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Thursday, July 16, 2009

2009 ROAR Fuel Nationals - Wednesday & Thursday

DAY ONE - Wednesday July 15, 2009
The team arrived at the 2009 Roar Fuel Nationals at Leisure Hours Raceway in Joliet, IL on Tuesday afternoon. We are here in full force with 23 team members attending. When we arrived the track looked really good and smooth. We spent most of the afternoon setting up the Losi pit area.

We woke up Wednesday morning to discover that it had rained for most of the night. When we got to the track we found that it had rained more than we thought, we could hardly get our car into the dirt lot to park. They ended up pushing practice back until noon which was not bad. The day ended up being a good day for the team. They ran two rounds of practice in heats, which I thought was the right thing to do since they started late and there were a good amount of people there.

The team mainly just focused on getting the track down. There are a couple of spots on the track that are a bit technical with some jumps in corners, and a very large jump in the center on the track. By the end of the day they all had it down pretty well. The track at the end of the day was very hard packed and grooving-up nicely. It looked as if it would hold up nice all week.

DAY TWO - Thursday July 16, 2009
We had no rain Wednesday night which was nice. Thursday's practice was run by ROAR, which means they set up new heat sheets. We are not sure if these are going to be the qualifying heats for Friday and Saturday. They ran two hours of open practice in the morning, one hour for truggy and one hour for buggy. The track was still looking good and grooving up more and more.

So they all tried different tires throughout the day, with Billy and Casey liking the Losi red Eclipse on buggy and Bowfighters on the truggy. Mike is liking the Bow Tie all the way around his buggy and Bowfighters on the truggy. Adam is using the Caliber on both his buggy and truggy. Most of the other team members are running the Losi Eclipse's in Red.

Mike and Adam seemed to be the to fastest on the track today with 32 sec lap times. Billy and Phillip are right there with those times but not as consistent throughout the day. This could have been because Billy and Phillip tried a lot of tires throughout the day. Everyone seemed to be happy with the cars today and is looking forward to qualifying tomorrow.

The track started to break-up at the end of the day, and looked to be getting a little slower in the last couple of heats today. As we started packing up our stuff to head back to the hotel we had a big storm come through that put a lot of water down on the track. This will change a lot for Friday's qualifying. We will have to see what happens tomorrow.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

HRH Shootout is over....

The team had a decent weekend at the Shootout. Here are the final results:
2wd Mod
Truhe 5th
Fischer 7th
Evans 9th

4wd Mod
Truhe 3rd
Evans 8th

Truck Mod
Truhe 6th
Evans 7th

I managed a 2nd place finish in 2wd Superstock and a 15th overall in 2wd Modified. Not too bad!

Main Day at the Shootout

Luckily Matt Francis is in town and has his wireless hooked up at the track so I can do some updates for part of the day. The big announcement yesterday was Matt was inducted into the RC Car Hall of Fame. The RC Car Hall of Fame is totally new to the RC World thanks to the creator Jimmy Babcock. Matt was honored as the first inductee into the Hall of Fame. You can find the website at for more information.

Onto the racing. Our team did well in the qualifying. Truhe and Evans put their XXX-4's and XXX-T CR's into the A-Main in 4wd Modified and Truck Modified respectively. In 2wd Modified Truhe, Evans, and Fischer placed their XXX-CR's in the A-main. I ended up placing my XXX-CR in the Super Stock Buggy Main in P4.


Friday, July 10, 2009

Results after first day of qualifying at HRH Shootout

Round 1
First round of qualifying the track had substantially less grip than we saw on Wednesday during practice. Generally at HRH the the weather is extremely hot around 100+ degrees however this year we have a comfortable 85 degree weather. Qualifying is based on best 2 out of 4 qualifying points so every run counts as well as consistency. Here are our results after the first day of qualifying. The tire of choice in 2wd is Red BK Bars on the rear and Silver Taper Pin front tires. In truck it is Red Taper Pins on the front and rear. 4wd we are using Red BK Bar on the rear and Red Taper Pin fronts. The whole team is using 2 stage inserts on the rear of all of our cars and the front of 4wd.
4wd Modified
4th Truhe
8th Evans

Truck Modified
6th Evans
8th Chambers
10th Fischer

2wd Modified
5th Truhe
7th Fischer
11th Evans

Round 2
The 2nd Round of qualifying definitely had a lot more traction. The sun finally came out and started heating up the track. However in 2wd we ended up running under the lights and finishing around 8:45pm.
4wd Modified
5th Truhe
8th Evans
9th Chambers

Truck Modified
7th Fischer
8th Truhe
10th Chambers

2wd Modified
3rd Truhe
5th Fischer
9th Evans
10th Chambers

Hopefully tomorrow we can improve. The guys are getting more and more confident each run.

Btw, the famous Matt Francis made it into town for a special occassion tomorrow. More details to follow tomorrow.

As for me and my resurgence into electric offroad today went relatively well. I managed a 3rd in Super Stock 2wd in Round 1. I believe a 5th or 6th in round 2. In 2wd modified....yeah I need more practice.

I just saw that our European team qualified really well in Austria at the 1.8th Offroad European Championships. We have 1 8IGHT 2.0 in the Semi Final Odd and 3 8IGHT 2.0's in the Semial Final Even. I wish them all the best tomorrow...actually they are probably at the track right now starting their day of racing considering they are 8+ hours ahead of us.

Time for bed, it is 11:30pm....over and out.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Day 2 of practice is over at 2009 Hot Rod Hobbies Shootout

Well it is time to head into qualifing tomorrow. Today's practice went really well. We were able to improve our laptimes in all classes. Today the whole team was running well with Dustin Evans and Mike Truhe posting very quick laptimes in 2wd Modified followed closely behind by Matt Chambers and Billy Fischer. Truhe looked stellar in Truck and 4wd as did the rest of the team.

There are a few hours of open practice tomorrow morning from 6 to 8am. Then we go into 2 rounds of qualifying with 6 minute qualifiers. As of tonight there are about 300 entries and they will be taking entries until 8am tomorrow so we may see well over 350 entries.

Truhe is back at the hotel working on his 8IGHT 2.0 right now getting it ready for next weeks 1.8th ROAR National. Can Losi make a three in a row? Adam Drake 2007 ROAR National Champion, Mike Truhe 2008 ROAR National Champion, ???? ????? 2009 ROAR National Champion.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

12th Annual Hot Rod Hobbies Shootout

The Losi team and I are at the 12th Annual Hot Rod Hobbies Shootout in Saugus, CA. From the Losi factory Dan Hissam (Losi Race Engineer) and myself are attending along with our entire Losi Offroad Electric team. This includes Matt Chambers, Dustin Evans, Mike Truhe, Billy Fischer, Schlick Brothers, and Matt Castellano. I am sure more of the local drivers will be showing up tomorrow for the final day of practice. The track layout is very flowing and is almost identical to the 2001 Reedy Race layout. For those who have never been to the Hot Rod Hobbies track it is very high grip when the track is run dry. So far fast laps in 2wd with our and Truck Modified are 18.5 second and mid 17 second laps in 4wd. This years race has racers from Japan and Australia which gives the race an "International" flare. Once again we find that Losi Red BK Bars are the best tire for the rear of our 2wd and 4wd along with Taper fronts. In truck it is still the famous Taper Pin on the front and rear.

Tomorrow is controlled practice with qualifying starting on Friday and continuing on Saturday. Sunday will be all Mains. Two Time World Champion and Losi Driver Matt Francis is coming in for the weekend for a special event at Hot Rod Hobbies. I kind of have an idea of what it is all aboutI and I will keep you informed on what happens so stay tuned.

In 2wd we have been working on some great setups that have been working really well. It is a slight departure from what we have ran in the past and I will get setups posted to next week.

Talk to you all soon.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Backyard crawling at Greg's

Lately I have been doing a little crawling with my new comp crawler. I have to say this is a fun, and relaxing way to enjoy rc. From the get go the comp crawler has been a blast for me to learn to crawl with. The dig option sure seems to get the truck in and out of some of the toughest obstacles.

My painter and long time racer Greg Carrol from Greg's Graf-x, has built a challenging crawling course in his back yard for some friendly competitions. The course includes a couple of man made canyons, a rope bridge, a vert drop to start you off and even an over-under to keep you on your toes. Greg has had to tighten up the gates and make the course a bit harder since getting his losi. I thought I would share some pics from one of the backyard comps. (notice the cool green paint job on my rig)

I would like to congradulate Richard and his team of die hard crawlers for putting in all of the hard work it takes to put out a great vehicle like this one. Great job guys! Keep up the good work.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Summer Series at the Nitro Pit

Hello Losi race fans!

The last couple of weeks have been super hot out here in sunny Arizona. But this never seems to stop us crazies from racing!
The Summer series at the Nitro Pit kicked off last weekend and drew a large crowd to do battle the AZ Nitro way. In spite of the 108 temps racers from all over came out to kick off this years series. To spice things up a bit we use a starting gate for the summer series. This adds plenty of excitement to the program and is quite fun.

Both of my 2.0 vehicles were up for the challenge and I was able to secure the TQ in both classes. As the sun went down the temps began to be a bit more bearable and by main time it was quite nice out. The expert buggy main was a hard fought battle between myself and fellow team mate Chris Wheeler. Chris drove a great race and he was rewarded with the 20 lap win, good job Chris!

Gates starts for truggy are always a blast and the one for this main did not disappoint. I got a decent start, was able to take over the lead on the first lap and never looked back. Thanks to Billy Fischer for some new set up ideas that have made my truggy the best its been. I am looking forward to the up coming Roar fuel Nats to see how we stack up to the competition.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Thank you, guys

I'd like to publicly thank Pro-Line's Scott Hughes for choosing the Team Losi Racing 1/10 Comp Crawler as his rig at the 2009 Axial West Coast Crawling Championships. We realize that Scott could run any vehicle he chooses and we're proud that he chose ours. Thanks again, Scott!
Also, a big congratulations to Jake Wright and Steve Fillion for their outstanding results at this comp.

The WCC Experience - by Jake Wright

First off, WOW! I've never been to a bigger, tougher, crazier, or more competitive event... ever! Parker and company really stepped up the courses and the event as a whole was awesome. Huge thanks to my sponsors Losi, Spektrum, RCP Crawlers, Rocksmith engineering, and everyone else who made this event possible. Everyone who dragged their rigs up the mountain for the WCC left with memories that will last a lifetime.

So about those courses... We all know that Parker is a madman, but this year he really went all out. Water, mud, sand, cables, bridges, banners, and courses that made you drive 100 yards or more were just some of the challenges. Oh, and throw in a 6 minute time limit and some very inviting bonus lines and you have the WCC.

After practicing on Friday, I knew I had to make a few changes to get my rig to where I wanted it. The rock at Donner Ski Ranch is tricky, it has tons of traction in places, and zero traction in other places. I slapped on a brand new set of Comp Claws and took an ounce out of each rear tire in hopes of finding a little more forward bite... and it worked! My Losi felt like it was glued to the rocks!

The level of competition at the WCC was just incredible. The best drivers in the US were there and putting up low scores all over the place. I drove pretty conservatively on day 1 and didn't attempt any bonuses, but I did finish all 4 courses with a total of -53 points. This put me solidly in 2nd place but just a few points ahead of some incredibly talented drivers.

Day 2 the courses were even tougher and I did my best just to keep putting in negative scores. Time management was huge and I watched several great drivers put in great runs only to time out just inches from the finish. I was definitely in the zone on Sunday and I took on the bonus lines on all 4 courses, netting me a score of -69, and a total of -122 for the weekend!

Going into the final 10 shootout, I knew I needed a good run. Grover and Kolby were only a few points behind me and any mistake could knock me out of the final 5 shootout. The course had a 3 minute time limit, and was absolutely brutal. I struggled a bit on gate 1, but managed to finish with just seconds to spare... keeping me in 2nd place.

The final 5 shootout course was awesome. It was a crazy combination of water, mud, bridges, boudaries, and crowds. I felt like the entire RC crawling community was watching when I stepped up to drive.

I ran a perfect -10 in the finals course and locked in my 2nd place finish. Jake H. was on his game all weekend and there was no chance for me to catch him. I might have had a shot had I been more aggressive on day 1, but even then he would have been tough to beat. He is a great driver and competitor, and I feel that he's stepped up his driving a lot too... oh well, time to practice more

All and all, it was one incredible weekend of wheeling at one of the coolest compsites in the world. I went into Donner on a mission, and I don't feel that I let anyone down. I wanted to show the world what the Losi rig was capable of and I wanted to honor my dad on the rocks the only way I know how. I know he was there watching too... I ran the 022 stickers all weekend and certainly felt like he was right there with me.

For now, I've got to figure out how to get all that mud off my rig and then its back to the rocks for more practice. The Vanquish LaGuerra en Rocas Rojo event in Colorado is two weeks away and the next battle is always just over the horizon...