By Curtis Tate
The 2010 SnoWest Vintage Snowmobile Show, held during the Intermountain Snowmobile Show in South Jordan, UT, Oct. 22-23, was a great success with more than 1,700 people's choice votes cast during the two-day display.
Eight participants from five western states brought a total of 32 antique and vintage snowmobiles to display. From Arctic Cat to Sno Jet, Johnson to Sears, 11 different makes were represented with models ranging from 1966 to 1989.
Participants were: Tony Crnkovich (Afton, WY), Jeffrey Fuller (Farr West, UT), Perry Hesteness (Hailey, ID), Bill Moss (Tooele, UT), Jim Smith (Bend, OR), Curtis Tate (Layton, UT), Paul and Mary Joyce Tate (Roy, UT) and Tom Whitaker (North Ogden, UT).
The original class consisted of 11 snowmobiles representing the manufacturers of Arctic Cat, Johnson, Polaris, Sears, Ski-Doo and Sno Jet. Tom Whitaker received the 1st place people's choice award for this class with his 1973 Arctic Cat Panther 440 and cutter. Did you notice the mannequin in the cutter enjoying the weekend show reading the current issue of SnoWest Magazine?
Second place in this class also went to Tom Whitaker's Arctic Cat Kitty Cat which sported a custom-made light blue Polaris hood displaying the name of "Allowance Operated." This sled left many wondering how they can make "mod" sleds out of their Kitty Cats.
Then there was the restored class. Twenty-one snowmobiles were in this category, showing off some serious muscle, chrome and hard work. Perry Hesteness displayed a 1973 Polaris Starfire which he restored and presented to the surprised owner, Rocky Sherbine from Bellevue, ID, last March at the 7th Annual Vintage Snowmobile Round-Up in West Yellowstone, MT. This sled sports an experimental one-of-one Polaris-built 600cc Fuji engine. This sled sported two gas tanks and was used to endurance oval race in the 1970s in Idaho-a true piece of racing history from the West.
Jim Smith traveled all the way from Bend, OR, to display his 1978 Polaris RXL 340 and boy is it a sled to show off. Direct from the "Midnight Blue Express" era, the 1978 Polaris RXL is arguably one of the sleekest and fastest looking sleds on the planet.
The editors of SnoWest Magazine chose Paul Tate's recently restored 1981 John Deere Trailfire 340 as the Editor's Choice Award winner. This sled was raffled off in Stanley, ID, in September, 2009 by the Vintage Snowmobiles of Idaho club and found its way into Paul's hands last March. It was completely restored over the summer and will return to West Yellowstone next March to take part in the 8th Annual Vintage Round-Up. Jeffrey Fuller's original 1970 Johnson Skee-Horse 437 received second place for Editor's Choice. This sled was displayed along with its original owners manual, registration and other materials. This is two years in a row that Fuller has received an Editor's Choice Award for his nice original sleds.
A big thank you to SnoWest Magazine for allowing antique and vintage snowmobiles to be on display at this year's Intermountain Snowmobile Show. Watch for other vintage snowmobile shows to be held throughout the upcoming year at an event near you. We invite you to visit the Western States Vintage Snowmobile Association's website at www.wsvsa.com for more information and an event calendar.
2010 SnoWest Show Vintage Winners:
1ST Place Original: Tom Whitaker - 1973 Arctic Cat Panther
2ND Place Original: Tom Whitaker - Arctic Cat Kitty Cat Mod
1ST Place Restored: Tony Crnkovich - 1977 Yamaha SRX Sno-Pro 440
2ND Place Restored: Perry Hesteness - 1975 Ski-Doo TNT 245 RV
1ST Place Show Debut: Jim Smith - 1978 Polaris RXL 340
2ND Place Show Debut: Curtis Tate 1969 Polaris Colt 372
1ST Place Editor's Choice: Paul Tate - 1981 John Deere Trailfire 340
2ND Place Editor's Choice: Jeffrey Ruller - 1970 Johnson Skee-Horse 437