I was trying to find a picture of the engine and didn't see one. I know on my Troy it has a wrap around piece of plastic that starts on the side opposite the starter, around the recoil and then over the starter. If I remember right some of the exhaust guard needs to come loose too. I would think yours might be similar.
The solution is as described. All that covers the flywheel needs to be removed to access the bolts holding the starter to the engine. What a piss-poor design compared to the simple '2-screws-and-remove' design for the majority of engines out there.
I have an Ariens model #921038 from 2014 with an lct ax 306cc engine. I'm having electric starter issues and I did remove the electric starter about two weeks ago. What I did was starting at the electric starter switch remove the two screws holding the push button box and behind that remove the two silver bolts that hold the metal shroud to the engine. Once you did that follow the metal shroud around to the front above the recoil and remove the four black screws holding the two metal shrouds together. Now you can pull the fuel shut off knob off. Once the knob is off lift the two metal shrouds up and remove the right one from the left one. You will need to remove two more black screws from above the primer bulb so metal shrouds can be lifted apart. Now you remove the recoil three screws. After all that lift the metal shroud covering the electric starter and hold it up while removing the two bolts holding the starter to the block. I know it sounds like a lot of work but take your time, maybe 20 mins. to get this done. I searched the internet and went to LCT in S.C. and followed instructions from them. Nothing on the internet forums or from Donyboy 73 available. Good Luck, let me know how you make out, we're all in this together.
I was out shopping and went down the snowblower isle. The new(er) machines I saw have the starter bolted in from the recoil side. The recoil and flywheel shroud would need to be removed to get to the bolts that hold the starter in place.