Thunder Bays WSA Snocross Racer Colin Chaschuk Has A New Teammate
By Scott A. Sumner
Thunder Bays own Colin Chaschuk, age 25, is starting to feel at home as a WSA National Snocross pilot. His team travels the national circuit across North America and he competes in the highly competitive semi pro ranks.
"I finished 11th overall in stock and had some trouble in Open finishing 17th overall. It was decent. I struggled in a few places but it wasn't so so bad, says Colin Chaschuk. I figure this year maybe I can step it up a notch. We had some motor problems at the start, some fuel problems, some detonation things going on, some chain case problems - but we made it and this year the sled looks stronger built." Last year Colin raced with Dusty McMillen, out of Silver Bay, MN. When Dusty got hurt at the Canterbury race and backed out Chaschuk traveled on his own with his mechanic. "I did 10 national WSA races and 4 NWRA races, so 14 weekends in all."
This year Colin is working three days a week Tuesday to Thursday at the local John Deere equipment facility in Thunder Bay. His team partner this year will be 20 year old Jesse Johnson who is from New London, Minnesota. Arctic Cat and race director Brian Sturgeon asked the two semi pro riders to team together. Colin was looking for a teammate to travel with to help cover expenses and it all worked out well. The trailer is based out of New London which is two hours west of the Twin Cities in Minnesota. "It is about 7 hours from home so I bring my sleds home on the weekend. I have a little two place trailer. We just connect at the races." states Chaschuk. Jesse Johnson has raced three years on the national circuit and one year on the districts and regionals. "I love Arctic Cats.' smiles Jesse Johnson. This year Colin's mechanic is Dallyn Maxwell from Kakabeka Falls.
"The sled is pretty decent so far. We are just trying some different set ups with the suspension and clutching. The suspension is coupled in the rear and there are air shocks in the front. There are many setting you can play around. We didnt really have much snow but I tested in Aurora for two days last weekend at Planet X,' says Chaschuk. "Hopefully we'll get some snow up in Thunder Bay so I can do some testing there."
A major goal for most snocross racers is to qualify for the Winter X Games race, the most prestigous of the year. Chaschuk didn't try qualifying for X in Duluth. "I might try in Winnipeg, but didn't feel ready yet here at Duluth." says Colin.
Chaschuk worked with a local personal trainer, Dywane Fuchs for four months prior to this season, and hopefully it will pay off. "I built a house this summer so I was pretty busy and had to work out in the mornings at 6am and go to work at 8am so it was quite a busy summer. I work out at Active Rehabilitation. Hopefully this will be another good year and well decide what happens after that,' smiles Chaschuk. "My main sponsors are Dalton Industries who came a long away and Arctic Cat which provided the trailer for the winter for the team. It is financially difficult to do the full circuit but its going to work. Jesse's got a business truck from his father that is pulling the trailer, so that is working out well. It is a very money consuming little sport that we have going on, but if you have the right sponsors it helps. I have a good paying job as well. I'll make it work financially. I love the sport . It is something I always wanted to do all my life. Now I'm hooked."