This past weekend I attended the RC Pro National Finals in Porter, TX at Gulf Coast Raceway. The crew at Gulf Coast Raceway designed an AWESOME layout for the race and provided an amazing facility for the 194 entries! I was coming in to this event tied for 3rd in points in Open Buggy, and not so good in truggy after some problems this year. The temps were supposed to get into the low 50s in the mornings, raise to the 70s in the afternoon, and drop back down to the 50s at night.
I showed up on Wednesday to get my cars dialed in for the racing weekend. I had the same setups on my cars that I raced with for my last race, the RC Pro Texas State Series Finals, except a little bit stiffer setup in truggy. My buggy was good from the start, I changed to a stiffer setup and it was even better! My M2 Revolver 2.0s were hooked up! My truck was awesome from the start as always and I didn’t change anything to it. The M2 Revolver 2.0s were awesome for this class too!
QUALIFYING (Thursday & Friday)
The qualifying for this race was best 3 out of 5 rounds of 7 minute heats (3 rounds of qualifying on Thursday and 2 rounds on Friday). My plan for qualifying was to just drive smooth and consistent every run and just try to get a good qualifying position for the 45 minute mains on Saturday! In Rd. 1 of truggy I decided to try some M4 Holeshots because of the cold weather and they were great! I was on a great run when my truck just shutdown, ruining my run. In Rd. 2 and Rd. 3 I tried some M3 Revolver 2.0s and they great but I had electrical issues, so I was already in the B-Main with 2 rounds to go. The last 2 rounds of qualifying were on Friday and I just wanted to get two clean runs in and set myself up as best as possible for the 20 minute B-Main on Friday. I then had engine problems in both Rd. 4 and Rd. 5, so I was dead last in the B, but that’s more track time! 🙂 In Rd. 1 of buggy I tried some M4 Holeshots that were recommended by a friend and they were HOOKED UP, but way too much for me! I almost could could not control my car because of how grippy they were! So, I had a bad run with many wrecks, and I was convinced that was one of my throw-away runs! In Rd. 2 I wanted to have a clean run and I did! I ran M3 Revolver 2.0s and they were awesome! I got 5th for the round and 7th overall after 2 rounds! In Rd.3 I was on a great run in 3rd when my car started glitching! Both the throttle and the steering starting glitching and that forced me to pull it in to pitlane because I didnt want to go to any further damage. I was pretty bummed, so we packed up that night after the 3 rounds of qualifying that day and I changed my setup to my main setup because I felt more comfortable with that setup. The following day was the final 2 rounds of qualifying, and I was beyond ready to get on the track! I put some M3 Blockades on the car and they got better as the run went on and I had on okay run with some mistakes. I got 7th for the round and I was looking good for the main the next day. I still had to get a good run in Rd. 5 and I did again! I still had the same M3 Blockades on the car and the were even better that run. I got another 7th for the round, and was starting 7th for the 45 minute main on Saturday!
MAINS (Friday and Saturday)
Due to me being in the B-Main for truggy, I had to run it on Friday afternoon after qualifying. I had to put an old motor in there that I haven’t ran in a very long time, and we just did not have time to put a good tune on it. I came in numerous times in the main for tuning and that just took too long and I didn’t have time to make a comeback.. I broke my truck on the big double-double in the back with about 5 minutes to go. So my season was ended in truggy on a bad note, but I still had buggy! Which was the class I was going for the championship in!!! In the Open Buggy A-Main I just wanted to stay smooth and consistent for most of it knowing that it was going to be a race of endurance. I was starting 7th and I knew I could hang with the guys up front. On the first lap, my car flamed on the second corner of the track, so I was already a lap down! And when you are behind your natural instinct is to race like a maniac and I did. I wrecked a couple of times in the next 5 minutes, but then I calmed down, my M3 Blockade tires started getting better, and I started driving better! And before I knew it, I was in 3rd place after I passed some guys and some broke! I just wanted to stay in 3rd for the rest of the race knowing that the 2 guys I was battling with for the championship were having problems and were many laps behind. I had a good cushion from everybody else, and I was just trying to drive good and not break my car. But, with 5 minutes to go, the set screw in the rear CVD shaft backed out! We were hoping that the screw was still in place but not tight, but it fell out. We did not have enough time to get me back on the track in a decent postition, so I did not finish. But, I still finished in 6th place! That would not be a good enough finish to win me the championship, but I was still happy with 2nd Overall in the Nation coming 2nd to Aaron Simmons who earned a well deserved win! The gap was only 2 points between me and Aaron, so the that set screw cost me the championship, but that’s racing! 🙂
I had a great year and I learned alot of new things and met alot of new people! I think I got way better from the start of the year, and I cant wait for next year, when I will be moving up to the Pro Class! I want to also congratulate fellow Pro-Line drivers Aaron Hess and Jason Branham for awesome finishes in their classes!
Till next time,
Cade “Young Gun” Whitenton
Pro-Line Products used-
1st Rd. of qualifying- M4 Holeshots
2nd-5th Rds. of qualifying and Main- M3 Revolver 2.0s
1st Rd. of qualifying- M4 Holeshots
2nd and 3rd Rds. of qualifying- M3 Revolver 2.0s
4th and 5th rounds of qualifying and Main- M3 Blockades