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Arctic Cat Teams With Olah Racing

THIEF RIVER FALLS, Minn.- (BW) Arctic Cat Inc. today added an impressive name to its snocross racing program, announcing that Fergus Falls, Minn.-based Olah Racing has signed a two-year agreement with the company. Arctic Cat and Olah will field professional and semi-professional race teams for the 2002-03 World Snowmobile Association (WSA) Snocross Circuit. The agreement represents the largest commitment to an independent race team in Arctic Cat's history.

"We're really excited that Arctic Cat is partnering with Olah Racing," said Brian Sturgeon, race director, Arctic Cat. "With Olah Racing's expertise, top racers and committed sponsors, their team is an immediate force in snocross competition."

Olah Racing has built an impressive record in snowmobile racing. In 2001, Olah fielded two teams with 16 combined World Championship Titles and 28 World Records. The teams' major wins include the WSA Triple Crown Championship and back-to-back World Championship Titles in Drag Racing. The 2001 team pedigree was unprecedented in the sport.

"I'm extremely pleased to be associated with Arctic Cat," said Brad Olah, team owner. "They lead the industry in technology. I'm excited about the upcoming season and the value we will deliver to our sponsors. By developing top teams, producing consistent race results and delivering innovative marketing programs, we help our sponsors build brand equity."

The Olah Racing Professional Team for 2002 includes Steve Thorsen, crew chief, and Dean Schwarzwalter, chief mechanic. Both are former World Champions. Pro Drivers are Kent Ipsen and TJ Gulla.

"These guys are not only talented, but also dedicated and passionate about the sport, which is what it takes to win," Olah said. "We think they're going to have bust-out seasons this year. Steve and Dean are pure professionals with exceptional backgrounds. Each has more than 30 years experience racing and managing crews and sleds. Team infrastructure is a key to success, and we believe we have the best."

Racer Kent Ipsen posted a strong rookie season in 2000, with four top 5 and eight top 10 finishes. He's back after a knee injury, and promises to hit the track firing on all cylinders.

"After taking a year off, I'm back to 110 percent and anxious to start racing again," Ipsen said. "I'm excited be part of the Olah Racing Team. It's going to be a great season."

Co-racer TJ Gulla echoed his teammate's sentiments, "I'm very excited to be back with Arctic Cat. I also look forward to having Kent as a teammate. He's a great driver and we'll have a positive effect on each other."

Olah Racing's Semi-Professional Team will include drivers Robbie Malinoski and Ryan Simons. Garth Gordon will serve as crew chief and Wayne Hoffman as chief mechanic. Gordon and Hoffman have been a part of 14 World Championship teams. As crew chief in 2001, Garth took first and second in the Eagle River World Championship.

"I look forward to working with Brad at Arctic Cat for yet another season," said Gordon, who has been an Arctic Cat dealer for 15 years. "He knows the business and runs a very professional organization both on and off the track. I am also glad to see us make the switch to Arctic Cat. They have great sleds."

"This is a huge opportunity," said Simons, who has been racing for four years, always with Arctic Cat. "I am proud to be driving for Arctic Cat and to be part of such an amazing team. I'm looking forward to driving with Ryan and learning from the Pro drivers, Kent and TJ. "

When asked how he feels about being part of the Arctic Cat Olah Racing Team, Malinoski said, "It's a dream come true!"

In addition to Arctic Cat, other team sponsors for the 2002-03 season include Chevrolet, Scott USA, Snap-On, Mikuni America Corporation, Camoplast, V-Force, Woody's and Fox Racing Gear.

Based in Fergus Falls, Minn., Olah Racing has a world-class organization of racers, team members and sponsors committed to the sport of snowmobile racing. More information can be found at the team's Web site at www.olahracing.com. The Web site includes race results, race schedules, team member bios, photos, interactive chat boards and up-to-date information on Olah Racing. Sponsor logos, rotational advertising and Web links also appear at the site.
 
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