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Boss Cats to the Arctic Cat 50th Celebration


(7/13/2011)

Arctic Cat Boss Cat III, II and I

Boss Cat I, II and III are among the three most iconic snowmobiles in Arctic Cat history. Thanks to the considerable effort (and expense) of the Warning family, all three will be together at the Arctic Cat 50th Anniversary.

(And for the record, they're shown here L-R: III, II and I.)

According to the Warning family and VintageSleds.com, the 50th Anniversary Celebration will be the last time in the forseable future that all three sleds will be shown together. The Warnings plan to place Boss Cat III on display at the Snowmobile Hall of Fame in St. Germain, Wis.

Arctic Cat Boss Cat III, II and I

Also for the record, the Boss Cat I on the right isn't actually Boss Cat I. It's a stunning reproduction, the result of untold hours of research and recreation.

 

Boss Cat I explodes in Boonville, NY, in 1972, photo courtesy of BossCatLegacy.com

The original Boss Cat I was destroyed during a speed run in Boonville, NY, in 1972, with Team Arctic's Dale Cormican in the cockpit. Cormican escaped, but the turbine-powered, 1000-hp machine that ran 126 mph wasn't so fortunate. A mock-up the the Boss Cat I was recreated and put on display at the Arctic Cat offices/museum, but it was destroyed when a fire ripped through the building in 1973.

I for one and hoping the hex is broken, and that the Warning's recreation remains free from disaster.

 

Test Run with Boss Cat I, photo courtesy of BossCatLegacy.com

Here's another shot of Boss Cat I during a test run at Arctic Cat in Thief River Falls.

 

Boss Cat I with Cormican and Ray, photo courtesy of BossCatLegacy.com

On the left is Dale Cormican, one of the racers who piloted the Boss Cat. On the right is Dennis Ray, the genius who designed all three Boss Cats.

Both Boss Cat II and III are the originals, and restored to their condition during the first speed run heyday in the early 1970s.

Arctic Cat's Kale Wainer observes that the Boss Cats are so iconic and outrageous in style, that they're like looking at the Egyption pyramids. You stand in awe and wonder, not fully able to comprehend their full beauty and presence. I think he's spot-on with the observation.

For the record, Boss Cat I hit 126 mph in 1971.

Boss Cat II hit 130 mph with Charlie Lofton at the helm.

Boss Cat III notched 123 mph in 1973.

(To see the complete history of these machines, go to BossCatLegacy.com and prepare to lose yourself for a few hours.)

The Boss Cats represented a golden era for snowmobiling and Arctic Cat, when the company spared no expense to prove it would compete in all forms of competition. To see the three machines at Arctic Cat during the 50th Celebration will be a historic moment whose imprint will be remembered for decades to come.

I can't wait.

Boss Cat III, photo courtesy of BossCatLegacy.com



Comments (4):

Vince says:
7/16/2011 7:17:00 AM

I would love to hear those machines get fired up, especially Boss Cat III, that definitely would be a sound and feel that wouldn't soon be forgotten.
Greg Hallstrom says:
7/21/2011 5:05:00 PM

That brings back some old memories!
Jim Scheuneman says:
7/21/2011 6:43:00 PM

Brings back memories of the Glory Days of Arctic Enterprises. Back to a simpler time, when gas, along with everything else, was cheaper. When the slide rail suspension, & the leaf-springers RULED!! When the names Coltom, Lofton, Elsner, Thompson, and others struck FEAR in the hearts of racers all across the snowbelt. And, back to a time when a young man by the name of Charlie Lofton, ruled the ovals, and set a land speed record on Boss Cat #2. Clocked at 130 MPH-man, that is FLYING!! Rest in Peace, Charlie...you were one of a kind!!!
Lois Sott says:
7/25/2011 9:16:00 AM

Where can I find out about the 50th celebration & what is going on this week-end? We have a boss cat we would like to bring.
Thanks.

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