December 8, 2018
-Each day a new set of items will be available to bid on. I will post the items before Noon EST and each day that set of items will end at 8:59:59 PM EST. (New York City time)
December 6, 2018
Wow, where has the time gone!? My 13th season of doing this professionally is coming to a close here in 2018. It’s been another good year, not my best, but not my worst either. I’ve had some really good High’s and some Low’s but all in all I’ve been blessed yet again to do this.
I started off the year going to visit one of my favorite locations because the people are so awesome! That is the January Jam in Flowood, Mississippi. I was able to get off to a strong start with a sweep of the event.
I had some good results as I went to SIC in Alabama as well before heading to the DNC, in what we now know was it’s last time at the Fear Farm. After that I went up to the Pacific NW to attend the Holiday Hangover RC Arena-cross event. This was a great event with a unique practice feature with punch cards. I also got to put on a great clinic and meet a lot of really good people!
Next I shot across the pond to China where the IFMAR 1/10th worlds were last year. Though this time I was running my 1/8th buggies. I had some good competition from the current Japanese National Champion but I was able to come away with the victories in this one and really enjoy my time there!
It was then time to go to a race I feel I am pretty known for. That is the iconic PNB! I again decided to be crazy and drive 5 classes! It was a lot of fun like always and I defended my iron man title taking 5 podiums and 3 victories!
After that it was time for Silver State in a new venue! In a very nice building at the South Point Hotel and Casino. It was a last minute location find and it turned out awesome. I can’t wait to see what they come up with for 2019 having a year to plan it all out! This is one to attend for sure! I had some great results and could have been even better with a little luck and a better compound decision. But still came away with 3rd in truggy and victory in E-buggy!
As we got into summer I made a special trip to the MDA benefit race at Corbyn Showers track for a great event for a great cause which got me ready to head to Florida for the ROAR Nitro Nats. The crew did an amazing job beating the rain and keeping the track good and I was able to get yet another truggy podium at the ROAR Nationals!
As the dog days began we had AMS 9.0 and the ROAR E-Scale Nats. I battled with Joe in 4×4 SC but he squeezed out the overall victory from me and I took 2nd. I did win some more concourses at the ROAR race because my painter Diggity Paints is simply awesome at what he does!
Next was one of the most memorable events I will have ever been a part of and that was the Wicked Weekend where I was able to donate a car to a deserving young man with Cystic Fibrosis. It was so awesome to see the R/C community rally behind him, as he tried it out on the track and just made the moment so special!
Next was another Jet set across the world to South Korea to hang out with my friend Kevin Lee and crew and finally do some racing on Korean soil. It went great with double TQ and victory and was awesome to avenge my total rainout in Korea 8 years ago.
Our final race before the IFMAR Worlds was the Southern Nats in Louisiana. I had some great qualifying efforts at a race I usually have bad luck at. But it turned out the bad luck just saved itself for the main. Still always such an awesome fun event.
After that we had a private company test session in preparation for the worlds before we embarked on an across the world journey (Literally). Joe and I took 42 hours door to door to get home! The event was amazing, the club who put it on did such an amazing job they really couldn’t have done anything better in my mind. The results weren’t there for me but that’s racing. I will use it as motivation for the next time!
We finished out the racing portion of the year at the Fall Brawl in Myrtle Beach. It’s always a great time and the track is so much fun to race on. Unfortunately the rains came and washed us out of the final round of quals and the mains. We did some fun stuff with the R/C family though, going to Dave and Busters and Bowling. All in all it was fun and a great time seeing everyone!
So here I sit at the end of another season of R/C car racing. I have had such great support from family and sponsors over the years and I can’t thank them all enough for all they have done for me. Here is how long I have been with each of my 2018 sponsors.
Tekno RC – 4+ years
Blok Engines – 2 years
Byron Fuels – 8 years
AKA Tires – 11 years (since day 1)
Futaba – 7 years
Tekin – 9 years
ProTek RC – 7 years
PT RC Oils – 7 years
Dutch Oven Designs – 3 years
Diggity Paints – 3 years
LutzRC – 7 years
I want to thank all of my sponsors from 2018!
–Tekno RC – (NB48.4, NT48.3, EB48.4, ET48.3, SCT410.3, EB410)
-Blok Engines – (Blok 21aM, Block 21aP)
–AKA Racing (Amazing tires, wheels, foams, that keep me fast on any surface!)
–Byron Fuels (30/8 Worlds Blend fuel, The most consistent fuel in the industry!)
–Futaba (7PX Radio, S9373SV Servos, R304SB Rx)
–Tekin (RX-8 Gen 2, Redline T8 Gen 2 1900 motor (2000 truggy), RSX, Redline Gen 3 motors)
–ProTek RC (2600 Lipo Rx packs, 100C full size LiHV packs)
–Dutch Oven Designs (Graphics, stickers)
–PT RC Racing Oils (Shock and Diff oils)
–Diggity Paints (Paintjobs!)
–LutzRC.com (my small business that keeps me busy on my ‘off days’ haha)
–R/C Hobby of Medina (My fathers Hobby Shop)
-Daniel Lewis and Matt Wolter at Tekno RC for all the support and help throughout the year and making sure we had fun and didn’t take ourselves to seriously! Keep an eye out here shortly for my end of the year Charity Auction December 9-13th
December 4, 2018
This past weekend I embarked on my final race of 2018 to Myrtle Beach for the annual fun filled Fall Brawl event. This track is always a blast to drive on. They get it super smooth and it grooves up as the days go along. The biggest challenge is picking the right tire for the right time of day and track condition. Overall In the morning and evening runs we were running clay tires (AKA Typo and Chainlink for me) and then on a midday sunny run if the groove was out then SLW was good. (Impacts were surprisingly really easy to drive and pretty fast too!)
On Friday afternoon/Evening we decided to do one qualifier to finish out the night as their was rain in the forecast for the weekend. In Nitro buggy I started off great as the first heat of the class and got onto a 12 lap pace. But I just got a little nervous for some reason and made a couple mistakes and dropped me back loosing around 7 seconds. I would end up 6th for the round which was unfortunate because my pace was a TQ one. :-/ In truggy I had a very unlucky start as a mechanic and marshal were standing at the end of the straight away as I started the clock and I got into them and cartwheeled off the track. I had another mistake on the next lap on my own and would have to setting for coming back to 3rd.
On Saturday morning we started early with Q2 and watched the forecast closely. In buggy I was battling with Joe for a while for the #2 spot but ended up crashing on the front right jump and fell to 6th before recovering up to 3rd by the end. My car felt good overall, just need to cut out the mistakes. In truggy I was on a great run even though my tires weren’t the right ones for the condition. For sure a clay tire would have been better but I was still managing to lead the pack on my SSLW Grids and with just a couple laps left I rolled it over relegating me back to 3rd again.
Shortly thereafter the skies opened and we went on rain delay. Many of the participants went to Dave and Busters and we had some lunch and played some games. Then I overheard the guys next to us saying they were going bowling….And I do enjoy a game of bowling. So after finishing up Joe, Matt, and I headed to the bowling alley where they were already on their 2nd game about 3 frames in. They said I could jump in with them so I proceeded to grab my lane shoes and they let me use one of the house balls they had found that just happened to have fingertip grips and was reactive resin. I proceeded to throw the first 7 strikes in a row and finish with a 268! One of the top 10 games of my life so that was a lot of fun!
..Unfortunately on the racing side of things the rain never did stop and we got rained out making the results be from the 1 or 2 qualifiers that were completed. So because of that I would be 3rd in truggy and 4th in buggy. Not how we want to end a race but at least we got some racing in and had a good time regardless. Also with some testing in between I feel we got the new buggy feeling really good on this track and I was looking forward to a longer main to put down some laps but alas, it will have to wait until later!
Next for me is getting my Charity Auction all set-up and ready to go! Be sure to follow my Ryan Lutz Facebook page December 9th – 13th for autographed memorabilia, trophies, and more!
November 15, 2018
Sixteen days were spent away from my family to attend this years rendition of the IFMAR World Championships. The event was held in Perth, Australia which for us Ohioans meant we probably could have gotten their faster by digging to the other side of the earth. Part of that issue is our current airline allegiance being Delta and thus being held to their schedule which included 3 layovers with 2 of them being 5+ hours each. Our trip there was a 38 hour affair, and our trip home was 42 hours door to door with our delay we encountered on our final flight. The positive on all of this is that for the most part, any further trip we take should feel pretty short in comparison! Joe and I left Ohio on Sunday morning and we met Matt and Danny in Los Angeles on Sunday night before embarking on the 14 hour flight across the largest pond on earth.
We ended up arriving on Tuesday afternoon accounting for time changes which we were hoping would allow us to acclimate to the time before we began our work week long session of practice.
So it was on Thursday we began practicing. Well, that sounds like we got more practice than we actually did. In fact we got to run just 1 time for 10 minutes on that first day. Friday we got 2 more runs, and then for some still unknown reason on Saturday we got just one run yet again. So in the first 3 days of the event we had seen the track a total of 4 times and got hopefully 40 minutes of track time. Sunday and Monday saw the Official IFMAR Practice begin with Mondays two runs being seeding runs to seed us into qualifiers based on fastest 3 consecutive laps.
Now, we had a test session with Joe, Alex, Jared, and I about a month earlier in So-Cal to test a new car that we were considering to take to the Worlds. We tested at Thunder Alley and the old Dialed in track which were both higher traction and Dialed in being very rough as well. They were your typical American tracks with lots of tighter corners and the new car was working very well. We were all pleased with it and felt it was performing better than our .4’s. So we made a group decision to take the car to Worlds.
Throughout practice and into qualifying we continued to work hard together making changes, talking about what we felt and how we thought we could improve. I took slow mo video’s around the track of the other guys to help us maybe analyze what the car was doing better. We put in hours of wrenching after each day at the track doing our best to get comfortable and dialed in.
As qualifying started Joe put in a couple of decent runs early, in the mid and upper teens. I struggled with mistakes early on and was in the 30’s the first couple of runs. On the final day I was able to put in two top 20 runs with my final run potentially having been a top 10 but one large crash kept me out of that. But regardless things were getting better and I felt that things were moving in the right direction and that I would be able to have a good main day. Joe, Alex, and I would all qualify into the quarter finals.
At the start of the 1/4 final I had one of my best starts ever starting from the 6 position. As others seemed to be super cautions I decided to be assertive and quickly moved into 5th on the inside of the stairs. Then as others in front of me tangled and fought I simply powered by and quickly assumed the lead 1/2 a lap into the main. I started to even pull away a little and was in a bit of disbelief but pleased and just wanted to put in good laps. But on the 3rd lap I hit to far inside on the double after the carousel that had no lip, and shorted the jump and lawn darted into the face of the lander. I got stuck in the loose stuff in between and fell back a lot. I got back out and being a 30 minute race I wasn’t to concerned yet. But as we got to the pit option lap I was asked if I wanted to come in at 7:45 or at 8:15. Being the first stop and knowing the tank was full from the start of the race, I opted for the 8:15 mark and started another lap. But even down the front straight I felt it start to go lean and I knew I probably made a mistake. A few corners later there I was out of gas and out of contention in the 1/4 final. It was because I chose to fully change my tune for the final qualifier and main to make it easier for me to drive it but it turns out it wasn’t the best mileage tune. I never got a good fuel mileage run and just hoped I would be able to do the 8:15 on the first stop but it wasn’t meant to be and that’s all on me.
So yeah, that’s pretty much how it all went down. Joe was doing great as we were in the same quarter and he assumed the lead after my crash. He had some good battles up front but came up just short in his bid for the bump. Alex in the other quarter had a pretty good race but had a really bad pit lane incident I think and that basically cost him a bump to the semi. So overall an unfortunate disappointment for us, final result wise at the Worlds. We are still extremely confident in the new car and the ideas that are in it. I feel perhaps just a lack of track time on similar surfaces and lack of time with the car are really what hurt us the most.
While not doing well at the largest event held every two years is a major bummer, it’s not the end all. We do many large events every year and will simply regroup and learn from the mistakes and come back stronger as the 2019 season comes around.
I want to make a comment regarding the new World Champion Davide Ongaro. I watched most all of his qualifiers and he simply has the most amazing throttle finger i’ve ever heard. His extremely quick and precisely tuned throttle inputs in the corners are like no one else i’ve ever heard. He is able to keep momentum while not breaking traction. He absolutely was favored to win and for good reason. Congrats to him on the victory!
September 19, 2018
This past weekend was a trip down to the bayou in West Monroe, Louisiana. This event has become so popular that they have an entry cap and the event sells out within a day or two. This year they allowed just over 400 entries and everyone was treated to yet another huge 3D track! The amount of dirt they use to build this track allows for some huge jumps and elevation changes of more than 8 feet. The format would be a normal 3 day schedule with practice Friday, Quals on Saturday, and the mains on Sunday.
Practice was just ok for me. I made a few changes from my Korea set-up and tried some new shocks pistons that Jared Wiggens came up with. We ran 3×1.45, 3×1.8, 4×0.8 in the front and 3×1.4, 3×1.8, 6×0.8 in the rear with 475 cst front and rear with shocks mounted out on the arm. These shocks weren’t a huge difference from the 3×2.2 ft, 3×2.1 rear but they did seem to preform a bit better as the track got rougher.
Once qualifying began I suddenly was doing great. This is an event that I usually have some kind of bad luck and just don’t do great at but when qualifying was being run through, things were looking good. I was running any number of SSLW AKA tires ranging from Impacts to Grids to Double downs and they were all feeling pretty good. In Q1 I took the TQ in Nitro Truggy, 3rd in Ebuggy and got 2nd in Nitro Buggy. In Q2 I was able to wrap up overall TQ in Truggy and I also got TQ in Ebuggy and another 2nd in Nitro buggy. In Q3 I was able to also take TQ in Ebuggy to get the overall and TQ Nitro buggy as well. So overall I would be TQ in nitro truggy and Ebuggy and start 2nd on the grid in nitro buggy.