Sleds Skim the Water in Superior's First Watercross Shootout
Posted at: 08/17/2013 3:58 PM
| Updated at: 08/17/2013 6:12 PM
By: Travis Dill
There was no snow, but Northlanders craving snowmobile action got their fix at the first Superior Watercross Shootout on Saturday.
Over 100 riders raced across the water off Barker's Island on Saturday in an event called the fastest show on H20. Fitting that title the sleds got over 60 mph in drag and oval races.
The sport has races throughout the Northland, but this new event in Superior showed how watercross is growing according to Organizer Kimberly Carr.
“It absolutely is a growing sport. There's a lot of traction with it. It's the newest extreme sport. It's a lot of fun; a lot of people around here snowmobile in the winter so they're interested to see how a snowmobile operates on water,” Carr said.
The sight amazed fans, and some of the riders explained what it takes to keep the sleds above water.
“Lots of throttle,” Krisa Maki-Zurn of GLH Performance said. “I think it's definitely a big adreanaline rush to be out there on the water. You know these sleds don't float. You have to have a lot of throttle control.”
Rider David Fischer with Straightline Performace said it feels like riding on the moon.
“It's definitely a different feeling than riding on the snow. It's like riding on almost a beach ball, like your track, only so much of the track hits the water,” Fischer said.
The action was loud and wet, which impressed the crowd of snowmobile fanatics like Ryan Lang.
“Oh it's unbelievable. People don't understand how hard it is to go across the water, and to see them actually on the water it's unbelievable,” Lang said.
Riders got a thrill from the race, fans reveled in the show, but with over a thousand people turning out over the weekend the event was a win for local businesses too.
“There are a lot of sponsors. It brings in a lot of people and I think it helps all the local businesses around here,” Lang said. “I think it's great. The more people that buy around here, spend around here, it's good for the community.”
This was the first Watercross Shootout in Superior, but fans and riders said it wouldn't be the last.
Over 500 people turned out on Saturday to catch the spectacle, but those were only preliminary races. The action continues on Sunday with championship races starting at 10 a.m.