It was an unusual feat that Sabrina Blanchet achieved on Sunday on the icy speedway of the famous oval course in Eagle River, Wisconsin, when she was crowned snowmobile world champion in the Vintage 440 Super Mod category. .
At the finish line, she beat 11 opponents, all men, who faced her in a tough ten-lap final.
“It’s definitely one of the best victories of my career and it bodes well for the rest of the season,” said Blanchet in a telephone interview withJournal.
The winner was part of a peloton that originally had 59 entries, including another woman.
Blanchet learned very early on not only to compete with men, but also to manage to get ahead of them on the track.
“I’ve never been intimidated by guys, although some must find it special to be doubled by a girl. I always got the respect of my opponents. »
Sunday’s eventful final gave rise to particularly heated debates.
Numerous accidents forced the race management to raise the red flag on many occasions.
“At first I got hit, but luckily there was no damage and I was able to continue. Subsequently, I was able to avoid collisions while keeping my pursuers behind me”, indicated the 26-year-old driver who led nine of the ten laps of the event.
In addition to its triumph in the Vintage 440 Super Mod category, it also scored three other victories [dans des catégories inférieures] and also reached the podium[2[2e et 3e positions]on two other occasions.
Great ambitions in Valcourt
This achievement comes at a very good time for Blanchet, who will return to the Grand Prix de Valcourt, which the pandemic has forced to cancel for the past two years.
“I have fond memories of my last visit to Valcourt,” recalls the Drummondville resident. In 2020, I finished second on Saturday in the premier Pro Champ category. However, this year, I am aiming for victories in front of parents, friends and sponsors. It’s my aim. »
Note that the Vintage category, which gave him his championship on Sunday, returns to the programming of the 40e Grand Prix de Valcourt (February 10 to 12) after several years of absence.
“The goal is obviously to win, even if, as in the Vintage class, the competition is very strong,” she added.
It should take part in the Pro Champ events at Boonville, then at Eganville, two races scheduled before that of Valcourt in a few weeks.
Blanchet was immersed in the world of snowmobile racing at a very young age. His grandfather, Gaston Ferland, was one of the tenors of the discipline in the 1960s and 1970s.