Archive for the ‘Pro RC Racers’ Category

Jared Tebo's Team Orion / Kyosho / Lunsford Display Shelf

Jared Tebo's Team Orion / Kyosho / Lunsford Display Shelf

That is a much nicer, and neater display than the following mess, or rather, my mess:

My Messy Corner in the Living Room

My Messy Corner in the Living Room

My wife and I reckon that I should get a similar display to Jared’s in my new home, which I’ll be moving to in 6 weeks’ time.

Following the successful Savage X 4.6 RTR’s 2011 new look (FOR A HIGHER PRICE), and the Baja 5SC SS, HPI went with the confidence plucked from the two market tests to create yet another spin-off, on one of the younger cars on the HPI lineup – the Blitz ESE, creating a “Pro” version.

The Savage and Baja platforms have been around for long enough to be regarded as pillars of the company and would stand strong so long bashers and fifth-scale pundits exist – no matter what HPI did with the former juggernaut, and the pioneering latter. The Blitz however, is a question mark. No doubt Short Course track racing quickly made its way to popularity over the last 20 months, I just wonder if HPI really thinks they have properly justified the $200 price hike on the preceeding Blitz ESE Kit. According to, which gets first-hand news on all that’s new in the RC bashers’ world, this new Blitz will cost US$469- just for a race-roller! However, Tower Hobbies merely lists this one at a $50 premium over the “lesser” one, at their low price of US$279.99

Let’s review some of the key changes in the Blitz ESE Pro to see how much “more” it is.

The new HPI Blitz ESE Pro Kit

The new HPI Blitz ESE Pro Kit

HPI Blitz ESE Pro Kit features MIP ball differential

HPI Blitz ESE Pro Kit features MIP ball differential

Genuine MIP Ball Differential

For lesser rolling resistance, silky smooth differential action and extra adjustability, HPI has since bumped up to the MIP ball differential as a stock feature on this ESE Pro kit.

HPI Blitz ESE Pro - New HPI MK8. V2 Wheels

HPI Blitz ESE Pro - New HPI MK8. V2 Wheels

New MK8. V2 Wheels

HPI has redesigned their MK8. V2 Wheels, and this time they come with a flat inner profile that uses a single foam insert.

HPI Blitz ESE Pro - Gear Housing Unit

HPI Blitz ESE Pro - Gear Housing Unit (Same as Blitz ESE)

No changes here….

HPI Blitz ESE Pro - Chasis Side View

HPI Blitz ESE Pro - Chasis Side View

No visible changes here either…

HPI Blitz ESE Pro - Chasis Top View

HPI Blitz ESE Pro - Chasis Top View

Nope… still can’t spot anything different.

Verdict: To Buy or Not to Buy?

It’s your call. If you’ve got cash to blow, then you should get this one over the old one. It’s definitely better. But if you ask me if it’s worth paying for though? Well, not at the MSRP of $469 it’s not. But if you get the Pro kit off Tower Hobbies at just a $40 premium over the old one, I think that’s well worth the new MIP differential, new wheels and tyres – because you’d probably spend that much anyway to get it to a similar spec.

If you’re a racer but a basher, I suggest you go for the stock US$239 one. You won’t feel the difference. If you’re a racer though, you would need the extra speed, power transmission, as well as traction and road-holding the better MIP differential and new tyres can give you.

Http:// Here’s my 2nd hand Kyosho Inferno MP9 TKI WC. I bought it as a race-roller. It had lots of expensive mods already on it- all it requires for operation was a receiver, a new powerplant and exhaust muffler. As a big supporter of China-designed and manufactured products, I went for a Flysky GR3C receiver, the Taiwanese SH Engine PT28 XM-P8, and Jammin JP-4 exhaust kit by Hong Nor. Check out the video for features and list of mods. This setup should be strong enough to repeat XxxMain’s record house-jumping. What sets this apart from Redcats is how well this well holds up on nosedive crashes from hardcore bashing as well as very precise wheel camber adjustments for sharp responsive turning.

HPI-Hot Bodies HB CR8 - Revolution of the D8

HPI-Hot Bodies HB CR8 - Revolution of the D8 Hot Bodies’ Lead Designer Josh Alton takes you through the many changes and refinements in the successor to the winning D8, right here in the all new CR8 buggy.

Key features include:
– A narrower composite chassis reinforced with replaceable aluminum plates.
– Groove-less suspension arms
– Smaller, but stronger steering servo linkages
– World’s first front mud-guards
– Larger bearings for CVDs and wheel hubs
– and many more….

Watch the video to hear it from the Josh Alton himself!

Thanks to NeoBuggy for this video. They’ve been actively following the developments of HPI-Hot Bodies’ new “Secret Weapon” in this year’s upcoming big races.

I’ll soon be posting a report on all the changes on my RC blog at Stay tuned!

Team Losi Racing's Totally New TLR22 2wd Race-Ready Buggy

Team Losi Racing's Totally New TLR22 2wd Race-Ready Buggy

The Latest on my RC Wishlist…. The TLR22. This replaces the XX, XXX buggies by TLR, and draws inspiration from the RC8. Mom would flip with the addition of yet another box in the hallway. Looks like I’ll have to wait till July when I get keys to my new home. This will be something to kick ass at the Lor Chencharu Bottle Tree Park 1/10 off road race track.

Check out this video intro by Horizon Hobby. It’s the most informative introduction I’ve found as yet.

Team Losi Racing is back in the 1/10-scale electric game with a vengeance with the debut of their new 2WD buggy. Dubbed the 22, it marks a totally new direction in terms of design, features, tuning, materials and more from previous designs. Perhaps the most innovative new feature on this new platform is the ability to reconfigure it from a traditional rear motor configuration to a mid-motor configuration, totally altering how the car handles and jumps.

The best part is, you’ll be able to make the switch without having to purchase any additional components. It’s quite literally like having two different vehicles in one box. The 22 has a number of other outstanding and innovative features that, while unavailable or expensive options on other chassis, come as standard equipment on the 22. All-new top-filled shocks grace the four corners of the 22 and have been modeled after the ones found on the larger 8IGHT 2.0 Race Roller. Their larger 12mm diameter and thick, titanium-nitride-coated shock shafts provide the 22 with a plush suspension that is incredibly smooth.

Speaking of titanium nitride all the hinge pins feature the gold sheen that it is noted for. The 22 also omits a traditional bellcrank system, instead opting for a unique slider rack that has nearly friction-free operation. And a car is nothing without a sturdy backbone and the 22 has just that thanks to the 2.5mm thick precision-machined 7075-T6 aluminum chassis plate. That’s right, I said aluminum.

Come along with us as we share the details with you on what is sure to be the pinnacle of 1/10-scale buggy performance in the Team Losi Racing 22.

I’ll be posting soon the lowest prices on the TLR22 after I do some scouring on the net. Do check back on As you know,Traxxas is the Official and Exclusive Hobby Class Radio Control Truck of Monster Energy Supercross. Monster Energy star rally and gymkhana driver Ken Block – who also inspired the Traxxas “Ken Block Gymkhana Fiesta” just received his very own “Ken Block Limited Edition Traxxas E-Revo”.

The former DC Shoes co-founder and snow-boarding competitor gets alot of snow this time of the year, and asked Traxxas if they could whip up something he might enjoy. The result was the awesome  Ken Block Monster Energy E-Revo.

Ken Block Limited Edition Traxxas E-Revo

Ken Block Limited Edition Traxxas E-Revo

It boasts a striking Monster Energy paint job, and aggressive bead-lock, green-anodized wheels with snow-gripping tyre threads. Here are more pictures of the snow-buster…

The Ken Block Revo sure looks quite the racing truck. Almost could have been a truggy or ST. Why doesn't the HPI Savage X ever look this cool?

The Ken Block Revo sure looks quite the racing truck. Almost could have been a truggy or ST. Why doesn't the HPI Savage X ever look this cool?

Check out the Ken Block E Revo's Green-anodized Beadlock Wheels and Snow-grip tyres!

Check out the Ken Block E Revo's Green-anodized Beadlock Wheels and Snow-grip tyres!

Aggressive rear wing for greater downforce at high-speed and tail-end stability during jumps

Aggressive rear wing for greater downforce at high-speed and tail-end stability during jumps

Here comes the bad news! The Ken Block Edition E-Revo is #1 in a production run of 1! But who knows? Keep your fingers crossed. After all, the Ken Block Edition Fiesta 1/16 VXL Brushless Gymkhana Rally Car was a hot-seller. Perhaps this one will get more mileage across the globe too!

Thanks for reading!

YouTube – Racer Tips from a World Champion!

Multiple World Champ Atsushi Hara says if you want to win like him then you need to get a grip! Setting your tyres up right is both basic and essential. Watch his hot tyre tips now..

Ryan Lutz writes on: How much does a Pro RC Driver make?

Ryan Lutz writes on: How much does a Pro RC Driver make? Pictured: 2011 Psycho Nitro Blast Double Victory + Buggy TQ

by Ryan Lutz
via How much does a Pro RC Driver make? – R/C Tech Forums

I have seen this question pop up quite frequently in the last couple of days and i’ve seen assumptions and criticism thrown around with reckless abandon as well in regards to the topic. Without diving into full on details (of which I am unaware outside of my own situation anyways) let me try to explain why and how some drivers are able to make a living doing what most consider a hobby.

First lets make some bullet points as to what the top Pro Drivers contribute to a company who sponsors them and perhaps gives them a Salary. I would say most Pro Drivers have about 80% of what I’m going to list below. Very few have the entire package and those that do are Highly sought after.

-Approximately one of the fastest 10-20 drivers in the world in their respective class.

-Name recognition that is known well throughout the Hobby that can be used in advertising and marketing of said company.

-The knowledge and ability to test new products and provide feedback to help improve the car of said company.

-A Personality that can do one of many things including attract attention when said driver is racing, or being known as uber helpful off the track to anyone with a question or needing assistance.

-The ability and willingness to endure long hours of traveling either by plane or by car to reach said event. (I for instance flew over 125,000 miles last year attending events).

-Much of what a top driver offers a company can be summed up in a few key words. Marketing, Advertising, Personable, Knowledgeable, Fast as all Get Out!

Now that we know what a Pro RC Driver offers a company who sponsors them lets figure out whet the Pro RC Driver Looks for in a company to sponsor them. (because it is a two way street)

-If they are an elite driver then yes, salary is important because to be able to race 40-46 weeks out of the year it takes a full time commitment. Thus they must be able to support themselves and perhaps their families as well.

-Top drivers also want to run something they can believe in and that they can win with. Most top drivers get a majority of their pay based on contingency (winning races). Their Salary may be just enough to squeak by on during the year but if they can win races they can earn much more from contingency. Thus the smart elite drivers will not only look at salary but at what companies they feel provide them with the best shot at winning (and thus winning contingencies). You may go with a company that offers 25% more salary but hasn’t ever proven its self yet. In that instance if the car isn’t quite up to par you can end up loosing out on contingency moneys from all of your other sponsors because you can’t win a race. So picking companies you believe in is very important as well. Also consider this….If you are one of the best in the world, how long is it going to sit well with you if you can’t win a race. The top drivers are all Extremely competitive people and their favorite thing to do is Win Races! Why compromise that??

-How the company does business is also important for some drivers. Each company does things differently. When booking travel some companies have someone in house that does all of it while other companies leave it up to the driver who then gets reimbursed. So taking into consideration personal preferences about travel can be a factor. Some companies also expect wins wins wins and are very tough on their drivers to perform. Other companies are more concerned about public image and putting their best face forward and realizing that things happen and that wins will come when the rest is put into place.

So now we know what a company looks for and what the driver looks for. This now may be self explanatory to some of you at this point but lets decipher why these drivers may or may not deserve to be paid.

-Most of these drivers become the face of the companies they are representing. Thus they become an ‘icon’ so to speak. They are used by said company for marketing and advertising of that companies products. They are expected to adhere to strict codes of conduct and represent the company to their fullest ability.

-These top drivers give up a lot in their personal lives to race these cars. Some of the top drivers have families and as i’ve mentioned before, racing 40-46 weeks a year can be quite hard on a family. Racing R/C cars Full time is not a normal occupation. It’s not a 9-5 M-F line of work. Schedules are hard to schedule and your home for a week then gone for 2 or 3. It can be taxing.

-The top pros are also ALWAYS under the Microscope. They have given up the hobby that they grew up loving and have made it into a job. A job where they are scrutinized and berated on their every move. No longer can a Top pro driver go to a race track and just throw down their dirty car and bash around and have fun. Every time their car hits the track they are expected to win. If they do not win ‘there must be something wrong’ ‘the car must not work good’ ‘the engine must be junk’ and on and on and on. It doesn’t matter if they just flew for 20 hours the night before and it’s their first time on a new track to them. They are expected to be perfect and if they are not then the critics come out and the forums blow up and the snowball effect begins!

Let me finish by saying that while some may not consider R/C racing a viable job or occupation, to a handful of people it is. Also to the companies in our industry it’s also important to have Top drivers who can help further develop their cars as in any form of racing. If your not developing your products further to stay ahead, your falling behind. Some may think that hiring top drivers makes the company have to raise their vehicle pricing to compensate. If the money wasn’t spent on hiring drivers it would instead be spent on other forms of advertising, marketing, and hiring people to help develop the cars. So why not get all of those aspects in a top driver or two and get some results while your at it! 🙂

<->Lutzinator Out<->