Famous Early Snowmobile Race to Hold 50th Reunion in 2014

by Midge Rosebrook
Berlin Reporter

November 28, 2012

Lancaster In 2014, Lancaster will be celebrating its 250 anniversary as a township. Lancaster, once known as "Snowmobile City USA," held a snowmobile race as one of the many events, during their winter carnival on the first weekend of February in 1964, that kicked off a year round 200 "Bi-Centennial" celebration.

Although Lancaster held it's first organized snowmobile races in 1962 and again in '63, there was no name for them other than "Motorized Sled Races." But for the special 1964 race it was called, "The International Grand Prix."

This race was so successful, that for the next 13 years the "Grand Prix" was one of the premier races and a must stop for all of the top drivers, who were riding the finest racing sleds in the world!

They were vying for the chance to win the coveted “Kilkenny Cup”, named for the rugged mountain range on the outskirts of town. To win this cup, one needed to garner top points for three consecutive years. A feat that proved too great, even for the best! This cup, one of early snowmobiling’s most coveted trophies, now resides in the clubhouse of the “oldest” snowmobile club in America, “the Lancaster Snow-Drifters.” Its base is adorned with the list of names of drivers that reads like the roster of "The Snowmobile Hall of Fame."

In 2014, a little over a year from now, Lancaster will be holding a 50th reunion of “The International Grand Prix.” Once the largest outdoor winter event held in New Hampshire, with upwards of 15,000 spectators at its height, the Grand Prix is coming back! There will be vintage racing and snow-cross racing to be held near the Lancaster fairgrounds, where world-class snowmobile racing once encompassed their half-mile track. All are invited!

But make no mistake. This one-time event is for those original "Warriors of Winter" who graced the pages of Bill Vint’s masterpiece written in 1977 of the same name! It may be the last opportunity for these early innovators of snowmobiling to get together for reminiscing and fellowship with their one-time friendly rivals and old teammates. We are hoping for an east meets west reunion, from Minnesota to Maine.

Lancaster is going to be rolling out the "Red Carpet" for these folks, during the week leading up to, and including the first weekend in February of 2014!

For information on where to stay, check out the Northern Gateway Regional Chamber of Commerce website athttp://www.northerngatewaychamber.org/

Midge may be reached at 25 Hill Street, Lancaster, NH 03584 or by email at greatnorthwoodsjournal@myfairpoint.net

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