Hey guys I’m back…..Its been a crazy hectic busy 2018 already with regular work “Sound Guy Stuff” and RC racing photography “Fun Stuff” I’ve already shot 7 events so far this season and we are in our 5th month still and my regular job takes me away for about 2 months of time so as you can see i’ve been busy!
We started off the year between the Tennis Stadium and RiseUp Hobbytown. If you guys haven’t checked it out yet do so. Its a new indoor facility with hobby shop featuring the famed CRC black carpet….Its the only Black Carpet track in California doing both OnRoad and Offroad racing on a weekly basis. In between setting up for the 3rd largest tennis tournament in the world I help get the track together laying the carpet down and installing all the audio system for the facility. We ended up hosting the 1st round of the Competition Touring Series hosted by Lex Tyler and it was a push to get everything ready in time. The race went off well although I feel the attendance was a little light. Everyone that came had a blast though and well we had some good fast racing on the track for sure.
After the race I had to switch hats and focus on everything sound for the BNP Paribas Open here at the beautiful Indian Wells Tennis Gardens. In case you didn’t know I handle everything sound wise here at the facility We have 9 stadium courts and 24 practice courts plus a live stage and more. I have a small team under me and we are very busy during the event. I average around 10 to 15 miles of walking per day making sure everything is going to plan.
Shortly after the event I was back at the SoCal Nitro Shootout put on by Victor Guerrero and Eddie Laret at the Proline Test Track. 2 day events are always rough as the weather in Banning can change in a heartbeat and take a nice day to bad real fast. Friday’s practice didn’t look good as the wind was really howling but Saturday and Sunday was perfect. It was great to get out again and see all my peeps and well got to watch some incredible racing as usual. The track got some character this time for sure but the sand pit was my favorite as it made for some awesome pictures even though most racers hate what it does to the bearings (Except for Tyler Brown)….More Bearing sales!!
Next I was off to do some 1/8th OnRoad at the brand new Steel City Speedway built by the Goodwine family and friends…Now I haven’t an 1/8th OnRoad since the early 90’s when we still ran 3 speed tranny’s so this was going to be exciting for sure. I ended up helping a buddy of mine get his ready for the event and well he’s lucky he got it back. I couldn’t believe how fun this was still. The cars have come so far and the track was perfectly suited for them. I was still perplexed as to why the engines still barley get 5min of runtime before the tank is empty when Offroad the Adam Drakes of the world make an easy 10min on a tank…..Something to think about manufactures? But anyways I was in seventh heaven watching, listening, and shooting them on and off the track. I liken them to the music a formula 1 car makes….its music to my ears. I ended up bringing my daughter along so we could sell pictures over the weekend. She does such a good job with the racers helping them find a picture, anyways it was a great kickoff to a great new race track.
Las Vegas my home away from home……Except this time it got off to a bad start. I headed to the new SilverState II this year held indoors for the first time by “The Dirt” after setting a few things up at the track I headed over to another hotel I was staying at and had my car broken into overnight…. This sucked for sure as I felt stupid for leaving anything in the car which I rarely do. This time it bit me hard as I lost about 8500.00 worth of gear. It was my auxiliary equipment not my primary but it defiantly put a damper on what I could do at the event. Obviously it was a suck day that day and trying to keep it professional I kept shooing though it all. Many many racers and friends either came to me or texted me asking what they could do to help. This was humbling as I’m not one to ask for anything. At the end of the day I called my wife and got a little verklempt telling her how my RC family came around to support me after what had happened. The next day I put it all behind me and shot what was a very difficult facility to work in.. These little things we race move fast and without the sun to light them they tend to blur on camera and well Silver State was no exception. I worked hard to get what I got and had to pick a few spots on the track to get the best out of it. Even though it was rough for me the racing was flat out incredible. From the ever changing track to a 9yr old TQ’ing a round, to the 5th scale cars to the nose to tail freight trains in the main events I was in awe after the event ended on what I had just witnessed.
After Silver State it was back to one of 2 of my home tracks min from my house as the JBRL was in town the very next weekend. JBRL is kinda cool as most pro’s don’t attend so its really about the sportsman and intermediate drivers and there chance to shine. We got lucky this year as the temperatures were only in the mid 80’s instead of the usual 100’s which made for a great weekend. The PDRCR crew had there hands full getting ready for the event with a owner change. Utilities weren’t transferred properly in the sale which left the track well high and dry…..did I say dry during the layout rebuild. But I will say even with a crossover which I cannot stand Chris Marrale put in one of the best layouts that facility ever had and even though the surface got blown out it made for some of the best racing as it was hard to be fast and not crash. During the event I got to hang out with Cory Drachenberg from the come drive with us series of video’s. If you haven’t watched one all I can say is Watch now…
A couple week break and we were at it again….Cory on Video and myself on camera at the Proline By The Fire or BTF as its known. Many have heard of Axial Fest well this is Proline’s version and in its 3rd year now its really grown. The event is held at Horseman Park up in Apple Valley California. 30min north of the Inland Empire. People come from all over to attend what was this year a 2 day event. Many came in early camping out Friday night and though the weekend. Saturday started off with check-in and the show and shine. I would estimate around 400+ vehicles were dropped down and shown off. The crawling world is interesting to me as it combines model building along with RC. Too often I think many details are overlooked during the judging process but hey its hard to see everything in a small time span. Lots and lots of effort and time are put into many of these rigs. Winners were chosen and the coolest trophy’s were handed out to them that I had seen in a long time, very creative. Then it was time to hit all the events. Each year Paul Willhite the mastermind at Proline BTF comes up with new and exciting events for everyone to partake in and this year was no exception. Monster Trucks and Rally racing!!! BTF had a couple of courses laid out…One just like you see at monster jam where they have to line up drag race over a jump do a 180 turn and head across the finish line. Many tried and few succeeded in this one as traction was low in the area but made for some exciting side by side racing. SoCal Rally Runners were on hand with a very cool setup. One of the guys let me take out his Traxxas Rally car on the track. It was fun but also kinda weird as i’m so use to standing in one place to control my car. Most of these guys run right behind it on the track. Anyways I think I moved like 3 times into another position so I could see a little better but hey if you want to loose some pounds maybe this is the sport for you….Go walk or run your car…literately. Scale City, Mud runs, weight lifting and the night crawl would all go down during the day/night. The next morning many had left to hit the road but wait there was more. One of the crawling clubs had set up a trial trail where you had x amount of time to do it and points deducted if you didn’t do it correct. The line got pretty long waiting to hit the course. All in all the event was another hit with the community.
REEDY! that one word says WORLDS BEST. Weather its offroad or Onroad you know your about to witness something special. I look forward to going to the Touring Car Reedy Race of Champions every year. I have even raced in it once in 2015. The Tamiya test track is a special place and I have been racing on it since it opened in the early 90’s. Tamiya is beautiful located a short distance from the ocean so cool breezes usually accompany it although held over Memorial Day Weekend it can also see drizzle or rain as what local call June Gloom can hit. This year started off much the same with a delay in the racing while the track dried from the weather. Unusually cold temps kept the drivers guessing a bit on setups as the tires when too cold or too hot had little grip. The field was stacked this year as entries filled fast to attend the very last Reedy to be held at Tamiya. The track is scheduled for demo in October as the land has been sold and will become a storage unit facility from what I hear….SO SAD. I enjoy so much the atmosphere at this event as its fun even though its super competitive… Yes I saw some that were having a bad day…hell I saw Ronald Volkner toss his car after a DNF that cost him any chance of winning yet in the last race of the day even though he couldn’t win the championship he have it his all and was still smiling in the end. I got to see a long time friend Dave Jun win 2 of his invitational heats after a hiatus from racing. I got to see a new star Brandon Clements shine bright wining some too. “Must have been the Paint” I had a nice chat with Hara one of my all-time favorite drivers. Dale Epp is always a pleasure to see and how can we forget Miss Courtney Day my all-time favorite trophy girl and RC driver wrangler…. She makes what I do capturing the podium shots easy and more fun for sure…Champain Anyone….. At the very end of an exciting weekend it was with sadness and gladness to have the honor or signing the infamous “KINK” along with many of the worlds best driver. 1 more to go at TAMIYA and I wouldn’t miss it for the world TCS Aug 18,19
So for now I wait for the next one and I believe it is the KO Grand Prix at SCS while I fill out police reports and insurance forms…..YUCK!