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Hill climb brings back memories

Jonathon Knott, Milroy, left; gets an early lead on Drew Reinarts of New Ulm in the Trophy 800 division at the River Valley Dutchmen Snowmobile Club Hill Climb at Golden Gate Campground in the Minnesota River Valley Saturday. Knott finished second to Doug Kral of New Ulm in the class.

GOLDEN GATE CAMPGROUND — Several hundred spectators and more than 65 driver entries including a number of racers more than 50 years old participated in the River Valley Dutchmen Snowmobile Club Hillclimb at Golden Gate Campground Saturday.

For Tom and Nancy Anderl of New Ulm, it was like old times after several years without the hillclimb due to lack of snow most of the time.

“Our kids ran the snocross circuit years ago in Hill City, Canterbury Downs, Willmar, Hutchinson. We even went to Lake Geneva, Wis.,” Tom Anderl said. “We just did it for the fun of it about every weekend. No money. Just trophies.”

Snocross is a racing sport involving racing specialized, high performance snowmobiles at speeds up to 60 miles per hour on natural or artificial tracks with tight turns, banked corners, steep jumps and obstacles.

The local hill climb caused Anderl to remember some of the more unusual snocross events.

“One time at Hutchinson, it was so cold, they delayed the races for a few hours until it got a little warmer,” Anderl said.

Some of his other memories are taking family snowmobile rides for several days at a time in Northern Minnesota, on trails in the Brainerd and Park Rapids areas.

“Trails on abandoned railroad track really work well,” Anderl said. “I’m too old for hill climbing now. I’ve got lots of fond memories. It’s like riding a horse. If you fall off, you get right back on.”

A number of snowmobile enthusiasts said they just came out to the event to get outside and enjoy the winter weather and hill climb competition.

“We’re here to support our kids racing,” Anderl added.

A number of familiar names were among the hillclimb winners.

Marcus Lang of Sleepy Eye was named Trophy Class King of the Hill. He won the 600 stock and improved class and the Trophy 600 races. He placed high in a few other classes.

Justin Krebben of Lakeville was King of Hill Cash Classes.

Results:

Trophy 500- 1. Kevin Leary, Rosemount. 2. Darren Anderson, NU. 3. Jay Detlie, Lonsdale. 600- 1. Tim Stadick, NU. 2. Hollister Struck, East Bethel. 3. Dana Effenberger, NU. 700-1. Nick Gardner, Owatonna. 2. Larry Thaen, Bloomington. 3. Darren Anderson, NU. 800-1. Doug Kral, NU. 2. Jonathon Knott, Milroy. 3. Drew Reinarts, NU. 850-1. Tyler Schulte, Mapleton. 2. Chuck Effenberger, NU. 3. Drew Reinarts, NU. 850 and over-1. Schulte. 2. C. Effenberger. 3. Jeff Matz, Arlington. 440-1. Stadick. 2. Nancy Lilleodden, Hanska. 3. Leary. 600-1. Marcus Lang, Sleepy Eye. 2. Stadick. 3. Tyler Thayer, Bloomington.

Women’s Trophy-1. D. Effenberger. 2. Lilleodden. 3. Alexis German, Clarkfield. Legend’s Trophy 40+ 1. Kral. 2. C. Effenberger. 3. Stadick. Fossil Trophy 50+ 1. Kral. 2. Joe Merkel, NU. 3. Stadick. Stroke Trophy 1. Jeremy Walters, NU. 2. Norm Grathwohl. NU.

500 Improved Cash 1. Stadick. 2. Lilleodden. 3. Leary. 600 stock-1. Lang. 2. Stadick. 3. Struck. 600 Improved 1. Lang. 2. Matt Kamm, NU. 700-1. Kamm. 2. Lang. 3. Thaen. 800-1. Matt Speckman, SE. 2. Josh Wurtzberger, NU. 3. Dominic Ourada, Lucas. 850-1. Wurtzberger. 2. Lang. 3. Devin Adolth, Hazel Run. Open 1. Krebben. 2. Lang. 3. Jon Pitzl, Wabasso.

Fritz Busch can be emailed at fbusch@nujournal.com.

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