OS/Futaba Nitro Challenge w/Ryan Lutz

July 21st, 2013

As I sit here in this hot airplane in Minneapolis on my layover waiting to hear why our left engine won’t fire up, I figure what better time to write my race recap!

For me this past weekend was a struggle, but looking back at the final results I have to be pleased with the final trophies I earned. I struggled with the track surface never quite getting my cars to feel great. In qualifying I had transponder issues in ebuggy but fortunately got one to borrow and it worked fine the remainder of the time. In Nitro truggy I had pretty good runs battling with Wheeler for that top spot. I was able to take Q1 and 3 to take TQ. In nitro buggy managed a 2nd in Q2 and a come back Q3 TQ to take the overall. Nothing easy about it but hard earned which made the trifecta of TQs gratifying.

For the mains they did double 20 min Nitro mains and one ebuggy main. In Ebuggy I made a mistake early but got the lead back around the 4 minute mark and went on to extend my lead the remainder of the 10 minute race for the win.

In truggy Wheeler and I battled it out most of the race. I led until pit stops where he stretched to make 10 minute stops. After I did two stops and he did his one I was still right behind him. I made the only mistake either of us made the whole race though shortly thereafter coming onto the straight. That was enough for him to win and I to get 2nd. In A2 I knew I needed a bigger lead at the beginning. I was able to so so and after pits stops were done I had a 4 second lead. However I wasn’t feeling comfortable and Wheeler was on rails and over the last 4 minutes he reeled me in a little every lap until he was on my bumper for one last lap. I played the best defense I could and he made an ill fated launch attempt on the center table and I was able to stay out ahead and win A2. Tiebreaker was qualification position so with my TQ I took the win!

In nitro buggy I struggled with setup. I caught the little ruts way to much and just had a hard time. In A1 I led for a bit an had a 5 second lead but crashed and the Marshall threw me back on my lid doubling the Marshall time and thus putting me back to 4th and I just couldn’t recover and finished there. In A2 I had the lead at the beginning and Wheeler and I battled again for a while. I would settle into second though but with a minute to go started having an electrical issue where my car would loose signal and have mini runaways. Luckily I was able to still complete a lap in that condition and still finish 4th. Overall it put me 3rd on the podium.

In the end it was a fun but really hard layout for me. The surface was a challenge. I enjoyed the event though and especially the park like setting of Dirt Burners. Big thanks to hobbico for supporting this event and the crew for running it. Look forward to returning.

Next up is back-to-back Nationals in PA and CA for electric 1/8 and 1/10. Lots to prepare and hopefully some national titles to come!

Podium

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Posted by Ryan Lutz

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