Getting Ready For Texas Nats…..

Well last weekend we were in Alabama for AMS 5.0. It was a pretty exhausting trip. 589 entries for a 2 day race make for a long day. We left after watching the Pro Buggy A-Main, which I wish I would of been in instead of watching, and headed to Atlanta to spend the night with my wife’s friends. They treated us to a fantastic breakfast and we were off again to finish our drive back to Florida.

Well it sounds weird but that drive back to Florida was the start to our ROAR Fuel Nationals preparations. I’m borrowing a friends Truggy, thanks Ricky!, and since we were already in the car we decided to push through and drive an hour past our house to go pick it up.

Getting back home Sunday evening I didn’t want to be in the same boat I was in to get ready for AMS, staying up until 1am every night and getting up for work is not something my body handles well anymore. So I unloaded the car and started to tear my Tekno NB-48 apart. Anything was a step in the right direction and I was happy to have done anything Sunday.

So I just rebuilt the nitro buggy for AMS so what should I do? Well being that we were going to Texas and the biggest race in my RC carrier I struggled with how far to take it. I’m not in a position that I can buy a new car whenever and the Tekno’s are made from some kind of unwearable plastic anyways. So I cleaned it, replaced the pins in the CVD’s (I had a ton so why not), replaced the diff oil, and painted a new body (the fiery orange I did for AMS was too hard to see). That was it. I’m picking up the tires there thanks to the JConcepts team and I’ll rebuild the shocks when we get there. The shocks is something I see the pros always wait to do so why not, one less thing on the to do list.

20140615-220855-79735076.jpg I love my Tekno buggy. I’m running a Werks B5 Pro engine, Radiopost radio and Signature Series servos, Trinity 2500mah receiver pack, JC wing/Bullet rims/tires, and Byron’s 30/11 fuel.

With the buggy done it was time to redo Ricky’s Tekno NT-48. This was a little different. Ricky literally just rebuilt the diffs so I’m satisfied with leaving those alone but the list of “to do” items was a bit longer. First I tore it apart and cleaned it.

20140615-221732-80252573.jpg It’s amazing how fast you can tear one of these apart. I usually strip it down to the chassis and go from there. My new air compressor has cut my cleaning times to about a quarter of what it took before. Next step was putting it back together which included my electronics, motor, and updated fuel tank. This was not going to look like the same truck. I pulled the Savox servos and Sprektrum receivers pretty quickly but spent a little extra time making the Radiopost equipment look good. I attached the receiver with Kyosho gel tap and surrounded it with foam like I did in my buggy. Nobody will every see it but it looks fantastic. Same deal with the shocks. eh. I painted a new body but I also picked up mud guards, newly released from Tekno, and painted those to match as well.

20140615-222639-80799994.jpg I’m running a Go engine that was given to me by my good friends Brian and Brandon, I put in a Radiopost receiver and Signature Series servos, Ricky already was using a Trinity 2500mah receiver pack, I added a JC wing with rims/tires getting picked up at the track, and Byron’s 30/11 fuel.

20140615-222754-80874725.jpg This thing looks bad ass. I got it all stickered up to match the buggy now. Nobody would guess it was the same truck. Fortunately my wife is awesome and agreed to let me buy a Truggy kit for the trip to have for spare parts. It just made more sense to buy the kit instead of guessing on what spares to get. Plus the best part, when we get back I’ll be able to replace whatever and build my own truggy!

To finish off preparations, I stole the servo, receiver, and transponder out of my 4×4 SC and will be bringing the Tekno EB-48 for spare parts. I have the car loaded with as much as I can tonight. One day of work tomorrow then we’ll finish loading up and start on our 16+ hour journey to Hutto, Texas. This is going to be awesome.

20140615-233641-85001822.jpg I’m going to do my best to document our ROAR Fuel Nationals adventure.

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Epic Race Weekend

What a fantastic weekend. Newred was a blast getting to go back and run some stock SC with good friends. Whitesides is as fast as they say. Cody Wiles made a great pass on the start and just had a perfect run to win the main and the money. I think I’ll put my stock SC back in retirement. 4×4 SC was a blast and it was great to see 6 out of 9 were Teknos. The top 3 finishers being Teknos. The EB-48 was so much fun and plus we showed E-buggies can be run on any track. Best part of the evening was Ricky Laymen handing his Tekno 4×4 to a young novice driver who broke his in the warm-up for his race. That’s what this hobby is supposed to be.

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I couldn’t of capped off the weekend any better than the epic nitro finish at Capital City Raceway. Brandon Denmark and I made the trip over to Tally Sunday. The track got a lot of rain during the week but the weather was perfect Sunday and the track was ready to run on by time we rolled in. The layout was so much fun, high speed sections, camber changes, elevation changes, technical sections and a long straight. It must of been so entertaining for people visiting the park that day. Brandon and I ran 3 classes each and were running around all day getting vehicles ready for the next run. Brandon especially since I gave him the job of pit guy for the day.

For qualifying drivers were on their own clocks but free to start any time once the loop was live. Brandon and I both ran our Tekno 4×4 SC trucks and started each of the 3 rounds of qualifying with a drag race at the tone. It was so much fun going back and forth in the qualifiers. Again the top 3 were Tekno 4×4’s. E-buggy was a blast as usual and I had a great time chasing Chris Giraldo who ended up with the A-Main win.

Now the nitro was just the second time I’ve gotten to race my new Tekno buggy but it was the most epic race I’ve ever been apart of. I loaded up Carmen’s pit bag (plug) and went over the game pIan with Brandon for the 30 minute main. I had great qualifiers and put the NB-48 on the pole. Brandon got me lined up great on his first “down and quiet” and we were off. I had a bobble on the first lap and fell to 4th. The NB felt great and the tune finally seem about perfect. I kept it smooth and made it back out front a few laps later but by this point I could tell my front left tire was coming off. Brandon saw what was happening and wanted to swap it during the first pit but since it was running good and Chris was so close I decided to just keep running. Brandon called me in for the first stop but I ran out of gas before I could make it back in. Luckily I was close to the pits and Brandon was able to fill and fire me up quickly. When I made it back out I was in 4th and a lap down. I had plenty of time and went to work trying to catch up. Chris had a huge lead but I was catching and put myself back in third by the next pit stop. In and out again I was back to chipping away at that lead. Unfortunately the tire got worse and I started having to lay off down the straight. I had to come back in a couple laps later to have Brandon swap the wheel. Brandon had me in and out quickly. I was back in second but I fell back about 30 seconds from Chris. Going back out I started pushing too hard and started making mistakes. Then Brandon yelled what I always tell people, “slow and steady”. That really settled me down and I really started catching the leader. With 2 minutes to go I was 4 seconds behind. Then Brandon starts yelling, “Go, Go, Go”. Chris had crashed and I passed him for the lead. I was out front with only a minute to go. When the time expired I just had to finish my lap. With four turns to go I ran out of gas again. I couldn’t believe it. Then I see that Chris ran out of gas too. It turned into a race of the pit guys. Brandon had to run to the farthest corner of the track but he still managed to get back to the pits at the same time as Chris’s pit guy. Brandon filled it up and got me running before Chris’s and I was able to finish the race in first. Brandon won that race for me. Couldn’t of done it without him.

What a great weekend. Thank you Tekno RC, Hobbywing NA, JConcepts, Trinity, Radiopost, Boca Bearings, Boys Making Noise, Sylveris RC, NF Hobbies, and Kal-Gard for the great products. Thank you Brandon Denmark, Matt Wolter, Chris Giraldo, Daniel Lewis, Ricky Layman, David Whitesides, Tracy Carver, Doug Smith, Tom Hitchcock, and everyone else that made this a fantastic weekend.

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Round 3

Photo Credit: Cheryl Joye-Shiver

Well I headed down to Shiverville Raceway for round 3 of the 5 race points series. I had a chance to lock up the 4×4 SC and E-Buggy classes with another TQ and win. I had some great runs with the B44.1 in the 4wd buggy class but there are several that can still take the class. Since there are 2 drops I decided to go ahead and get in on the mod SC class as well.

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Round 1 of qualifying went well.

In practice I had my mod SC set to blinky with a 7.5 motor. I’ve run it this way on many occasions but this time it seemed kinda slow. I added some turbo timing to it just before the race. During the warm-up it still felt sluggish. Then I discovered that my EPA was set to 80. I had turned the speed down for my nephew to run the truck at round 2 and completely forgot. I cranked it back up to 100. Lol, not a good idea. It took several laps to get used to it. I got a handle on it and qualified second.

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The 4wd buggy had more grip than I expected and I had several mistakes early. Again I was able to settle down and secure a second for the round.

The Tekno EB48.2 was perfect but we only had 3 show up for E-Buggy. Very disappointing but I still a good time.

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I was excited try a new shock setup on the Tekno 410. It’s been an amazing truck and I really haven’t changed much from the box stock setup. This truck never disappoints. It set the TQ by a full lap. Love that thing.

Round 2 went about the same.

In mod SC, I think I may have been on a TQ pace but got too anxious, carried too much speed coming out of the sweeper, and got into the back of some traffic that knocked me back into second.

The 4wd buggy was awesome this round. I ran some worn blue JConcepts Bar Codes. I was doing some tire management and saving a new set of JConcepts DD’s for the main. I won the heat but came up 4 seconds short for setting the new TQ.

Despite the low turnout I was still enjoying the track time with the EB48.2. I threw some worn blue JConcepts Stackers on for the high bite surface and set a new TQ time. The drove very smoothly and handled the tight turns easily.

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I made some adjustments to the droop and installed a stiffer front sway-bar in the SCT410 based on how high the traction was. I was able to push the truck even harder and bettered my round 1 TQ.

The race order changed a little bit for the mains.

First up was the 4wd buggy. I’m in the running for the points lead in this class so I really wanted the win. Early on I hung tight to the leader Daniel and felt I was a little faster in certain section. All I had to do was not lose ground where we were equal. I was able to move into the race lead several laps in and a mishap gave me a nice lead over Daniel. It looked like I had it in the bag with 25 seconds to go. Then I rolled and had to sit and watch Daniel pass me as I laid on my roof. With only a lap to go there was nothing I could do. It was a great race that I wish I could do over.

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Next was E-Buggy. Unfortunately one of the three cars had broke in the second qual. and he was unable to fix it. This really wasn’t how I wanted to win the class so I’ll be running the last two rounds with the EB48.2 to hopefully show that I deserve it.

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The sun was going down and the shade started taking over the track. When track starts to cool it loses it’s traction. I stuck with my JConcepts blue Bar Codes on my SC10 and hoped the traction was still there.

I planned on learning from my mistakes and played it safe on the start of the mod SC main. It was a great start for all as we were single file through the first 3 turns. Coming into that tight sweeping 3rd turn I was still in second but was worried about 3rd and 4th place running into the back of the truck as I paced the leader, so I went wide and allowed them to pass me on the inside. By the straight-away I had moved back into 3rd. The leader caught a pipe going around the large sweeper and slowed up 2nd enough that I was able to pass them both and move into the lead. I settled in and held the lead for the race win.

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Last up was the 4×4 SC class. The sun was going down, the lights were on, and the whole track was in the shade. I was betting on the track being slick so I went with some JConcepts 3D’s in green. I was clear from my warm-up lap that we no longer had the traction we enjoyed all day. I was glad I changed to greens and looked forward to taking advantage of my pole position. I knew I couldn’t push the truck like I had earlier so I just tried to maintain a steady consistent pace. The second place driver, Cody, and I broke away and I was able keep a small gap between us. I held on for the win and locked up points series.

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I’d like to thank all of my sponsors. Tekno RC, JConcepts, Trinity, Hobbywing, Radiopost, Boys Making Noise, Boca Bearings, and Kal-Gard

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Catching Up……

It seems like I’m always behind with this blog now.

Two weekends ago we ran round 2 of the Shiverville Points Series. I was having a pretty good race day but I was excited about having my wife and nephew out racing in the novice class. This was actually the third time racing for both of them. I had my nephew Devon out there running my SC10 with a 17.5 motor in blinky and let Carmen run the 4×4 Slash in the 50% training mode. They both did a great job. Devon finished 3rd and Carmen came home in 5th.

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I was running my Tekno RC SCT410, Tekno RC EB48.2, and my Team Associated B44.1. They were flawless all day and the my JConcepts tire choices were right on for each round including the mains. If you recall they were giving raffle tickets for to the person with the fastest lap in each round/class. Well I managed to come home with 8 more raffle tickets. I’m usually just consistent and don’t have the fastest lap in a race too often so to get these has been a delight. I finished round 2 of the series with three TQ’s and three wins.

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I’m looking forward to round 3 on Oct. 12th. It’s a 5 race series with 2 drops. With some luck I can lock up the win in the 4×4 SC and E-Buggy classes. With a DNF in round 1 I’ll have to continue to race the B44.1. The plan is to run mod SC and mod 2wd buggy as well during this next round and transition into those classes for the remaining races.

JConcepts Clash

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I really wanted to right this big ol’ elaborate blog about the Clash but if I stick to that mentality it’ll never get done. So this is the “express” version.

So my wife got us in very late Wednesday partially due to the extra hour we gained heading west. I got up and made my way to the track Thursday morning to claim a pit spot. I thought it was a little weird but practice wouldn’t start until about 1 o’clock so all you could do was get a good spot and wait. What I wasn’t expecting was JConcepts to make room for me under their tent. Great way to start the event.

I decided to race my Tekno RC SCT410, that has been very good to me, and my brand new Tekno RC EB48.2. This only be the second time racing the EB but I have a lot of confidence with Tekno RC.

The track was very slick to start. It was something I could handle with the SC pretty easily but the starting setup I was using on the EB was honestly terrible. It was from a setup sheet online for higher grip situations and that was not the case here. I knew something had to change so I made some camber tweaks and headed back out. Thank goodness it started to act like it should and I started to get a feel for it. Some toe changes and I was ready.

Friday was more practice in the am with a round of qualifying scheduled for a 4pm start. Both Tekno’s felt good. The plan was to just put in two safe runs. Qualifying was going to be based on qual points and your performance scored over 3 of the 4 qualifiers. That means being fast once don’t mean much. You have to be consistent. So finishing 7th overall in E-Buggy and 4th overall in 4×4 SC was a great start.

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Saturday was three rounds of qualifying. The E-Buggy class was nuts. It was the biggest class and just full of talent. Watching them go around was amazing. I still didn’t quite feel used to the EB48.2 quite yet. I had been driving a Tekno converted Mugen MBX-6 prior. So this felt like going from a Caddy to a Porsche. Despite that my performance netted me a 8th place position in the A-Main.

The SCT410 was great like always. I finished Saturday with two 2nds and a 1st that put me number 2 in the A-Main behind JR Mitch.

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Sunday was triple A-Mains meant consistency was going to pay off again. E-Buggy A1-Main was first and what a great way to start. Sneaking through a pile up after the start and picking the JConcepts tires to start the day, gave me a 3rd place finish.

I was feeling good going into A1 of the 4×4 SC mains. The Tekno was great again and I finish in second behind JR.

Unfortunately bad luck and mistakes knocked me out of a podium finish in E-Buggy but I’m still proud of my 7th place overall finish. 4×4 SC was close but I finish A2 and A3 with a 2nd and a 1st to secure a 2nd place overall.

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This was my second JConcepts Clash and it doesn’t disappoint. A great facility and great racers make this one of the best races of the year.

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Road to Mississippi

Well we are about half way to Mississippi right now. My lovely wife Carmen has done all of the driving so far. She usually does the driving and I’m not going to complain.

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Donna is passed out.

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It still amazes me how much crap I have just to race two vehicles.

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Practice starts tomorrow.