The 51st annual Strathcona Snowmobile Races scheduled for February 10

At last year’s Strathcona Cup Race, the individual in the back gives the giddy up signal as they complete their final lap of the Missy Matthies Memorial Two-Man Race. In this race, the first partner drives one complete lap before coming to a stop and letting their partner drive the second and final lap. (photo by Ryan Bergeron)

Bob Lee drives a “Snowbug” and finishes first in the David Johnson Memorial Rear Engine Race at the Strathcona Cup Race on February 11, 2017. (photo by Ryan Bergeron)

Yes, that’s right! It’s been 51 years since that 1968 snowmobile race that started it all. The small town of Strathcona, Minnesota, has held annual snowmobile races in February every year since that time, never missing a single one! And the tradition continues this year for the 51st Anniversary Races.
The 51st Anniversary Strathcona Ice Oval Snowmobile Races will be held on Saturday, February 10. Though this is not a SLEDS race, an online registration is available on the SLEDS website by clicking on the raceday link. On-line registration is mandatory, or there will be a $40 late fee. However, registration is also available beginning at 8am and closing at 10am on the morning of the races. Hot laps also run from 8am to 10am, with a Drivers Meeting at 10:30am. Racing starts at 11am!
New to this year’s race is that Strathcona is the first in a three-race series for the F-500 Country Cat Series Payout. The other two races will be held on February 17 in Grey Eagle, Minnesota, and February 24 in Detroit Lakes, both races under the auspices of CMPR (Central Minnesota Pond Racing). Watch for further details in the upcoming Honker about the Detroit Lakes race, which will be featuring veteran racers from the 1970s. There should be lots of stories about the old days!
There will be plaques awarded to the first, second and third place finishers in each class, as well as flags to Class Champions. There is Guaranteed Purse Money of over $10,000, and $2500 Payout for the F500 Class.
Though he said he said last year would be “the last year,” Armand Westlund is the Race Director for the Strathcona Races once again. He is aided in his efforts by Keith and Dana Wojociechowski, Honey and Jeremy Gust, Nathan and Kristi Westlund, Shannon Peterson and Mardy Anderson, among others. Last year, Armand said, “Racing is more than a hobby. It’s part of who I am and I consider it and the racers family.” He just can’t walk away from it, and as long as he has the help, he’ll probably keep doing it!
His passion remains strong, and with the new leaders, he hopes that the Strathcona Cup Race will also remain strong as it heads into a new future.
Like last year, there will be trackside delivery of food. Spectators who are watching the races from their vehicles around the oval track can call 218-781-RACE, place an order and have the food delivered to their vehicle. Once again, there will also be clothing available for purchase at the race.
An Awards Ceremony will be held following the races at the Greenbush American Legion with a burger bar for those who are still hungry! The event is open to all and everyone is invited out to meet the racers.
Don’t miss it! Strathcona Races will be Saturday, February 10. Racing begins at 11am. See you there!

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