Chassis – Yokomo BD7 2016 Motor – LRP X20 4.5T ESC – LRP Flow Batteries – LRP 5600 mah “LCG” Tires – Sweep (handout) Radio/Servo – Sanwa/Highest Bodyshell – Protoform LTC-R Remarks – Factory Yokomo driver Ronald Volker is running a close-to-standard, 2016 version of the BD7 from the Japanese manufacturer. His car sports a soft top deck, aluminium chassis, titanium turnbuckles and a set of aluminium screws.
Chassis – Roche P12 Motor – Muchmore Fleta ZX 3.5T ESC – Muchmore Fleta Pro Batteries – Muchmore 8000mah Tires – GXX/JFT Radio/Servo – Sanwa/Xpert Bodyshell – Protoform AMR-12 Remarks – Three time World Champion in the class, Naoto is racing 12th scale at the AOC running a P12 from the Hong Kong manufacturer. Using the event to test on the same carpet that will used at the World Championships in China later this year the car is pretty close to standard, only equipped with an aluminium chassis, hard compound suspension arms and a floating servo mount.
Local ace JJ Wang has taken a clear win in the first Modified A-main at RCI V2 in Shanghai, taking the hole shot and never being challenged, also helped by an early incident between Ronald Volker and Naoto Matsukura that allowed him to build an early gap. The beneficiary of the incident was Jilles Groskamp, who managed to sneak passed the carnage and up into 2nd. A mid race pass on 4th place finisher Jan Ratheisky gave Chinese legend Motor King the 3rd position.
The ‘race was good’ said the Chinese American, who once again set the fastest lap of the race on his way to taking A1. Following Volker’s crash and subsequent exit from the race JJ just controlled the race, keeping it clean and steady and ‘on all 4 wheels’. Having had some scary moments with traffic on this tight layout he managed to get through without incident. For A2, with Ronald back in the race Wang thinks it should be a fun race and says it will be harder with the multiple ETS Champion just behind him.
2012 World Champion Jilles Groskamp was happy to take 2nd, starting from 4th he could get passed in the 3rd lap thanks to the crash between Volker and Matsukura. Giving credit to Ratheisky, who was behind him, for his mature driving as he himself was being held up by the reigning World Champion, he could pull clear once in 2nd. With JJ nearly 3 seconds ahead at that stage he focused on driving smooth and running his own race and was very happy with his lap times. Starting with new Sweep tires, he ran a lot of warmup laps and said they felt very good and should have newer tires than his competition in the 2nd final. Having changed a lot on the car for the final, he said he couldn’t see any change in lap times and will again try something different for A2.
Chinese Yokomo driver Motor King was delighted with 3rd in the main having started 7th. Knowing he was ‘super lucky’ to find himself 4th on lap 3, he later made a pass on the Xray of Jan Ratheisky to take the spot and after that he just drove his own race. For A2 he is hoping for some more luck and is just planning to go out and try his best.
German Xray ace Ratheisky claimed he was ‘for sure lucky but could have been 3rd’. Feeling his car was sliding around a little on new tires he says he will need more luck to finish in the top 4 and for the next main he will ‘just drive, have fun’. In his 3 other classes he continued to dominate, however it was a little more difficult in the formula class as his car stepped out on the first corner and dropped him down the order, meaning he had to work harder than normal to take the win. The reason for the car breaking away on him was that the rear tires are worn out and he doesn’t want to spend the money to get new ones and so for A2 will apply the sauce for much longer and use less on the front to help make the car push. In stock touring he was just driving safe without much pressure, despite finding the tire on his boosted car is damaged.
‘Didn’t go as planned’ was how Yokomo factory driver Volker described the opening final. His take on the incident was that he went a little wide into the first corner and pulled it back onto the line for the following apex however Naoto saw a gap and went for it, hitting the German’s BD7. The Japanese driver saw it differently saying that he stayed on his line and Ronald cut across him. The crash caused the sensor in his LRP motor to come loose, eventually coming off completely on the next lap and so with no power he retired. Not feeling the new set of tires was good he will also change back to his previous set for the next main.
Chassis – Xray T4 2016 Motor – LRP X20 4.5T ESC – LRP Flow Batteries – LRP 5600 mah “LCG” Tires – Sweep (handout) Radio/Servo – KO Propo Bodyshell – Protoform LTC-R Remarks – Currently without a chassis sponsor, Chinese-American driver JJ Wang chose to use a T4 2016 here at RCI V2. His car features an aluminum chassis and a floating servo mount, and is equipped with Arrowmax front double joints, graphite arms, low friction belts and a LeeSpeed spur gear.
JJ Wang is top qualifier in Shanghai having topped the final round in qualifying in what were quicker track conditions as heavy rain outside lowered the track temperature and increased humidity. The only driver to manage a 31 lap run all weekend, he also set a new fastest lap on his way to the top spot. Ronald Volker will start 2nd, having also improved his time despite a heavy hit against the barriers early in the race tweaked his car. Naoto Matsukura takes 3rd with a solid run that saw him break into the 9 second lap times, leap frogging a disappointed Jilles Groskamp who also made a mistake and will now start from fourth on the grid.
Running new tires, he was surprised that they were faster and following rival Volker’s crash in the first minutes he decided to push and go for the time knowing that as long as Ronald was behind him, he would finish on top. Still believing that old tires are quicker even in these conditions, he expects the A-mains to be very interesting on a track that is very difficult to pass on, joking that ‘maybe Volker can make it passed’.
‘I hate rocket round’ was Volker’s reaction to losing the TQ in the final qualifier, the AOC choosing to use the fastest single qualifier instead of qualifying points. Blaming himself for the tap on the straight that left his car badly tweaked, he said it took him some time to adapt to the car but despite this he still improved his time and also managed a fastest lap of 9.883. Trying to put some pressure on JJ later in the qualifier he was not close enough to affect the outcome and deny him his TQ. Saying ‘the rain didn’t help as the track improved too much’ he vowed to fight back in the mains.
Current World Champion Naoto Matsukura said a change to harder springs left his car much improved, now having good corner speed he is still looking for more steering from his Tamiya prototype. Going into the final qualifier knowing he needed to improve he didn’t risk running new tires, instead opting for an old set, he felt he was slowed by a recovering Groskamp who he finally caught up to the back off at the end of the 5 minutes. Happy to improve position he predicts a super close final. In 1/12th scale, a crash resulting in a damaged front tire meant he takes the top spot on the grid using his Q1 time. Testing different GXX tires in each run he says he will go back to his Q1 choice for the finals.
A frustrated Groskamp simply said ‘I threw it away’, having spun out at the end of the straight around the 1 minute mark. Losing a second just there, his car continued to lose pace as the run went on and believes that perhaps new tires would have been better as the traction improved. Not a fan of rocket round qualifying, and with the track difficult to pass on, he said to give away 3rd place was ‘a shame’. Similar to Matsukura, the Infinity driver now has a brand new set of tires for the finals and should the conditions remain the same, this could prove to be an advantage.
A very happy Jan Ratheisky was content that the changes he made prior to the 3rd qualifier had improved his car a lot and he will now leave his Xray the same for the mains. Set to start from 5th, using his Q2 time, the ETS Champion also used Q3 to run a new shell, having been peer pressured by fellow racers on Facebook to get rid of the old beat up shell he was using. Running in 3 other classes, 13.5 blinky, 13.5 boosted and Formula he used Q3 to further improve his TQ times in touring car, his Q1 time being quick enough for pole position in Formula. Working with Ales Dobnikar from LRP, Jan has also been using his run to try different gearing and timing in the stock classes with boosted getting particular attention, with Jan never having never raced this class prior to coming to China.
Set to start behind Ratheisky in Stock 13.5 blinky is Nicholas Koh, the 11 year old ending qualifying 3 seconds clear of 3rd place Max Park. In boosted Gavin Kwok will start 2nd, with ARC boss Jones Chu set to start the triple mains from 3rd. In the great looking VTA class the pole position went to Erik Koh from Sean Wang and Ben Lai but the real battle will be between 7th and 8th starters Rick Wang and Scotty Ernst.