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Econo and Mixed Race at Electron on 2/17/20

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#1 rvec


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Posted 18 February 2020 - 11:15 AM

I thought it might be time to shake it up a bit. So, this week’s event included Econo and a True Scale Mixed race (Sports car, Trans-Am or NASCAR). Also, we will add True Scale NASCAR as a class this season (see image below and see the link http://slotblog.net/...20/#entry772553 for rules).

Ron 1.jpeg

A record number of eleven racers showed up for the Event held at Electron Raceway 2/17/20. Because of the large field, both classes included an “A” and a “B” Main. I seeded the racers so that four of the least experienced were entered in the “B” main. The winner of the “B” main had the option to run in the “A” which included the balance of the drivers.

The field featured two brand new racers, Ken Robinson and Rob Rippy. In fact, we have added three new racers over the past year or so. Another encouraging sign is that, at this point, we have at least six and maybe even seven racers vying for the three podium spots. All racers have upped their game but, what is really noticeable is that drivers that were in, what I might call the second tier have closed the gap on the top dogs. This keeps everyone on their toes and puts a premium on consistency. It also increases the fun factor, a key in keeping folks interested and attracting new racers.

Econo - Background

Econo racing is always close. The reason is that even though the chassis are scratch built, they adhere to very strict specifications. The chassis are relatively simple featuring only a side to side motion of the pans (no hinges are allowed). In addition, front and rear track is specified (wheels are allowed to extend beyond the bodywork) so, body selection is not as much of an issue.

Econo – B Main

Although Todd Messinger recently passed, memories and handiwork will live on. Rob Rippy acquired Todd’s weathered 70 Chevelle which epitomizes the era of early, dirt track hobby stock (see image below).

In the initial heat, Mike and Terry battled for supremacy. Mike came out on top besting Mike by a full lap. However, Terry was far from out of it. In the second heat, Terry closed the gap to only two sections only to fall behind in heat #3.

Going into the final heat, Mike had completed 49.8 laps and was ahead of Terry by 1.3 laps. The final heat was a door banger and Terry made a final valiant effort to overtake Mike. In the end, it was Mike for the win with Terry only a half lap behind.

Meanwhile, the battle for the bottom step of the podium was between Ken and Rob. As mentioned above, Rob recently acquired Todd’s Chevelle. Ron was kind enough to put together an Econo for new racer, Ken Robinson. The chassis formerly belonged to Big Steve from Pelican Park and was mated with a 58 Edsel body. Dollars changed hands and Ken became the proud owner of the Edsel. Both cars are competitive rides and will serve their owners well for years.
As brand new racers, both Rob and Ken are just learning the track. Both have raced slot cars in the past and both did a credible job for their first event at Electron Raceway. Ken’s more recent experience was the deciding factor as he finished third only a lap and half behind second place Terry. It is interesting to note that in the final heat, Ken turned 18.3 laps which was the highest lap total for any competitor in any given heat in the B Main. With some additional experience, both Ken and Rob will be challenging the rest of the pack.


Econo – A Main

As the winner of the B Main, Mike moved up to the A Main as the designated “Ironman”.

The initial heat featured three of the top four seeds (and the fifth seed, Mark). Bob won the first heat with 20.9 laps. Rich and James were second and third respectively about a half lap down. Mark struggled in the initial heat turning 18.4 laps.
James rotated out for the second heat while Rich rotated to white and Bob rotated to black. Joe entered the race on red. When the smoke cleared both Bob and Rich were tied with 41.4 laps. Joe turned 19.4 laps and in the hunt.

Joe improved his position in heats #3 - #5 and was in the leader in the barn after 5 heats with 82.3 laps.

Going into the final heat it was Rich comfortably in the lead with 63.1 laps and needed only 19+ laps to overtake Joe. Bob entered the final heat with 60.8 laps and a shot at catching Joe. Ron and James would battle to overtake Mark (already in the barn at 80.1 laps) for the fourth spot.

Rich ran conservatively and won the race with 84.3 laps. Bob ran a very good final heat but it was not enough to unseat Joe. Neither James nor Ron was able to overtake Mark for fourth. So it was Joe second, Bob third and Mark fourth


Mixed Race - Background

The grid was a mix of True Scale historic Trans-Am (model years 66-72) and True Scale Sports Cars. However, Bob bucked the trend by entering a True Scale NASCAR. In my opinion, the 66-69 Camaro is the best body to use in Trans-Am. These are light and low. The Ferrari 458 seems to be the best choice for Sports Car. The Camaros and 458s run nearly identical lap time. The NASCARs are at a bit of a disadvantage because they are taller than the Camaros and Ferraris.

Mixed Race – B Main

Again, Todd’s memory lives on. Rob acquired Todd’s beautifully detailed Corvette C7R. Again, Ron came through for Ken. Dollars were exchanged and Ken became the proud owner of a True Scale 67 Mustang.

Terry was looking for some revenge after Mike won the Econo B main. Revenge it was as Terry’s Challenger led the race from wire to wire finishing with 74.8 laps. Mike was able to stay close but ended up in second place about 2.5 laps behind Mike.

Again, Ken and Rob battled it out for the bottom step of the podium. These True Scale cars are a bit trickier to drive than the Econos and it showed. Ken managed a distant third while Rob was fourth. Again, both will improve as they get more experience.


Mixed Race – A Main

Terry, as the “Ironman” had the option to move up to the A main but declined, so, Mike stepped up.

The first heat featured three of the top four seeds and the fifth seed (Mark). Bob won the first heat with 21.7 laps with Rich only three sections behind and James only three sections behind Rich. Mark was fourth with 19.7 laps.

James rotated out for heat #2 while Rich and Bob continued to battle. At the end of heat #2 Bob had increased his lead to about a half lap over Rich
Going into the final heat it was James at 67.7 laps, Bob at 66.7 and Rich at 66.1 laps. James cruised to a victory, finishing with 90.4 laps. As the final heat progressed, Rich was closing on Bob. Then, an unforced error put Rich out of contention. So it was Bob and Rich for second and third respectively. Kudos to Bob for running the most consistent race (95.27%) and finishing second with his NASCAR!

Meanwhile, Joe, Ron and Scott were fighting for fourth place. Joe was first in the barn with 85.4 laps. Scott fell short of Joe by just over a lap. Ron entered the final heat with 63.4 laps and a shot at overtaking both Scott and Joe. Ron ran a good final heat to overtake Scott; however, he fell short of overtaking Joe by a single section. Great racing guys!


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Rich Vecchio

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