Sanford and Son RC headed out to Heritage RC Park in Chula Vista, CA on July 30th for round 2 of the Summer Series. The track had just received a new layout by the world famous Joey Christensen of The Dirt Racing. There were a number of outdoor and indoor races in the area on the same day, so the turnout was a little light, about 90 entries. The race would consist of two five-minute qualifiers and 30 minute A Mains for the nitro classes, and 7 minute triple A Mains for the electric classes. The track would be watered every other heat.
The competition for this round would include TLR’s Don Vinkemulder, Mugen’s Gil Alontaga and Chad Grana, Adam Schick and Art Sanfratello from Tekno RC, and fellow Kyosho drivers Anthony Howarth, Alex Hartmuller and Loch Stigre, and a number of fast local racers.
1/8 Scale Electric Buggy
I was able to get in a little practice before qualifying, and the E Buggy was good, but the shocks were packing up on the jump landings. I lightened up the shock oil by 2-1/2 weight all the way around, but there was not enough time left in practice to try the change. However, when I drove the first practice laps for Q1, the car was fantastic. The setup change was spot on. I got a great start, and was able to lead the race from start to finish, without any mistakes. There would be a second heat of E Buggy, but my TQ would hold up. The car was a couple of tenths faster in Q2 on the watered track, but I made a couple of bobbles, missing my first round TQ time by a few seconds. I would start on the pole for the Triple A Mains.
A1 started, and I got a great hole shot. Kyosho driver Loch Stigre ran a good race, but I was able to pull away and win A1 with a victory lap. My Kyosho MP9E had been great all day. In fact, it was faster than my nitro car during qualifying. I required one turn marshal in A2, but was still able to win the round. My two wins in the first two A Mains meant that I would be able to sit out A3, and finish at the top of the podium.
1/8 Scale E Buggy Results:
1. Lucas Sanford (Kyosho / AKA)
2. Loch Stigre (Kyosho / AKA) (not pictured)
3. Adam Schick (Tekno / AKA)
1/8 Scale Expert Nitro Buggy
I jumped out to an early lead in Q1 of the Expert Nitro class. Racing was really tight for the first few laps, and I swapped the lead with Anthony Howarth midway thru the race. I raced clean for the rest of the race, and would take a 10 second win, earning the first round TQ.
In Q1, the car had a little too much grip in the high speed corners, so I decided to make a setup change before Q2. I raised the inner link on the rear suspension, and the result was amazing. In Q2, I was able to throw the car into the high speed turns without worrying about traction rolling. The car was a couple of tenths faster per lap than it was in Q1, and I was able to beat my own TQ time by a little more than two seconds. I would qualify for first place in the 30 minute A Main.
My tire of choice for the A Main was a fresh set of AKA GridIron II Soft Long Wear. I normally use AKA Soft Impacts for the main, but I wanted to try the soft long wear compound. The tires held up very well for the entire 30 minutes.
In the A Main, I felt more confident with the car because of the setup change. My lap times reflected how well the car handled, as my lap times were over a half a second faster per lap than the competition. I ran the entire 30 minute A Main with only one mistake requiring a turn marshal. My car almost ran out of gas in the pits during my second pit stop, so since I had a comfortable lead over the field, my pit man pitted me a little earlier than planned for the rest of the race. The car felt so good, I was able to relax and run my fastest lap times of the day. With the setup change, the car was even faster than the E Buggy in the A Main. I finished a lap ahead of the field, and got caught at the line, .2 seconds short of an additional lap.
1/8 Scale Expert Buggy Results:
1. Lucas Sanford (Kyosho / AKA)
2. Don Vinkemulder (TLR / ProLine) (not pictured)
3. Anthony Howarth (Kyosho / AKA)
Everything really came together this weekend. I was very consistent with both cars, and my equipment performed flawlessly, so I am very happy with the results. I cannot say enough about how fun this new layout was! Thank you to Joey Christensen of The Dirt Racing! I want to also say thank you to my sponsors: Sanford and Son RC, Kyosho, KO Propo, AKA, DE Racing, Tekin, TTN Racing, Vision Racing Products and Upgrade RC.
Radio duties for both cars were handled by the KO EX-1 KIY transmitter and KR-413FH receiver. The nitro car was equipped with the KO BSX2 Response H.C. servo for throttle, and both cars used the KO RSX2 Power H.C. servo for steering.
My Kyosho MP9E TKI was powered by the Tekin RX8 Gen2 ESC and Redline T8 Gen2 1900 motor. Both buggies were mounted with soft compound AKA GridIron II tires. (I used soft long wear compound AKA GridIron II tires for the 30 minute nitro A Main).
Thank you to Heritage RC Park, and to track manager Anthony Howarth and the track crew for a great job getting the track ready. Thank you also to race director Victor Orellana for keeping the program running smoothly, and for a great job on the mic.