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Flashback: Feb. 22, 2012. Team Arctic Hillclimb Crew


5/25/2017 10:21:00 AM

Team Arctic's Tupper, Kincaid, Shimpa & McClure. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

Flashback. Feb. 22, 2012. Island Park, Idaho. Near Arctic Cat's mountain test facility.

(L-to-R): Todd Tupper, Rob Kincaid, Al Shimpa and David McClure. Each is a key member of Team Arctic's hillclimb race program. Tupper is the racer/engineer.

|  posted in Features  |  comments (0)  |

New Pro Open Rules: CSRA's Ken Avann Responds with His Opinion


5/22/2017 7:53:00 AM

Pro Open Snocross racing from 2016. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

Controversy?!? Right now there's plenty of it when it comes to the new rule for Pro Open snocross sleds for 2017.

Ken Avann, president of the Canadian Snowcross Racing Association (CSRA) was one of the principal architects of the new stock-sled-based rule change.

Click for Ken’s perspective on the new rule and what it will accomplish.

|  posted in Features  |  comments (17)  |

So Close! SHOF New Building Fund On Cusp of Reality


5/22/2017 7:34:00 AM

Snowmobile Hall of Fame New Building Fundraiser

The vision of a beautiful new building that displays historic snowmobiles and memorabilia is almost ready to happen at the Snowmobile Hall of Fame in St. Germain, Wis.  With the Classic Sled Roundup weekend festivities happening this coming weekend, the SHOF hopes to bridge the final gap to its building fundraising goal in hopes of hosting a groundbreaking ceremony on Saturday, May 27.

“We are so close to our goal of $350,000 that we can taste it,” said Craig Marchbank, SHOF President. "With one last push, and a few spare dollars from those who are able, we’ll put shovels in the ground for this important showcase of snowmobile history.”

Click to read more about helping the SHOF this week with any size donation.

|  posted in News  |  comments (0)  |

Mash-Up Masterpiece: The Cat Kid's Custom Arctic Cat ZRThundercat


5/16/2017 8:35:00 AM

Doug Hanson's custom Arctic Cat ZRT 600

Doug Hanson (aka "The Cat Kid") builds some truly wonderful custom Arctic Cat snowmobiles.

This ZRT/T-Cat mash-up featuring a bunch of Thundercat, ZR and performance goodies is a perfect example of his work.

Click to see some more of this fine sled.

|  posted in Features  |  comments (10)  |

Craig Kennedy Named Vice President of Snow & International


5/10/2017 1:54:00 PM

Arctic Cat's Craig Kennedy. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

This week, longtime Arctic Cat veteran Craig Kennedy was named Vice President, Snow & International. The announcement was made by Kevin Holleran, President and CEO of Textron Specialized Vehicles.

Kennedy has more than 18 years at Arctic Cat, in a variety of roles. He knows the brand, the customers, the dealers and the employees.

Oh, and his blood is green.

Click for more info.

|  posted in News  |  comments (13)  |

Textron Shifts Production to TRF & St. Cloud, Closes Mpls HQ


5/10/2017 1:45:00 PM

Arctic Cat manufacturing plant in Thief River Falls, Minn.

Yesterday, Textron Industries announced a few big changes that will make an impact on Arctic Cat:

* Production of the (Textron) Stampede will move from Augusta, Ga., to Thief River Falls, Minn. (above)

* Production of the Textron 4-stroke engine (that powers the Stampede) will also move to TRF.

* Arctic Cat's Minneapolis HQ will be shut down, with employees transitioning to St. Cloud

Click for more info.

|  posted in News  |  comments (19)  |

We Want YOU (to Apply for the 2018 Team Arctic Race Team)


5/5/2017 9:34:00 AM

Become part of the legendary Team Arctic Race Team.

Attention all potential Team Arctic racers: We want YOU to send in your race application for the 2017-2018 race season!

Yep, you could join the long line of legendary Team Arctic race teams for cross-country, snocross, hillclimb, drag, enduro, oval and more.

May 30 is the deadline to apply.

Click for more info and to download the Race Application.

|  posted in Racing  |  comments (4)  |

Inverted Thinking: Say Goodbye to Mod Sleds in Snocross


5/4/2017 9:26:00 AM

Pro Open Snocross sleds, when they were truly Open. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

Say “goodbye” to these stunning and tricked-out Pro Open mod sleds in snocross this coming season.

They’re gone, replaced by Stock sleds with raspier, slightly louder exhaust.

That sound you hear? Sadly, it’s not the howl of 160-hp mod engines and twin tuned pipes. Instead, it’s the proverbial road to hell, being paved with good intentions.

Click to read my rant.

|  posted in Features  |  comments (43)  |

"Cross-Country" Carrie Longley Showing How It's Done in Alaska XC


5/2/2017 10:06:00 AM

Carrie Longley (formerly Goodwin) is an amazing racer!

When it comes to high-speed Alaskan cross-country competition, she's often the fastest racer, regardless of gender. She's on record with a first place overall finish in the Men's Kotz-Kiana 180 XC race, plus a first place overall finish in the Kotzebue 120 XC women's race (3 times, actually!).

At the recent Men's Kotzebue 'Last Chance' 105 XC, Carrie raced a 2004 Firecat 600 in the 600cc class of the race (the 2003-2006 Firecats remain a popular choice amongst XC racers in Northwest Alaska due to their amazing top-speeds).

Carrie got off to a slow start in the 'Last chance' race but eventually passed all of the male Cross-country racers in her class, some of which have placed first overall in the nationally recognized Kotzebue 220 XC race. Carrie caught some huge air along the way and maintained the lead in the 600cc class until she eventually blew her track.

Take a few moments to watch what high-speed lake racing is like in Alaska, as well as the nerves it takes to go wide-open.

For sure watch the wicket tail-stand that occurs at 4:45!

|  posted in Racing  |  comments (2)  |

Flashback: September 2014. Arctic Cat Next Gen Bodywork


4/27/2017 3:25:00 PM

Prototype of the 2018 Arctic Cat Next Gen bodywork. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

Flashback to September 2014.

Inside the Arctic Cat styling shop in Thief River Falls, where Nathan Blomker and Corey Friesen worked their design and styling magic on what would eventually become the 2018 Next Gen bodywork.

Click to see and read a few nuggets from that.

|  posted in Features  |  comments (10)  |

Q&A with John Collins, Vice President of Textron Specialized Vehicles


4/24/2017 8:36:00 AM

John Collins, Vice President, Consumer, Textron Specialized Vehicles. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

In the three months since Textron announced its intention to buy Arctic Cat (and the six weeks since the sale was finalized), the brand’s loyal legion of riders, dealers and employees has wondered what the future would bring.

Last week I sat down with John Collins, Vice President of the consumer business for Textron Specialized Vehicles, and asked key questions about the future of Arctic Cat as part of Textron.

Click to read about Textron's plans for Arctic Cat, including its people and products.

|  posted in Features  |  comments (45)  |

Q&A with "Duke" Johnson, the Million Mile Man


4/21/2017 10:00:00 AM

Arctic Cat's Gary "Duke" Johnson. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

This week at Arctic Cat in Thief River Falls, Minn., Gary “Duke” Johnson logged his last miles aboard a snowmobile (or ATV) as field test rider for Arctic Cat, a job he’s had since 1979. At the tender age of 64, the Thief River Falls native is riding off into the proverbial sunset called retirement, having ridden more than 1 million miles aboard snowmobiles during his career in the company's Field Test department.

Let that sink in for a moment. One. Million. Miles.

Yes, Duke has had a job that most of us would dream for: getting paid to ride snowmobiles.

I chatted with Duke this week about his career with Arctic Cat.

Click to read what it was like to become a million mile man.

|  posted in Features  |  comments (11)  |

New Sport-Utility Side-by-Side from Textron Off Road


4/20/2017 2:45:00 PM

New Sport-Utility side-by-side from Textron for 2017. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

During its dealer presentation yesterday, Textron Off Road announced a coming-this-fall side-by-side aimed directly at the Sport-Utility segment of the SxS market.

They didn't tell us the name, but they gave some pretty compelling spec's:

More than 100 hp, KING shocks, bucket seats, extended cab, usuable storage, and available in fall 2017.

They also announced that the Wildcat XX won't be available until spring 2018.

Click for a few more pix.

|  posted in ATV and UTV  |  comments (6)  |

Textron Talks Future Plans for Arctic Cat


4/20/2017 12:50:00 PM

 

At a special event held in an airplane hanger in Dallas-Ft. Worth yesterday, Textron Off Road shared with its dealers some plans for incorporating Arctic Cat into its family of vehicles. I was there, and I can tell you it was a powerful and good presentation. One of the key messages was that, going forward, the Arctic Cat name will be substituted with Textron when it comes to wheeled vehicles, while sub-brands like Wildcat, Prowler, Alterra and Stampede will be retained.

Arctic Cat snowmobiles will forever retain the name.

("There are some things that are sacred, and the Arctic Cat snowmobile name is one of them," Collins said to me.)

I have a lot more to say about this, including a soon-to-come interview with company Vice President John Collins in which he answers the questions that so many are asking.

In the meantime, if you have an hour to spare, I recommend watching the presentation. There's a lot of business/dealer talk, but there are also great things for everyone to hear.

|  posted in News  |  comments (14)  |

Hunter Houle Memorial Foundation Go-Kart Racing Fundraiser


4/17/2017 11:35:00 AM

MB2 Raceway

If you’re like me, then you want to show Tucker Hibbert the fastest way around the track. You know, show him who’s the boss (and I don’t mean Ross).

And if you’re like me, you know there’s no possible means of doing this on snowmobiles. But there is a slight chance of beating him to the checkered flag on go-karts, and that opportunity is Saturday, April 29 at the MB2 Raceway indoor go-kart race track in Fridley, Minnesota.

There, beginning at Noon, the first Hunter Houle Memorial Foundation fundraiser will unfold with kids, adult-kids and delusional adult-kids who will rip around a sweet track while enjoying the friendship and fellowship of like-minded goofballs.

Click to read about it.

|  posted in News  |  comments (3)  |

Jared's Wish Comes True


4/13/2017 11:57:00 AM

Three days ago, Lakewood Schools student Jared Stevens saw an outpouring from family, friends, teachers and classmates.

The junior in the Marshall, Minn., area battled pinoblastoma, a brain cancer, with treatments occurring last summer at the Mayo Clinic. There, Make-A-Wish volunteers met him and learned his deepest wish.

His answer: a new snowmobile. Arctic Cat, along with Country Cat, Tucker Hibbert, Arcticwear, Fly Racing, the Make-A-Wish foundation and others, partnered to make Jared’s wish come true in the form of a ZR 6000 and all the gear he needs to ride.

Jared is free of cancer as of his last check-up. I’m wishing for happy trails ahead for Jared and his family.

|  posted in News  |  comments (5)  |

2017 Team Arctic Success at World Championship Hillclimbs & Lake Geneva Snocross


4/12/2017 6:02:00 AM

Playing catch-up with the Jackson Hole World Championship Hillclimb and Lake Geneva ISOC snocross race results from a few weeks ago.

Team Arctic racers produced excellent results at both, taking their fair share of checkered flags and podiums. And yep, as the video shows, Jackson was GNARLY this year with hardpacked, icy conditions!

Click to read the highlights and to see the podium finishers who raced Cat.

|  posted in Racing  |  comments (0)  |

Limited-Edition Speedwerx Custom 2018 Arctic Cats


4/10/2017 10:00:00 AM

Speedwerx custom 2018 Arctic Cat limited sleds

Speedwerx has gone full-tilt into the custom, limited-edition Arctic Cat zone for 2018, producing four turn-key rippers that combine holy-crap! horsepower (on pump gas), dialed-in clutching, key upgrades, sweet wraps and a traction equation that can put that power to the ground.

The models: 2018 Arctic Cat Thundercat, ZR 8000 Limited, and two version of the M 8000 Mountain Cat.

They’ll produce a maximum of five of each version, with orders (and a $1,000 deposit) required by April 15.

Click to see the checklist of custom goodness for each model.

|  posted in News  |  comments (2)  |

TGIF: The April 7, 2017 Edition


4/7/2017 3:04:00 PM

TGIF with CJ Ramstad and the original Mud Dogs.

I'm thankful for snowmobilers who dominate the terrain, no matter what the conditions are.

I'm thankful for the farmers who allow snowmobile trails to cross their fields.

I'm thankful for C.J. Ramstad (left), the original Mud Dog (and many other things).

And I'm thankful it's Friday, April 7, 2017.

|  posted in Features  |  comments (2)  |

Priced to Move: Arctic Cat No-Brainer Sales for Dirt


4/6/2017 8:48:00 AM

Arctic Cat No Brainer Sales event

I don't typically write about sale prices, but Arctic Cat's just-announced "No Brainer" sales event offers pretty unbelievable pricing on new non-current ATV and side-by-sides. Truly, price just became a non-issue for anyone who had seriously been in the market for wheelers.

For example:

2015 HDX 700 XT EPS is now $9,999 U.S., which is -$4,000 off MSRP.

2015 Wildcat Trail is now just $7,499 U.S., a $4,400 savings.

2015 Wildcat X price has been chopped by $5,800 bucks to $12,999 U.S.

And the 2015 XR 550 Limited EPS ATV is now a mere $5,699 U.S., $4,700 lower than MSRP.

Click HERE for a jump to Arctic Cat's website to see ALL the truly outstanding prices/details on non-current and new machines.

|  posted in ATV and UTV  |  comments (0)  |
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