Press Release –
It was cold, really cold. Like spit and watch it freeze before it hits the ground cold.
Three days of sub-zero temperatures didn’t stop three Team Arctic racers from battling it out in the USCC Red Lake I500 January 18-20th.
These three racers set a goal to not only finish the grueling three day race, but donate any money raised or won to the Children’s Miracle Network and the Gillette Children’s Hospital.
Jim Urquhart of Somerset, WI and John Sandberg of Prior Lake, MN, both piloted new Arctic Cat F5s in the Sport 85 class, while Pro Jeff Gruhlke of Forest Lake, MN took command of the all-new Sno Pro 600.
After battling extremely cold temperatures mixed in with whooped out, drifted ditchlines, icy rivers, tight woods and rugged swampy terrain, Sandberg proved victorious by winning the Sport 85 class and donated his $1,300 winning check.
“It’s a privilege to be healthy enough to race Arctic Cat snowmobiles, and I was fortunate to win my class,” said Sandberg. “I’m personally honored to be able to donate the money I won to CMN/GCH, so that I might in some way help a child gain their own good health. I had a great experience in that race and a lot of people helped me along the way, but helping kids is just as rewarding as winning races.”
The donations didn’t stop there as Gruhlke followed suit. Racing Pro Open, Pro 600 and Vet 30 Plus classes, Jeff raised $1,300 by finishing 6th in Pro Open and 10th in Pro 600. He also finished 4th in Vet 30 Plus. Gruhlke, who was a consistent Top 5 finisher last season on the USCC circuit stepped in to race the Black Magic-prepped sled just a week before the I-500.
“It was extremely difficult to find a new Arctic Cat Sno Pro this late in the game, and after working with some leads through the Team Arctic race shop, I worked out a deal with Black Magic Racing the Saturday before the I-500,” said Gruhlke. “We had little prep time, but the crew at Black Magic worked hard to race-prep the sled for me. We got good results and with more time we could have been in the Top 5. We’ll get better results next year, but I’m just happy to help the cause.”
A strong fourth place finish in the Sport 85 class put Urquhart out of the money, but he raised over $1,500 outside the race by getting contributors to sponsor his race program; putting the total contribution to charity over $4,000.
“I came up with the idea of racing for charity last year and figured I could beat my previous total since so many people were willing to help out and be part of the program,” said Urquhart. “I really appreciate all the people who helped me along the way this year, namely Arctic Cat. Without them, the USCC and multitudes of contributors, this season would have never been a success.”