Arctic Cat's Tucker Hibbert swept the podium this weekend at ISOC's 2012 AMSOIL Championship Snocross the Blackjack National in Bessemer, Mich.
Pro Open Day 2
“It was definitely a lot of fun out there,” said Hibbert. “But it’s a challenging track and I’m thankful I got the holeshot. There was a lot of hard work back at the shop the last two weeks to get this sled ripping. Glad we got up here with two wins this weekend.”
According to ISOC officials the short Stud Boy Holeshot was narrowly grabbed by Darrin Mees (AMSOIL/Ski-Doo). But Hibbert, with the seventh gate pick, jetted past Mees and into the early race lead. As Hibbert checked out, setting the day’s fasted lap time (55.047) by an amazing two seconds, Mees would inherit 2nd based on his excellent start, with Martin blasting up to 3rd.
By lap six Hibbert’s lead was up to 7.5 seconds – and growing. Martin, who won at Blackjack last year, set up and passed Mees off turn one – pulling ahead of the Scheuring Speed Sports super team that included Mees, Tremblay (4th) and Duluth double winner Malinoski (5th).
About the only thing at this point in the race that could happened to Hibbert was a mistake – to which he made one in the second heat race when he went down in the middle of the “Dirty Dozen” downhill section on the face of Blackjack’s steep front ski run. But Hibbert wasn’t about to make that mistake a second time and gunned his Arctic Cat through seemingly impossible lines to take the 15-plus second win.
Ross Martin and Tremblay battled in the end for second.
“In the end I just ran out of time,” said Tremblay on his 3rd place finish.
Added Martin: “Feels great to be up here. The guys were up until 4 a.m. working on my sled, so thanks to my team for that.”
Pro Open Day One
Tucker Hibbert was on a mission at the AMSOIL Championship Snocross Blackjack National today, catching and passing Duluth (Minn.) double winner Robbie Malinoski (AMSOIL/Ski-Doo) three laps into the 15-lap contest and pushing his sled on the treacherous track to a 23-second lead at the checkers.
Hibbert passed Malinoski in the gnarliest section of the Blackjack track.
Joining the aforementioned racers on the Pro Open podium in 3rd place was Malinoski’s AMSOIL/Ski-Doo teammate Darrin Mees, who added: “I couldn’t believe how far out front Tucker was.”
With Malinoski pulling the Stud-Boy Holeshot, Polaris’ Ross Martin was up front early and well into podium position when he was struck by Mees’ sled and run off the track into a deep valley. Once Martin, who won the Blackjack National opener last year, got back on the track he was way out of the top five and would be a non-factor.
Pro Open #2 Final
1 68 Hibbert Tucker Arctic Cat Pelican Rapids MN
2 837 Martin Ross Polaris Burlington WI
3 11 Tremblay Tim Ski-Doo Ste Jeanne D'Arc Quebec
4 9 Mees Darrin Ski-Doo Stanchfield MN
Pro Open #1 Final
1 68 Hibbert Tucker Arctic Cat Pelican Rapids MN
2 4 Malinoski Robbie Ski-Doo Lino Lakes MN
3 9 Mees Darrin Ski-Doo Stanchfield MN
4 11 Tremblay Tim Ski-Doo Ste Jeanne D'Arc Quebec
Pro Lite Day 2
Three new faces up on the Blackjack National Pro Lite podium on Sunday as Jake Scott (Polaris) put on a masterful performance in topping No. 1 qualifier John Stenberg (Ski-Doo) and 3rd place Renaud Alexandre (Ski-Doo).
Pulling the holeshot in the Pro Lite main was Arctic Cat’s Matt Pichner. Scott would move quickly into second place, but bided his time in making a move on Pichner for the lead. Midway through the contest, on lap four (of eight), Scott shot to the outside of Pichner on turn one and took the lead heading up the big uphill section. As he stated previously, Scott rode a smooth, calculating Pro Lite main at Blackjack and brought ‘er home for the win.
Stenberg, contesting his final ACS event in the States this year before moving back to Sweden to race, soon moved into 2nd place past Pichner and set his site on Scott. Alexandre then moved past Pichner – on the same section where Scott took the lead – and grabbed the third and final podium spot. The veteran Pichner would hold on to a solid 4th place finish and Friday’s Pro Lite main runner-up, Polaris’ James Johnstad would round out the top five.
Pro Lite Day 1
Continuing his reign on the AMSOIL Championship Snocross’ Pro Lite class, Ski-Doo’s Canadian pilot David Joanis ripped to his second main event win in three rounds, topping Polaris racers James Johnstad (2nd) and Andrew Carlson (3rd) for the victory.
“It was really rough out there and everyone raced awesome,” said Joanis, rallying back in a big way from a black flag DNF at round two at Duluth. “I just let the race play out and tried not to make many mistakes.”
Up front early in the night’s first Pro class main event was Carlson. The Minnesotan’s Polaris pulled holeshots for him all day and he was able to parlay that explosive out-of-gate speed into an early race lead. But biding his time and pretty much stalking Carlson was the #115 of Joanis, who passed Carlson five laps into the 11-lap race and made it stick – extending his lead as the laps ticked off.
The best battle of the Pro Lite main would be for 2nd and 3rd when Johnstad reeled in Carlson and passed him late in the race. However, all was not lost in Carlson’s 3rd place effort as it was his first career podium in the Pro Lite class. “I had a great start on my Polaris, 2nd off the start and led part of the race,” said Carlson. “Congrats to Dave on the win.”
Rounding out the top five in the Pro Lite class on Friday at Blackjack were Sweden’s John Stenberg (Ski-Doo) in 4th and Canada’s Dylan Hall (Ski-Doo) in 5th.
Pro Lite #2 Final
1 42 Scott Jake Polaris Port Jefferson Statio NY
2 259 Stenberg John Ski-Doo Lofsdalen Sweden
3 793 Alexandre Renaud Ski-Doo Val-D'or Quebec
4 193 Pichner Matt Arctic Cat Owatonna MN
Pro Lite #1 Final
1 115 Joanis David Ski-Doo Cochrane Ontario
2 154 Johnstad James Polaris Beltrami MN,
3 151 Carlson Andrew Polaris Elk River MN
4 259 Stenberg John Ski-Doo Lofsdalen Sweden