BAILEY COLE Wins the ULTRA4 Spidertax East Coast series


From all of us at Axial R/C, CONGRATULATIONS TO BAILEY COLE!!!

The 2017 KMC Battle in Bluegrass at Dirty Turtle Off-Road Park was an amazing event. It was the final race of the Ultra4 Spidertrax East Coast series. I was battling for the East Coast series lead, the National points lead, and a King of the Hammers spot. I would be racing both the 4800 and 4400 class. It was going to be a long couple days.

We started off with a little prerunning Friday. The course had the best short course I have raced on, tight woods, and huge hill climbs. The racing was going to be great. After a bit of practice it was time to qualify. We didn’t have perfect runs but did enough to earn 3rd place in 4800 and 17th in 4400 and, more importantly, we kept the car in one piece. We got a bit of sleep and prepared for the long day of racing to come.

Saturday was race day. I was a little nervous because I never have loved tree racing or water, but I trusted in my crew and co-driver keep us on track. The 4800 race started well. We passed 2nd place before the first hill climb. Then I started to track down Kent Fults. He flies through the trees. It was a great battle through the first lap. He pulled away from me after an early red flag situation. I saw him a lap later with broken steering after he hit a tree. We got past and set the car on cruise control. I had gotten about half a lap lead and wanted to preserve the car. Two laps from the finish I got a call on the radio that said Cade Rodd was gaining fast. I had to step it up if I wanted to stand on top of the box. We picked it up and set some fast laps. We were able to put one and a half minutes on Cade before the finish line. It was a perfect race. We were able to win the race and the East Coast Championship, winning my 3rd race in a row.

While I went to the awards ceremony, my amazing Trent Fab crew prepped the car for the main race. They were pleased that all they had to do was splash fuel. Lining up for the 4400 race was a very different feeling. We looked around at a lot of very fast drivers. I felt like a very small fish in a big pond. I had to put those feeling aside though it was time to go racing. I quickly got past a few cars and was on track to push for a top five finish. I saw Derek West coming up to pass me and I knew he was very fast so I pulled over and let him by. I was able to stick with him though and passed him on the short course. We battled for a little over a lap, however in all my excitement of racing with the big boys I managed to have two tire failures. I drove into a big rock and a big tree and since I was still on my DOT tires they could not withstand the impact. My crew got me back out on the track quick and we started passing people again. We fought our way back up into the top 20. With a few laps to go everything with the car was great. I was not so good. I was starting to lose feeling in my arms from working the wheel so much and bouncing around. My co-driver was able to keep me going fast. We didn’t let up and passed a car on the final lap to get 11th place in 4400. The car could have done more laps, however I don’t know I could have. Trent Fab definitely makes a car that will last far longer than you are able too. It was an amazing feeling. We were the first non qualified driver so I earned a KOH spot.

It was an amazing experience to race with the big boys, but the coolest thing I experienced was the day after the race. While helping clean the course we came across a boy, named Levi, and his dad wheeling. They were really excited to hang out and talk and Levi asked if I could sign his shirt when they got back to the campground. I of course agreed. They stopped by our camp as we were packing up and I signed his shirt. We talked for a little bit and he reminded me of when I was little and was talking to my heros Dustin Webster and Dean Bullock. They really helped me get a love for off-roading and I wanted to do something more for Levi. I pulled my trophy out, and asked him to take care of it for me. His face made my weekend. It was really great to give something to the fans that make this sport amazing. Without these races I wouldn’t have met some of my best friends and some people that are as close to me as my family. Family is what makes Ultra4 the best racing series out there.

I have to thank all the amazing sponsors who helped me get here. Griffin Thermal Products, Spidertrax Off-Road, Axial Racing, Yukon Gear & Axle, Fox Racing Shox, Nitto Tire, Wilwood Disc Brakes, KMC Wheels, WARN, Team 208 Motorsports, ATO Performance Transmissions, Douglas Machine Engines, and Factor 55. I also have to thank my dad for letting me be a racecar driver, my family, and girlfriend supporting me. None of this would be possible without all of your support.
#winning #bestsupport #teamwarn #propertuning #teamyukon #reliable #becauseracecar

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AXIALFEST2017 Concourse Results

AXIALFEST2017 Concourse Results

The Concourse event at this year’s AXIALFEST2017 was absolutely amazing! The builders are getting so much more creative than previous years that it’s making it near impossible to pick a winner.

In the end, though, the judges did have to crown the best of the best, so here’s the pictures of the winner’s rigs. We’ve also added a small gallery at the bottom with some additional pictures.

AXIALFEST2017 Concourse WinnersBest of Axial Heritage Winner: Patrick Jurica

AXIALFEST2017 Concourse WinnersBest of Adventure Trailer Winner: Matt Alley

AXIALFEST2017 Concourse WinnersBest of Work Trailer Winner: Chris Zemek

AXIALFEST2017 Concourse WinnersBest of Adventurist Winner: Dan Huff

AXIALFEST2017 Concourse WinnersBest of Monster Truck Winner: Jim Prestwood

AXIALFEST2017 Concourse WinnersBest of Daily Driver Winner: Troy Olsen

AXIALFEST2017 Concourse WinnersBest of D’Raison Winner: Jackson Hall

AXIALFEST2017 Concourse WinnersBest of Trophy Truck Winner: Jason Philo (right)

AXIALFEST2017 Concourse Winners

AXIALFEST2017 Concourse Winners
BEST OF SHOW Winner: Todd Pearson

Additional Pix

AXIALFEST2017 Rock Racing Results

AXIALFEST2017 Rock Racing Winners

If you didn’t get a chance to attend AXIALFEST2017, you certainly missed out on a fantastic event! Along with all the other amazing activities, the Rock Racing portion of the show was by far one of the most popular!

The Rock Racers were sorted into 8 different classes, allowing drivers of different ages and vehicle types to compete against each other. The classes were:

RR1] Rock Race 10-Under Kids Class – 1.9 & 2.2 Combined
RR2] Rock Race 11-15 Kids Class – 1.9 & 2.2 Combined
RR3] Rock Race 1.9 Factory SCX10 Class
RR4] Rock Race 1.9 Frame Rail Class
RR5] Rock Race Factory Bomber Class
RR6] Rock Race Wraith – OPEN Class
RR7] Rock Race 2.2 Tube Chassis Class
RR8] Rock Race EXO/Bomber – OPEN Class
RR9] Rock Race 2.2 Tube Chassis Class

For a detailed description of all the classes, see our post here ROCK RACING RULES – AXIALFEST 2017.

After the dust had settled, 9 winners had been crowned champions of the AXIALFEST2017 Rock Racing, well, race!

Rock Race 10-Under Kids Class – 1.9 & 2.2 Combined

AXIALFEST2017 Rock Racing Winners
1st Place – Simon Kirsch
2nd Place – Joe Zuniga
3rd Place – Andrew Pena

Rock Race 11-15 Kids Class – 1.9 & 2.2 Combined

AXIALFEST2017 Rock Racing Winners
1st Place – Kason Ernest
2nd Place – Hunt Parr
3rd Place – Ethan Mulhollen

Rock Race 1.9 Factory SCX10 Class

AXIALFEST2017 Rock Racing Winners
1st Place – Michael Pham
2nd Place – Paul Russell
3rd Place – Bryan Kautz

Rock Race 1.9 Frame Rail Class

AXIALFEST2017 Rock Racing Winners
1st Place – Michael Pham
2nd Place – Angelo Lanford
3rd Place – Brian Richards

Rock Race Factory Bomber Class

AXIALFEST2017 Rock Racing Winners
1st Place – Dominique Judkins
2nd Place – Harley Judkins
3rd Place – Saphira Judkins

Rock Race Wraith – OPEN Class

AXIALFEST2017 Rock Racing Winners
1st Place – Spencer Bell
2nd Place – Mason Dunievitz
3rd Place – Michael Pham

Rock Race 2.2 Tube Chassis Class

AXIALFEST2017 Rock Racing Winners
1st Place – Michael Pham
2nd Place – Rich Bolts
3rd Place – Danny Ensor

Rock Race EXO/Bomber – OPEN Class

AXIALFEST2017 Rock Racing Winners
1st Place – Jake Wright
2nd Place – Mike Thompson
3rd Place – Chris Duran

Rock Race YETI Class

AXIALFEST2017 Rock Racing Winners
1st Place – Michael Pham
2nd Place – Devlin Shipley
3rd Place – Ben Thomas

Here are some other links to posts regarding AXIALFEST2017.

Thank You – AXIALFEST2017
This page has downloadable group photos as well as a list of every name that pre-registered for the event!

Off-Road Dave’s First Time Account of AXIALFEST 2017
A detailed look of David “Off-Road Dave” Miller’s first adventure to AXIALFEST2017.

Athletic RC Adventure Mashup – Inside the Axialfest Altra Ultra 5K Enduro
An inside look at the Altra Ultra 5K Enduro written by RC Driver’s Greg Vogel.

Athletic RC Adventure Mashup – Inside the Axialfest Altra Ultra 5K Enduro


Words and photos by: Greg Vogel

Axialfest 2017 Altra Ultra 5K

A lineup of radio control rock rigs sit behind a start/finish line. Batteries are charged, hardware has been checked, the rigs have been built to withstand a true torture test and the radios are on ready race. Where are the drivers? They’re stretching their muscles, tightening their Altra running shoes, making certain their backpacks are prepped with spare parts and of course water for hydration. Ah… What?! This is what the start of the Altra Ultra 5K Enduro looks like during Axialfest where drivers are put through the ultimate RC integrated sporting test. Not only preparing their bodies and mind for a 5K adventure run through some gnarly terrain, but also preparing their mind and RC machines to run to the grueling gauntlet as well.

Axialfest 2017 Altra Ultra 5K
The Altra Ultra 5K is the brainchild of Rodney Wills of Axial Racing who is constantly searching for new and exciting ways for Axial owners to enjoy their vehicles in their intended habitat and beyond. Rodney who is well known among Axialfest attendees has a broad range of interests and uses them to his advantage to create new experiences and the 5K may be one of the greatest RC event innovations in the history of the sport. Rodney was able to meld the sport of adventure running with adventure rock racing and based on the growth of attendees at the 2017 event over its inception a year prior, this has all the makings of being something big and here to stay.


Axialfest 2017 Altra Ultra 5K
Everything that happens at Axialfest is a team effort made up of Axial employees and enthusiastic volunteers. The Altra Ultra course at Axialfest is carefully scoped out weeks in advance and is set up before participants arrive.

Obstacles- If you enter the Altra Ultra, you’re in for a lot more than just the asphalt starting grid. Throughout the course, you’ll encounter terrain that will test your abilities both mentally and physically. On the trail you may navigate man-made jumps, rocks, logs, dirt, uphill terrain, water hazards, drainage piping to drive or crawl through. Yes, both you and your Axial rig will go through these tests. Not just once, but a number of times such as the six laps to complete the 5K run in the 2017 event.

Markers- To determine the course boundaries, red and green streamer tape is used to define the course for the runners. Volunteers or marshals are positioned at strategic points to help assist participants in running the proper direction, to make sure that vehicle rollover/ recovery rules are followed and to make race directors aware of those who drop out or stop for repair.

RC Needs- A wide variety of Axial based vehicles hit the trail from stock out of the box Axial SCX10 II XJ’s to original SCX10’s, Wraiths and Bombers. Many drivers obviously spent hours prepping their rigs to withstand abuse with parts from Axial supporting aftermarket companies. Some participants however were in it for the fun and are there challenging themselves to simply finish with the vehicle they have. This is what is so exciting to see. Although some are in the race for its competitive aspects, many are there to enjoy this event and race toward their own goals to establish their personal best time. But if you are the type itching to compete among the top runners, the Axial Bomber seemed to be the machine of choice to start with.

Athlete Needs- Proper equipment is a must for the runner/ driver too. Be prepared to work on your machine if necessary. Have a small tool kit and a small box of essential parts. A backpack is of course in order too, to carry these items and a means of hydration. Axial was kind enough to provide water at certain points on the trail, but a leisurely stop to grab water adds seconds to your time. Many runners used Camelbak packs for hydration and those backpacks were also used to secure equipment. The equipment needs don’t end there, proper clothing is a must. Sure, it was a bit chilly in the early morning at Cisco Grove, but the day comes in quickly with the heat and as you run, you’ll heat up too. Wear shorts, and an athletic sweat wicking shirt so your body doesn’t overtemp like a nitro engine leaned out. Perhaps the most important item for preparedness is having the right footwear and the main sponsor of the event is a favorite among the participants. Ten of the top eleven finishers were sporting Altra Running footwear designed specifically for adventure running.


Axialfest 2017 Altra Ultra 5K
If you want to go for the cash and prizes… ok, maybe just prizes, you’re going to have to start preparing months in advance. In a discussion with this year’s winner Jake Wright, he discussed spending lots of time training by running everyday and eating healthy. He also spent time practicing with his rig and making sure he knew its handling traits. At the event, you will want to pace yourself, know your limits and the limits of your machine. Going full wick from the start might result in tiring yourself out too soon. You’ll need to consider conserving your rigs energy too, as battery change stops take time. Ripping on your rig at full throttle isn’t considered the best strategy. Full throttle bursts will use up more power than a consistent speed. Those full throttle runs where your machine becomes a spec in your sight might not be the best strategy either. By the time you catch up you may have realized your machine is not in the best position to tackle an obstacle, resulting in time lost for you to stop, back up and attack the course line from a new angle.


Axialfest 2017 Altra Ultra 5K
The Altra Ultra 5K Enduro is not a free-for-all such as the exciting adventure trails at Axialfest. Each participant checks in at the Altra timing station and receives a number badge to wear. At the start of the event, runners will pair up to run on their own clock. Runners will start the race in increments ten seconds apart to give proper spacing rather than risking a massive pile up of bodies and machines in the first turn or obstacle. Each lap, a staff member positioned at the start finish line will call out the participants number as does the participant to insure their lap has been recorded by an official. Timing and laps are monitored by staff and they will let you know when the 5K has been completed. The looks on the faces of participants who were told they had one lap to go when they thought they had finished was pretty entertaining for spectators.

Axialfest 2017 Altra Ultra
The start of the Enduro is pure excitement, pure adrenaline, hooting and hollering, laughs and friendly bets being passed among those ramping up for the event. Through lap one those same enthusiastic people trek their way through the trail generally with a look of excitement on their faces, some with concentration as they try to memorize mistakes and map out perfect lines so they know what to do next lap. But as they hit that second lap, it’s evident that a wave of seriousness is setting in. No longer is this a fun jaunt, this is a mission. The terrain is changing and breathing is a bit heavier. On lap three, beads of sweat trickling down runners faces is evident and layers of clothes worn in the chilly early morning have been tossed to a friend encouraging their favorite driver alongside the road. Lap four brings on concern. “Is the rig going to hold up? Did I use enough locktite on the screws crosses the mind of many. Am I going to have to change the battery soon. I think I need some water.” These questions repeat over and over in the drivers minds. Then it’s on to lap five and as runners pass the line, their faces drop as the timer tells them there’s one lap to go. This is it, time to push your body, time to drive smart. The course has dramatically changed, your mind is racing. This is “The Push!” Time to make it happen, gather up every last ounce of energy, put your trust in your machine and finish the race strong to reach your goal; which for some is pure bragging rights that they conquered the Altra Ultra 5K Enduro.

Axialfest 2017 Altra Ultra
For each and every person that starts the Altra Ultra 5K Enduro, there is a deserved sense of pride, especially for this year’s first female competitor, Katie Murphy. And for those that finish, there is a real sense of accomplishment. For those who treated this race as a professional event, there is even more at the finish line. The top three finishers at this years Axialfest went home with a big bounty that is rather impressive in terms of event prizes. The top three each received an Axialfest 2017 themed Prospector Pan labeled with their finishing order and a gift certificate towards a new pair of Altra Running shoes. And each received a unique prize such as full-scale BFGoodrich tires, Method Race Wheels and a Magnaflow exhaust. Where else do you find prizes like this in the RC world? Congratulations to the 2017 top three: 1st Jake Wright, 2nd Mike Thompson, 3rd Kyle Listul!

Axialfest Enduro Finish
The Altra Ultra 5K Enduro is not for everyone. Or is it? In true Axial fashion, everyone is encouraged to participate and there are some competitive adventurous types who give it a try and leave the race when they reach their limit. At Axialfest 2017 rumblings of modifying the program was overheard to accommodate those who want to push the limits more. Perhaps the program can be modified too to accommodate different age brackets with varying distances? One wild rumor circulated John Schultz would head to Cisco Grove even earlier to build several Ultra courses (Rodney said it was okay.) Keep in mind, anything can happen at Axialfest, a new twist, a new challenge, the unknown is why so many are drawn here. What is known is that the Altra Ultra 5K Enduro is an amazing event that delivers participants more than just a chance to drive an RC car, you get a memorable experience. So are you in? Follow Axial on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and the Axial-blog as well as for upcoming Altra Ultra 5K Enduro event announcements.