Sabrina Blanchet of Drummondville, Quebec, Canada made snowmobile racing history Sunday at the World Championship Derby Complex (WCDC) in Eagle River.

Piloting her 1974 Samson Racing replica Ski-Doo SnoPro Super Mod 440, Blanchet outlasted a first lap crash and stayed ahead of trouble the rest of the race becoming the first female driver to be crowned World Champion in the event’s 22-year history.

Blanchet’s win didn’t come easy as she was nearly caught in a nasty wreck coming into turn one on the very first lap that left Alec Nesbit of Princeton, Minn., and Mason Schuette of Rhinelander both shaken up, as well as out of the race.

Schuette high-sided coming into turn one and shot just past the rear bumper of Blanchet’s sled, clipping Nesbit and sending both drivers to the pits.

On the next restart Blanchet, her teammate Jay Mittelsteadt of La Valle and defending Vintage World Champion Matt Goede all cleared the first turn before Brice Pretzel of Belding, Mich., overturned leading to another caution and restart.

Blanchet then won the race to the first corner off the next restart, and avoided the next wreck behind her which took out two of the top contenders who were battling for second position.

Mittelstaedt drove his No. 297 Ski-Doo hard into turns three and four, and midway through lost his bite on the front of the sled which shot him up the track and right into the side of Goede who was attempting a pass on the high side exiting turn four.

Goede rocketed up the track into the fence while Mittelstaedt also had to be escorted to the pits midway through the race which left just eight sleds competing for the championship.

A staggered restart seemed to work in favor of Curtis Pederson of Fargo, North Dakota as he for a brief moment seemed to have something to challenge Blanchet. With three laps to go Matt Bennett of New London fell victim to engine trouble, bringing out the red flag and tightening the field for one final dash to the finish.

Blanchet wouldn’t be denied as she quickly put her Ski-Doo on the preferred line coming into the first turn and never looked back, pulling away from Pederson to claim her first-ever World Championship Vintage Derby title.

Finishing in third place was Lucas Nast of Lancaster, New Hampshire. Behind him was AJ Lange of Maple Grove, Minn. These were the only four drivers to complete the 10-lap final.

Fifth place went to Bennett followed by Kevin Flannery of Marquette, Mich., in sixth. Pretzel was seventh followed by Ross Olson of Fargo, North Dakota in eighth. Mittelstaedt was ninth, Goede 10th, Shuette in 11th and Nesbit in 12th.

Following the race Blanchet’s victory was protested by the Pederson pit saying a part of her front suspension and ski configuration were not in alignment with the championship class rules. Speculation of course fueled online discussions on social media platforms throughout the night Sunday, but officials have said that no announcement on the protest will come until at least Wednesday following inspection from International Snowmobile Racing personnel.