TEAM LEWIS RACING

2014 SOUTHERN NATIONALS

It’s been a while since I entered a blog on here. Not sure why but I promise to do better. Landen and I have have been racing allot and our most recent race was several weeks ago in Flowood, MS. Landen was able to bring home 2nd overall in Open E-Buggy while I also brought home 2nd in Sportsman E-Buggy and 5th in Nitro Truggy.

This week, we head to the land of Duck Dynasty, West Monroe, LA.

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This is our third year in a row making this trip for a race called, Southern Nationals. I look forward to this race every year as the track is much different than other Nitro races we attend. The track is much larger and the weather is always cool. A nice change to the heat we have been having around here. Also, it is a great time to hang out with some of my friends that I don’t get to see very much.

We fly out on Thursday and look forward to seeing what Team Lewis Racing can do.

AMS 5.0 – The Greatest Show on Earth!

AMS 5.0, the Great Show On Earth!!!  Where do I even begin?  This race has such a special meaning for Landen and I as it was the first big race we ever attended 2 years ago.  We were so lost when we got there but it was a launching point for Landen.  It was following this race, that Landen got his first sponsorship.  We had been looking forward to this race ever since it was added to the calendar.  Outside of the Cactus Classic in Arizona, this is our favorite race of the year.  And this year did not disappoint.

On our way to Alabama, we were about one hour into the 8 hour trip and I didn’t;t think about going through the Agriculture/Weigh Station on I-10 with my 12′ cargo trailer.  About 1 mile later, the Cabbage Cop had caught up to me and made it very known that she was upset about it.  She go to go into my trailer and inspect everything.  Of course she had never heard of R/C Racing and took that time to want to hear all about it.  Of course, the best part was the comment she made, “Over Yonder”…  I got a warning and about 20 minutes later we were off again.

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We arrived Thursday evening and got the new Team Lewis Racing tent all setup for the weekend.

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Landen had not raced his E-Buggy since last October, so unfortunately with all the racing we have had going on and trying to finish up school, he still had to put it together from the last time he raced it.  We stayed and got it ready and glues up tires for the next mornings open practice.

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This year, there was a record number of entries and getting practice in was not easy.  The line to practice was always long but at an event like this, you come in knowing that and you try and get as much as your can.  At. 4:00pm, the intentions was to have controlled timed practice for each class so they could seed you for qualifying.  However after only 6 heats in, the first of many serious thunderstorms came rolling in and we lost power for hours.  While it was frustrating to lose the valuable practice, it was nice to get everything perfectly ready for the next day and walk around and see all my friends.  Going to a race like this is always fun for the competition but I enjoy the socializing more than anything.  When the power came back on, the race director decided to cancel the controlled practice and just open it back up for open practice.  Landen got one more practice in and then we were off to bed because we had to be back at the track at 5:30am the next morning.

Friday morning came and qualifying began bright and early.  The Open Nitro Buggy class was stacked full of some great drivers from all over the country.  Last year, Landen did not make the A-Main and we have been preparing and practicing as much as we could the last month to get ready.  This was the one class that Landen wanted more than any.  We felt as though we had some setup ideas going into this race.  We also knew that we would be completely different than most of the other Kyosho drivers there but we felt we had the setup needed to win.  From the very first practice, we knew that we had nailed it.  Landen’s buggy was awesome from the beginning.  In the first qualifying, Landen had a bad draw and getting around lap traffic was difficult.  He ended by taking 5th overall for that round which was very exciting because we knew we left 15+ seconds on the track.  Making one minor change in the shocks, we went out for round #2.  This round, the heats were resorted and so Landen would get a chance to race with the top 1st Round qualifiers which helped him keep his pace up as those drivers were all great.  He put in a very clean run and took the TQ for the round.  With a 5th and a 1st, we knew Landen had locked in a Top 4 starting position in the A-Main.  So, the only thing to do in Round #3 was to go for overall TQ.  There was no need for any setup changes.  Landen decided to run the same set up Proline M3 Holeshots from the first 2 qualifiers and went out and took the TQ for the round, giving him the overall TQ for the event.

Qual

 

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In the Open E-Buggy class, we put the same setup we had on the Nitro Buggy because we knew it was good.  However, the E-Buggy was not as planted and did not have the same steering that Landen likes so as the day went, we kept making changes after changes hoping to just make the A-Main and find the setup needed for him to compete.  By the end of qualifying, Landen felt good with the buggy and was able to get the 5th best qualifying run in the last qualifier.  This would get him into the A-Main but unfortunately, he would be starting 12th overall in both A1 and A2.  We decided to make one last change which was to lower the rear diff oil to 2,000cst and we felt we had the buggy as good as we could get it for the mains.  At 3:00am in the morning, after being at the track since 5:30am, we decided to go to the hotel and get as much sleep as we could.  With Landen being in all A-Mains, that allowed us to sleep in and get some much needed rest.  Or, at least that was my goal.  Landen woke me up several hours earlier than I wanted becasue he pumped and excited.  So, off to the track we went.

First up would be his A1 and A2 of Electric Buggy.  He was starting 12th on the grid and the caliber of competition in this class was so high and this being his  1st time behind this vehicle in over 7 months, I was just hoping for a Top 5 finish.  That would have exceeded our expectations by allot.    In A1, Landen had a rough time getting around all the buggies as everyone is obviously racing hard.  He had the speed and the buggy was dialed but just couldn’t get to the top after such a bad start.  In the first few turns, Landen got hit as he was accelerating and got flipped over.  He was the last to be turn-marshaled and found himself dead last and 12 seconds slower on the first lap than the leaders.  I was concerned that he would then over drive the car and lose his cool but I was proud that he fought hard, driving his line and going for it.  By the end of the race, he had got all the way up to 4th place.  With the start that he had, 4th was AWESOME.  We would take it.  In A2, Landen took a different approach to the start and made the most amazing pass.  By the start of Lap 3, Landen was all the way up to 2nd place and with a great battle with Hunter Cupp the entire race, Landen was able to squeeze out 2nd for the race which secured him 3rd Overall for the Open E-Buggy Event.  Taking home 3rd in the Open class at such a premiere event and not racing the buggy for over 7 months, I could not have been more proud of Landen.

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Later on in the evening, it was time for Open Nitro A-Main.  Landen would be sitting TQ and we knew he had the buggy to bring it home.  After already getting podium in E-Buggy, I felt good as Landen seemed to be relaxed and confident going into the 30 Minute A-main.  At the start of the race, Landen and Danny Bartholomew went back and forth for the lead but had separated themselves from the rest of the pack.  Around lap #8, Landen went to make the jump onto the front stretch and his engine flamed out.  I could not believe it.  His buggy was so good and his REDS engine had performed so well all weekend.  I felt so bad for him.  Jader Lopez, who was pitting for Landen got him back on the track but on the first lap back out there, it flamed out again.  At this point, Landen had no chance for podium.  Some engine tuning adjustments were made and Landen went back out to finish the race in 11th place.  Far from the finish we wanted but Landen drove so good.  If it had not been for engine failure, there is no doubt he had what it took to win the race.  However, things happen in Nitro racing and we know that.  We kept our heads high and accepted what had happened.  He still proved through qualifying that he was fast and could leave the race knowing that at least on Friday in qualifying, he had the best car.

This is the third race in a row that Landen has driven his Kyosho MP9 and has yet to break a single part.  Last year, we could not finish a race without something breaking.  At one point, we had almost wanted to give up on racing Nitro because of the frustration.  With a new approach, I am glad to see that the Kyosho is proving why it is the best out there and being the dependable buggy that we need.

We already can’t wait for AMS 6.0, our favorite Nitro race in the country.  Thank you Chris Cassidy for putting on a TOP NOTCH race and being such a great friend as well.  Special thanks to Jader Lopez and Tommy Allen for pitting Landen.  It was nice to have faith in them to take case of those duties and allow me to just get to sit back and watch.  Also, Jovan Cruz made the trip so much fun.  The stories I could tell.  I have never laughed as much as I did this past weekend.  Between Jovan being attacked by a fly in his sleep, using the concrete wall as an A/C unit and filming his own socks for some unknown apparent reason, good times was had by all.  I had so much fun with everyone.  Yes, we never got to sleep and it will take weeks to catch up but I would no change a single moment for anything.  Except for maybe when 1/2 of my thumb got ripped off when I made the “Idiot Move” of weekend by trying to use my thumb to stop a fly-wheel on a run away buggy.  #BadLap #ThanksObama

Thanks goes out to Landen’s sponsors for all their support:  #Kyosho #Proline #REDS #Airtronics #MIP #SchelleRacing #LFR #Stickit1Racing #KustomRCGraphics #Teeter #TeamLewisRacing

 

 

 

Carolina Spec-Tech-Ular at The RC Pit!!!

This weekend, Team Lewis Racing made the 6 hour trip North to Luguff, SC for the Carolina Spec-Tech-Ular at The RC Pit!!!

This race was very unique in the the way it was ran. We don’t get to run Nitro very often during the winter and spring.  So, with the summer/early fall months being full of Nitro events, we knew we needed to get some practice in.  Landen had only ran his Nitro Truggy once this year and the Nitro Buggy, twice.  So, we needed all the practice we could get.  Also, since being picked up by REDS, we needed to fully break in the engines. We arrived to the track late morning on Friday and got our pit all setup.  Mo Denton, a Pro from Pennsylvania was the only other driver there.  We traded off practicing and marshaling for each other.  Other drivers slowly starting rolling in as the day went alone.

Our goal Friday was to get a good feel of the track and get the REDS engines as close to race ready as possible.  Landen was happy with his setup and the engines were running unbelievable. Saturday morning we showed up back at the track and the parking lot was full.  Racers had came from everywhere to race this event.

There were Pro’s from Virginia, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina and us from Florida.  In the Pro Class, we knew Landen was going to have his hands full with the level of competition that he had.  The goal was to just run with these big racers and work on getting his feel back.  As the day went on, Landen got better and better.  We were not able to stay for the last Main and therefore that blew any chances of him making a podium but the experience he got and track time was great.  Seeing him 10+ minutes into the race and battling for 3rd with these guys was awesome.  I think Landen is going to have a great Nitro season and we are excited for it.

If you are interested, here are the details of how the race was ran:

Format:
The race will not have any qualifying…Each class will run 4 main events. That’s right, all heads up racing. The exciting part about this is that every time on the track matters, and if you add it up, it’s MORE track time. Ever qualify all day to have one unlucky thing happen in the main to ruin your day, not this time.
-Electric Mains will be 10 minutes for 1/10 Buggy, 4wd Buggy, E buggy and 8 minutes for 4wd SCT.
-Nitro Mains for all classes will be 15 minutes each.
-Best 3 of 4 mains count, with the drop being used incase of a tie breaker.
-Each race you will be grouped with different racers, in a rotating fashion.
Spectechular:
Now, here’s the kicker…and what adds the extra edge to this race. The thought behind this is two fold, increase race strategy the driver must manage for themselves, AND reduce the cost associated with being able to run up front.
-Each driver will be allowed to use 2 complete sets of tires throughout their 4 main events. So yes, each set of tires must be ran at least twice. Tires do NOT have to be preselected, however once a second set is recorded in tech, those two sets will be the only sets the driver can use for the remaining mains.
-Tires will be teched “post” race after each main, and uniquely marked accordingly.
-This includes fronts or rears, they do not have to be used as “sets”, but each pair whether front or rear can only be used twice.

NewRed Hobbies 10th Anniversary Race

This past weekend was NewRed Hobbies 10th Anniversary and so they put on a special race to commemorate the anniversary.  We got to the track Friday morning and began to get our cars all ready for the weekend.  Landen decided to make the move to Mod fulltime.  In Florida, other than Mod 2wd Buggy, sometimes it is hard to get enough entries to run Mod truck classes.  There were not enough entries in the Mod Truck class, so he had to shelf that truck for the weekend.  However, Brian Kinwald, a legend in the RC Industry had flown cross country to race with us and so Landen got to race with him in the Short Course class.

I was VERY proud of how Landen drove him Mod.  Consistency is the only thing that hurt him this weekend.  He was turning some of the fastest laps and many times had the lead even over some of the Top pro’s in the state.  Making the jump full-time to Mod will take time and patience.  There is NO doubt that this is where he belongs and he wants it.  In the B-Main, he had the lead in the 2wd Mod Buggy race the entire first 10 laps.  He had even got up to a 4 second lead on 2nd pace.  However, one mistake then turned into several more and at the end, he found himself outside of the 2 bump up spots.

In 2wd Mod SCT, he wanted to beat Brian Kinwald.  Of course, beating a prior National Champion is no easy feat but he wanted to soooo bad.  In qualifying, Landen held his own.  In fact, Landen only lost by three seconds in the 2nd qualifying run.  Running his new Kyosho SC6 without any track time to find a good setup, he was on cloud nine.  Going into the Triple A-Mains, all he wanted to do was again try and hang with Brian and somehow try and pull out one victory.  There were times he had the lead and that was exciting but in the end, Brian Kinwald is sooo good and sooo smooth, that he got Landen.  However, it sure was fun watching Landen wheel the SCT.

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With Landen running Mod, it really frees me up to concentrate on the stock classes.  I ran all three stock/17.5 classes:  2wd Buggy, Stadium Truck and SCT.  In stock, we may not have the fastest drivers but the level of competition is extremely high.  I knew that I had the two trucks to make the AMain and I wanted to qualify in the Top 5 with both of them.   In Buggy, all I wanted was to make the AMain.  There were some long time veterans and really fast guys running 17.5 2wd Buggy, so I knew I had my hands full.  After the 2 rounds of qualifying, I was 3rd overall in SCT and 5th overall in Stadium truck.  However, I was less than 1 second from qualifying 7th in Buggy and found myself in the B-Main.   I was not too disappointed because there was one more change I wanted to make to the car and I knew I left several seconds on the track.  In the B-Main, I felt as though I drove my best all day.  It was a very tight race between Collin Cabre and Brian Denmark and myself.  Fortunately, I was able to bump up into the Triple A-Mains which allowed me to reach all my goals.  My RB6 was hooked up and fast.  Recently, I have been trying different setups and such which has broadened my knowledge and I have been able to get my cars better and better at each race.  This weekend, I nailed it.  Unfortunately, my car was better than I was.  If I had done my part, the RB6 was good enough to finish in the Top 3.  I feel as though I am getting much better and understanding how to drive smarter and faster.  I just need more patience and cleaner runs.  I ended up 6th overall on the weekend in 2wd Buggy which was awesome with over 35+ entries.

Thanks to Tom for such an awesome event and I hope you are around another 10 Years!!!

Landen takes TQ at 2014 Cactus Classic

Landen Lewis Wins at SCRC for the First Round of Super Cup.

Space Coast RC is one of the best tracks/facilities in Florida and across the nation.  This is the home of the 2014 1/10th scale Roar Nationals.  With over 200 entries, the 1st round of Supercup was hosted here and drivers all across Florida showed up to compete.  A heavy blue groove was set, and with a new layout, Space Coast RC was ready to begin practice.  I knew coming up to the race that tires would be the main factor.  With such a tight layout and fast competitors, every little bit of traction would be needed.  I very soon picked up on the fact that M3 or soft compound tires were the way to go.  Running these tires ensured that you would have great traction and your tires would last a whole race.  Ions were DIALED on the Buggy as well as the SCT,  while Scrubs dominated on the Stadium.  Good friend and teammate Tilar Pollack found other combos best for his driving type.  He tried MC, MX, and X2 compounds as well as other treads.

Race day came around and it was on like Donkey Kong!  The cars were ready to go and tires were glued.  This super cup race was ran differently due to trophy representation for the previous series, so one qualifying round was ran on Saturday while the 2nd round and mains were ran on Sunday.  My gameplan was to throw in a safe round and hopefully secure A-main positions on Saturday.  This is exactly what happened!  I was able to qualify top 8 in all classes, but wasn’t finished yet.  The next round of qualifying was tomorrow and I knew I could place very well if I tried harder.  I woke up around 6:00 AM Sunday morning and we drove out to SCRC.  That morning I ran very clean and fast and was able to secure TQ for shortcourse and top 5 for both buggy and truck.  The mains were coming up and I did my regular routine.  I mounted M3 Ions for the rear and MX Ions for the front of my Kyosho SC-R Shortcourse.  I went with M3 Rear Ions and M3 Front Scrubs for Mid-Motor Kyosho RB6 Buggy, and M3 Scrubs all the way around for the Kyosho RT6 Stadium Truck.  Now for the intense part… THE MAINS!

The mains were super exciting as I took TQ and Win in short course.  I was able to lead the entire race from the beginning.

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In Buggy, I found myself the entire race following my Kyosho team mate, Billy Bruce.  I felt as though I could have pushed the buggy a little more and try and battle with him, but we had such a nice lead on the rest of the field, I choose to play it safe and let Kyosho take 1 & 2 for the event.  In Stadium Truck, I got a little caught up in traffic and was unable to catch the leaders but still made podium with a third place finish.   The cars were awesome and the races were even better!

 

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I would like to personally thank Daniel Adams and the whole Proline Team, Kyosho, Peak, Airtronics, MIP, “Teeter”, KustomRCGraphics, LFR,  Stickit1 Racing, Shiverville Raceway, and most importantly, Jesus Christ.

I hope you all had an amazing racing weekend!

-Landen Lewis

1st Annual Whoop Action Classic

Team Lewis Racing made the 7 hour trip up to Maplesville, AL.  It is a small town around an hour north west of Montgomery, AL.  We headed out on Thursday with the whole family in the Motorhome.  I had reserved a camping spot just south of Troy, AL  for the evening.  This allowed us to get up and get to the track on Friday by noon to get in some needed practice.

We arrived at the track and was welcomed by Brett and Blake who was putting on the event.  They seems very happy we made the trip and I was excited to get setup and get out on the track.

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As the day went alone, it started to get colder and colder.  I was excited to bring out some of my new Kyosho winter gear that I had bought over the summer.  However, it does not take long in the cold to be thankful of the good weather we have had lately back in Florida.  They had a fire going at night which I found to be a popular place to get.

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I had plans to run both E-Buggy and E-Truggy but decided to just stick to E-Buggy at this event with my wife and daughter there.  I like to have more free time when they come.  Landen was running three classes and all of them in the Pro division.  He was running Mod SCT, Pro E-Buggy and Pro E-Truggy.

By Friday evening, we were ready for race day and spent the rest of the night hanging out with great friends.  There is nothing like camping out at the track.  Landen and I enjoy it allot.

Saturday morning came around and we were scheduled to start at 9:00am but with some flyer confusion, they had to postpone the start until 11:00am.  I knew then that it was going to be a long day.  As qualifying started, Landen put in some great runs.  He was sitting 1st in SCT, 2nd in E-Truggy and round 14th in E-Buggy.  I broke in my first round which was not good.  I had a great run going when I landed wrong and broke a rear A-Arm and bent my shock shaft.

In round #2, Landen secured overall TQ in SC T but was unable to improve in E-Truggy and was still 2nd overall.  He improved his position in E-Buggy and so he was all set for the mains.  Being that I broke in the 1st qualifier, I attacked the 2nd round a little different.  I was not as concerned about going after TQ as much as making sure I made the A-Main.  That was exactly what I did.  I ended up 4th overall in the round but 6th overall going into the A-Main.

In the mains, during the first lap of the race, I ran into an upside down buggy which caused me to wreck as well.  By the time I got turn-marshaled, I found myself in last place and 15 seconds down to first place.  This was not exactly the start I had hoped for.  Being that it was a 10 minute main, I took a deep breathe and tried to not worry about where the leader was but try and turn the best laps I could and only concentrate on getting by the car in front of me.  With about 1 1/2 minutes to go, I found myself on the tail of the leader.  The leader was my friend and fellow Proline team-mate, Chris Cassidy.  Chris had not been attempting the huge jump in the back but knew that I had been.  So, he went for it but found a little bit of bad luck and didn’t make it.  I did and that gave me the lead I was hoping for.  I never lost the lead and found myself crossing the line for the big win.

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Landen went into the E-Truggy race knowing that he had a tough challenge racing against fellow friend, John Ball.  John is fast and had his E-Truggy dialed in the entire weekend.  At the end of the race, Landen didn’t have enough for John and so he settled for 2nd place overall but was a huge accomplishment since it had been over a year since he had raced his E-Truggy.  In SCT, Landen was starting 1st but with an early bobble, he found himself in the back of the pack.  He quickly settled down and started picking his way back to the front.  His times were faster than the leader but didn’t have enough time to catch him as the race ended and settled for a 2nd place overall.  In E-Buggy, Landen would be starting last but both of us were thrilled to have just made the A-main.  He was running in the Pro division and there were allot of fast drivers.  Landen probably had one of his better runs on the day and ended up 6th overall, just one place shy of podium.  He didn’t bring home any wins but had a great showing.

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We had a great time racing at the Snake Pit and look forward to racing there again in the near future.  Traveling around and racing different venues allow Landen and I to meet new people, see different track layouts and test our racing.  We would like to personally thank all of our sponsors for helping us in every way possible:  #Kyosho #Proline #Airtronics #HVR #LFR #MIP #ShivervilleRaceway #KustomRCGraphics #OurLordAndSaviourJesusChrist

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1st Annual Florida Outdoor Championship

By:  Landen Lewis

After tons of out of state racing and travel, Team Lewis Racing decided to stay at home and race in Florida.  RRW at Ocala, Fl. is where we ended up. We packed our bags, hauled up in the motorhome and set up to go racing. The track looked great and was ready for a race day. Cody Wiles, Tilar Pollack, and Peyton McDonald also showed up with their supplies hoping for a DIALED weekend. Practice went just as expected (except for forgotten stuff) .  Thursday night we went back to celebrate goods time with the Land family and pick up our necessary tires and parts. After a fun night we woke up on race day. Brian Lewis was running Stock SCT and Stock Truck. Landen was running the same in the mod division. Qualifying went very well for all racers. All of us were able to secure a TQ and were ready for the Mains.

After a few races into the mains, the “R” word moved in. It started to come down slowly, and then hit us hard. Lance McDonald fought hard and waited it out, but sadly we had to shut down the track. That meant that you qualifying positions would count for your overall placement. This was not what we hoped for but was something outdoor racing was all about.

After the award ceremonies we kicked backed, cooked some burgers, and had a great time with some amazing friends. Landen was able to take the TQ and win in SCT along with 2nd in Mod Truck. Brian dominated Stock SCT and took the TQ and win as well. Tilar Pollack took TQ and win in Stock Truck while Peyton took TQ and won Buggy. Little Mad Dawg Cody Wiles took TQ and the win in Nitro Truggy and second in both Nitro Buggy and E-buggy.

Awesome Job guys!

RRW – Florida Outdoor Championship

Team Lewis Racing made it’s way 2 hours south to RRW in Belleview, FL for the 1st Annual Florida Outdoor Championship.  We decided to take the Motorhome and camp out at the track the entire weekend which was so much fun.  The race was held on Saturday and Landen was running 2wd SCT and Stadium truck in the Mod division and I was running the same classes in the stock division.  Tilar Pollack was joining us this weekend and he was entered in the 2wd Stock Stadium Truck and 1/8th Scale E-Buggy.  This would be Tilar’s first time taking the new Kyosho TKI3E out to the track.  Cody Wiles was also with us which put all three Florida young Proline drivers together to represent.  Cody was only running 1/8th scale and entered 3 classes:  E-Buggy, Nitro Buggy and Nitro Truggy.

After 2 rounds of qualifying, the rain came and ended the race short as the owner’s felt the track was not able to be ran on.  The awards would be based on qualifying position and three young guns had earned some serious hardware for the day.

Landen Lewis secured the win in Mod Short Course and was 2nd in Mod Stadium Truck.  Cody Wiles took the victory in Nitro Truggy and brought home 2nd in both E-Buggy and Nitro Buggy.  Tilar Pollack took the win in Stock Stadium Truck and 3rd overall in E-Buggy.  I also took home the win in Stock Short Course Truck.

I was very proud of the boys and how they represented themselves, their sponsors and the sport.

Qualifying at the CLASH!!!

Well, qualifying is over at the 2013 CLASH in Flowood, MS and Landen is sitting great going into tomorrow’s mains.  He was able to take 3 of the 4 qualifiers in Nitro Truggy to take the overall TQ.  In Nitro Buggy, he is sitting 2nd overall.  He is also sitting 2nd in Stock Short Course.  Stock has been a battle all weekend trying to find the right gearing but I think we are finally there as he was able to take the win in the last qualifier.

Vehicles are being cleaned and prepped and tires are being glued up!

Thanks to all his sponsors:  MOM (Teeter), Kyosho, Proline, Airtronics, MIP, LFR, HVR, Kustom RC Graphics, Shiverville Raceway and most importantly, Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.