Polaris cross-country snowmobile racers on the Polaris RUSH built on the AXYS platform earned more victories and top-three finishes during USXC racing January 17 at Grafton, N.D. Justin Tate (2-Eight Motorsports) won the Pro Open race and finished second in Pro 600 aboard a Polaris RUSH, and Alex Hetteen (131 Racing) won both Semi-Pro races.
This is the first season that top Polaris racers are campaigning RUSH models built on the innovative new AXYS platform, and they are piling up race wins on the USXC circuit.
Pro Classes: Three of Six Podium Positions for Polaris
Polaris racers earned three of the day’s six Pro-class podium positions as Tate won the Pro Open race and finished second in Pro 600, where he was followed across the line by Bobby Menne (131 Racing) in third. Also earning top-five finishes in Pro Open were Nicholas Jahnke in fourth and Gabe Bunke (Bunke Racing) in fifth.
There are five Polaris racers in the top 10 in points in both USXC Pro classes, including Tate, Bunke, Menne, and Ryan Faust (Faust Racing) in second through fifth, respectively, in Pro 600. Tate is also second in Pro Open points.
Semi-Pro: Alex Hetteen Sweeps Both Classes
Alex Hetteen continued his outstanding season by winning both the Semi-Pro 600 and Semi-Pro Improved races. Also earning top 10 finished in Semi-Pro 600 were Taylor Bunke (Bunke Racing) in fifth, Jamie Line in sixth, and Kyle Dickinson in seventh. In the Improved race, Bunke finished fourth and Nels Wicklund was eighth.
Hetteen is second in Semi-Pro 600 points and Bunke is in fourth. Their positions are reversed in Improved point standings, where Bunke is in second and Hetteen is in fourth.
Bunke also ran well in the I-500 Class race at Grafton and finished third. Dickinson took fifth and Andrew Wichlacz was eighth.
Polaris Racers Dominate in Sport Classes
The Sport-class finishing order was totally dominated by Polaris racers. Eight of the top 10 finishers in Sport 600 Stock were aboard Polaris sleds, including the top five finishers. Andrew Storbeck won, Andrew Wichlacz took second, and Robert Loire, the points leader in both Sport classes, finished third.
Seven Polaris racers earned top-10 finishes in Sport 600 Open, including Andrew Storbeck in second and Mike Fugelberg in third.
Earning podium spots in the Masters classes were Parker Thimony, who took second in Masters 40 & Over, and Paul Ander, who was third in Masters 50+.
In the Women’s class, Polaris racers finished second through fifth in this order: Jill Tangen, Anne Pladson (Bunke Racing), Kelsey Pladson (Bunke Racing), and Kalley Bardson. Tangen is the current leader in the Women’s points standings.
Next up for the USXC racers is the Park Rapids [MN] 106, Jan. 31-Feb. 1.