Sanford and Son RC headed out to SCVRC Raceway in Santa Clarita, CA on April 5th for Round 7 of the JConcepts Top Notch Winter Series.
Although this round’s 119 entries was the lowest turnout in the series thus far, it was a track record for SCVRC. My main competition for this event would include Hobby Pro USA’s Andrew Smolnik, Tekno RC’s Rudy Rico, Team Associated’s Jake Mayo and fast local drivers Kevin Kasten and Scott Wagner. There would be two rounds of 5 minute qualifiers, followed by 6 minute A Mains.
4wd Mod Buggy
Practice went very well on Friday with my Lazer ZX-5, so I was looking forward to Saturday. The track was hooked up on Friday, but Saturday the track was very dusty all day. The track crew did their best to keep the track watered, but by the second race after watering, the track was very dry and dusty. The 4wd Lazer ZX-5 was a little loose in the rear, but still hooked up pretty good. I had a great first qualifier getting the TQ over Jake Mayo on his local track, so I couldn’t be happier with the car. Everyone was slower for the second qualifier, so my first round TQ help up.
In the A Main, I got a great start. I pulled out to about a 2 second lead, but midway thru the race, I got tied up with another car who crashed right in front of me. I would surrender first place to Mayo. With two minutes left I got taken out from behind on the left-hand turn before the rhythm section. I was up on the pipe while my second place position quickly deteriorated to sixth. I punched the throttle and tightened up my lines, and drove mistake free. I managed to get back up to third when time ran out on the clock. Considering the trouble I had, I was happy with the podium finish. My Lazer ZX-5 with AKA clay Typo rears and Pinstripe fronts, with the Tekin RSX and Redline Gen 2 5.5 motor was amazing all day.
4wd Mod Buggy finishing order:
1. Jake Mayo (Associated)
2. Kevin Kasten
3. Lucas Sanford (Kyosho)
1/8 Scale eBuggy
SCVRC Raceway is very small, and they don’t even race 1/8 scale eBuggy locally. However, I brought my Kyosho MP9e TKI and signed up just in case. No locals would sign up for this race. It would be only myself, Rudy Rico, and TTN teammate Shane Monsees.
1/8 scale eBuggy was the first race of the day, so the track was very wet. I set up my MP9e TKI accordingly. I elected to bolt up a set of AKA clay Handlebars. It was a good choice. I got the TQ in the first round, winning by 2 full laps. In round 2 I finished with an almost identical time, so I would start 1st on the grid for the A Main. My TQ point for this round would wrap up the overall series for me, allowing me to relax a little and have some fun in the A Main.
Rudy Rico was a no-show for the A Main, so it would be just myself and TTN teammate Shane Monsees. The track was even wetter than it had been for the qualifiers, so my lap times were about a half second slower. However, the car was very good, and I had no troubles, crossing the finish line with the win.
What I love about my Kyosho MP9e TKI is that I never have to make too many changes, regardless of the track conditions. Wet, dry, dusty, high-grip, low-grip … it doesn’t matter. A camber link change is usually all it takes for the car to be dialed in. My Kyosho MP9e TKI with the T8i motor and RX8 Gen 2 ESC was awesome!
1/8 Scale eBuggy finishing order:
1. Lucas Sanford (Kyosho)
2. Shane Monsees (TTN)
3. Rudy Rico (Tekno RC)
2wd Mod Buggy
We spent Friday practicing, breaking in tires and honing in on a setup. As is often the case, traction was completely different on Saturday, so I struggled a little in the qualifiers. I had practiced all day Friday on clay Typo’s which were completely hooked up, but on Saturday’s dusty track, it was obvious that Super Soft Typos would have been the ticket. I had no Super Soft tires, so I would have to go with clay. I softened up the springs and oil, and it did help a little.
In the first qualifier, I tried to push the car too hard, and had a tough race. I crashed a number of times and finished fifth. In the second qualifier, I ran mistake free, but only managed to finish 3rd for the round. I would start fifth on the grid for the A Main.
In the A Main I got a pretty good start, moving up quickly from fifth to fourth. The track was so dusty, so I was just trying to keep a tight line and race without mistakes. I was pressing Smolnik in front of me when he hit the brakes to make an uphill right hand turn, causing me to spin him. I pulled over and waited for Smolnik to pass me, but that pretty much eliminated my chance for a podium spot. Smolnik and I would battle for much of the race, swapping positions a couple of times. With one lap to go, I just barely clipped the pipe on a left hand turn off a drop-down. I didn’t flip, but got spun around in the wrong direction, letting Smolnik get by. I would finish fifth overall.
My RB6, equipped with AKA clay Typos and Tekin RSX with the Redline Gen 2 7.5 motor was good, considering the dusty conditions.
I would like to thank all of my sponsors for making it happen: Sanford and Son RC, Kyosho, AKA, DE Racing, Tekin, TTN Racing and Upgrade RC. Thanks also to JConcepts and DE Racing for sponsoring this series, and SCVRC Raceway.