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Tech Report

- BUSY day in tech. 36 entries were changed to different classes upon being examined in tech. It’s important to note that not all of these changes were due to tech infractions. Many were due to racers being assisted in entering the best class for their sled. Still busy though, there were a lot of items found in tech.

- One rider was underweight for the entered class and was required to add weight before the race.

- One sled failed fuel testing, miserably. Luckily the infraction was found before the start of the race and the fuel was replaced and the sled/rider was able to compete.

Race Report

- After visiting Driftpile for the first time last year, one had a feeling that the second annual event was going to be a winner, and it didn’t disappoint! An awesome turnout of both local area racers and those who came from far away enjoyed a fantastic racing surface, some great food and hospitality, and a large crowd of race fans taking in the action. Hats off to the hosts including Starr Saskamoose who brought the event together.

- Great job again by Don Milot who as announced his 5th SSRA race now this season keeping the racers and fans up to speed on the “High Octane, High Horsepower, SSRA Drag Racing Action!”

- And speaking of 5 races, the Driftpile race takes us just past the halfway point of the season.

- And speaking of seasons, it may have well been Christmas, there were far too many red lights to count.

- Did I mention some racers came from far away? The crew from Hay River made the most of their trip attending both Grande Prairie and Driftpile races. We have to mention one of them in particular, 77 year old Ray Shields was rockin’ it and took home the win in Open Mod 1000!

- Last weekend’s host Dwayne Heinz from Wetaskiwin was on fire and raced his way to 5 wins on his own sleds and another as a hired gun. Nice.

- An indicator of the great local racer turnout, there 15 entries in Amateur Stock 800. That’s a bunch of racing and Jim Simmonds prevailed to take the 1st place finish.

- Which brings me to Mike Simmonds from High Prairie. His 800cc Cat seems to get faster at every race and he took the win this race in Improved 800 against some fast competition. Keep it rolling Mike!

- Thanks Driftpile, see you again next year!

Tech Summary

- 7 entries were moved to different classes as a result of items found and advice given to riders during tech inspection

- Zero sled/rider combos were required to add weight to make minimums

- Overall a very smooth day in tech

Race Summary

- Huge thanks to the Smokin Joes Racing team of Tiffany Dinwoodie and Tyler Matt for their assistance making this race happen! Given the conditions, the snow cat was essential and the crowd enjoyed the announcer. Thanks again!

- Speaking of conditions, the race day weather was fantastic, but mother nature still found a way to throw a monkey wrench into things. She opened an air hole in the ice about 30 feet in front of the starting line flooding the whole starting area of the track with water and making a slushy mess the night before the race. There was a delay in getting things started as a result, but a switch to racing from the original shut down end was the solution that allowed the race to happen.

- And speaking again of the Smokin Joes Team, they also got the hard luck award for mechanical failures with two of their beautiful pro sleds which took them out of the competition.

- There was a great turnout of local and new racers to a SSRA event, many of which placed well in the final heats. In particular, new to the SSRA racer Freddy Hebb has won Amateur Stock 800 in back to back weekends now in Wetaskiwin and Grande Prairie. Great job Freddy!

- Here a turbo, there a turbo, everywhere a turbo! Holy forced induction Batman, we saw a lot of turbo powered sleds this race. Being close to the mountains, these riders like their boost, and they brought it with them to the track. There were no less than 5 Yamaha Sidewinders, some custom turbo 4 stroke sleds, and some turbo two smokes racing as well! Given that more of the new sled manufacturers are employing the technology, are we starting to see a trend? Only time will tell.

- During the presentations after the race we commonly throw a friendly tease toward someone whose red light start turned out to be memorable. This race’s target, Mike Fowlow. Hard not to pick on that early jump in Stock 600 Mike. Good job the rest of the day though with 3 other first place finishes. Nice recovery!

- Grande Prairie also saw the return of SSRA member Patrick Penton to the circuit with his Yamaha Sidewinder race sled. Even tough it was his first race of the year, he made a statement taking his first wins in Open Improved and Mountain Improved.

- Nice to see the crew from Hay River in the Northwest Territories making it down for the race. And these guys weren’t slow, in fact Andrey Dziewe was fastest man on the lake this day taking the win in Outlaw! Congrats!

- Racers and spectators were treated to an impromptu air show when a helicopter made a couple of LOW altitude laps of the race site. It was kind of cool …

Tech Summary

- 21 entries were changed to different classes from what they were entered in after coming through tech inspection

- 1 sled was checked for minimal ground clearance and was asked to adjust their suspension to raise the front end.

- 2 sleds were required to add weight to meet minimum requirements

Race Summary

- Third time’s a charm! After missing the Wetaskiwin stop on the circuit for two years in a row due to a lack of snow, it finally came together this year. Mother nature tried her best to foil us right up to the bitter end though as it rained/snowed till just before the race started. Despite the conditions, the track held pretty well and the large crowd was treated to some awesome racing by a great turnout of racers. Thanks to event host Dwayne Heinz and his wife Neisje for organizing a wonderful event!

- In the category of no surprise;

Kevin Boudreau proved that his Vermilion results were no fluke with another strong showing winning Stock 800 for Black Betty Racing, again.

Tyler Galant – AKA Team Tyler in his General Lee themed Mini Pro sled was victorious again and is serving notice to those in Junior that he is knocking on their door.

- In the category of pleasant surprises;

It was great to see the Heaver 5 Racing team out at their first event of the year. They didn’t show much rust in their performance taking several podium finishes including a dominating win in Mountain Open. Congratulations guys.

A previous long time SSRA racer, Glen Galbraith from Sherwood Park, made it out with a Sidewinder SRX and placed well in Open Stock and Open Improved. Hopefully he can make it out to a couple more races.

- Great Guessing! After finding a dice cube, Kendall Freed of Nova Pro Racing decided to give it a roll and take a guess at the light in the Mountain Improved final. And it paid off! He went .001 on the tree jumping out to a several sled lead and managed to hold everyone off to win the class. Not sure if you call it a great guess or a bad job of red lighting but it worked, congrats.

- The Outlaw class is always a great show but this weekend it added an awesome finish to the spectacle. In the final, Tyler Matt on his Smokin’ Joes Racing entry edged out the turbocharged “Pumkin” of the 54 North Performance team by about 18 inches to take the win. We are heading to Tyler’s home of Grande Prairie for the next race so you know he is going to be amped up to repeat for the local crowd!