Google search engineGoogle search engine
HomeNewsFirst Ride: Engineering Claims First Tracks in Thief River Falls

First Ride: Engineering Claims First Tracks in Thief River Falls

My old pal Alicia Martin shared photos of snow engineering’s first tracks ridden in Thief River Falls at the factory earlier this week. Seeing these 2021’s on snow is getting me excited to ride!

If you’re wondering, “Ols” is giving a thumbs up. He knows I’m not Number One.



  1. Desperatly looking for a 2021 RXC! I was traveling and didn’t get the “Snowmagedden” order in. Unfortunately, no dealers in Michigan ordered any for stock. Does anyone have any leads on where I might be able to buy one?

  2. I like that the engineers are driving sleds with real windshields – which we can’t choose when ordering a sled and instead have to spend an extra $150 to get.

  3. Kevin – I sense a hint of sarcasm, and I don’t disagree with you. The windshield height debate is long and storied…I sat in nearly 20yrs of styling meetings where this topic comes up every year. At the end of the day, more consumers (and dealers) complain tall windshields make the snowmobiles look slower and less appealing from a showroom styling standpoint. Is the fleece thong functional? No. But they sure look better than granny panties.

  4. It’s nice to see cats last two engineers hard at work. Nice job!!!!! But shouldn’t they be testing the all new 2022 snowmachines!!!!LOL!!!!

  5. Hopefully another great season on the horizon!

    Kale, kind of a random question…do you have any insight into the Riots using straight rails vs tipped rails that the competition uses? I’ve been a shorter track guy my whole life, but I would look hard at a tipped rail crossover. Seems like no downsides with shorty cornering feel?


  6. Bill,
    Mike is still the head of the race department. Last I heard they didn’t have any left either.
    My front bumper isn’t here yet either, dealer hasn’t been able to get a date on it.

  7. Kevin and Kale – When I was young, all the cool sleds came with a token windshield, just like they do today. The 70’s elTrigre, TX and Blizzard all had tiny windshields when they left the factories. Back then, there weren’t too many refitted with tall windshields (which were available). I remember riding those sleds with low windshields and heated NOTHING – boy, were they cold! But, the bumps beat you to death, so it’s not like that was the worst of the problems those sleds had.

    I’m waiting a windshield myself. Hopefully, it gets here before the real snow starts flying in N MN.

    I like the Polaris build-to-order process and wish that Cat would do the same. It would be very cool to spring order and the sleds left TRF with the accessories you picked out at that time.

    Speaking of cool, How about having workers actually sign the sleds they built? In WW II, workers did this all the time. Signatures someplace inconspicuous, like under the seat.

    One more cool thing: Marry the NS1 gauge to full-sized Cats as standard equipment – all full-sized sleds. Let Doo and Polaris fight about who has the best optional gauge, and jump right over them with the best standard gauge.

  8. Have to be wondering what a Cat engineer is working on these days. Making sure the new colors ride as well as they did last year?

    About the windshield looking slower in the showroom – that’s not a problem any more for Cat, correct?

  9. To everyone asking why they are riding previous editions. Why would Kale put a yet-to-be-released anything on a forum platform? As a person who leads a product development team for a totally different industry, I am glad that when we badge as current model year platforms people still cannot get past it missing anything we might not have hid well enough.

    Moral of the story. Don’t let criticisms cloud your vision. You never know what you’re missing out on.

  10. Would be nice to get a hint of something that shows they plan to stay in the game -engineers out riding 2021’s that no one can walk into a showroom and buy is a strange site.

    In the last few years, the Blast and the 200 were nice additions for perhaps new markets, and the Alpha rear skid was big too, and the riot to some extent. The Canada customers are left out to dry along with the 18-19 800, which was set aside with no explanation. There is no press whatsoever on them anymore either. Just seems that there is no development of chassis or engines for the main product lines. Perhaps they are content to sell 10-15% of the market and focus on the value side.

  11. Mark – I talked to a dealer about a week ago who said they were asked by the factory for input in the lineup, what should go and what they should bring back. I think we can assume there’s a new chassis in the works, and that people’s jobs are on the line if a single detail is leaked before they are ready to announce. Because of that, there’s no way for us to know what’s next, but I think the fact that they are reaching out to dealers tells me that things have gone well and they’re planning to regain market share. The Canadian situation is terrible, but the saga it still hasn’t ended, from what I understand. Maybe that’s why we haven’t heard anything new for a while. And, btw, I got a survey today from Cat, and I plan to bend their ear on a few suggestions I have.

  12. Krom,
    Thank you for your reply. I did get a call from Mike and he verified what you have said in your post. There are none available at all from the factory. My only hope now is that a dealer somewhere may have ordered one for stock but the light on that hope is dimming fast. I love the color of the new RXC and when I think of my 2015 Tucker Hibbert model and the way it handled I was ready for the 2021. Oh well…..

  13. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder when it comes to windshields. And you won’t see any cross country racers or Arctic Cat test riders using thong bikini windshields on their machines


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Most Popular