Patenaude, Thibodeau post clean sweeps in Bangor
BANGOR, Maine (Feb. 2, 2017) — Vermont veteran Hunter Patenaude and Maine native Kassie Thibodeau notched clean sweeps in their respective classes over the weekend, as East Coast Snocross completed the first two rounds of competition on the 2017 schedule at historic Bass Park.
Patenaude (Ingles Performance/Ski-doo), of Hartland, Vermont, stormed to victory in Saturday's Pro Open final ahead of Team Southside/Polaris teammates Kristoffer Holm and Cody Paolella. On Sunday, Patenaude dominated the 10-lap final on a challenging track as Paolella and Scott VandeBorne (Team Southside/Polaris) filled out the podium.
"It was a great day; I couldn't ask for much more," Patenaude said after winning Sunday's final. "I have to thank my parents and team for the hard work that makes this possible. I'm thrilled for Ski-doo and Ingles Performance, who put so much into my program. I'm glad I had the opportunity to be here."
Thibodeau, of Rumford, held off Ashley Baird for top honors in Saturday's Pro Women final. With momentum from her recent podium runs in ISOC national action, Thibodeau rallied past early leader Sabrina Verville in the closing laps on Sunday to complete an impressive sweep. Alissah Ashline and Teresa Max also scored podium finishes in Pro Women finals over the weekend in Bangor.
"It felt great to get such a strong start to the season," Thibodeau said after completing her sweep. "Now hopefully we can continue to lead the points all season. I had lots of friends and family here this weekend, even one of my teachers, so to sweep my finals for them is pretty rewarding."
In Pro Lite action, it was Canadian athlete Scott VandeBorne drawing much of the attention. The gifted athlete from Ontario has experience on the CSRA national circuit, and it showed in Bangor. VandeBorne grabbed the all-important holeshot in Saturday's final and powered his way to victory. Patenaude settled for second, while former Sport class standout Ryan Dupont filled out the podium.
On Sunday, VandeBorne was rocket-fast again and finished second behind Patenaude in the final. Marco Travaglini showed why he was ready to advance into Pro Lite for 2017 with a solid third-place performance. He and fellow Sport graduate Dupont will add excitement to Pro Lite all season.
In the Southside Sales & Service Sport class at Bangor, Vermont-based rising star Bradley Tatro powered his way to victory in both Saturday and Sunday's Super Stock final. Matt Simonson (second) and Nathan Bourassa (third) filled out Saturday's podium, while Ryan Hoffman and Bruce Gaspardi Jr. (Team Southside/Polaris) finished second and third respectively on Sunday.
Action in the MotoTrax Snow Bike class was entertaining, as well. Andy Mathieu, 35, a veteran motocross racer from Lewiston, Maine, rode to victory in Saturday's final and backed that up with another impressive win on Sunday, completing the weekend sweep aboard his Husqvarna-powered machine. The Snow Bike class continues to grow in popularity among racers while fans quickly embrace this exciting new form of competition.
In Junior class action at Bangor, Gavin Fleury and Jason Olsen led a full field of eager racers. Fleury won Saturday's Jr. 16-17 Stock 600 final, while Olsen earned top honors on Sunday. Tucker Olsen (Saturday) and Travis Emery (Sunday) notched wins in the Jr. 14-15 class with solid performances.
Other final round winners over the weekend in Bangor include Nathan Bourassa (Plus 25/35 Saturday and Sunday); Tucker Kierstead (Sport Stock 600 Weekend); Sabrina Verville (Women Sport Stock 600 Saturday); and Theresa Max (Women Sport Stock 600 Sunday).
East Coast Snocross would like to thank Jennifer Khavari and the staff Eastern Maine Community College Foundation for hosting our series a third straight year. The community support from great folks like Dysarts, Darling's Auto and Lane Construction made the event a reality, and we appreciate the work.
Teams and officials now prepare for the showcase event on the 2017 schedule, a companion race with the ISOC National tour in Salamanca, NY, this coming weekend, February 3-4.
The East Coast Snocross Conx2share series, presented by Woody's Traction and FXR World Class Outerwear, is an ISR-affiliated sanctioning body for snowmobile snocross in the northeastern states. ECS strives to maintain a healthy level of grassroots racing in this region while also cultivating new talent for tomorrow's factory-backed professional teams.
“I was really happy to get the win on Saturday,” Brunelle said. “I got the holeshot, and never looked back. I just kept a steady pace the whole race, and it paid off. On Sunday, I had a couple of issues and decided not to push it. I'm thrilled with our results for my team and our great sponsors.”
Poirier, (Ingles Performance/Ski-doo) of St. Theodore, Quebec, slotted into second behind Dahlgren at the start of Sunday's final, but quickly found his way around the Swede and led from lap 2 to the finish. Dahlgren settled for second, while George capped a consistent weekend with a third-place finish.
Cody Paolella (Team Southside/Polaris) swept the Pro Lite class at Snow Ridge, nipping Wade Acker in a 10-lap tussle on Saturday while fellow Sport graduate Joe Bishop filled out the podium in third. On Sunday, local rider Andrew Bristol followed Paolella across the stripe for second while Acker powered his way to third.
“I think the weather was perfect and snow conditions were good,” Paolella said. “It was a little different to race on a ski hill. The downhill part made it challenging by having to use the brake to get through the bumps. The track was pretty wide with some good jumps, but I'd still say it was important to get a good start because the snow dust was pretty bad. I'm super pleased to sweep both finals.”
In Sport class action, Bristol held off a hard-charging Marco Travaglini and Dalton Jacquier for top honors in Saturday's Super Stock final. On Sunday, Travaglini found redeption as he outgunned Jamie Vanderaa and Jeff Roylance for top honors. This class is where tomorrow's Pro Lite stars hone their skills, and the 2015 season is delivering some great racing from these young athletes.
Other big winners over the weekend at Snow Ridge include Nykea Williams (Pro Women Sat. and Sun.); Bruce Gaspardi Jr. (Plus 25 Sat. and Sun.); Michael Newman (Jr. 16-17 Sat.); and Anthony Paige (Jr. 16-17 Sunday). Congratulations to all of our final round winners in Turin on a job well done.
East Coast Snocross would like to thank Snow Ridge owner Brad Horn, Russ Horn and the entire staff for hosting Round 4. The warmth and hospitality extended to our racing fraternity was second to none, and this facility is ideal for snocross on the famed Tug Hill plateau. While trail riders have frequented the Tug Hill region for decades, racers are quickly becoming fond of it, as well.
Teams will now prepare for a trip to western New York this coming weekend, Feb. 6-7, to join with ISOC at the Seneca Allegany Casino in Salamanca for the Eastern Nationals. This is ISOC's only race in the east, and ECS athletes will be looking to impress the big teams.
East Coast Snocross, presented by AMSOIL, Woody's Traction and FXR, is the eastern regional affiliate of ISOC. ECS strives to maintain a healthy level of competition in grassroots snocross, while also cultivating new talent for tomorrow's factory-backed national teams.