GLYNDON, Minn. – Buffalo River Race Park continues to be a winter wonderland for snowmobile racing enthusiasts. The speedway has played host to ice oval snowmobile racing in recent years with its nationally recognized blue ice covering the high-banked quarter-mile oval. This year, speedway general manager, Kevin Nathe, is switching things up by bringing back the fan-favorite Amsoil Championship Snocross series this weekend, beginning on Friday.
“Being in the racing promotions industry, this is such a unique event that separates Buffalo River from other facilities. Not many tracks get the opportunity to host Snocross,” said Nathe, who is approaching 13 years managing the motorsports park that lies three miles east of Glyndon.
This weekend’s event will be the fourth time Buffalo River Race Park has hosted the country’s premier snowmobile racing touring series, but the first since 2014.
The event, billed as the Country Cat Snocross National presented by Thunder Seed, will be unprecedented as it will be a three-day event, compared to the traditional two-day format.
“To have three pro open main events on the same weekend hasn’t happened but once or twice in the history of the sport,” said Nathe.
Qualifying for the pro open and pro lite divisions will be taking place during the day on Friday and Saturday, along with racing for the amateur divisions. Racing for the pro open and pro lites will begin at 6pm on Friday and Saturday. Sunday will host the pro open division only, with racing beginning at 10am. Sunday’s event is a makeup from the event in Duluth, Minn. that was canceled due to a winter storm.
Buffalo River Race Park’s last dirt track race of the season was held over Labor Day weekend. Since then, Nathe has been going full throttle getting the facility prepared for the Snocross weekend.
“After the dirt track racing season was over, we started hauling out all of the barriers and infield tire markers. The process of making snow started around Thanksgiving,” continued Nathe. “It’s been a non-stop grind of making snow since then. You can’t have too much snow for an event like this.”
Nathe said the track layout should be one of the biggest tracks the speedway has had, matching their course in 2012, which was the largest to date. Nathe estimates that eight to 10 feet of snow covered the dirt track before the Snocross course groomers came in to begin building the course.
Buffalo River Race Park is one of the most fan-friendly facilities the Championship Snocross series visits. It’s one of the few that has substantial indoor seating and viewing. Nathe has renovated the indoor seating area since the dirt track racing season ended to make it even more accommodating for fans. Numerous portable heaters will be scattered throughout the grandstand area to keep fans warm, including on the Turn Four patio deck.