January 25, 2020

Maifield leads Reedy Race at the end of opening day

Ryan Maifield leads the way at the end of the opening day of racing at the Reedy Offroad Race of Champions. The Yokomo driver enjoyed a strong first day of 4WD action being the only driver to record three wins which together with his second place from the first round gives him a 3-point lead over Team Associated’s Spencer Rivkin. After a less than perfect start to the 26th running of the unique race format event, Dakotah Phend turned things around with two convincing wins to hold third overnight, the TLR driver putting an impressive move on Rivkin in Round 4, with both cars touching, to take the win and end the day holding 3rd position.  After kicking off his title defence with a win in the morning, Tebo holds 4th position going into Day 2 at OCRC Raceway with the same points tally as Phend.  Having become the first driver to register a double win when he took the opening two rounds, four time champion Ryan Cavalieri ended the day with a third in his final race ahead of Tebo.  With a 7th from Round 3 he will be looking to drop that result with two strong results in the final two rounds of 4WD tomorrow – each driver only able to drop one round per class.  Making his Reedy Race Invitational Class debut, Yusuke Sugiura would become only the second non-US drivers to win today with the Yokomo driver winning on his fourth attempt to leave him 6th in points.

‘It’s been a good day’, was how Maifield summed up his lead in the points.  Winner of the event in 2015, on his latest heat win the Arizona driver said, ‘the car was good and I had another good start.  All day I have tried to capitalise on my front row and Top 4 starts and I hope tomorrow we can end with a couple more good runs in 4WD before we get going in 2WD.  My car has crazy power and we are running a lot of new parts on the car which are working well’.  The former double World Champion said that tomorrow’s remaining 4WD races was going to be a ‘tyre game’.  He said, ‘They are getting loose especially towards the end of the races with the dust so we will run in tyres in the free practice in the morning and hope they come in’.

Reacting to losing out in the win in Round 4, Rivkin said, ‘It was not what I wanted but at lest I didn’t make any mistakes to finish below second’.  On the pass made by Phend, the only driver in the Top 5 to yet claim the Reedy Race title said, ‘He made a nice landing and sneaked down my inside. It was a good pass’.  Looking to the remaining 4WD encounters, the newly crowned 2WD World Champion said, ‘I need to be better at keeping it rolling throughout the run but to end the day with nothing more than 3 points is pretty good. I wish I had got that win but we are in the hunt’.

On his strong finish to the day, Phend said, ‘everything is working awesome. I was pushing the whole race and was able to catch Spencer and at the end could make the pass for the win. I’ll keep chugging away tomorrow to drop that 4’.  Asked about tyres for the remaining two rounds of 4WD, the 2016 Champion said, ‘we will run another set in practice in the morning to save this set because I hope I can run out the last two races on this set’.

Ending the day with his worst result having lost 3rd place with 2-laps to go, Tebo said, ‘that was the fastest my car has been just with the higher grip I had trouble with my timing at the first triple and two times it almost cost me. I need to slow my power down. The car felt great but I had too many bobbles out there’.  Asked about tyres, the Tekno driver said, ‘my front tyres are bald but they feel good so I don’t know what I am going to do yet’.

Becoming the 8th different race winner of the 2020 event, Sugiura was happy that he was able to register a win on his debut in the invitational class.  A previous Open Class Champion, taking the 2WD win on the Reedy Race’s only time hosted outside of the US at the Yatabe Arena in Japan in 2009, the 2019 World’s podium finisher is concerned about his tyres for the rest of 4WD saying, ‘now the tyres are very slick especially the front tyre so I will try new tyres in the morning practice but I am happy with how my first day has gone’.

View our event image gallery here.


If you republish any elements from this page on another website, including text, original pictures or results please be sure to add a link back to this page as the source: