Fertile, Minn. (December 12, 2011) – The Christian Brothers Racing team traveled to Bessemer, Michigan, for Round 2 of 8 on the ISOC National snocross series. The two-day Blackjack National was held at Blackjack Resort, a ski hill just outside the town of Bessemer, and featured a challenging, V-shaped track cut into the side of resort’s ski hill. Coming into the event the Christian Brothers team was looking to build on momentum it had gained at the opening race two weeks earlier and during testing with its new Arctic Cat Sno Pro 600 snowmobiles leading up to the Blackjack National.
During the week leading up to the race the team suffered a setback when Pro rider Logan Christian made the decision to sit out the event to let his knee heal up. Christian underwent off-season surgery to repair a knee injury sustained while racing motocross. That left Garth Kaufman and Cory Davis to carry the flag for the team in the Pro Open class while D.J. Ekre joined the team to race Pro AM Vet 30+ and Evan Christian rode in Champ 120 and Transition 8-12 Limited.
Kaufman and Davis struggled in Saturday’s Pro Open racing and both riders landed in the LCQ. Only Kaufman transferred and he posted a 12th place finish in the final. On Sunday Davis and Kaufman both landed in the LCQ again. Kaufman won it and Davis finished 5th which got them both a back row starting position for the final. Pro Open riders put in 14-laps on the brutally rough track which tested the fitness of the riders and setup of their Arctic Cat machines. When the checkered flag flew Kaufman was up with the frontrunners in 7th place and Davis crossed the line further back in 12th place.
“We were hoping for better results this weekend but the good thing is we’re making progress,” said Kaufman. “We were able to do a bunch of testing and got a lot figured out on the new Arctic Cat Sno Pro 600 race sleds. It’s still early in the season and we have some ground to make up but with 12 races to go we have a lot of time to do it.”
Long-time CBR rider D.J. Ekre raced the Pro AM Plus 30 class at the Blackjack National for team. Ekre was part of the first-ever National level snocross squad for Christian Brothers Racing during the 2002-2003 season Normally a cross-country specialist, Ekre hasn’t raced snocross since 2007 but proved his versatility as a terrain racer when he finished third in the dog-eat-dog Plus 30 race.
“It’s been a while since I raced snocross,” said Ekre. “But it’s like riding a bike – you never forget how to do it. It’s been a while since I’ve stood on the podium at a snocross National, that’s for sure!”
Evan Christian backed up Ekre and stood on the podium in both the Transition Limited 8-12 class, where he finished second, and in the super-competitive Champ 120 class where he took home third place.
“It was a positive weekend for the team,” said team co-owner Dwight Christian. “The team is definitely headed in the right direction. The new Arctic Cat race sled is going to be very good and it won’t take much before it’s there. Garth and Cory looked very good and it was fun to watch D.J. battle again. As long as we keep working hard the results will come.”
Next up for Christian Brothers Racing is the USCC Grafton 100 in Grafton, North Dakota, December 31. For more information visit snocross.com. For more information on Christian Brothers Racing visit www.christianbrosracing.com.