After a very successful initial launch in 2018, the Mega Meltdown Vintage Snowmobile Racing event returns to Caribou on Saturday, March 23. The event will once again be held behind the Northern Maine Brewing Company. Funds raised by the Snowmobile Racing event will benefit ‘Brian’s Ride’ a nonprofit organization that supports cancer patients through the Jefferson Cary Cancer Center. The ‘Tame the Track’ touring group will hold their last race in a series of Vintage Sled Racing on a track designed on the property of the Northern Maine Brewing Company.
Vintage sled racing consists of years sleds from 1960’s through 1980s with ‘leaf spring’ suspension. The sleds race in various classes. The Mega Meltdown, will bring a number of sledders from throughout the state vying for points to earn the ‘high points’ trophy. Local snowmobile enthusiasts who have vintage sleds are invited to participate in the racing and all sleds will be registered for the event the day of the race.
Shawn Pelletier, who works with the race organizing committee said that in spite of very cold temperatures last year the event drew a great crowd and he is hoping for even bigger numbers this year.
“We were very impressed with the success of the event in 2018” said Pelletier. “People braved the cold and really turned out to see some exciting racing. I think the fact that this event is for a worthy cause also draws people out. It is hard to think of anyone who has not been touched in some way by cancer. Brian’s Ride has provided thousands of dollars for cancer patients over the years and this event is a large part of our annual fund raising campaign”.
Jimmy Leighton, a vintage snowmobile enthusiast and racer is once again helping to organize the event. He said that the welcome sledders and their families received last year was very impressive.
“We certainly have the snow for this event and people really had a great time last year”, said Leighton. “There is a real sense of hospitality in the County that is hard to find anywhere else. Our conditions should be good and we are hoping for some great crowds as well as a large number sledders”.
Sharon Pelletier, a registered nurse at Cary Medical Center, and the wife of Shawn Pelletier who is part owner of the Northern Maine Brewing Company, is working with the Brian’s Ride Committee to secure sponsorship for the event. She said that local businesses have been very generous.
“We know that local businesses are asked to do so much and yet we have been very pleased with the response we have received”, said Pelletier. “It is our hope that more sponsors will step forward so that we can raise more money for Brian’s Ride and help more cancer patients and their families”.
Brian’s Ride is a special fund created in memory of Brian Caldwell who died from cancer. Over the past two years the fund has helped nearly 100 local cancer patients and their families and raised more than $40,000.
The vintage sled racing event also will invite youngsters to race on sleds called 120’s. The kids racing will feature three classes 120 Stock, 120 Improved, and Kids Modified. There is a Women’s Open, Teens Open, and multiple other classes ranging from Vintage Single Stock to Vintage IFS Stock (up to ’92). Total payout for the event will be $2,000.
In addition to snowmobile racing the Brewing Company will also offer outdoor music, a bonfire and food. Admission to the event is $10 for adults and $5 for students and those under 12. There is a $20 registration fee per sled entering the racing program. Pits for sleds will be open at 8:00 am and racing starts at 11:00 am.