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First-ever ATV & UTV derby concludes Submitted: 08/31/2015

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EAGLE RIVER - The first-ever ATV & UTV Side by Side World Championship Derby finished up Sunday afternoon. 

Races started on Saturday and continued through the weekend. 

Spectators, racers and event staff all say they were pleased with how the event turned out.

"There's always going to be some nit-nat things that need to be changed, but I can tell you for the first event with everything we had going, it really went well," said Russell Davis, the Derbytrack's VP of Sales and Marketing. "And we're going to have some meetings afterward and obviously change some things, but we've got a lot of compliments, mostly positive, and we're excited to build on next year."

Event organizers estimate about 150 racers of all ages and from all over came to the challenge. Winners got cash prizes. The derby also had night events such as a mud run and a freestyle show.

Next year organizers hope they bring in more people.







Story By: Stephanie Haines

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 LOCAL NEWS

Play Video

EAGLE RIVER - The first-ever ATV & UTV Side by Side World Championship Derby finished up Sunday afternoon. 

Races started on Saturday and continued through the weekend. 

Spectators, racers and event staff all say they were pleased with how the event turned out.

"There's always going to be some nit-nat things that need to be changed, but I can tell you for the first event with everything we had going, it really went well," said Russell Davis, the Derbytrack's VP of Sales and Marketing. "And we're going to have some meetings afterward and obviously change some things, but we've got a lot of compliments, mostly positive, and we're excited to build on next year."

Event organizers estimate about 150 racers of all ages and from all over came to the challenge. Winners got cash prizes. The derby also had night events such as a mud run and a freestyle show.

Next year organizers hope they bring in more people.




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EAGLE RIVER - Wisconsin native Zac Zakowski won the UTV championship derby on Sunday at the AMSOIL Eagle River Derbytrack.

"Once you start doing this you can't stop," said professional UTV and ATV driver Zac Zakowski. "It's like a drug."

Zakowski started racing seriously when he was about 17 years old. The fun hobby quickly turned into a pro sport, a career and a lifestyle. He has been traveling to many different races since then, competing at the professional level.

"You kinda miss out on that stuff and you miss it but at the same time when you're doing this stuff, you don't," Zakowski said.

The sport is hard on the body and the wallet. Two years ago, Zakowski said while driving his ATV he hit a tree and tore his ACL in his knee. He was out for two seasons.

One thing almost all ATV drivers, pro or amateur, can agree on is the sport is truly a family affiar.

"I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for my family," Zakowski said. "I mean you can walk the pits and probably almost everybody would say they do it because their family supports it and they do it as a family."

"The lifestyle is tiring because you load up the rig and the trailer to travel thousands of miles to race for an hour or two hours depending on the race," said Zakowski's mother, Linda. "Then you load back up to go home. But once you get to that site on the track you're excited and you just can't wait for things to get going."

Zakowski stopped racing for a while when his mom got diagnosed with breast cancer. Now his mother is in remission and Zakowski participates in races that raise awareness for the disease.

"He paints his whole quad pink and has stickers on it," Linda Zakowski said. 

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WAUSAU - A garage fire in Wausau early this morning will likely cost about $7,200 in damage, according to Wausau Fire Battalion Chief Allan Antolik.

Antolik said it was a 12 by 20 ft detached garage on Pleasant Street.

The Wausau Fire Department responded to the call at 1:30 a.m.

The department says the cause of the fire is undetermined.

No one was hurt. 

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WAUSAU - Wausau responders revived a man who was unconscious in his kayak late Saturday morning, according to Wausau Police Lieutenant Michael Juedes.

Juedes told Newswatch 12 some other kayakers started CPR on the man. 

Police said the man was kayaking on the Wisconsin River in Wausau.

He tipped over his kayak and went underwater.

But when he didn't come back up, other people around him got worried.

Other kayakers brought the man back up and saw he was unconscious.

A doctor and a nurse who happened to be there started CPR on the man.

They called 911.

Wausau responders were able to revive him.

The man is now at Aspirus Wausau Hospital.

Police say they don't yet know how he is doing. 

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 REGIONAL NEWS

MADISON - Attorney General Brad Schimel is arguing that a federal court ruling blocking new Environmental Protection Agency water pollution regulations should apply nationwide.

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GREEN BAY - Some football fans heading into Lambeau Field Saturday for the Green Bay Packers first preseason home game this year will encounter newly installed metal detectors.

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COLUMBIA, SC - Republican presidential candidate Scott Walker says the United States would aggressively confront what he describes as "radical Islamic terrorism" should he be elected.

The Wisconsin governor plans to lay out his foreign policy agenda Friday in a speech at The Citadel, a military college in Charleston, South Carolina.

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MINNEAPOLIS - Hillary Rodham Clinton, Bernie Sanders, Martin O'Malley and Lincoln Chafee are making high-profile speeches to members of the Democratic National Committee during its summer meeting in Minneapolis.

For the presidential field, it's their first opportunity to appeal directly to a national gathering of current and former elected leaders, state committee members and other leaders in the Democratic Party who serve as super delegates for each presidential campaign.

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