November 18, 2017

Chassis Focus – Ryan Maifield

Chassis – Yokomo YZ4 SF
Motor – Orion VST2 LW 5.5T
ESC – Orion HMX
Battery – Orion 5000mAh
Radio/Servos – Sanwa / MKS
Body – Kit Body
Tyres – Sweep (Handout)
Remarks – Newly crowned 2wd World Champion Ryan Maifield is using the YZ4 SF from Yokomo with only a small number of changes to the car’s base US setup. Opting to use more droop to make the car jump and land better, Ryan has also adjusted the car to have more toe-in on the rear of the car for more traction, again to help it get over the jumps.

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November 18, 2017

Tessmann Top Qualifier in China as rain stops final qualifier

Ty Tessmann is Top Qualifier at the 1:10 Offroad World Championships in China. The Xray driver secured his first electric offroad World Championship pole position after rain forced the cancellation of the final round of qualifying just after he had laid down the TQ pace as the top heat get of Q5 got underway. With cars from the fastest heat struggling to make the jumps and looking more like drift cars as the moisture set in, the call was made to stop racing and while officials deliberated the rain set in.  With drivers from the top heat still on track it was all hands on deck to cover track with the tarps, drivers keen to ensure that there is some chance of deciding the World title with racing rather than on qualifying order.  Behind Tessmann, David Ronnefalk qualifies second having tied on points with Tessmann but had the slower TQ time following his last tangle with Ryan Cavalieri in Q4 yesterday.  Struggling with the windy conditions in Q5, reigning champion Bruno Coelho will hopefully start his title defence from 3rd on the grid just ahead of newly crowned 2WD Champion Ryan Maifield with Spencer Rivkin completing the Top 5.  Also making the cut based on the best 2 of 4 rounds, rather than the planned 3 of 5, Joern Nuemann starts sixth ahead of Dakotah Phend, Naoto Matsukura, Ryan Cavalieri and Dustin Evans.

Having delivered a result that would have also given him the TQ had qualifying gone full distance, topping the fastest heat ahead of Matsukura and Neumann, Tessmann summed up Q5 by saying, ‘It was a little bit edgy so I was just trying to get around without crashing.  When it started to sprinkle my car was easier to drive.  I didn’t care too much about the TQ I was just trying to improve my points and when I saw Ryan (Maifield) crash I then just cruised around’.  Asked his thoughts on the developing situation regarding the running of the finals, the former 1:8 Offroad World Champion said, ‘If it stops maybe we can get going but with the lower grip there is going to be a few surprises as to who is quick’.  He continued, ‘we have a good car for low grip and we will get some diffs with lighter oil ready but even if we run its going to be on slime’.  One of the drivers involved in pulling out the tarps to cover the track he added, ‘I was hard to even stay upright, it was very slippery. It wasn’t quite like ice but it was close. Let wait and see’.

‘It will be interesting if it happens, it is not so bright right now but the forecast is better for the afternoon’, was Ronnefalk’s reaction after the stoppage.  The HB Racing driver continued, ‘I was a terrible decision to wait to cover the track because it is now wet even under the tarp so everyone is going to have to change the set-up of their car. You could see how much it changes even in the second heat so this will sure mix things up’. The reigning 1:8 World Champion concluded, ‘we have a plan for what to do with the car but we have to wait and see what the weather brings’.

Starting his title defence from 3rd on the grid, Coelho said, ‘the track will be completely different for the finals, it will be hard for everyone to know how to set-up their cars for this’.  Also the reigning European Champion, a title he won on dirt as opposed to his Worlds win on astro turf in Japan, the Xray driver continued, ‘I struggled a lot with the wind in the last qualifier, I’m not (a full time) offroad racer and am not used to this. I think the final will be hard now’.

‘I think we kind of knew this was going to happen’, was Maifield’s view on the situation.  The Yokomo driver continued, ‘I don’t think it is going to matter if you start 4th or 10th because when we pull off the tarps off its going to be a sticky mess even if we get to run.  Another driver who was involved in pulling out the track covers he said, ‘At least they made the decision to let us cover the track’.  Feeling his car ‘seems to have more traction than others when it got loose’, the American concluding, ‘it going to be hard to even jump some of the jumps so it is going to be the smartest not the fastest driver who is going to win’.  In terms of starting the finals, a provisional start time of 12:05 (Beijing time) has been called for a round of free practice.

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November 17, 2017

4 different TQs as Ronnefalk survives Cav tangle to top Q4

Qualifying at the 1:10 4WD Offroad World Championship produced yet another different TQ as David Ronnefalk took the fourth round despite a last lap tangle with former Champion Ryan Cavalieri that would cost the HB Racing driver over 2-seconds.  Luckily however for the reigning 1:8 Offroad World Champion his predecessor Ty Tessmann would make a 5-second mistake of his own doing on the final lap allowing the Swede claim his first TQ run by 3-seconds over the Canadian.  For Ronnefalk, who hasn’t run outside the Top 3 all day, the TQ puts him as the overnight provisional TQ holder over Tessmann.  However, with rain forecast for tomorrow, should the fifth and final qualifier be cancelled reverting the standings to count 2 from 4 rather than 3 from 5, then it is Tessmann who will be declared Top Qualifier due to having the quicker TQ time which explains Ronnefalk’s frustration at being obstructed by Cavalieri.  Overall it was a dramatic end to Day 2 of the event with the top heat also seeing Ryan Maifield retire after 3-laps while laying down the TQ pace with a broken arm and reigning champion Bruno Coelho having TQ’d the previous round tangled with Michal Orlowski eventually retiring after a series of crashes.  A clean round from Dakotah Phend would reward the TLR driver with third, his best qualifier, ahead of Joern Neumann, also having his best run of the day, Spencer Rivkin and Dustin Evans.

‘I’m still pissed because if it rains tomorrow Ty will be TQ.  Cavalieri cost me the best time on the last lap so that (Q5 being rained off) would suck’, was Ronnefalk’s response when asked about Q4.  He continued, ‘Cavalieri spun around at the chicane and I thought he was going to let me by but he didn’t.  Luckily I got the TQ because Ty crashed on his last lap’.  Claiming his first Electric Offroad Worlds Championship podium 2-years ago in Japan, he concluded, ‘I am happy anyway because the car has been great so we’ll just have to wait and see what it is going to do to tomorrow’.  Currently organisers are working off a forecast that will see it ran from 06:00 to 07:00 in the morning which should mean no delays to the timetable a round of free practice scheduled at 08:35 ahead of the final round of qualifying.

Summing up his Q4 attempt, Tessmann said, ‘It was good until the last lap’.  The Xray driver continued, ‘the track is really difficult to get around but I was just pushing too hard to try catch David’.  Asked about his error in the centre section, most onlookers missing it having been distracted by Ronnefalk’s tangle with Cavalieri, he replied, ‘I don’t really know what happened, the car just tumbled about 15 feet’.   The result of the error was a 29.5 lap time compared to his previous 24.6 lap.

‘I ran the whole time without a mistake. I was quite a bit slower but I was more consistent and it paid off’, was Phend’s reaction to his best run of the day, his overall time 6-seconds quicker than his previous best of P8 in Q1.  Having made changes to his car for the round, he said they had made the car ‘a lot safer to drive but slower’.  Also going more safe at the controls driving at a ‘half decent pace’, he said ‘nearly everyone made two mistakes, it is getting harder every run out there but this time our approach paid off in the end’.  Feeling they might have gone a bit too far with the set-up changes he plans to ‘go back a little to gain a little more speed for tomorrow’.

‘So so, two times I had to single the double and one time I had a big mistake’, was how top seed Neumann summed up the penultimate qualifier.  The German, who is racing without a chassis sponsor and has opted to use an Xray, continued, ‘today the track is more difficult to drive than yesterday’.  Sitting 6th in the overnight ranking he added, ‘I hope to end up Top 5 after qualifying because I think the finals will be wide open.  Four different drivers have TQ’d which shows just how tough it is’.  Behind Neumann, Spencer Rivkin would continue to be the best of the Associated drivers with fifth for the round combined with his Q1 TQ leaving him holding 5th overnight. AE team-mate Dustin Evans would end his day with a P6, his best result of the day.  Needing to get a good result in Q5 to make the A-Main, he sits 12th overall which is one better than team-mate and former champion Ryan Cavalieri.

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November 17, 2017

World Champion Coelho delivers first TQ run

Reigning World Champion Bruno Coelho ‘finally’ delivered his first TQ run in China as he became the first driver to run 13-laps at Xiamen ARC International Raceway. With a P4 for the opening round and a P5 in Q2, the Xray driver produced his cleanest run on his third attempt to top the times from David Ronnefalk and Ryan Maifield – the consistent duo of qualifying so far switching their Top 3 order of the previous two rounds.  With Coelho the third different driver to top the times in qualifying, Q2 pace setter Ty Tessmann would back it up with a P4 while Spencer Rivkin managed a much improved performance on his previous qualifier to end up 7th for the round.

Opting to leave his Hobbywing powered XB4 unchanged for Q3 having ‘got the car very good’ for the second qualifier, Coelho reaction was one of relief as he summed up his performance with ‘finally’. The reigning European Champion, a title he won on dirt while his World and EOS titles all come on artificial surfaces, he said, ‘I just went out to make a clean run and while that didn’t actually happen because I hit the pipe at the start after a hard comeback I could get the TQ’. Having struggled to get his car to his liking throughout the six rounds of practice and the opening qualifier, he said improvements in Q2 gave him confidence and leaving the car unchanged he could focus more on his driving. With just one qualifier remaining on today’s schedule, the fifth & final qualifier taking place tomorrow morning ahead of the final, he said his focus for Q4 is to keep the car the same and learn to drive it better around the track without having to readjust to changes to the set-up.

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November 17, 2017

Tessmann takes Q2 in China

Ty Tessmann has TQ’d the second round of qualifying at the 1:10 Offroad World Championships in China. Having opened 4WD qualifying with a P5 run, the Xray driver found 7-seconds to top Q2 by a 1.4-second margin from Yokomo’s Ryan Maifield who posted another P2 run. Despite a number of mistakes over the 5-minutes, David Ronnefalk would have the pace to again complete the Top 3, the HB Racing driver posting the fastest lap on his penultimate lap to finish a further 1.1-seconds off Maifield.  Having failed to finish Q1, Ryan Cavalieri would recover with a fourth for the round while Associated team-mate and Q1 pace setter Spencer Rivkin had a messy round ending up 19th fastest.

’That went really good’, was how Tessmann summed up his TQ performance. With driver’s getting just one warm-up lap prior to the heat start, he continued, ‘the car felt good in the warm-up but I didn’t make the double right and had to roll the jump so I was a a bit nervous at the start but in the race I made it every time and only had to roll it once’. Happy they have improved his XB4, the former 1:8 World Champion also felt tyres was a contributing factor. With the race using a hand out tyre, the Canadian said, ‘I think there is a big difference in the tyre batch to batch both in the grip and the wear. That was the first time I had a set go bald and the tyre had more grip. I’ve had a set with zero grip, good grip and somewhere in the middle. I think who goes fastest depends of the tyres’.

Summing up his second qualifying attempt, Maifield said, ‘I had a little bit of a mistake at the beginning and luckily stopped to let David (Ronnefalk) go by and then he did the same thing and let me go by so we worked well together on that. The newly crowned 2WD World Champion continued, ‘I also landed the table top weird and flat landed but apart from that I was going good and the car is working really nice’. He concluded, ‘we have good points to start with and we’ll keep going’.

‘Two third places is a good start as it could have been a lot worse’, was how Ronnefalk summed up Q2. The Swede continued, ‘the lap times feel great and the car is amazing but I need to relax a little. The racing is so intense. I need to stay more relaxed for the next one’. Giving an example of the intensity he said, ‘Myself, Maifield and Spencer got really close coming onto the straight. There was no space between the cars. It was not possible to drive. I was checking what Spencer was doing and wasn’t sure how he was going to jump and so I went for it but over jumped and crashed at the second double. Even with a lot of crashes I was still up there so if I can cut out some of them its got to be better’.

‘A lot better’, was Cavalieri’s reaction after the second of the five scheduled qualifiers, there still a threat of rain tomorrow. The former champion continued, ‘We changed everything on the car. I pretty much ran the same as Spencer so we finally have something that works’. Admitting to ‘stressing out every round’ prior to Q2, the American said ‘now I can relax and get on with driving’. Asked about his qualifier, Rivkin said, ‘I drove too slow. I wasn’t attacking like in the first round and it bit me’. Behind Cavalieri, Bruno Coelho and Joern Neumann would complete the Top 6.

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