USXC starts it cross-country snowmobile race season at Pine Lake near Gonvick, Minn. on December 14. The course on Pine Lake will have a lemans format with a dizzying mix of right-and left-hand turns. The race will also feature the long straightaways that made Pine Lake famous as the yardstick for cross-country speeds. The course will be 10-miles long and Pros will race 10-laps in both the Pro Open final on Saturday and the Pro 600 final on Sunday. There will be qualifying for all classes on both days and all racing will be heads-up, but transponders will also be used to keep track of lap times. “We are looking forward to getting this first event under our belts,” said USXC owner Brian Nelson. “It’s been a lot of work leading up to this first race and I think there are a lot of people watching us to see how we do. We are going to try our best to give them what they want and what they expect.” Since 1987 snowmobile racers have been flocking to Pine Lake near Gonvick, Minn., to participate in the race which has traditionally served as the first test of new machines. In the mid-1990s it became the place where the factories got their first chance to show just how fast their new race sleds were. The shallow lake freezes early and lends itself to thick ice when other lakes are still relatively unsafe, and it’s long straights and sweeping corners became the measuring stick for MPH in the cross-country race sled wars of the era. After every USXC event this season fans will be able to watch professionally-produced half-hour show about the race on xsan.tv. While the Pine Lake race is not scheduled to have live streaming, the rest of the USXC schedule will be streamed live. Visit xsan.tv or usxcracing.com for more info. Also, USXC will update its Facebook page with results as often as possible.