Sunday July 3rd was main day at the JC Summer Indoor Nats Rd #2. In the fourth qualifier I was able to take the 4th and final round of Short Course and thus won all 4 rounds pretty handily. My truck was honestly super dialed as some would say and again the Tekin Pro 4 motor was a beast. Even on this small track it was fun to cut ‘er loose and pull trigger and the super high bite clay surface just let me put the power down. We turned our tires into slicks for this race which was a first time for me. Taking a dremel to a new set of tires seems crazy but it was worth a few tenths of a second and that’s all that matters in racing! In 4wd Mod my DEX410 was starting to come around. I was throwing set-ups at it left and right just trying to learn the buggy and get it dialed in. The fourth round was okay and I managed a 4 for the round which was at least enough to put me into the A main and 6th on the grid.

Come main time it was SC up first. It was an 8 minute race and I wasn’t sure I can make it. (I’m sure some of you are like, come-on, it’s only 8min. Well put yourself behind the equivalent of a 2 turn motor and rip it like a 1/8th truggy and let me know your findings!) Either way I knew I had to pace myself to be sure I finished. So I turned it down to about 75%. I got out to the lead and only made 3 laps above 15 seconds. I stayed consistent and just showed what the truck can do. I ended up taking the win by about a lap and a half. My DESC410R was on rails as it has been lately. For those serious about racing the 4wd SC class the Durango is the only way to go. Put a diff in the center, get a couple of aluminum bits for added durability and you have yourself a super strong SC that is quite simply the fastest SC on the market!

Next up was 4wd buggy. This main was 10 minutes long and I was nearly positive I had zero shot at making 10 minutes. This was my first race weekend with the DEX410 and it was a bit of a learning curve to say the least. I had practiced with it twice before and I had a gremlin in it that we just couldn’t figure out. With the over the top help from Randy Pike from Tekin we were finally able to figure out what it was after changing out and trying just about everything. It was a trying time and things just weren’t going my way in practice or qualifying at this event either. Luckily I was able to make the A so I knew at least if I drove clean and smooth I could have a shot. At the start I stayed clean but a lap or two in someone tubed it and I got into them sending me to the back of the pack. I was dead last in 10th and actually content there for the early going as I didn’t do any practice laps because I wanted to make sure I would finish the race on battery. (I wasn’t able to test runtime due to the gremlin and so many other things that would take forever to go over.) Anyways I was attempting to drive super smooth. I had done one major change before the main and that was to shorten my camberlinks all the way around to give the car more camber-gain and I also just gave it more camber overall. This seemed to be really good. A few laps in and I started to find a groove. I slowly started moving through the pack and eventually found myself in 3rd. Tyler Vik and Steven Hartson were ahead of me and battling and I inched closer until it was a 3 way battle. Then Hartson broke out or something and it was down to me and Vik. I was running right behind him and with like 30 seconds to go coming over the front hump under the announcers stand the car shut down. Turns out I melted the wire off the motor and it shorted. Such was my luck but to come out and be competitive the first time really racing the car and with all the issues I have had thus far was very promising. It felt really good in the main and I’m looking forward to the Hot Rod Shootout this upcoming week and 6 min quals and mains! πŸ™‚ I think I can do well. Just got to get in the electric frame of mind!

4wd SC TQ and Win at JC Indoor Nats Rd 2

Anyways it was a good weekend for me overall. I was pleased with how it went and I was happy to show that yet again the Durango DESC410R is the truck to beat on yet another surface (Super high bite clay).
Next up I leave for the Hot Rod Shootout on Tuesday. Quick turnaround. I should be getting a prototype 2wd Durango to run this week. Should be interesting! Shout Out:::Billy Fisher, I’m going to need your help!!! πŸ˜€

Until a few days from now….
-Lutzinator

Did a short 2 hour travel up to Chico to race at Outback Raceway. (Also home to A-main hobbies)
The event is the J-Concepts Summer Indoor Nationals and this weekend is round #2. I decided to come and run some electric to prepare for the Hot Rod Shootout next weekend and the Nationals in about a month. I am running my DEX410 and DESC410R. So far my Short Course Truck has been dialed. The video above is courtesy of rcinsider.com and is of part of my second qualifier. So far I have TQ’d all three rounds run with one more tomorrow. My DESC410R has been able to dip into the 14 second lap times and is nearly as fast as my 4wd buggy!

Speaking of 4wd buggy my DEX410 is starting to come along. This is my first ever race with the car and to be honest it’s been a bit of a struggle. I’ve battled an unknown gremlin for a while now and am hoping to have got it figured out. Set-up wise i’m doing about 3 – 5 setup changes per round just trying to get the car figured out on this extremely high bite surface. I’ve had 2 DNF’s. Both the fault of the mechanic! But my one finish was 5th. In the 3rd round I was running top 2 and my wheel nut came out! oops! :-0 Anyways there is still one more qualifier to go so hopefully it will all come together and I can have a good starting position in the A.

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Sunday (EARLY AM), June 26, 2011

I’m Happy. It all came together today. It started in the Short Course class where I had to bump from the B after my issues yesterday. It didn’t go without some scares but I was able to comfortable bump into the A-mains. They ran 2 A-mains and combined the two points and times to determine a winner. I started 13th on the Grid and in the first main was able to dart and weave through traffic with my DESC410R and overtake some others down the straight utilizing the crazy power of the new Tekin Pro 4 motor! About halfway through the main I was able to catch up to the leader Randy Pike and overtook him and extended my lead and held it for the win. In the second main I had a great start. Jumping into about 3rd on the first corner. (Hara told me I jumped over 10 cars in that corner! haha) Anyways I continued the hot start and took the lead on the second lap and never relinquished it. I pushed and extended and ended up putting over a lap on the field in the 7min main. My Durango DESC410R was on rails and I dipped into the 29 second laptimes. It was a great feeling!

In Buggy I just wanted to stay clean and put in a solid run. I was noticing a lot of attrition in the other mains and thus knew I just wanted to stay running. Well I had another very good start coming off the 5 spot on the grid. I got up to third but made a couple of mistakes and let Pavidis and Truhe get by me off and on at the start. I was able to find my groove though and overtook them and held 3rd firmly. I just got into a rhythm and started putting in solid laps. After a while 2nd place flamed out and I inherited 2nd. Maifield had a good lead and he was putting 3rd a lap down and I was the last person on the lead lap. I worked hard to stay on that lead lap and did so for at least 35min or so. I have to hand it to Maifield, he is at one with his vehicles right now and he laid it down. I just did the best I could and was very pleased with my car and how it was driving. I was able to put nearly 2 laps on 3rd myself by the end of the race and stayed just over a lap behind Maifield and took a very solid 2nd. I was very pleased with my Durango DNX408 buggy and I’m looking forward to the next event!! Have to give props to my sponsors AKA for the great wearing and handling Soft Impacts. To Alpha Plus for the Amazing A852 engine that kept running solid while others were flaming out all around me. It’s with these sponsors and my many others that allow me to do what I do and enjoy it so much! Bring on the next race!!

-Lutzinator

Alabama Manufacturers Shootout

Saturday (Early AM), June 25, 2011

Yesterday was a long day of qualifying. 15 hours to be precise. In Short Course my Durango DESC410R was still the truck to beat and was able to blitz the field in Q1 for TQ of the round. Come round two and three however and the bad luck decided to rear it’s ugly head again. Both round I had the solder on my jumper wire between my two batteries come undone and ended each run prematurely. Thus I’m qualified 3rd in the B-main and will have to bump up into the double A’s.
In Buggy my DNX408 is getting better every run on the track. I’ve been able to bring my laptimes down to where I want them as of last night. Now I just need to clean up my lines and I feel like I have a chance at making a run today! My three qualifiers I finished 4th, 8th, and 5th. None of them felt good so I’m hoping today I can make my run feel good and hopefully the result will show that as well!

-Lutzinator

Thursday June 23, 2011

Out here in Alabama tonight after having finished a long day of practice at the 2011 Alabama Manufacturers Shootout. The day of practice went pretty well for me. I didn’t get quite the amount of track-time that I would have hoped for (or that I heard some people were getting!) but I still managed to put in some good runs in our 1 round of timed practice. In Short Course my DESC410R was awesome! Using the same set-up from Nor-Cal the week prior my truck was dialed and absolutely flying with the new Tekin Pro-4 motor. I was able to be within 1.7 seconds of my fastest lap in Pro Buggy with my SC. If counting the full run it would have put me 10th in the Pro Truggy A! haha
Looking for another good day tomorrow when it really matters! Qualification day!
In Buggy my DNX408 also proved to be on pace. I laid down some consistent laps and overall times put me #1. However they utilized your fastest 3 laps in a row which will put me 3rd in my qualifier tomorrow. Looking forward to a positive day and hoping to have a great rest of the event with 3 rounds of qualification tomorrow and mains on Saturday. (And home on Sunday to be with the family!)

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Saturday June 18, 2011

Just got back from my 2 hour car ride home from Nor-Cal Hobbies, home of Rd #3 of the Nor-Cal championship series. For this event I decided to stick strictly to Durango vehicles and I ran my DNX408 and DESC410R. The track layout was changed from the last time I was there and while it kept a few cool elements it also had some fun changes which made for a fast track and some good air!

The format was for two qualifiers and a main. I was able to win both rounds with both of my vehicles to take the overall TQ’s. My DESC410R was nearly able to lap the field in qualifying and was just flying over the jump sections. I was doing everything with it that I was doing with my 1/8th buggy and was only 2 seconds a lap slower with my SC than my 1/8th buggy. I’m getting more and more pleased with the DESC410R every time I run it.
In Buggy my DNX408 was dialed yet again on this Nor-Cal track. I was able to take overall TQ by about 8 seconds of second. My Alpha Plus engine was dialed and running smooth and crisp and my AKA rubber was laying it down.

Come A-main time I had a 7min main for Short Course. I took off from the pole and never looked back. I was able to pull away from the field as I took a good lead after 3 minutes and cruised the rest of the way to make sure I finished without issue. Everyone was very impressed by my DESC410R. I was launching it over the two table tops and landing on the second one just like the 1/8th buggies. My Tekin motor was flying and it all just came together for a great race.

Nor-Cal Series rd #3 double Champion

In Buggy it was much the same. I stayed out front from the pole position and worked on extending my opening lead. My DNX408 felt great from the start and I ran some solid laps to build a little bit of a lead. At that point I started to tone it down a little bit to preserve my lead and limit mistakes. It worked well and I was able to come away with the win in the 25min A-main. My buggy felt great from start to finish and my AKA Soft impacts were up to the challenge on this semi-abrasive surface. I’m beginning to really like Nor-Cal because I’ve had good luck there. Hopefully it will carry over for the Electric Nationals in a couple of months.

Should have at least one video of my SC qualifying round that I will be able to post shortly! Check back!

Up next is the Alabama Manufacturers Shootout which starts on Thursday! Here I come Alabama!

-Lutzinator

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June 6, 2011

Sunday was main day at the ROAR Nationals and I was prepared to see my hard work pay off and put in some good runs in the semi’s and the A-Finals. As has been my luck though throughout much of my career those aspirations would end short in the Semi’s. In Truggy I was running a solid 3rd and in good position to bump into the A-final. However I was landed on after the front triple and it ended up snapping my rear dogbone!? It was a frustrating way to bow out of the race but I knew I still had the class that really mattered to me, buggy, up next.

Come the buggy semi my Durango DNX408 felt good in the warmup. I made a mistake a few laps after the tone and fell back to 5th. I worked my way back to 4th and I don’t remember exactly how or where this happened but I got hit hard in the rear of the car. The bottom shock screw ended up cracking the arm and coming out and thus I was driving the car with the rear shock not fully functioning. I drove it like this for about 10 – 15 minutes and was still able to nearly keep pace with the 5th – 7th placed drivers. However shortly after that time I think the shock moved outside of the arm and boat anchored into the dirt and it was no longer drivable. Again, very frustrating to have had this happen especially when the car felt good and the track was beginning to get to more of my liking as the semi was going on.

Even though the results weren’t what I would have hoped for this weekend I can still take away some positives. I now have a better high bite set-up to start with the next time I’m on a high bite track. I also was able to qualify 4th overall which showed the pace of my Durango DNX408 on yet another track! I know I am getting more and more competitive each time out with my buggy and the Durango just keeps getting better and better. I know the results will continue to improve as I really mesh with the car and as our team continues to develop the car and make it into a contender for the World Championships in 2012. (That would be the other positive of the weekend, I was able to qualify for the Worlds in 2012 so everyone better watch out!) πŸ˜€

-Lutzinator

June 4, 2011

Today was a day to forget racing wise. We had the last two rounds of qualification and i just ran poorly and had bad luck this time around. Luckily yesterday was good enough to put me solidly into the Semi’s. I ended up qualified 4th in Buggy and 7th in Truggy. I will be looking for a solid top 5 in each of my semi’s to seat me into that coveted A-main. It should get interesting tomorrow night as the schedule seems to be running a little late and thus the mains could possibly be in the dark in which case the track will be completely different from if we run in the day time. It will be interesting, and having an assortment of tires ready will be key! Thanks AKA for all the support on that front!

I’m personally hoping for a later main because the track will be more loamy and there hopefully won’t be that tiny high bite groove that I can never seem to stay in!

Going to let-er-rip tomorrow and hopefully bring home some nice hardware!

-Lutzinator

Thanks rcinsider.com for the photo!

June 3, 2011

Out here today at the beautiful facility that is Thunder Alley Raceway. Rob, Levi, and crew have done a fabulous job yet again in bringing a world class R/C facility to us racers to enjoy!

Today was the first day of qualifying and I was looking to put my Durango DNX408 buggy and my rent-a-ride Mooooogen up near the top.

In truggy i’m doing my best to learn this Mugen MBX-6T truggy on the fly. The Mugen camp has been extremely helpful to me and I am very grateful for their assistance. Overall I have put in two 7th place runs. This isn’t so bad considering the truck is completely new to me. It should be plenty enough to qualify directly into the semi-finals so i’m happy with that.

In buggy my Durango DNX408 is rockin again. In the first round I got stuck behind traffic for the first 3 laps and eventually made my way around them and ran a clean rest of the race. I worked on staying clean and just putting in a solid run. I started throwing down faster and faster lap times as the track dried out. I threw down the fastest lap time of the round with a 29.3 on the last lap and ended up taking 2nd place just 1.7 seconds behind Tebo. Needless to say I was pleased with the result as I had done about 4 changes before the round and they all seemed to do as I had hoped.

Come round two I was hoping for a repeat or a little bit better. Unfortunately it wasn’t to be as I struggled to get the pop I needed to clear the front triple. I cased it nearly every lap and that probably cost me about a half second a lap. Everywhere else the car felt very good and I was still able to run relatively clean and put in a top 5. I guess it’s a good thing when your slightly disappointed at getting 5th at the ROAR Nationals. Must mean the car is working well!

Well tomorrow is two more heats of qualifying. Tebo already has two TQ’s in Buggy so the only way to unthrone him is to TQ the last two rounds and have a better tie-breaker…..That’s my goal! πŸ™‚ (Dream Big!)

-Lutzinator

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Sunday 5-22-11
Hey everyone. Had the opportunity to travel back to Ohio to visit my family and also spend some time at the track at the same time. I went down to Urbana, Ohio and attended the Grand Re-Opening event at Area 54 raceway. It was a very fun event with around 150 entries in all types of classes from SC to 1/8th to 1/5th baja’s!

I ran my Durango DNX408 buggy and just went out to put in some good laps and run my race. I was able to take TQ all three of the qualifiers, improving my time each one as the track got faster and faster. (Also to note this area had over 6″ of rain last Tuesday and another 2″ Thursday night. Plus it’s basically just been raining non-stop in the midwest in general! I told them I brought them some California sunshine for a couple of days! πŸ˜‰ )

Come main time with the threat of rain in the area I set out to drive hard and have some fun. My father came to the race and pitted for me for the first time in about 5 years. I think he enjoyed it although I’m sure he would deny it! haha. But it was a good time and even with making a lot of mistakes I was able to put in the faster lap times and come away with the victory in the end of the 20 min main. My Durango handled the weekend very well. I again changed nothing on my set-up and just drove it and loved it! I’m ready for Nationals in just over a weeks time.

I would like to thank the track owners at Area 54 for having me out and putting on a good show and getting the track all ready after all of that rain. The event went very well and it was probably the nicest pit lane I have ever seen. The drivers stand was also very nice and the track grooved up well also. I look forward to coming back in the future.

Next up as I mentioned in the ROAR 1/8th Nitro offroad Nationals the first week of June. I’m ready, I know Thunder Alley is going to put on a fabulous show as they always do and I’m looking forward to putting my Durango DNX408 up at the top!

-Lutzinator

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