Ross Martin closing in on championship
Polaris pilot wins Pro Open at Canadian Nationals
Story by Staff, Photography by ISOC Racing, Feb. 23, 2010Email a friend Print Friendly RSS
From green to checker the AMSOIL Pro Open was the race to watch in Sarnia. Levi LaVallee jumped out from the start line yards ahead leaving the pack behind during the 20-lap final. He looked like he would take the lead all the way to the finish line.
Positions were switching quickly and in the end it was Ross Martin (Polaris) who took first place followed by LaVallee (Polaris) in second and Emil Ohman (Ski-Doo) in third. Martin is the points leader in the Pro Open class. He stumbled a bit previously, but made up for it on Saturday night. “This is the class I like the most,” Martin said at the podium.
With a target on his back, LaVallee was running strong going deep into the turns that tricked up several riders along the way. His mechanic told him to not get squirrelly and he listened and held his ground. Into lap eight, Martin got underneath LaVallee in turn three, nearly bumping him off the edge. LaVallee held on. “I thought he was going to hook onto me and drag me around the track,” LaVallee said at the podium with a grin.
“It wasn’t the easiest thing to do to pass (LaVallee),” says Martin. “Every time I got close I’d get a face full of roost and couldn’t see. But he went up and I guess I bumped him a little and got under him.”
For the remainder of the race Martin and LaVallee held nearly the same lap times of around 32 seconds going nose to tail. Battles of nearly incomprehensible proportion were taking place behind the two leaders. Andrew Johnstad (Polaris) held a strong third-place position and with seven laps to go, but Ohman took advantage of lap traffic and passed Johnstad for the third place position. Garth Kaufman (Arctic Cat) put on an impressive showing all weekend and attacked the Sarnia track. He passed Johnstad with three laps to go putting him in fourth and Johnstad in fifth.
The Caterpillar Pro Super Stock proved to be one of the most exciting races of the evening with the victory going to Canadian Ski-Doo rider Tim Tremblay. The top spot was not handed to Tremblay, he had to work at holding his position. Ross Martin took the holeshot followed closely by Tremblay and Robbie Malinoski (Polaris). The entire line-up of 15 riders appeared to be taking the track in one huge pack.
Arctic Cat teammates Garth Kaufman and Corey Davis battled back and forth in the middle of the pack with riders leaving the track at nearly every turn. The top three held onto their positions for 4 or 5 laps when it appeared Martin’s ski got caught up in the sugar heading into the table top and he was off his sled. Emil Ohman took advantage of the situation with big air off the tabletop. His skis appeared to land on the seat of Ryan Simons (Arctic Cat) and both riders just kept on going.
With carnage all over the track Andrew Johnstad passed his teammate Malinoski to take third position while Martin was pouring on the steam and trying to recover from his off as Kaufman gained ground and battled with Malinowski for the fourth and fifth place position.
Through lap traffic and havoc on the track in the end it was Tremblay in first, Ohman in second and Johnstad took his first podium as a pro rider in third.
“I just wanted to pass (Martin) so bad,” Tremblay said at the podium. “And I did. He was riding really well. It was a good battle before he got off his sled. He just made a little mistake and I got by.”
AMSOIL Championship Snocross Series Standings:
|Pro-Open Standings||Pro Super Stock Standings|
|1.||Ross Martin||Polaris||318||1.||Tim Tremblay||Ski-Doo||288|
|2.||Levi LaVallee||Polaris||240||2.||Ross Martin||Polaris||260|
|3.||Robbie Malinoski||Polaris||230||3.||Dan Ebert||Arctic Cat||243|
|4.||Cory Davis||Arctic Cat||230||4.||Tucker Hibbert||Artctic Cat||243|
|5.||Tucker Hibbert||Arctic Cat||228||5.||Emil Ohman||Ski-Doo||234|
|6.||Tim Tremblay||Ski-Doo||221||6.||Robbie Malinoski||Polaris||218|
|7.||Andrew Johnstad||Polaris||215||7.||Levi LaVallee||Polaris||201|
|8.||Dan Ebert||Arctic Cat||208||8.||Cory Davis||Arctic Cat||191|
|9.||Emil Ohman||Ski-Doo||207||9.||Garth Kaufman||Arctic Cat||190|
|10.||Brett Bender||Polaris||205||10.||Brett Bender||Polaris||187|