Jake Wright Takes the Win at ECC 2012

Team Axial driver Jake Wright made the long trek down to Alabama from southern California with his XR10 for the 2012 East Coast Championships, aka ECC. ECC usually brings in drivers from all over the US to compete for the east coast crown. After a long hard fought battle with talented drivers from around the country, Axial’s very own Jake Wright managed to take the win and the cash prize back to California with him. Congrats Jake!! We are proud to have you on the team!!

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Photos courtesy of Ryan Bean.

OCRCRC – Comp One / 2012 Series

Orange County Radio Controlled Rock Crawlers (OCRCRC) held their first event of the 2012 calender year this past weekend. Winners of this series will get an invite to the SoCal Regionals later in the 2012 year. Winners of the SoCal Regionals event will get invites to the 2012 USRCCA Nationals. So, it is the beginning of a long road to the 2012 Nationals.

Being located in Orange County, Ca., we have access to limited terrain, and part of that terrain is man made. For the first stop of this series we hit up a local wash that is lined with concrete and rocks. There are some tough lines in this area, and there is traction for days, which allows the course designers to set some pretty crazy lines. While walking the courses before I ran I saw a few gates that made me go hmmmm. But, all gates were possible if you could find the right line through. The sun was shining and the weather forecast was calling for 80 degree temps, so the stage was set for a great day of competition.

Here are a few highlights from the event:

I set-up course one, which was a technical 20 gate marathon. The first few gates had some tough spots that you had to negotiate slowly in order to clear them without any penalties. Then, after gate 6 you had a series of technical off camber, as well as descending obstacles to clear. The last couple gates were easy if you found the proper approach.

Brandon volunteered to run my 20 gate course first, and who was I to deny him that pleasure. Of course him and his XR10 made it look easy as usual.

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OCRCRC club member/starter Tyler Schuldt broke his leg recently, so he competed on crutches all day. Not an east task in this terrain. On this particular course you had to stand inside a circle and let your spotter guide you through the course. This was the only course that played into his favor.

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Brandon spotting for Tyler.

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A few random shots.

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I spy some shafty axles, a man after my own heart!

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Jake Wright’s latest custom build with XR10 axles.

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Don Hughes attempts the 20 gate marathon course with his XR10.

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More random goodness…….

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This off camber gate forced you to blip the throttle on the way through in order to clear the lower gate.

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Another blip was needed here……..

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……..and here.

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More blip action.

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Here’s how the top 3 finished:

1st Rich B. -101

2nd Chris D. -88

3rd Jake W. -76

Congrats guys, see you at the next event!!

Jake Wright Wins 2012 Copper State Crawloff

The first big USRCCA nationals qualifier of 2012 was held this past weekend in Tucson, Arizona. Competitors from all over the southwest gathered for a shot at a national invite for the 2012 Nationals of R/C Rock Crawling. Team Axial driver Jake Wright made the trek down from southern California, with his XR10 and a handful of other SoCal locals, to test their grit against some of the best in the southwest. After the hard fought scores were tallied up, Jake and his XR10 were victorious by a slim 8 points. Axial would like to congratulate Jake on his win, and thank him for being part of our team. Way to go man!!

A few shots of Jake and his XR10 in action at a recent San Diego competition.

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Axial’s Coverage of the 2011 Nationals

Axial attended the 2011 USRCCA Nationals in Las Vegas, Nevada this past weekend. This is the biggest R/C crawling competition of the year. In order to compete at this event you must either win the qualifying series in your area, or sign up for the last chance qualifier (LCQ), and hope you make the cut into the main event. This event is in it’s sixth year, and still building momentum. Here’s a few highlights from this year’s competition.

Thursday was the first day of competition. There were 75+ drivers total signed up for LCQ, and all of them were hoping for a chance to make the main event on Saturday. The competition was about to get very tight.

The driver’s meeting on LCQ morning.

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Shortly after the driver’s meeting, courses were open and the competition was underway.

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Team Axial driver Dean Hsiao in attack mode.

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Team Vanquish and Team Axial driver Brian Parker doing work!

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Looks like Brian drove his XR10 to Vegas from Reno by the looks of those tires.

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There were plenty of XR10 based rigs to watch, with many different set-ups.

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The view from the top of the rocks.

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Me and my sombrero working it.

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A view of the top course, as drivers await their turn.

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Team Axial driver Jake Wright working his custom XR10.

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Axial’s good friend Yoshiaki Kataoka made the trek all the way from Japan with 6 of his closet crawler companions to compete in this year’s event. This is the fourth year Yoshiaki has made the trip to the US for this event.

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Scott Hughes squirreling his way through one of the tougher gates.

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After the main event Saturday, only 5 would make the finals on Sunday out of 101 drivers.

The talented 5 are……..

1st Brian Lorenz -111

2nd Scott Hughes -110

3rd Joel Gatlin -100

4th Nabil Jamali -99

5th Darwin James -97

Jason Hensel conducts the drivers meeting on Sunday morning.

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The event was broadcasted live over the internet so anyone that couldn’t attend this competition could watch from home by logging onto www.rccrawler.com

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Bulu Production’s Brett Carlson gives me the stink eye, as he records the drivers meeting.

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After the driver’s meeting the top 5 took to the finals course in hopes of pulling off the victory for that “2011 National Championship” title. Driver order was picked randomly out of a hat. Once the driver’s name was called, they had 30 seconds to start the course………….no pressure!!

Joel Gatlin was chosen first.

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This off camber gate was tough to negotiate, as soon as you approached it, your rig would start to unload. Most drivers quickly got on the throttle as their rig started to roll. But, the lip after the gate made it tough to get progress with the rear tires because it would instantly flip you off the obstacle as soon as your front tires touched it.

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Next up was Brian Lorenz.

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That same off camber gate bites another competitor.

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Scott Hughes was chosen to go 3rd.

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That nasty off camber gate looking straight on. Scott and I had decided before the top five started that the best way through this gate cleanly, was to back down below it first, then drive up through. Worked like a charm!

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Nabil Jamali’s name was drawn next.

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Darwin James was lucky enough to be the last driver to run.

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And the winners are………..

1st place Brian Lorenz

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2nd place Scott Hughes

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3rd place Nabil Jamali

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That wraps up the 2011 Nationals coverage. Keep an eye out for details on next year’s event. Special thanks to Steven Kautz, Mark Reel and Jeff Johns for helping me take photos.

Axial XR10 Delivers 1-2 Punch at 2011 USRCCA Nationals

Axial recently attended the 2011 USRCCA Nationals in Las Vegas, Nevada. This event brings in the best drivers from around the world to compete for a chance to be the top R/C crawler on the planet. This year for the main event there were over 100 crawlers battling it out for that one top spot. After a long hot day of incredibly tight competition two XR10′s were standing at the top of the podium. Axial would like to congratulate Brian “Burbo” Lorenz (left) for his first place finish, and Scott “Squirrel” Hughes (right) for taking the top 2 positions this year with their XR10′s. Way to do work drivers!!

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AWCC Rock Candy Winner – Becky Barger

Team Axial driver Becky Barger walks away with the Rock Candy win at the 2011 Axial West Coast Championship Finals in Cisco Grove, Ca with her Axial XR10. Congrats to Becky for her win, we are proud to have you on the team.

A few shots of Becky on course doing work!

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Most competitors rolled while driving off this ledge.

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Becky was quick enough to give her truck a little throttle when the front tires touched down, which helped her rig land on all 4 wheels. Nice driving!

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Becky Barger AXIAL West Coast Championships - AWCC FINALS 2011 Cisco Grove, CA

Rock Candy girls, Mindy Howe (left) and Jess Downing (right), present Becky with her 1st place trophy.

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Keep an eye on this girl at Nationals in September, she will be on her game as usual representing the state of Colorado.

Motorama 2010

Motorama 2010 US Indoor Rock Crawling Challenge

Article written by:
John “Rckcrwlr” Thorton

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Do you like RC…or even better, do you like Motorsports in general? If the answer is yes to either of these questions, then you need to be at Motorama held at the Farm Show Complex and Expo Center in Harrisburg, PA. This is the largest indoor motorsports event in the country, and when I say Motorsports, I mean MOTORSPORTS.   TunerWars, Robot Conflict, Speed Show, RC Rockcrawling, RC Electric Off Road Racing, RC Nitro 1/8 Scale Racing, 1/5 scale Racing, Arena Cross, Quarter Scale Midgets, and Go Karts are only a few of the attractions featured at the show.

This year, Western PA Crawlers returned to host this event with John Thornton’s (Rckcrwlr President) as the event coordinator. With the dedication of the club members and John’s hard work, this event was orchestrated flawlessly, “With the combined dedication of W.Pa.C. and myself, it will ensure that this event will get bigger and better each year. With the announcement that we are now an Official USRCCA Nationals Qualifying Event, it will guarantee the success and future of this event for enthusiasts on the east coast and around the country” said John.

Axial was a sponsor of this event for the second year in a row, and man was it a success. We pulled Crawlers from across the country, from Oregon & California to New Jersey and Florida. Competitors drove and flew in on Friday, February 19th for a chance to practice on over 80 Tons of Rock that was brought in just for the event.

There were over 75 drivers that resulted in 113 registrations in three classes.
25 entries in 1.9 Comp Class
71 entries in 2.2 Comp Class
17 entries in Super Class

Saturday morning started at 7:00 am with everybody coming in and getting ready. There were people charging batteries, tightening screws, cleaning tires, checking radios, etc. At 8:00 am Rckcrwlr announced the Drivers Meeting. This was it, there was no turning back.

We were running three 2.2 courses at the same time. These were set up as a free crawl and it was the responsibility of the drivers to make sure they ran all three courses before the stated deadline. Things went smoothly. Every course stayed busy the whole time, and the Judges worked hard to keep everything moving.
Following the 2.2 runs, we ran 2 Super and 1.9 courses. We finished them up and decided to get the other Super and 1.9 course out of the way…Leaving at 10:30pm, made for a long day, 14 hours of crawling.

Bright and early Sunday we started the 1.9 and Super Finals. This was the top 5 best scores from the previous days events. We also ran the last 2.2 course to come up with the top 10 finalists.

The courses were tough but fair. Deep holes and mud, offered a dimension of complexity that stumped a lot of the drivers. Making sure that every movement was where you wanted to be was the most important with these courses. One misplaced tire and you could fall in a hole that would either cost you a touch or repair.

With the assistance of Susquahana Valley Scale Crawlers (SVSC), we were able to offer the 40,000 plus spectators a chance to test drive an Axial SCX-10 Trail Ready Truck…and a chance on winning a brand new one donated by Axial. The demo truck was put through it’s paces. Close to 200 spectators took the chance and was able to drive it over the predetermined course, showing the durability of this truck.

Competitors were allowed to bring their own scale rigs also. Two that stood out were Rockcrawler’s (Jeff Gill) Modified 2 speed tranny w/27T motor Honcho and Gatekeeper’s (Austin Dunn) Honcho packing a Brushless 8.5T Motor. These trucks were amazing………unreal low speed crawlability with awesome top speed. There were also several 6×6 custom rigs and more that took on the mud hole. When it was all said and done…we had three top winners…

Here is how they fell into place:

Super Class:
John “Super Dave” Ripplinger
James Caruso
CJ Hines
Cory Owenburg
Pat Curran

2.2 Comp Class:
Jake Wright
Jeff Gill
Austin Dunn
John “Super Dave” Ripplinger (not in picture)
Andy Zuber

1.9 Comp Class:
Austin Dunn
Jake Wright
Jay Lewis
James Caruso
Dave Zettlemoyle

Motorama 2010 is done…Planning has already started for 2011.