The board of directors of the Snowmobile Hall of Fame in St. Germain, Wis., announced the 2013 Inductees. The inductees are Blair Morgan of Prince Albert, Sask., John Zeglin of Delano, Minn., Norman Ball III of Menominee Fall, Wis. and Bob Bracey of Almont, Mich. Induction ceremonies will take place on Saturday, February 16, 2013 at the Whitetail Inn in St. Germain as the evening event of the day long RIDE WITH THE CHAMPS (RWTC) sponsored by Modine HotDawg Garage Heaters. This will be the 30th annual RIDE WITH THE CHAMPS and the 26th annual induction ceremonies.
Blair Morgan popularized the stand-up style of racing that revolutionized both snocross and the entire sport. Morgan won 89 National events, 13 points championships, five ESPN X Games gold medals and multiple Racer of the Year honors from the sport’s media. Morgan is also credited with launching the sport of snowmobile freestyle thanks to his finish line displays early in his career. He was among the first snowmobile racers to create their own professional team and the only person to have a signature-edition snowmobile from two different manufacturers. A career-ending injury from a motorcycle accident forced his retirement from competition in 2008.
Bob Bracey produced the iconic Raider snowmobiles beginning in 1971. Having produced more than 20,000 Raiders from 1971-1975, Bracey switched his focus to oval and enduro competition by producing the lightweight Manta twin-track race snowmobiles in 1974 and 1975. With occasional victories in Sno Pro oval and in Michigan enduro competition, the Manta race sleds proved the handling and cornering success espoused by Bracey. In 1982 he reprised the Manta name for a series of consumer-based trail machines that enjoyed limited sales success for several years. His passion was reborn again in the late 1990s with the Trail Roamer. Bracey died in 2003 at age 66.
John Zeglin led the growth of the world’s largest vintage snowmobile event, the Waconia Ride-In. Zeglin launched the Midwest Ride-In in 1993, attracting roughly 150 entries. Considered a successful event at the time, Zeglin would guide the vintage event to attract upwards of 7,000 participants less than two decades later. He shaped the event as a volunteer-only, not-for-profit entity whose proceeds are given to multiple snowmobile organizations. The event currently enlists the volunteer support of more than 150 people, several snowmobile clubs, a trail association and multiple public and civic organizations. Zeglin has also served as the president of his local club; organized radar run events; created promotional vintage displays at various events; and organized the Ski-Doo Vintage Reunion.
Norman Ball III raced snowmobile grass drag starting in 1981 until his last race in 1999. Ball raced a seemingly-outdated Mercury Sno-Twister in multiple modified classes and was assisted by a small crew. As owner, designer, head mechanic and driver, Ball’s all-in approach to competition earned him the respect and admiration of fellow competitors. Ball garnered 16 Driver of the year honors in SWDRA, plus he captured the Minnesota cup on three occasions, notched nine Minnesota Fast Time titles and was victorious in the Michigan Cup. He was awarded the Best Engineered Sled award at Sno Baron’s Hay Days in 1998. Although the fiery competitor from Menomonee Falls, Wis., ended his career in 1999 following an injury sustained while racing.
The RWTC begins with 7:00 am registration and will feature five rider groups. Two will be vintage riders and two late model. Another will be those heading for Eagle River for a lap around the Derby Track. One of the vintage groups will be the now infamous VINTAGE CHALLENGE riders making the 150 miles trip to Fish Tales Restaurant on Lake Gogebic in the UP of Michigan. The $140 RWTC fee includes three meals, a souvenir bib and a cap. Dinner tickets for the Induction Banquet alone are available on a first come basis for $40.00. The autograph session begins at 6 pm at the Whitetail Inn.Visit the SHOF web site at www.snowmobilehalloffame.com for information and details of the Derby Exposition and the RWTC event. For additional information, contact Loren Anderson at 715-542-4488 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org