I’ll soon post the Team Arctic results and press release from the first weekend of racing in 2014, and it will highlight Tucker Hibbert’s historic wins along with the outstanding performance by Pro 600 winner Brian Dick (and all of Team Green) at the USXC cross-country in Detroit Lakes, Minn.
But the official press releases won’t tell what I think are two of the best stories of the weekend.
The first unfolded on Friday night at Canterbury Park in Shakopee, Minn., where Hibbert came into the weekend tied with Blair Morgan at 84 national pro class victories.
Before I continue with the story, we need to pause for a second to let that fact sink in.
84… Pro… Victories! That doesn’t even include wins at the X Games or regional events.
It’s a number that highlights the incredible talent and drive of two gentlemen who have absolutely, completely dominated the sport of snocross for the past 15 years.
Coming into Canterbury weekend, there had been a lot of questions directed to Tucker about Blair and their shared record. BJ Smith wrote THIS excellent story on ESPN.com detailing the historic moment.
There was never any question about whether Tucker was aiming to break the record. After all, he is a professional racer, still at the peak of his abilities and riding a wave of confidence that looks all but impenetrable. Tucker races to win, period, even if it means surpassing his friend’s win record.
Yet Tucker also understood the historical moment.
So as he launched off the monstrous finish line jump to take his 85th career victory, Tucker Hibbert did the one thing he could to honor his friend: he performed the first “superman” of his entire career.
It wasn’t pretty (a fact noted by Blair in a teasing text to Tucker the next day), but it was as genuine a salute as you will ever see by a guy who NEVER does tricks and who measures risk VERY carefully.
Truly, Tucker could have easily lost a lot with that trick, but he did it anyway.
We can’t yet know how many more finals Tucker will win, just like we can’t know how many Blair would have won had he not been injured in 2008.
What we do know is that these are the two greatest snocross racers in the history of the sport.
They are supermen whose impact will live on in the record books and memories of all those fortunate enough to witness their success.
Thanks, Tucker and Blair, for all the amazing racing.
Thanks for reading.
(Stay tuned for the behind-the-scenes story of Brian Dick’s win at Detroit Lakes.)