After last week’s failure, we decided to turn to someone we knew could rely on. This week’s guest is an icon in the industry for not only his racing accomplishments, but his various roles played throughout the years as well. Without further ado, please welcome Chad Bradley!
LiveRC: Welcome Chad to this edition of “Talk-It-Up Tuesday!” You are a legendary racer with a successful resume, but when, where, and how did it all begin?
Chad: Thanks Mike and Live R/C for inviting me on this week’s Talk it up Tuesday. I started racing in 1989 at Race Prep Raceway, just north of Los Angeles. Race Prep was where I first met most of my good R/C buddies. Jay Halsey, Steve and Mike Dunn, Marty Korn, Greg Degani, Jeremy Kortz and Jared Tebo, to mention a few. Most of the early 90’s I raced locally in and around Southern California.
LiveRC: We personally met for the first time at the Mugen Seiki Nitro Challenge held at Real R/C Raceway in Pleasant Hill, Missouri years ago. I believe you were one of the few who survived Steve “Hillbilly” Hale’s fireworks wars uninjured if I’m not mistaken?
Chad: Ya, the Mugen Manufactures Cup at Hillbilly’s track was always around the 4th of July, so fireworks were easy to come by. That event was unnerving with fire works going off in the pits, and the war on track where we would team up and basically shoot bottle rockets, mortars and what ever else we could shoot. I hit Kris Moore in the leg with mortar, which in turn broke his leg. I felt bad, he couldn’t bare the pain the next day was only able to race half the buggy main. The sparkler bomb firework that one of the locals made every year was pretty insane, as well.
LiveRC: You have multiple championship and major race wins to your name, what would you say is your most proud race win of them all?
Chad: This is a hard question, however what stands out to me was the 05 or 06 Silver State. Kyosho had just released the STR truggy and this was only my second or third race on the Jammin team. In the main Taylor James had control of the lead, Ryan Cavaleri in second and I was content in third (thinking that Taylor was going to take win). Taylor wrecked and fell to third, Caveleri took the lead with the Kyosho and I was in second. I knew how important it was for the Jammin team to take this win in this class and maintain status on having the top truggy currently on the market. I found a second gear with my X1 CRT and was able to pass Ryan with a couple laps remaining. That win was special because, the Truggy class was gaining huge popularity at that time. The Jammin team Celebrated by parting all night in Vegas, good times.
LiveRC: You spent many years as one of the top American drivers for Mugen Seiki, and then moved to Jay Halsey’s Jammin’ team. So far every former Jammin’ team driver that we have spoke to has said that team and time period is some of the most memorable times of their R/C career. Would you agree?
Chad: Totally agree, the chemistry and comradery that the whole team had toward each other was very special. That definitely helped us all put in good results. Jay Halsey’s hard work preparing us prototype equipment before major events, we were one of the first teams to have professional looking pit areas with branded canopies and side skirts. We looked professional at a time that on line media was exploding like Neo-Buggy and Live R/C. The 5 years with Mugen previous of Jammin was a great time as well, Kris Moore was a huge influence to me teaching me about representing an R/C company.
LiveRC: Would you join the Jammin’ team again if it were to make a return to the racing scene?
Chad: I highly doubt that Jammin’ has plans to make a new R/C car or truck, the market is too saturated with many manufactures. Jay’s busy making options for many of today’s R/C cars and trucks as well as work with toy commercials, he’s very happy where Jammin Products are currently standing.
LiveRC: Off the race track you have played many roles behind the scenes. You worked closely with graphics genius, Robert Ibon of Upgrade RC, for quite some time correct? What sort of roles did you play at Upgrade?
Chad: I spent five awesome years working for UpGrade R/C as a graphic designer and raced for them four years prior. Robert’s artistic ability is unreal, many of the manufactures logos you see around today was created by Ibon. I was very fortunate to learn from Robert; main duties at UpGrade were creating die lines for many of the popular lexan bodies. Plus, die lines for the 1/8 wings and doing some of the custom orders placed on upgrade-rc.com.
LiveRC: You are now the Surface Product Specialist at A Main Hobbies. What are some of your daily roles and duties for A Main?
Chad: I am part of the Product Development Team at A Main Hobbies. Most of the days are spent with our two proprietary brands ProTek R/C and EcoPower. I do a lot of field testing, making sure the final product is flawless. Speaking with vendors around the world and brainstorming with the rest of the product development team on new products works or ways to make our current products better.
LiveRC: We were excited to see the new Protek R/C “Chad Bradley” Team Edition servos released not long ago. Tell us a little about the new servos, and what makes the “Chad Bradley” approved.
Chad: I was quite surprised to see that, one of the first projects I was on was reviewing box art for the servos and that’s when I first had learned of them. A MAIN has two new ProTek hi volt “Chad Bradley” servos in the surface category. The 170S has a black anodized full aluminum case, speed of .07 and torque rating of 549oz at 7.4V. The 170S is what I prefer for my electric 1/10 cars (however still plenty strong for 1/8 applications). The 170T servo shares the same black anodized aluminum case as the 170S uses. Speed ratings on the 170T is at .11 and torque at 630oz at 7.4V. The 170T is my servo of choice in both my 1/8 Buggy and Truggy. I have been very happy with the performance of both, I have never had servos with this amount of torque, speed and holding power that the new 170S and 170T delivers. We lab test the new servos for longevity by using a machine that our lab engineer came up with, basically we beat them up good for around 9 hours. I’ll take the servo that we had just did the longevity test on and run them in my 1/8 nitro buggy, and results have been very good, they basically performed just like a new servo. New as well is our “Greggor McGrath” cyclic 270T helicopter servo, and all new Prodigy hi-output AC/DC chargers and power supplies.
LiveRC: Obviously you are a team driver for A Main Hobbies as well as an employee. What vehicles will you be running for the 2014 season?
Chad: Definitely, the Mugen MBX7 1/8 buggy and Kyosho RB6 1/10 buggy. I still have my TLR 8ight T 2.0 that Ive been using for 3 years now.
LiveRC: Any specific reasoning behind these brands of vehicles?
Chad: Reasons for using the Mugen MBX7 is that I am really familiar with the Mugen cars from the days I ran for Mugen USA. The MBX7 is very strong, the plastics lasts a very long time and I love the handling. The other reason for using the MBX7 is because, of the popularity among racers. Being able to provide information to them and learn from them at the track and as well as in the on-line forums is beneficial. The RB6 is easy to drive and has great steering. The 8ight T 2.0 is extremely easy to drive and has very good corner rotation and the speed it carries over bumps is better than most truggies I have tried.
LiveRC: You have attended many 1:8 offroad IFMAR World Championships through out the years, and most recently the 1:10 offoad IFMAR Worlds at A Main Hobbies Silver Dollar Speedway. How would you rate the Worlds at Silver Dollar Speedway, and was this your first 1:10 Electric World Championship?
Chad: The 2013 Worlds at Silver Dollar Speedway definitely was one of the best Worlds I have attended. Usually, what makes a Worlds a race memorable are the exotic locations that the race is held. Plus, the facility, the amount of people working the event and obviously the track. Chico, California is a collage town, with a beautiful down town area. Great places for food, entertainment and amazing historical buildings. The track layout put in for the 2013 Worlds at Silver Dollar was one of the best tracks I had gotten to drive on. Huge firework show was what stood out at this years race from all others. A Main scheduled this perfectly. Fireworks proceeded the 2wd mains race. The most impressive was that the track was basically destroyed two times by heavy rains and many of the A Main employees and the team drivers worked non stop to get the track in a near perfect conditions faster than I had imagined. Once the track was ready again for racing it was like no storm had passed, lap times and the surface were nearly the same as the day prior, unbelievable.
LiveRC: When you aren’t living the R/C dream, what are you most likely out doing?
Chad: Getting accustomed to Chico and seeing all the great parks so far, I want to get back to doing some snowboarding up here when we get some heavy snow in the local mountains. I have been taking advantage on the weekends of having one of the best out door R/C tracks in the world at Silver Dollar Speedway and A Main Hobbies indoor track Outback Raceway.
LiveRC: Best and worst thing about R/C car racing?
Chad: The best is traveling to places I would never have the opportunity to visit and meeting great people. The worst for me is packing for a race we have to fly to, I hate packing and forgetting key items.
LiveRC: One thing most people don’t know about Chad Bradley?
Chad: I am oldest of 10 children. I have 5 sisters and 4 brothers. The holidays at the Bradley house hold usually has a total of 23 immediate family members.
LiveRC: Chad we look forward to seeing you again soon, and want to thank you for joining us today! Before we go, is there anything else you would like to say?
Chad: LiveRC has enabled my family to watch the races I attend all around the world, so keep up the good work LiveRC!
JOIN US NEXT WEEK FOR ANOTHER EDITION OF “TALK-IT-UP TUESDAY!”