This past weekend the Tekno team descended upon Las Vegas once again for the Silver State Nitro Challenge. Coming in from Ohio where we were having snow so it was nice to enjoy a weekend of high 80’s dessert warmth and sunshine. The track would be ran like at the Worlds with water for most runs. About 80% of the layout was new with the other 20% remaining from the Worlds. The event would have a standard format of 3 qualifiers and ABC mains.

For most of the weekend the track was on the lower grip side of the equation. Meaningful bumps didn’t start to materialize until around the middle of qualifying. For this event we went in with a bit of a different strategy. We wanted to start with a rough track setup and just leave the settings as much as possible and just get comfortable with the cars. No big changes or even little ones were to be made going into the mains.

Qualifying started off really well taking 5th in Ebuggy, 2nd in truggy, and 4th in Nitro buggy. The track was still pretty easy going into Q2 and now the field really started to tighten up. Especially in truggy which just laid waste to the small bumps in the road. I was on a TQ run with a 1.5 second cushion with two laps to go and they said behind Ronnefalk. I was following him in the track so I figured if I paced him I would have TQ. But there were no more announcements until the race was over and suddenly Tessman leapfrogged me on the last lap to take the win by tenths. So I settled for another 2nd, which I also got in Ebuggy. Nitro buggy I made a mistake and got a 7.

For Q3 I still had a shot at TQ in truggy and I led for a few laps to start the race. But I got wide at the end of the straight and shorted the big jump landing in my lid with a 4 second crash. I fought back up to 4th about 3 behind the leader but it was not enough. I would start 3rd in the main. There was no improvement in Ebuggy so I would qualify 3rd there as well. Nitro buggy was a decent run with a top 5 seeding me 6th into the Amain.

Come main day Ebuggy was up first with a single 10 minute main. Starting from third I stayed in line through the start until Phend crashed promoting me to 2nd. I had a couple good laps and was right on Maifield until I made some small bobbles falling a little bit back. Then I crashed falling to 5th where I would have a 3 way battle with Ronnefalk and Tebo for the remainder of the main. We battled and swapped positions as we navigated the increasingly bumpy track. At the tone I would come home in 4th just off the podium.

Nitro truggy was up next and I was feeling pretty confident. At the start over the big jump on the left, Tessman jumped a little short as I went long landing on the side of him and overtaking the position into 2nd. The next 2 laps I was nipping at the heels of Maifield and felt racy. But I shorted the right double going away and fell back to 3rd. A short bit later I made another mistake falling back to 6th and soon over 10 seconds behind the leaders.

I had a momentary feeling of dismay as I thought my shot was over but thought my car is just too good. So I put my head down and fought back into a battle for 3rd with Tebo. For two stops we swapped positions during pit stops and I found myself 13 seconds behind the leaders 14 minutes in. As everything started to heat up my truck kept getting better. I was also starting to feel the flow of the track better and everything began to mesh. I gained full control of 3rd and set my sights on the leaders. I saw I was catching them on the track and Jimmy confirmed on the mic. I soon found myself about 5 seconds behind second when another round of pit stops was coming up. Maifield was first in and he flamed out loosing 15 or so seconds. This put me up to 2nd and everything kept feeling better. After my stop I was about 5 seconds behind Tessman and just started to real him in. Some laps I was a second faster still throwing down mid 31’s.

Soon I was within 2 seconds when Ty crashed and I got by. I would not relinquish as I got a couple second gap. I had a bobble lap letting Ty get back to my bumper but I cleaned it up and put in some of my best laps of the event. I started to pull out into the Vegas sunset as my lead grew to just under 10 seconds by the end of the main. I crossed the line with my first big victory in a while. This was my second Truggy title at Silver State but was possibly my biggest win ever as the competition was the highest this year.

Nitro buggy was the final race of the day and I was hoping to put in another good run. From the start I jumped up to 5th from my 6th starting position. There is where I would run for the first 7 laps before making a mistake and falling back to 7th. I would then begin to battle with quite a few others as we jockeyed for position. The lead 3 were gone and soon it was again a battle between Ronnefalk, Tebo, and I for 4th-6th. We all battled off and on for a good portion of the race. As we neared the last stops the leader had a part breakage promoting our battle to a battle for the podium spot. With 5 or so minutes to go it was me trailing behind Ronnefalk trying to chase him down but coming up around 3 seconds short as the race concluded. Thus another 4th place finish.

Overall I am very pleased with my results from the weekend. A win and two 4ths against a very talented crop of racers. I moved up to 7th overall on the TOP25RC Rankings and I’m feeling really good about the rest of the season!

In the Teammate Challenge I am starting to leave Joe in the dust this weekend. Taking a 17pt victory from Silver State and thus an 18pt lead in the season series. Anything can happen with many races to go but Joes already saying he thinks I will beat him by 30pts by the end. We shall see!

Next up is another back to back set of PNB followed by NeoBuggy In England. I know what I’ll be doing on that flight to England! 😉

-Lutzinator

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MNL #2 in Malaysia

March 8, 2017

No rest for the weary as I traveled home from Arizona to Ohio for about 20 hours following the Dirt Nitro Challenge event. That was about 5 hours worth of flying, a lot for some people. But that next morning I embarked on a trip around the world that would take about 22 hours in the air and maybe 27 overall.  My destination was Malaysia by way of Singapore for the Malaysian National league round #2 in Johor Bahru. As mentioned I flew into Singapore arriving just after midnight where I was picked up by Ilias and another local where we were transported across the Singapore/Malaysian boarder in what amounted to about a 45 minute trip. We soon arrived to our house that was rented for us which I did a Facebook live tour of on my Facebook page. We stayed up to 3am chatting before heading off to bed where I awoke at 7am. (I was fortunate to get a lot of sleep on the planes, so this allowed me to jump right into their schedule which was +13 hours from my normal time zone.)

View from our house. Water is shrimp farms!

So first day and the plan was to go to McDonalds for breakfast as the rumor was that I was like other Americans who had visited, and wouldn’t want to eat the local cuisine. But on the drive we decided to hit up a Dim Sum location and I dove right into the local food. To me I really enjoy most of the food in Asia, and it’s a nice change of pace from what I am constantly eating in America. I really enjoy the great variety and it started the day off right! Next we headed over to the track where we would spend the day practicing and I would spend some time helping a young man (but very tall! (12 y/o but probably 6’4″!)) get his car all dialed in. I let a few people run my Truggy, and just had a good time running on this multi surface (Dirt, Bricks, carpet jump faced) track.

Love the family style, big variety of food!

That night we met with some more people who would be staying with us and we went out to dinner and then back to the house where we called it a night (At least I did as I was now tired pretty early). The next day we awoke to some rain and for the next two days it would just be off and on. As soon as the track would look like it was ready to race again another downpour would come washing out hopes of running. Many others had arrived to attend the event and what was amazing to me was that they still almost all stayed at the track each day and just hung out and worked on their vehicles. Everyone was extremely friendly and kind which is what I encounter all over the world in general. It’s pretty awesome to experience when our news is bombarded with fear about other locations, but I see none of it when I travel around the World.

Track a bit wet and covered in spots.

The Flood!

Friday evening when we headed back to the house we decided to have a quick 3 on 3 Futbol match. We called it the East vs. West All stars. It was over pretty quick, about 3 points in after a few of the more mature guys couldn’t breath anymore! It was low 80’s and very humid after all! 😉 But it was a lot of fun and a nice way to unwind from the day. On Saturday at the track Ilias and I spent most of the day building a brand new NB48.4 for the local distributor which he was able to sell at the track as many watched me build the buggy and we called it my Pro Build #003. On Saturday eventing we were down to 2 on 2 for Futbol and I feel like my skills improved greatly over the first day and my team took the win! (There is video footage out there on Facebook, trust me though, it’s nothing to impressive haha.)

Bagged Iced Coffee!

So it was Sunday and the threat of rain was still there but fortunately it held off. We ran one 10 minute qualifier to seed for the mains. The track was muddy still and I was up in race 2 for buggy. I was racing my buggy #002 that Eddie would be receiving after the event so I felt kind of bad running it in the mud. But it was the right thing to do so I got it muddy and had some fun racing again. Then we participated in a 25 minute semi-final to seat up the mains. Later in the day around 2:30 we would run the hour long final. I bet Kent who is the local distributor that I would beat him by 10 laps based on how the Semi’s went. In the hour long final I had my front body clip come undone early in a lap causing an alligator and also a few other crashes. I would come away with the victory by about 6 laps after the final but I only beat Kent by 9 laps and 10 seconds thus we say he beat me! 😉

Just a little muddy!

The final race of the day was a 45 minute truggy final. There were only 6 of us so I managed to drive normal for about 5 minutes and then I just decided to have fun a push it. So for the next 40 minutes I continued to dial up the intensity as I drifted corners, overshot jumps, did some whips, and would see how much I could balloon the inside tires through corners. I also had fun tailgating the other drivers as I approached them to the delight of the crowd. I had fun and I think everyone watching did too. I put the truck and new Blok engine to the test running 40 minutes at noodled intensity and it all held up great!

Seafood restaurant where we had Squid, whole fish, Ostrich, Mussle Soup, and more.

After racing I quickly cleaned up the buggy and was able to present it to Eddie. Then we headed off to get cleaned up and dinner at Domino’s where we all said our goodbyes. We were off to Singapore then so I could make my 6am flight on Monday morning.

I had a great time in Malaysia and made a lot of new friends and met some great people. I’d like to thank Kent, Eric, Sam, Kato, Danny, Ilias, and many others who made the trip possible and enjoyable! I look forward to another trip in the future to visit and race again!

Next up for me is a week to get caught up on life before heading out to Vegas for the Silver State Nitro Challenge!

-Lutzinator

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This past weekend I once again attended the Dirt Nitro Challenge which this year really lived up to its name. The Dirt was a huge challenge! With rains pounding the area days before we arrived, the track didn’t get finished until last minute, and thus it never got smoothed out. So the track started and continued to be rough, as the surface had clods of dirt and very uneven surfaces throughout. On top of that the water broke on the first day by an errant truggy in the first practice, and thus we ran a dry track most of the weekend. . . until mains.

Track before Pro Buggy A-main

Practice started us off on Wednesday with 2 rounds per class. Everyone was working hard to come to grips with these unique track conditions, and you could see it was going to be a struggle all week. The Tekno team was a fantastic atmosphere to be a part of as we worked together to get our cars on pace.

Come qualifying day one, we had Nitro truggy and Ebuggy on tap. The track was high bite and very bumpy. My truggy started the week off dialed, as I navigated the tough track to take an opening round TQ. Success wasn’t as high in Ebuggy with a 13th as I still worked on nailing down a comfortable setup.
In Q2 I really hoped to lock up TQ in truggy but the track got a bit of a slick groove midday, and I was a bit more uncomfortable. Still a great run in 2nd, as Maifield and I would battle out in Q3 for the overall. Ebuggy Q2 would be my drop round of a 19.

Q3 would finish off the night. I put in a run of my life in truggy staying ahead of the hard charging Tessman and Maifield to take the overall TQ with the fastest run of the entire weekend. In Ebuggy I really needed a miracle run with how things were going and I got it. I was in the B resort and took the victory even with feeling like I was making lots of little errors. The track was just so tough. Then in the A sort only 2 drivers beat my time thus securing me a 3rd, and a spot in the A in 10th.

Nitro buggy qualifying would happen on Friday and it was another long day especially only racing one class. My results were excellent for me though. First round held it together in the tough conditions to take a 4th. In the second round had a bit faster pace but also a 4 second mistake. Still took a 5th for the round. In the final round I was already locked into the main but did a couple setup changes and a different tire selection choosing AKA Soft Chainlinks. I was leading for much of the race before making a mistake and falling to 2nd for the round. But everything was coming together and I had qualified 5th into the A main.

Saturday was main day for Ebuggy and Nitro Truggy. The decision was also made midway through the day to start watering for the first time all week. Thus tire choice just got that much harder. For the Ebuggy A main I decided to go with soft chainlinks like I ran on my Nitro in Q3 the night before. It was the wrong choice for the new track condition. My car was loose on the surface that had a water glaze on top and I just struggled from the get go. I never got into a great groove and was only able to muster finishing where I started in 10th. I was a bit disappointed, and it left me questioning what to run for the Truggy final.

Truggy Qualifying Order

The truggy final would be a 45 minute affair and I would be starting on pole for this prestigious race. I chose super soft long wear gridirons and they were great to start. As the tone sounded we were off, with me leading the way. After 2 laps I got in a groove and started to pull away to a 3 or 4 second lead and my truck felt amazing. Suddenly though I lost my smoothness and it got hard to drive. It seemed as though my steering wasn’t being consistent and I just started to make mistakes. Perhaps oils heated up and we started to soft or perhaps tires should have been soft compound. About 7 minutes in I got sideways at the end of the whoops and into the pipe. I fell back to 3rd where my teammate Joe and I would find ourselves running together for the next 20 minutes or so. At that point I really started making a few mistakes and then drove into the hay bales after jumping the back triple going away while running 3rd. I’m not sure what happened or why. But the end result of hitting the bale with the wheel full turned was it pulled the screw through the steering spindle plastic. It was a hard hit that I just watched again. Maybe I just got on the gas to much and just made a big mistake. Either way race was then over for me. Quite the bummer as it had looked so promising. Big congrats to Joe though who took home another 2nd, and also to Alex for taking 7th in his first ever event driving truggy!

At least I got the TQ!

On Sunday we had the nitro buggy main. For some reason I wanted to try to improve my buggy further from my excellent qualifying results, and thus did some changes for the Amain warmup. The car was decent but perhaps not as good as in qualifying. But with an entire day between qualifying and mains for said class, it made it hard to really compare. Well come main time I chose to go with soft double down tires. I think I made the right decision there, but going with the setup changes I made was probably a wrong decision. My car was a bit tricky to drive and I had some gnarly crashes throughout the start of the race. I tried to find a groove but I just couldn’t keep it consistent the whole time. Some of my crashes were so violent that my throttle trim got moved somehow and I had to adjust it on the fly to make the car drivable again. You can’t put a car through as much punishment as I gave it without some consequences. Well in about the middle of the race I was able to get everything sorted, and it was great to be one of the only drivers doing 9 minute pit stops during the main. The Blok engine was running amazing and I just wish I had stuck with my Q3 setup on the car.

Nitro Buggy qualifying Order

For much of the beginning of the race I found myself languishing in last. But throughout the middle, I was able to make some adjustments and find a groove, and I was able to move up slightly through the pack through the race. By the end of the 45 minutes I found myself in 9th position. Not nearly what I wanted, but I learned some things and will work to come back stronger next time.

Congratulations to Maifield on the clean sweep of the mains. Very impressive indeed for such a difficult track. And also a huge congratulations to my Tekno Teammate Carlos Arredondo who took a commanding victory in Expert Truggy and a huge come from behind 2nd place in Expert buggy! 

As for the Teammate Challenge this race had the potential to really give me a big lead but I didn’t capitalize and thus we stand just 1 point apart!

Tekno Teammate Challenge:

Ryan – 34

Joe – 35

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Monday the 30th at 9pm was the completion of the LutzRC Pro Build #001 that was auctioned off on Ebay. 100% of the selling price of the Tekno EB48.4 that I built went to support the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. I also posted on my LutzRC Facebook page that I would donate 100% of the sales on my website LutzRC.com for the duration of the auction. I was able to raise another $630 through my website on top of the $1,850 that the buggy was auctioned off for. I donated a bit more to make it an even $2,500 that has been donated to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Donation from LutzRC Sales

I was able to do next day delivery of the buggy because the winner of the auction happened to live 10 minutes from me! His name is Randy Sing and I got to meet him today at my dad’s hobby shop to hand deliver his new purchase. Now his story was pretty awesome as well I thought, so I would like to share it. Randy has been in my dad’s shop a couple times and had a few Traxxas vehicles in his fleet. He has been practicing with some friends at a local indoor track with his Slash but didn’t have a true race vehicle. He and his buddies had been admiring the new Tekno E-buggy at the track and were considering getting one. Randy himself really wasn’t on Facebook but his buddy saw me post the listing and told Randy about it. He had a friend growing up in Medina who had Cystic Fibrosis and was told she probably wouldn’t see past graduation. She is now 41 and still working as a spokesperson for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and working with other Charities and Veterans organizations in the area. Well because of that connection he had with her, this donation also was towards a cause he really believed in. 

I got to meet and thank Randy Personally for supporting this great cause!

So now Randy has a brand new Tekno EB48.4 which will be his first real race buggy. He had me sign the body so he won’t run the body or wing, but the buggy he will be giving a whirl here in a week or two. I just thought it was pretty awesome that he was local to me yet we had never met. He had a connection to the cause this auction was supporting, and it’s his first foray into 1/8th racing. I look forward to helping him get fully set-up and making the most of his experience at the track! 

Tekno EB48.4 LutzRC Pro Build #001

I want to truly thank each and every one of you who either bid on the buggy, purchased from my website, or simply liked and shared the post to get the word out about this cause. You each played a part in helping to raise $2,500 for this great cause! God Bless you all!

A huge Thank You to all of my sponsors who made this auction possible as well!

TeknoRC – EB48.4, Ti-Ni Shock Shafts, Aluminum Servo Horn, Aluminum Cross Pins

Tekin – RX-8 Gen 2 + T8 Gen 2 1900kV motor

AKA – AKA tire of choice

Futaba – S9373SV Servo

Diggity Paint – Killer “Lutz Worlds” Paint Scheme

Dutch Oven Designs – Great looking decals!

ProTekRC – 6500 LiHV 4S 100C battery

-Lutzinator

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Tekno EB48.4 Charity build

January 25, 2017

I have a new program I am going to do as part of LutzRC this year called LutzRC Pro Builds. In my available time I will build up Tekno vehicles with my spec equipment in them and offer them to those interested. First up all of my sponsors chipped in a donated product to make my first build be a charity build. The charity supported will be the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation as selected by Tekno owner Daniel Lewis, with the entire proceeds benefiting the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. I want to thank all of my sponsors for making this possible.

Here is the products in this build:

Tekno EB48.4 with hop ups including (Ti-Ni shock shafts, Bearing sleeves, Alum. servo horn)

Tekin RX8 Gen 2 with Redline Gen 2 1900 motor (Same spec I run and speedo is programed with my settings)

Futaba S9373SV Steering Servo

ProTek 6500, 100C Silicon graphene 4S HV Lipo pack

-One of my personal bodies done up by my painter Diggity Paints

-Decals provided by Dutch Oven Designs.

-One set of AKA tires mounted (your Choice of tread and compound.)

-This car is engraved with serial #001 and is initialed by me with RL.

You can see the listing HERE on eBay and bid to win this item! Thank you for your support and even if you can’t bid on the item I would greatly appreciate if you could share this auction!

 

-Lutzinator

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