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81-year-old Severson lives life full throttle

At 81 years old, Larry Severson is living life to the fullest and with a need for speed. The Westfield native is a three-time Pro Vintage Racing snowmobile champion. He is the oldest active racer to accomplish such a feat.

“I started racing in 1967, off and on,” said Severson. “Then, they started older classes for 60-year-old people and 70-year-old people.”

Severson races in both classes. More often in the 70-plus class. All drivers must be 70 years old. He is 81, competing, and winning. Adding to the race, in a vintage style, the sled can’t be newer than 1980. Severson drives a 1976 Polaris TX 250.

It’s turned into a father-son duo. Larry’s son Dan does most of the mechanic work on the sleds they race.

“He does a very good job, and we maintain our sleds, and we spend a lot of money on machinery and motors,” Dan said. “We expect to be up in front.”

Race day takes the Seversons all over the state. The biggest race each year is in Eagle River at the World Championship Derby Complex. Last week, Severson won his third title in Eagle River.

“It’s incredible at his age. His strength at his age,” Dan said. “What he does is pretty much unheard of.”

Larry will race on January 26 in Holcombe, WI, again on February 9 in Ironwood, MI and on February 23 in Dorchester, WI.

 

Alec Ausmus

Sports reporter

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