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Ennismore snowcross racer won’t let Asperger’s slow her down

Click to play video: 'Snowmobiler races for Autism awareness' Snowmobiler races for Autism awareness
A Peterborough teenager with Asperger's says snowcross racing helps her concentrate – Feb 19, 2018

Lindsey McClenaghan says snowcross racing has become a learning tool after being diagnosed with Asperger syndrome on the autism spectrum.

The 16-year-old has been snowmobiling for a decade and says it helps her concentrate.

“I enjoy it because it’s fun racing against other people and going over jumps and racing on the track,” said McClenaghan, who lives in Ennismore just north of Peterborough.

The teen competed in front of family and friends during the weekend’s Kawartha Cup — an annual race on the Canadian Snowcross Racing Association’s (CSRA) circuit in nearby Lindsay.

The two-day event at the Lindsay Exhibition attracted more than 250 amateur and professional racers.

For the McClenaghan family, the major event also helps them raise awareness of autism. Their snowmobiles are adorned with “Autism Awareness” logos and they highlight Lindsey’s successes on the track. Lindsey’s young sister Meaghan, 13, also competes.

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“The girls absolutely love the sport,” said proud dad Eric, who operates Realm Racing. “It’s a great family event too. There’s a lot of camaraderie here — it’s an enjoyable sport.”

Meghan says she is eyeing the top prize.

READ MORE: Olympic rower Silken Laumann speaks about autism

“Well, it’s kind of nerve-racking — I want to come top three or top five because I want to reach the podium.”

The CSRA’s season wraps up at the end of March at Horseshoe Valley Ski Resort in Barrie, Ont.

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