The Alaskan Grizzly is based in the sub-arctic, closer by far to Santa's home than to the nearest drag strip. In fact, Grizzly driver Jamie Bodenstadt graduated from North Pole High School. Three generations of the Bodenstadts are Mr. Claus's neighbors, living in Interior Alaska's Fairbanks and North Pole areas. And you can bet that they've put a few racing goodies on their Christmas lists over the years; for more than a quarter century, the Alaskan Grizzly has been a passion for the family. Gary and Susan, Jamie's parents, Angie, Jamie's wife, and brother Marty are key members of the team, as well, doing everything from working on the Grizzly to planning the logistics of race weekends.
But even though the team reigns from the frozen North, they certainly don't have cold feet when it comes to racing. It might help that the racing season takes place during Alaska's long summer days, when the sun shines for more than 20 hours a day. And then, during the equally long winter nights, the team plots their strategy for the next season.
When the snow melts come spring time, the Bodenstadts are ready to hit the road for multiple race weekends, traveling hundreds of miles to get to the closest drag strip, in Palmer, Alaska. With a 95-foot motor home and stacker trailer, they've got all the supplies they need to keep the Grizzly growling, even when home base is an eight hour drive away. Keeping everything in top racing form can be a challenge, but it's one the Alaskan Grizzly team thrives on.
Cars aren't just a hobby for the Bodenstadts, though, it's their business as well. The family runs the Gas & Diesel Doctor, an auto repair shop in Fairbanks, Alaska, that specializes in the repair of diesel pick-up trucks. The shop is well known in the area, drawing clients from as far away as Canada's Yukon Territory.
And, when the team isn't gearing up for a great race or hard at work at the Gas & Diesel Doctor, they're enjoying the great outdoors as a family. Camping and fishing are some of their favorite pursuits, but so far, there have been no sightings of an actual grizzly during these adventures. But when they do see one, you can be sure you'll hear about it on alaskangrizzly.com!
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