r365whtblkwallpaper
SubscribeBanner
RideX365

Race Recap – USXC Seven Clans Thief River Falls 250

#169 kennedy

 

woodys-sidebar-banner_ridex365_300x100-01Presented by Woody’s Traction & Control

Photos and story by Aaron Kennedy On The Plains Photo and Emily Wicklund

In a final test before the I600, racers returned to Thief River Falls for a 2-day, 250 mile event. The race was run ‘I600 style’ with racers leaving in intervals to kick off Saturday’s 2-lap jaunt on a ~65 mile course.  On Sunday, racers left in order of Saturday’s finishing time. Day one featured the Goodridge, MN loop that proceeded to the northeast of the Seven Clans Casino.  With a good mixture of ditch and river, the course was smoother than Sunday’s track that looped south towards Plummer, MN.  Despite being the ‘easier’ of the two courses, weather once again proved to be a factor with low, thick clouds making the light extremely flat on Saturday.  Riders had to rely on markers and subtle clues (such as brake lights) to determine features, and there was certainly a fair share of surprises.  On Sunday, the sun came out making for excellent conditions to tackle the rougher course.

For those that watched the races at Park Rapids, the Pro class race looked like a continuation of the previous weekend.  On Saturday, Polaris rider Aaron Christensen (#10) edged out Cat rider Zach Herfindahl (#312) by less than a second. Despite the light, they would average a blistering ~74-75mph.  A number of riders weren’t far behind, with Taylor Bunke (#14), Ross Erdman (#311), and Dillan Dohrn (#5), all within 3 minutes of the leader.  With ~120 miles of riding to finish on Sunday, any of these racers were in position to land on the podium.

On Sunday, Herfindahl quickly opened up a minute gap on Christensen during the first lap.  This gap would be the deciding factor for the checkered flag with the two running near-identical lap times during the 2nd lap. To round off the podium, Erdman put in a 2nd strong run to take 3rd.

In the Semi Pro class, Ryan Trout (#105) had his win streak broken for the first time this season.  Timmy Kallock (#48K) took the checkered flag with Dan Revering (#101) about one minute behind. Garet Grzadzielewski (#12G) took 3rd, 14 seconds behind Revering to take his first podium of the year in the Semi Pro class.

Many of the USXC riders have a busy two weeks ahead of them.  A number of the Pros/Semi Pros are  en route to the SOO I500 for the historic oval race.  Immediately following this race, they will make their way to Winnipeg for the USXC I600 on the following Wednesday.  Due to weather, the I600 has been reduced to 500 miles and will run from Winnipeg to Bemedji. In-between, the racers will spend an extra day doing loops around Thief River Falls, so this past weekend should be a good preview of the I600 contenders.

Brian Brown gave his ZR 600 a workout while taking the win in the classic IFS classes.

Brian Brown gave his ZR 600 a workout while taking the win in the classic IFS classes.

Meanwhile, his son David had another successful weekend with a win in the Extra 85 class. Like past years, crowds lined the ditches surrounding Thief River Falls to watch the races.

Meanwhile, his son David had another successful weekend with a win in the Extra 85 class. Like past years, crowds lined the ditches surrounding Thief River Falls to watch the races.

Cody Wolter had another great weekend taking the checkered flag in Sport 85.

Cody Wolter had another great weekend taking the checkered flag in Sport 85.

Meanwhile, Lucas Burnside took his second consecutive win of the year in the Trail class. Photo by Emily Wicklund.

Meanwhile, Lucas Burnside took his second consecutive win of the year in the Trail class. Photo by Emily Wicklund.

The Mattison family never fails to put on a good show. While Karl Mattison (#442) was the lone member racing this weekend, he won the Vintage 50+ class.

The Mattison family never fails to put on a good show. While Karl Mattison (#442) was the lone member racing this weekend, he won the Vintage 50+ class.

Despite a run-in with a log on Saturday, Dustin Dohrn grabbed another win in the Semi Pro Improved class. Photo by Emily Wicklund.

Despite a run-in with a log on Saturday, Dustin Dohrn grabbed another win in the Semi Pro Improved class. Photo by Emily Wicklund.

Dan Herberg of Hayford Racing along with his teammate Jeff Hayford (#211) rounded off the podium in Semi Pro Improved.

Dan Herberg of Hayford Racing along with his teammate Jeff Hayford (#211) rounded off the podium in Semi Pro Improved.

Andy Pake followed up his win last week with another commanding victory in the Jr. 10-13 class, winning by nearly six minutes. This was good enough to take 3rd in Sport 85.

Andy Pake followed up his win last week with another commanding victory in the Jr. 10-13 class, winning by nearly six minutes. This was good enough to take 3rd in Sport 85.

Timmy Kallock appears to have his Ski-Doo setup just in time for the I600.

Timmy Kallock appears to have his Ski-Doo setup just in time for the I600, taking the win in the Semi Pro class.

Four races, four wins. Zach Herfindahl has found ways to take the Pro win each week.

Four races, four wins. Zach Herfindahl has found ways to take the Pro win each week.

Up there with Zach is Aaron Christensen. The two have easily put themselves up there as the top two contenders for the I600.

Just behind Zach is Aaron Christensen. Consistent finishes have put themselves up there as the top two contenders for the I600.