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Alicia's World: I Love It (Snowmobiling)


(1/31/2019)

Arctic Cat's Alicia Martin

Like many of us, Alicia Martin loves snowmobling to her very core. She's also an Arctic Cat engineer and Team Arctic racer. And she's willing to share with us her experiences as a passionate snowmobiler, engineer and racer, beginning with with this really cool introduction.

Read about how her love of snowmobiling brought her to Thief River Falls and Arctic Cat:

 

I Love It

I often think of my favorite Wayne quote: “Party on, Garth”.

Wait a minute… that’s not right.  Wrong Wayne! 

I meant The Great One.  Wayne Gretzky.  He said, “I love everything about hockey.”  He loves game. He loves passing, shooting, assisting, practice, drills, traveling for games, his teammates, learning, and teaching.  He loves everything about it and I think of his passion when I think of my own toward snowmobiling. He said, “Hockey is my life. I love every minute of it.”

I love every minute of uncrating sleds, pouring gas, and changing skis.  I love learning about clutching, gearing, and suspension. 

I live for the days when I can go mountain riding, ditch riding, tree riding, or trail riding. I love the smell in the air before a snow storm and the way fresh powder crunches under my boots.  I still get an adrenaline rush just thinking of racing whether it’s snocross, hillclimb, or cross country. I love talking to people about their favorite exhaust, a trip they took 3 years ago, and what the snow is like out West. I could sit and chat with people who have spent 50+ years in the industry about what they’ve seen and learned till the cows come home. I left my home and everyone I knew, then moved across the country because I love this sport and have always dreamed of being at the heart of it.

So, I was surprised the other day when someone came up to me while I was studding a track and huffed, “Looks like you got stuck with the crappy job.” 

*Read this next part with sass. One had on your hip. The other with your index finger in the air*

First of all, buddy, it’s my own track, and I need studs if I want to race next weekend.  Second of all, this is part of snowmobiling. And I love it.  Sure, I may have drilled through my own thumb, but studding tracks is part of the game.  It didn’t even cross my mind to think that what I was doing was “crappy” or that I was “stuck” doing it.  I love being involved whether I’m working on my own sled or someone else’s, studding tracks or spilling chaincase oil all over the ground, trying to pull over an 800 when it’s 10 below or fishing a pipe spring out from under the motor. I love every minute of it.

The people, most of all, make this sport great.  My favorite and fondest memories usually involve sleds and riding.  I remember my mom and I riding ZRs up Mill Creek together when I was barely big enough to see over the handlebars while standing up (I guess that’s not saying much… I can barely see over the bars now).  I’ll always think of mowing through the steep trees up Gold Hill, proud of the line I made just to keep up with my brother.  I’ll never forget my dad blazing passed me through the bumps in the Co-Ed class racing Meeker, Colorado thinking, “holy smokes, he’s fast!”. I’ll cherish all the new friends I met and came to know riding this winter over Christmas in Steamboat.

I even loved working late nights and early weekend mornings in the parts department at the dealership in Laramie just to keep the heat on in my 1-bedroom apartment while earning my engineering degree.  I was pumped to see how excited a group of guys were that we had a trailing arm in-stock for a ’98 670 Summit, because that meant they could go for a ride that weekend.  I wouldn’t trade any of it for the world.

A friend just told me something that hit me right in the pump.  He said that he has nothing but thankfulness in his heart from what this sport has brought to his life.  Aside from the accomplishments, he commented the people in the industry, in the Arctic Cat factory, in those offices make life worth living. 

He said, “Dream big, Alicia.  Set goals and make tracks. Make our sled go from third-place to first. But most of all, have fun. This isn’t a job. It’s a lifestyle.”

And there you have it. Whether you ride a 2019 Alpha One, or a 1978 Kawasaki Drifter. It’s all fun.  It’s what makes life worth living. 

So, party on, everyone. 

 

Arctic Cat's Alicia Martin

Arctic Cat's Alicia Martin

Alicia Martin was born and raised in Evanston, Wyoming and has been riding snowmobiles with friends and family since she could walk. She grew up racing snocross, hillclimb, cross-country, and backcountry mountain riding around Utah, Wyoming, Idaho, and Colorado. She moved to Thief River Falls last year to work at Arctic Cat as a Snowmobile Test Engineer and has been racing the USXC circuit in the Womens Class.  In the off-season, she loves riding dirtbikes, bicycles, hunting and fishing, and working on Mopars.



Comments (16):

CATMAN says:
1/31/2019 6:36:00 AM

You GO girl,Your living many peoples dreams
Thanks for a great read John
Alex says:
1/31/2019 9:25:00 AM

Weird... Alicia having sass... who would have known...

You forgot to mention shes a badass mechanic for a long hair at various snocross events haha. Shes a good egg.
ibleedgreen says:
2/1/2019 11:15:00 AM

That gave me chills...
MNSnoPro says:
2/1/2019 4:03:00 PM

Don't forget... She rips on a sled too!

I saw the no. 9 coming down the ditch in Park Rapids a couple weeks ago and thought who the heck was that? They're hauling...

So pumped for you Alicia! Keep the passion. That's what Arctic Cat is all about!

You have a wise friend.
Tom Rowland says:
2/1/2019 9:01:00 PM

Heck yea, right on Alicia!
Jon Carlson says:
2/2/2019 6:46:00 AM

I haven't read or heard anything that describes the passion of snowmobiling and competing like Alica's words......she captured the beautiful insight that spans generations of of us and our passion for the sport! Alica I look forward to seeing you leading our industry, and your picture and message on the annual report! Respectfully Jon
Bill Nemanis says:
2/3/2019 11:48:00 AM

This is a great read Alica! Keep riding, testing, designing and let's give the Arctic Cat faithful the sleds that will make any Yellow rider turn Green with envy!!
Dave Guenther says:
2/4/2019 6:19:00 PM

Right on Alicia! when you get to do what you love everyday you never have to spend a day going to work... great story John . so refreshing to see!
mopars&cats says:
2/5/2019 9:54:00 AM

And a Mopar girl on top off it? Nice....
Darin says:
2/5/2019 12:40:00 PM

yes, good choice in vehicles
I love cat and mopar so much that i ordered my new scat pack shaker challenger in Arctic cat green go.
Haha
mopars&cats says:
2/5/2019 2:44:00 PM

Right on Darin! Have a couple of Challengers myself, and two Cudas. Mine are a few years older than yours though. Lol
B&E OUTDOORS says:
2/5/2019 3:05:00 PM

I just heard that Roger is done at Cat/Textron …. She will have big shoes to fill...
Mike F says:
2/5/2019 6:40:00 PM

Set goals and make tracks....I wonder where I have heard that before?
Scott Schuster says:
2/6/2019 8:08:00 AM

Awesome Alicia!!! Passion is what snowmobiling is all about and something that people who don't ride will never understand. Ride On & see you at the Races!!!
Matt says:
2/6/2019 6:39:00 PM

We just lost 3 dealers in our area I think we should be concerned about what the future of cat is. All 3 I talked to said same thing floor plan on leftovers then having to take more inventory killing them. I hate to loose my dealer been great to deal with honest and truly cares about the customer. If the rumors are true I’ll be moving to doo. It’s a shame I’ve been cat guy since 74 they have brought lots of technology to this sport that consumers and other manufactures have benefited from. My dealer has posters displayed of cats through the years hanging on the walls so many good memories of sleds that we’re produced. Cat is finally starting to make a better product especially a domestic twin produced in Minnesota. I see know reason why cat shouldn’t have been sitting at the top of the industry but greed and mismanagement has put them in the spot their in. Let’s hope that these dealers dropping them isn’t a sign of things to come.
Mark J Hayward says:
4/8/2019 10:51:00 PM

People I admire.. Smokey Yunick, E.J. Potter, Bill Grumpy Jenkins, Bob Glidden, John Force, JR Johnson, Alan Kuiwikki , Dick Trickle
Olav Aaen,
I had never heard of Alicia Martin before but she sounds very interesting.

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