“Hedgehog Day”, Wednesday, February 1 broke cloudy, still and a warm 37 degrees in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin, as the “Hedgehog,” lawn mower racer Mike Miller emerged from his burrow, the world waiting to see if he would see his shadow and to hear his prediction for the start of his first race of the 20th Anniversary STA-BIL® Lawn and Garden Mower Racing Series.
Miller then returned to his burrow, which also functions as his garage, and brought his souped up, 80-mph Factory Experimental racing mower, also named “Hedgehog” out for a few hot laps on the winter morning grass.
After slinging some sod, he turned to Bruce Kaufman, “Mr. Mow It All” U.S. Lawn Mower Racing Association President to translate his prediction for when “The Hedgehog” will start his first race of the 20th Anniversary STA-BIL® Lawn and Garden Mower Racing Series. Spoken in “Mowerese” a language understood only by Mr. Mow It All, the news was shared with the world:
HERE YE, HERE YE!
On this winter morning I see,
No shadow lies near me.
So I shall bring out my mower to race,
On April Fool’s Day, to set the pace.
My bladeless wonder “HEDGEHOG” will soar,
To speeds of 60 mph – or more.
20 years of kickin’ grass,
Now, out of my way and let me pass!
Miller built his championship mower, The Hedgehog, 15 years ago and has piloted his trusty ride to numerous STA-BIL Series victories and championships in his 19-year lawn mower racing career. Hedgehog is a 1968 E.T. Rugg, with a 390cc Honda Power motor, turning 45 horsepower. It will go zero to 50 in 5.5 seconds and reach a top speed of 80 mph.
“We plan to make Hedgehog Day an annual tradition,” added Kaufman. “It is only fitting that we present our first Hedgehog Day as part of our 20th Anniversary. Since the “Hedgehog” did not see shadow, he will leave his burrow on April Fool’s Day, the 20th birthday of the U.S. Lawn Mower Racing Association to begin his racing season. If the “Hedgehog” saw his shadow, he would have returned to his garage to tinker and make adjustments for the season, making his racing debut June 23, under the warm summer sun at the 4th Annual STA-BIL Land of Lincoln Regionals, at Nostalgia Days in Zion, Illinois.”
Also like the famous mowtivated mammal that emerges in February, Hedgehog has its own “elixir of life,” HEET Gas-Line Antifreeze that allows his engine to start right up and spring him to life in the cold winter months. Hedgehog fills up with HEET each winter to keep him mowing and going. HEET removes water from the fuel system to prevent gas-line freeze-up and harmful rust and corrosion. Miller also uses Iso-HEET Premium Fuel-line Antifreeze, Water Remover & Injector Cleaner. It absorbs five times more water than regular gas-line antifreeze, while it cleans fuel injectors and carburetors. It’s designed for use year-round in all 2-cycle and 4-cycle gasoline engines and diesel engines.