Eagle River will again become the center of World snowmobile racing this week with the running of the 21st annual Vintage Championship. Following that of course will be the 59th annual World Championship Snowmobile Derby, still considered by many in the sport as the Super Bowl of snowmobile racing.

Events at the famed World Championship Derby Complex will begin Thursday and run through Sunday as testing, qualifying races and then the coveted World Championship Vintage race is set for Sunday afternoon. The following week will be packed once more with racing events as teams from around the United States make their way to Eagle River for racing events.

There is a lot of optimism surrounding events this year, particularly with many changes being implemented in the World Championship division next weekend. That and an increase in popularity hopes to spur entries and spectators in a positive direction following a pandemic-laden 2021.

Derby Complex race director Craig Marchbank has been one of the sports biggest proponents in dealing with the many changes, which, like any change in life have come with those naysayers. Many of course who will stop at nothing as they prophet from their online pulpit that these changes coming just won’t work.

One thing though that race fans both want and strive for is controversy.

If there is any sport that has both thrived and fueled itself with controversy across generations, it is racing.

The big adjustment for fans and racers this year comes of course with the changing of the guard in terms of World Championship divisions. Moving from Pro-Champ 440 to the Formula III chasis and engine packages means a whole new look for what had been the elite class in ice oval racing.

Many can speculate as to why the change was made, especially beneath the surface. But one thing that isn’t up for debate is that someone will have their name etched in history on the Sno-Goer Cup next weekend, carrying on the torch of heroes both past and present who’ve laid their claim to fame at Eagle River.

Fans who’ve never been to the Derby Complex should take some time away from their schedule this week or next to visit the complex and take in a race.

Whether it’s standing alongside the Kitty Kat drivers and teams with racers as young as five years old, or watching some of the most elite drivers in the sport turn laps at over 100 miles per hour, there is a certain adrenaline rush that comes over anyone who steps on the grounds these next two weeks.

Don’t miss your chance this year to witness racing and sports history.