final. On Sunday Davis and Kaufman both landed in the LCQ again. Kaufman won it and Davis finished 5th which got them both a back row starting position for the final. Pro Open riders put in 14-laps on the brutally rough track which tested the fitness of the riders and setup of their Arctic Cat machines. When the checkered flag flew Kaufman was up with the frontrunners in 7th place and Davis crossed the line further back in 12th place.

“We were hoping for better results this weekend but the good thing is we’re making progress,” said Kaufman. “We were able to do a bunch of testing and got a lot figured out on the new Arctic Cat Sno Pro 600 race sleds. It’s still early in the season and we have some ground to make up but with 12 races to go we have a lot of time to do it.”

D.J. Ekre

Long-time CBR rider D.J. Ekre raced the Pro AM Plus 30 class at the Blackjack National for team. Ekre was part of the first-ever National level snocross squad for Christian Brothers Racing during the 2002-2003 season Normally a cross-country specialist, Ekre hasn’t raced snocross since 2007 but proved his versatility as a terrain racer when he finished third in the dog-eat-dog Plus 30 race.

“It’s been a while since I raced snocross,” said Ekre. “But it’s like riding a bike – you never forget how to do it. It’s been a while since I’ve stood on the podium at a snocross National, that’s for sure!”

Evan Christian backed up Ekre and stood on the podium in both the Transition Limited 8-12 class, where he finished second, and in the super-competitive Champ 120 class where he took home third place.

“It was a positive weekend for the team,” said team co-owner Dwight Christian. “The team is definitely headed in the right direction. The new Arctic Cat race sled is going to be very good and it won’t take much before it’s there. Garth and Cory looked very good and it was fun to watch D.J. battle again. As long as we keep working hard the results will come.”

Next up for Christian Brothers Racing is the USCC Grafton 100 in Grafton, North Dakota, December 31. For more information visit www.isocracing.com. For more information on Christian Brothers Racing visit www.christianbrosracing.com.

Ross Martins Wins Pro Open At Blackjack National

Ross Martin WINS the Pro Open on Saturday… AGAIN!. Martin hit the throttle and blew by heavy traffic taking a substantial lead early. He was the only racer to triple out of the corner at the base of the big uphill giving him a 6 second lead on the competition. Martin was virtually untouched for most of the14 lap final although there was a last minute challenge… but to no avail. Ross blazed through the checkered for this season’s second Pro Open WIN!

Sunday – Martin finished 2nd in the Pro Open Final .

Martin’s excellent performance throughout the weekend ups his year-end points lead to 13.

“2 Pro Open Wins, 2 Pro Open 2nd’s plus winning the Amsoil Dominator we’re feeling really good” said Scott Judnick, Team Owner. “The entire team had a good showing this weekend. Ross and Mike Bauer (1st year Pro) qualified for front row starts in both Saturday & Sunday’s Pro Finals. James Johnstad (1st year Pro Lite) was running great and looked like the podium again was in his grasp but a bit of bad luck took him out near the end. All in all we are very pleased and we will continue to build on our success.”

Don’t forget this Sunday you can watch Duluth action on Versus 5pm EDT

Catch the action from Bessmer, MI on Versus Sunday, Jan 8th, 5pm EDT.

Our next race is at Canterbury Park Racetrack & Card Casino, Shakopee MN, January 6-7. See you there!

Thank You To Our Outstanding Sponsors.

DuPont, Jack Links Beef Jerky, Amsoil, Polaris, Motorfist, SSI, Fly, Fox, EVS, Factory Pipe, Stud Boy, Renton Coil Springs, Wayne Davis Photography, Jeff Foster Trucking, C&A Pro, HMK, C-Tech,

Link Ford, Camoplast, Champion, Mitsuboshi, Sportech

Carlson Motorsports Experiences Mixed Bag Payout at Blackjack Nats

Johan Lidman

Punishing – in a word it sums up the massive ski-hill snocross track that confronted Carlson Motorsports racers Johan Lidman and Andrew Carlson for rounds 3 and 4 of the AMSOIL Championship Snocross Series (ACSS) in Bessemer, Michigan. It was a weekend filled with tough luck, unfortunate offs, and in the end a hint of redemption as Lidman finished 6th in Sunday’s Pro-Open main event.

Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is often referred to big snow country for its massive lake effect snowfalls that accumulates there every winter. While the snowfall has yet to inundate the region this season, the snowmaking equipment on the slopes of the Blackjack Ski Resort near Bessemer more than made up for the void. The deep snow was then transformed into a challenging snocross track that featured a pair of downhill bombs that proved to be an obstacle for virtually every rider on the tour.

For the Polaris/Arctiva riders of Carlson Motorsports, the weekend was one of battles won and lost starting with Lidman missing his traditional pre-race meal of cabbage roles. Call it hunger pains or bad luck, but the usual “speedy” Swede was missing a gear in qualifying resulting in a poor start and a nasty crash that ultimately forced the hungry Lidman to watch Saturday’s final from the sidelines.

Seeing the struggles of his teammate, Carlson slammed a double shot of Muscle Milk after practice, donned his Thor helmet and managed to salvage a back row start via the Last Chance Qualifier. From there Andrew battled traffic and rode a smart race, capping the day with a top ten finish in ninth.

Vowing to amend his poor Saturday performance, Lidman charged through qualifying enroot to a front row start and ultimately a 6th place finish, besting more than half the field of international heavy hitters.

“That was a perfect example of Johan using his experience and sticking with it,” said team owner Chris Carlson. “He could have packed it in after a very disappointing first day. Instead he charged the track and it speaks volumes about his mental make-up and the determination of this team.”

But where Johan faired better on Sunday, the tough luck returned and sunk its teeth into Andrew Carlson in the Pro-Lite competition. A pair of crashes in qualifying and just missing the transfer spot in the last chance race made for an early exit.

“It certainly wasn’t what we were hoping for,” said Chris Carslon at days end. “The good news is we escaped the weekend unscathed, collected some points, and have three weeks of testing, training, and seat-time in front of us before Canterbury. We’ll be ready.”

Hibbert Notches Near Perfect Weekend in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula

Dec. 12, 2011 – Monster Energy’s Tucker Hibbert put on an impressive show at the second stop of the ISOC National Snocross Series in Bessemer, Mich. putting to rest the questions surrounding Arctic Cat’s all-new Sno Pro 600. Hibbert won all of his qualifying rounds and ran away with the Pro Open final Sunday afternoon by taking the holeshot, riding flawlessly and crossing the finish line over 15 seconds ahead of second place.

The Blackjack National featured a massive track built on the side of a ski hill stacked with deep rollers, towering berms and challenging rhythm sections. Hibbert, the defending Pro Open Champion, consistently turned the fastest laps of the weekend proving once again he’s the man to beat.

After a rough season opener two weeks ago in Duluth, Minn., Hibbert and Team Monster Energy/Arctic Cat went to work to improve his race package. He proved his hard work paid off by notching a near perfect race weekend. While leading the Pro Open final Saturday afternoon and with two laps to go, a mechanical issue forced him to back off and coast in to finish fourth, eluding him of a weekend sweep. He bounced back Sunday by winning both qualifiers and the final with a dominating race from start to finish.

With a three-week break on the schedule, Hibbert has no plan to slow down but to continue to test and tune. Racing action resumes Jan. 6-7 at the historic Canterbury Park Racetrack outside of Minneapolis, Minn. Until then, catch the NBC Sports (VERSUS) broadcast of the Duluth National Sunday, Dec. 18 at 5 p.m. ET.

Tucker Hibbert – Blackjack National Results
Pro Open 1 – Saturday
Round 1: 1st
Round 2: 1st
Final: 4th
Pro Open 2 – Sunday
Round 1: 1st
Round 2: 1st
Final: 1st

Tucker Hibbert – #68 Monster Energy/Arctic Cat
“This was a big weekend for me. We (the team) made huge improvements on our overall race package and it showed. The track was long and rough. ISOC did an awesome job building a challenging track. I felt night and day better than I did at Duluth. With a weekend off, I was able to put more time on new ProCross chassis to get more comfortable. I was able to charge hard and ride to my potential. I felt strong, just like I have in the past. Going into this break, I have a lot of confidence and I’m excited to see how much more we can improve. After our performance this weekend, I know we’re up-to-speed and fully capable of winning races.”

Noteworthy: Hibbert’s 2012 Official Merchandise Line is now online with shipping available to seven countries – tuckerstore.mybigcommerce.com