The Art of Competition – An Interest that Became a Business
We’ve painted A.J. Emerick’s vintage snowmobile hoods for many years. Vintage sled restoration is not only time-intensive; it requires attention to detail that most people don’t possess. It’s this incredible patience that makes A.J. a maverick in the field of snowmobile restoration.
Like many northerners, A.J. grew up in a snowmobiling family. He fondly remembers spending several days snowmobiling with his parents and two sisters around their Michigan cabin. Of course, he was perfectly content driving his dad’s hand-me-downs, but nothing compares to your very first snowmobile. For A.J., it was a 1978 Polaris TX.
Since the mid-1970s, A.J. has been involved in all aspects of snowmobiling. From racing to trail and mountain riding, his experience and love of the hobby eventually led him to vintage (1976 to 1980) snowmobile restoration and show.
A.J. caught the competition bug in 2008, after showing his dad’s restored 1979 Polaris Centurion. Since then, he refined his skills to win competition after competition. A.J. now owns seven restored “show-quality” race and trail sleds that encompass the vintage years.
What is so addicting about showing snowmobiles? The pure adrenaline of the competition. After spending hundreds of hours restoring vintage sleds, A.J. takes a critical eye in comparing his work to that of other competitors.
But no one comes close to A.J.’s passion or attention to detail.
Maybe that’s why his 1978 RXL Enduro won the National Championships, along with his 1979 Centurion and 1980 Indy winning their classes. You just can’t beat quality work.
What’s next? A.J.’s passion has shifted to helping other enthusiasts create show-quality vintage sleds. In April, he started a new business aptly called Vintage Snowmobile Restoration [www.vintagesnowmobilerestoration.com], where you can find a large selection of vintage hoods, pans, foam, tunnels, seat covers, flaps/plastics, windshields and decals. However, if you’re seeking a full restoration, you better talk to A.J. soon. He books out quickly.
With vintage sleds being the fastest growing snowmobiling segment, the future looks bright for AJ. The contact number for Vintage Snowmobile Restoration is (507) 685-2537.
Please call Bodywerks at (952) 461-5070 for information about snowmobile hood, suspension and chassis painting.