Video – Buggy Qualifying Rd2

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Saturday, February 21, 2015 - add a comment

Tessmann last lap denies Boots in Q2

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In a repeat of what he did in the final round of Truggy qualifying on Jared Tebo, HB’s Ty Tessmann snatched the TQ for the second round of Buggy qualifying at the Dirt Nitro Challenge with another blistering final lap, this time knocking Kyosho’s Elliott Boots from the top of the timing screen. Starting his final lap holding the P2 pace, the defending champion would run 2/10th faster than Boots to deny the former World Championship Top Qualifier his first TQ run at the DNC by just 0.022 of a second.  An extremely close qualifier, Q1 pace setter Ryan Maifield would finish third just 3/10th of a second off having ended his run with the fastest lap of the round.

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Chasing a third DNC Buggy title, Tessmann said switching to thicker shock oil on his D815 for the hotter temperatures of Q2 worked well with the Canadian happy with his buggy. Running Pro-Line’s M3 Lockdown tyre he said while they were maybe not the fastest tyre to run on they left his buggy feeling good to drive.  Having a coming together with Boots in the warm-up and needing to pit to have his bodyshell seen to he said this left him with not a lot of practice laps making the start of the run ‘a little hairy’.  With over 4-hours of a wait till the third & deciding round of qualifying Tessmann expects they will make changes due to the cooler temperatures of the night time run.

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Only 13th fastest in Q1, Boots said his improved performance came simply from driving smoother.  Happy with the speed of his car in Q1 he said ‘a few mistakes’ left him down the order but knowing he had a good car he didn’t make any changes to his Reds Racing powered MP9.  Again running Pro-Line M3 Blockades, the British driver who qualified 4th overall on his DNC debut in 2013, said the plan for Q3 was to ‘just do the same again’ although he added ‘anything can happen on that track’ but he would ‘try to keep it clean’ for the 7-minutes.

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Doing nothing to his TLR 8ight other than mount a fresh set of JConcepts Blue Chasers and instead using the long time between rounds to get some sleep having had to visit ER during the night due to a throat infection, Maifield said he ‘thought (Q2) went good’.  He said ‘I did everything I could and I wouldn’t change anything over a couple of tenths’ referring to how close the top 3 ended up on the increasingly difficult track which he said is ‘getting tougher and rougher’.  Running a completely kit stand 8ight, the 2013 Champion said the car was running fast, super consistent and reliable and he was looking forward to the final qualifier.

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Maifield’s Team Losi Racing team-mate Dakotah Phend would finish fourth fastest again just missing out on an 12-lap run.  The 18-year-old said it was ‘another solid run’ and making no changes to his Pro-line equipped example of the 8ight he ‘just went out there and drove (his) own pace’.  Locked into the A-Main, last year’s podium finisher said for the final qualifier he would probably try a bigger pin tyre as testing for the Main that is set take place in similar conditions on Sunday night.

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Having got caught out by an earlier than expected start to Q1, him pitting for fuel unaware the clock was already running and leaving him to end up 40th, Ryan Cavalieri would post the 5th fastest time.  The Associated driver said his RC8 prototype had the pace and the run started off really good until he had a few bobbles leading to a few 39-second laps.  Running AKA’s new Chain Link tyre he said for the final qualifier he might switch to their new smaller pin Rasp tyre which he feels will give more grip if there is more moisture in the track.

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Setting the 6th fastest time, David Ronnefalk said overall his HB D815 felt ok and now he just needs to work on the small details.  Suffering one crash and a small roll, he said as a result Boots passed him but following his former team-mate for a few laps he was happy with his pace.  With his buggy pushing a little he put this down to a wrong tyre choice and for Q3 he will switch from AKA Catapult to the new Rasp, his engine tuner Adrien Bertin set to test the tyre for his protege during his run in the 35+ class.

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Making a number of changes to his prototype Tekno RC buggy, Ryan Lutz set the 7th fastest time.  Standing up the rear shocks one hole and raising the rear camber link he said they didn’t have the desired effect with the rear of the buggy dumping worse on power making the right hand corner before the big step-up particularly difficult.  With the car pushing more and more as the run went on a last lap mistake would lose him a position to Ronnefalk and he hopes a ‘Tekno family discussion’ will help him come up with a better set-up for he final qualifier.

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Eighth fastest would be Tanner Denney, the Associated driver putting his run down to better driving.  The 19-year-old said he was on a solid run in Q1 until a last lap crash which dropped him to 15th.  Driving a ‘smarter’ Q2, he said his RC8 Prototype ran well with him particularly happy with his choice of JConcepts blue compound Diamond Bar tyres which he said gave him ‘a lot of forward grip’.  For Q3 he said will check over the front end of the car feeling it was binding a little and for the colder condition he will also go down in shock oils.  Behind Denney, Agama’s Darren Bloomfield and Mugen’s Barry Pettit who where 5th and 6th fastest respectively in Q1 round out the Top 10.

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Saturday, February 21, 2015 - add a comment

Tessmann TQs eBuggy

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Ty Tessmann is the overall Top Qualifier in eBuggy at the DNC, the Canadian topping the times for a second time in the third & final qualifier having yesterday TQ’d the opening round. The HB driver, who qualified on 7th last year, will start on pole position ahead the S-Workz of 2013 Top Qualifier Austin Blair who ran his best round in Q3 posting the second fastest time.  The pace setter in last night’s second qualifier, defending champion David Ronnefalk would only end up 6th fastest but with a 5th from Q1 will start from 3rd on the grid.  Behind the Swede, whose win last year made him the first European to win a ‘Dirt’ title, former team-mate Jared Tebo will line-up 4th with arch rival Ryan Cavalieri and British National Champion Elliott Boots completing the Top 6 of the increasingly competitive field.

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Saturday, February 21, 2015 - add a comment

Maifield heads TLR 1-2 in opening ‘Dirt’ buggy qualifier

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Ryan Maifield headed a 1-2 for Team Losi Racing in the opening round of buggy qualifying at the Dirt Nitro Challenge, the Arizona driver the only one to complete 12 laps of the Fear Farm track. Behind him last year’s triple podium finisher Dakotah Phend would set the fastest 11-lap run over the 7-minutes in a marked improvement from the 17-year-old who ended up only 27th overall in Truggy qualifying. Behind the TLR pairing it was defending champion Ty Tessmann that would complete the Top 3 despite losing over 4-second when he rolled his HB while on target for a TQ pace.

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Asked about his qualifier, Maifield running in the X group of the 6 unseeded heats, said he ‘went for it’ and while he had a few bobbles it was fast with his Orion powered 8ight having ‘a lot of power’ something he said was a nice complaint. Having used eBuggy qualifying to work out his tyre choice, all drivers having only had one 6-minute practice on the track on Wednesday, he said his choice of JConcepts Chaser tyres in blue compound worked really well. Suffering a little with his brakes fading towards the end of the qualifier he said he will make a small engine adjustment to cure this for Q2.

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Having come into the event feeling under the weather and suffering ‘a bunch of stupid stuff’ in Truggy, Phend said he managed to take on a new mindset for the change over to buggy qualifying and it worked out well. Last year’s Buggy Top Qualifier, he said despite the track getting rougher and it harder to get around without mistakes he was happy with how ‘super easier’ his 8ight was to drive. Running Pro-Line’s M3 Holeshot tyre, he said they were a safer choice for his style of driving and his big focus for Q2 was to keep his new found form going.

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‘Was going pretty good until I crashed’, that was how Tessmann summed up his opening qualifier. The World Champion said everything in terms of his D815 and Pro-line M3 Blockade’s ran pretty much as expected although he will rebuild his shocks for Q2, his father Gord joking ‘we should have enough time’. With approximately 4-hours between rounds, this year’s DNC attracting over 800 entries for the 1:8 classes, Tessmann said changes would depend on how the track is looking nearer to the time of the day’s second of three scheduled qualifiers.

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Setting the fourth fastest time Ryan Lutz seemed a little happier than he was with his truggy qualifying describing his first buggy qualifier as ‘pretty good’. The Tekno RC driver said ‘luckily 80% of the track is right turns’ as he had less left turn steering feeling something must have been binding on the buggy’s steering. Running AKA’s new Chain Link tyre he said they ‘seemed good’ and are ‘very forgiving’. Asked about any changes for Q2, he said it all depended on how the track was going to be and whether they were going to water or not jokingly referring to the event as the ‘Dirt Nitro we leave you guessing challenge’.

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Former European Champion Darren Bloomfield was delighted with his opening run as he took his Agama to the fifth fastest time. Saying the result takes a lot of weight off him as he targets his first A-Main appearance at the DNC, the British driver said the run ended up a lot better than he thought. Running early on side by side with former finalist Elliott Boots and then towards the end of the run with Tessmann who he had to open up for twice after the champion made his mistake right in front of the him, he felt his driving was slightly compromised by this. Just 4-weeks on the market, Bloomfield said his new A215 ‘felt really good although a touch edgy’. still trying to learn how American tracks evolves over an event he said they used eBuggy to get a set-up for Q1. Happy with how that ran in the final qualifier, he said taking the weight of the electric buggy, which is heavier, into account they reduced the oil weight in the nitro buggy, adding they ‘guessed well’. Running Beta’s Vmax tyre he said he is tempted to try their small pin style Cube for Q2 but will wait to make that call.

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Despite suffering two crashes on his way to posting the sixth fastest time, Barry Pettit described Q1 as ‘a decent opening round’. The Mugen driver said while the run started out a little slick due to the watering of the track his MBX7R ran good getting better & better over the heat. Running Pro-Line’s M3 Holeshot tyre he said while he would have to ‘wait & see’ what happens to the track over the remainder of the round, the Pro heats running first, he didn’t plan on making any changes being happy with how everything is performing.

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With a few mistakes, Cody King said he wasn’t going to complain about getting points for 7th. The former World Champion said the track is changing quite a lot add he got lucky with the timing of his heat as the sun came out for the heats up after him. Planning to ‘make a few adjustments’ to his Kyosho for Q2 he said the track might turn out looser and so he might end up holding off.

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Posting the 8th fastest time, Serpent’s Mike Truhe said he ‘went safe and it worked out good’. Describing it as being ‘as clean as can be’, he said the front shocks were too thick causing his S811 to be loose on-power although it was ‘not terrible’. Set to make a few minor set-up adjustments for Q2, the former double champion said he would take it from there and see how it goes. His first big race using Picco engines, Serpent’s US distributor taking on the distribution of the Italian manufacturer with both Alberto and Edo Picco on hand at the DNC for support, he said everything in that department was working out well.

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Behind Truhe, new HB pairing Drew Moller and David Ronnefalk completed the Top 10. Moller would set the fastest lap of the round with a 37.173 while the run was effectively Ronnefalk’s first run in nitro buggy after he managed one lap in practice as his engine moved. The Swede said his D812 felt pretty good but compared to eBuggy the whoops section was a lot harder and by the end of the 7-minutes he had started to get it figured out and he feels good he can improve in Q2.

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Saturday, February 21, 2015 - add a comment

Tebo is Truggy Top Qualifier at DNC

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Kyosho’s Jared Tebo is the overall Top Qualifier for Truggy at the Dirt Nitro Challenge taking pole position for Saturday’s 45-minute Main on a tie break from defending champion Ty Tessmann.  Having TQ’d the second round of qualifying, the battle looked set to be between Tebo and David Ronnefalk who topped the opening qualifier.  Initially Ronnefalk again set the pace just like in Q2, only this time it was a mistake of his own and not traffic, the Swede would give up the lead as the run entered the second half.  Losing over 3-seconds, this would leave Tebo and Tessmann to battle it out with the pair finishing up separated by just 0.015 of a second thanks to a blistering fastest final lap of 35.545 from Tessmann who fired his HB truggy across the finishing loop.  In the end though it was Tebo’s Q2 pace that gave him the tie break for his first Truggy TQ at the Fear Farm, his last TQ of the class coming in 2011 when he did the DNC double when the race was held at the Nitro Pit.

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‘Pretty good’ was Tebo’s reaction to his Q3 performance.  Happy at securing the overall TQ, the same couldn’t be said for how he was starting the race.  With the track being watered while the cars ran their warm-up laps, one centre section clearly over watered, Tebo left his position on the driver stand twice to air his frustrations with the race director.  While the drivers were given more time for their warm-up, commenting afterwards Tebo said the watering is not being done consistently.  In terms of his Inferno ST-RR Evo he said having made a change to the front shock location he would go back a little to something inbetween this and what he ran in Q2 for the final practice.  Looking to the final he said he is feeling pretty confident adding he is really happy with his new engines, this being his first race with new engine sponsor Mx.

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Having struggled to only the 12th fastest time in Q2, Tessmann described the final qualifier as ‘a lot better’.  Describing the run as a ‘little hairy at the start’ he said it was a clean run but still his tyres where not perfect.  Having struggled for traction yesterday, the set of Pro-Line Holeshot tyres he ran in the second qualifier left him struggling for traction and steering with Tessmann noticing that set of tyres didn’t balloon as they would normally do.  With a new set on the D8T this morning, he said the fronts acted normal giving him better steering but still the rears didn’t balloon.  Putting it down to a bad batch of tyres, the Canadian said while they will switch to Blockades for the final they will bench run the truggy to ensure all four tyres balloon.  Asked about his blistering final lap time, the World Champion said he knew it was close between himself and Tebo so coming off  the last jump he ‘punched it over the line, the truck glancing off the outside piping.

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Frustrated at knowing he could have wrapped up his first overall TQ at the DNC yesterday only for traffic to put him on his roof, Ronnefalk was even more frustrated by his Q3 error which was all his own doing. Running too close on the inside of the uphill triple the Swede hit he piping which put his D8T on its roof, a moment of the race he said ‘sucked’. Despite this he said starting the long Main in the Top 3 was ‘ok’ and he knows in terms of pace he can run with both Tessmann and Tebo so he is confident for Saturday.

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Fourth fastest in Q3 and securing that same position on the grid, the surprise of the event Joe Bornhorst said he was ‘speechless’.  The start of his first full season with Tekno, having signed with the team last September, the 20-year-old said ‘everyone stepped it up that time and I tried my hardest’ and ‘I am more than happy with 4th’.   Describing the track as being ‘really wet’ at the beginning, adding he isn’t in agreement with how they are watering the track, he said despite this his NT48 was ‘awesome’ and he is really looking forward to the final.

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Despite having his worst run in Q3, a couple of mistakes and changes to his engine hampering his performance, Adam Drake will line-up fifth on the grid.  One of the all time legends of 1:8 Offroad, he said ‘all things considered I’m happy to be fifth’ pausing for a moment before adding ‘I’m happy to be here racing period’.  Putting together a late deal with Mugen to contest the DNC,  he said rather than change the clutch as planned for Q3 he opted to change ‘some stuff’ on his Novarossi engine but it was the wrong way to go.  Asked about the final he said will revert back to the engine set he ran in Q2 and having found better steering in his MBX7T and with some small set-up changes he should be good again for the Main.

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Setting the 8th fastest time in Q3 to secure 6th on the grid, Ryan Maifield said his run was ‘not awesome but it got me the points to be in the Main’. Feeling under the weather, he said ‘starting 6th is fine’. In terms of his truggy, the TLR driver said he went with too soft a JConcepts tyre for the final qualifier and his Orion engine could have done with a better tune but they’re both things that can be easily rectified for the final.

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Starting behind Maifield will be his former team-mate Ryan Cavalieri.  The longtime Associated driver said his Q3 ‘started off a tick slow’ but but he put together ‘a good consistent run’ to posted the 6th fastest time behind Ryan Lutz.  Looking to make his modified RC8T ‘a little quicker’, he will make ‘a couple of changes for the warm-up’ in the hope of finding some speed for the final.

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Lining up 8th on the grid, Ryan Lutz was overall frustrated by how qualifying had gone.  Not happy with his own driving so far, he said in terms of his truggy, gearing is an issue with the options he has available leaving him inbetween where he wants to be.  With the gearing he is running too tall he said switching to a 13-bell would leave him too short.  He said he has ‘a lot of things to work on for the final’ but ‘if (he) can nail it, it should be good’.  Behind Lutz, Mugen’s Barry Pettit, Xray’s Josh Wheeler, HB’s Tanner Stees and Associated Carson Wernimont, who pulled the rear wing off his RC8T in Q3, complete the Top 12 direct A-Main qualifiers with a further 3 drivers set to bump up from the B-Main.

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Friday, February 20, 2015 - add a comment

Ronnefalk takes second eBuggy qualifier

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Defending eBuggy Champion David Ronnefalk headed a HB 1-2 in the second round of qualifying at the DNC, the Swede outpacing team-mate and Q1 pace setter Ty Tessmann by 1.8-seconds.  Having suffered two bad laps in Q1 at either end of the 7-minutes which would leave him 5th fastest, in Q2 he would reduce his errors to just one which came on lap 5.  Setting a blistering pace, the European 1/8th Gas buggy champion would be the only driver to run below 37-seconds posting two 36-second laps. Behind the HB pairing, A-Main team driver Austin Blair would take his S-Workz to the third fastest time followed by the Tekno of Joe Bornhorst.  Fresh from TQ’ing the second round of Truggy, Jared Tebo would posted the 5th fastest time with Mugen’s Adam Drake completing the Top 6.

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Friday, February 20, 2015 - add a comment

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Introduction

Red RC are making our annual trip to the Fear Farm Raceway in Phoenix, Arizona for the 2015 Dirt Nitro Challenge. The international season opener for the gas offroad class, each year it attracts close to 700 entries and this year will once again be stacked with talent all with the goal of taking the wins in the blue ribboned truggy and buggy classes, dominated last year by one man, Canadian Ty Tessmann. Red RC's coverage begins in full on Wednesday afternoon (18th) and we will be trackside bringing you reports, insights, videos and photos directly from the track throughout the week.

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