Date(s): August 16th-19th 2013
Location: Warehouse 3 in Peoria, AZ
Event: Pro-Line Arizona Indoor Off-Road Championships
The 1st Annual Pro-Line Arizona Indoor Off-Road Championships was held this past weekend at Warehouse 3 in Peoria, AZ. This facility is a great addition to the storied legacy of Arizona R/C facilities (Scottsdale R/C Speedway (SRS), Competition Hobbies, & the Fear Farm). With the doors opening at this facility less than 8 months ago, having a large scale national caliber event was a key goal for Jim Chaney and his team at Warehouse 3 and this event did not disappoint! With an anticipated turnout of 125-150 entries, everyone (attendees & staff alike) were blown-away by the 325 total entries for this first year event. Classes included: Novice, Ladies-Only, Short-Course Buggy, Pro-Lite SC, Pro-2 SC, Pro-4 SC, 17.5 2wd Buggy, 13.5 2wd Buggy, Modified 2wd buggy, Modified 4wd buggy, 17.5 Racing Truck, and Modified Racing Truck. With a wide range of classes offered, a wide range of entrants participated in this event. From kids & families, to the seasoned weekend warrior, and even top-level sponsored drivers in attendance, this event was sure to be memorable.
Practice began on Friday 8/16 and the track filled up quickly with those itching to get laps in on “The Dirt Racing” designed track by the great Joey Christensen. The track was a fast, flowing track with great rhythm and even better air time. The best part of the layout was that regardless of what classes you were competing in, the track still provided tons of options for lines and didn’t favor one class over another. Due to the volume of entrants, the staff implement a controlled practice throughout the entire day to ensure everyone was able to get equal amounts of track time to dial in their setups. The tire of choice at Warehouse 3 has been the Pro-Line Racing ION tires in M4 (super soft) compound. With the more laps and more wear the tires received, the faster the lap times got. Many racers were able to run the entire practice & race weekend on one set of tires. With many events lately using highly abrasive traction additives (sugar, etc.) to the racing surface, it was a great change to be able to minimize the cost related to tire wear and still have fantastic traction. Modified classes were running in 18-19 second/lap range while the stock classes were in the 20-22 second/lap range.
Due to the sheer volume of entrants, qualifying was cut down from 4 rounds to 3 rounds (best 2 out of 3 using IFMAR style qual-points). With 36 qualifying each round, it was sure to be a long day(s) of qualifying. Also, to ensure that racing didn’t last too late into the night/early morning, round 3 was finished up first thing Sunday morning before the main events. Pro-Line drivers TQ’d each of the premiere classes at the event. Charles Hick’s TQ’d Truck Modified, Mac Mitchell TQ’d 4wd Modified, Trevor Clement TQ’d Pro-4 Short Course, and Chris Wheeler pulled double duty by TQ’ing Pro-2 Short Course and 2wd Modified! Each Pro-Line driver was running M4 Ion’s with closed cell foam on all four corners of their respective vehicles.
The main event’s on Sunday began shortly after 12PM and concluded just after 8PM. With each lower main running 6 minutes and two bump-ups transfer spots available, action in the lower mains was intense. Some of the weekend’s best racing came from the 2wd Stock 17.5 buggy & Pro-Lite classes. Wheel to wheel racing, swapping paint, and incredible back and forth racing gave the crowd and racers a huge smile on their faces at the conclusion of their race. Each A-Main was 10 minutes in length and did not disappoint. In the Truck Modified A-Main, Charles Hicks led out from the tone with this TLR 22T and was battling with Spencer Rivkin until lap traffic cost Charles the lead and Spencer took the win. A great weekend for Charles as he also made the A-Main in 2wd Modified. In Pro-4, Trevor Clement led wire to wire with his TLR TEN-SCTE 2.0. Trevor also made the A-Main in 2wd Modified. In 4wd Modified, Mac Mitchell led from the tone until the 4 minute mark when his Tamiya TRF502x stripped a rear bevel pinion gear costing him the win. Mac also made the A-Main in 2wd Modified and Pro-2 Short Course. Chris Wheeler led from the tone and never looked back in both Pro-2 Short Course and 2wd Modified. His TLR 22SCT and TLR 22 were on rails and incredibly consistent all weekend. Congratulations again to all of the Pro-Line drivers who were in attendance.
Thank you again to the entire Warehouse 3 Staff (Jim, Kenny, Brian, Ricky, and everyone who I am forgetting) for putting on a great event and especially to the 325 entrants who made this race such a success in its first year. The team at Warehouse 3 is already hard at work putting together next year’s event and we are looking forward to seeing you there. Stay tuned!
Check out this Link to more photos taken via Bert Jones Photography of the 2013 Arizona Indoor Off-Road Championships
Special thank you to Mac Mitchell for the awesome event write up and support out at the event!