The annual U.S. Indoor Championships in Cleveland is a premier road racing event for 1/12th and 1/10th pan cars and touring cars. For over 30 years, the ‘Champs’ has created many exciting finishes and fond memories. For 2012, there were big changes to the schedule and a new venue. For the first time in 25 years, racers would no longer travel to the Holiday Inn in Independence, OH, instead the new location for the race was the Holiday Inn in Strongsville, Ohio. Also new this year, no car would hit the track on Thanksgiving day, making it a shorter more affordable race.
The Champs race continues to feature the 1/12th Masters class and the 1/12th stock class, both using the same rules package, 17.5 motors and no-timing speed controls. The only difference is the age limitation, the Masters class is reserved for drivers over 35 years of age. Year after year, there is a friendly competition between the stock and masters class to see which group is quicker. And about 75 percent of the time, it seems that the ‘old’ drivers have had the upper hand, out performing the youngsters on a regular basis. This year, CRC driver Wayne Gerber took his CRC 3210 Xti 12th scale car to and impressive TQ and win in the Masters class. Wayne not only won the Masters class, but also to set the fastest time for any 1:12th car in 17.5T. Completing a CRC Xti podium sweep, Frank Calandra and Brad Mergy took their cars to the top of the Masters class finishing 2nd and 3rd. Lee Harpe took fourth place also with a CRC car.
In touring car action, CRC/VBC driver Dave Johnson has been burning up the race track started 3rd but quickly worked his way into the lead and never looked back. In the VTA class Brian Wynn took his VBC Wildfire to an impressive win from last starting position. Although Wynn was TQ, the crazy rules of VTA not only reversed the track direction, but also inverted the starting grid. From 10th position, Wynn charged his way back to the front. The World GT class consists of 200 mm wide, 1/10th pan cars with GT bodies. The class is very affordable with spec handout tires making the tire choice simple and fair. The cars feature a full body with a large bumper, so crash damage is minimal. At the 2012 U.S. Indoor Champs, Wayne Gerber took the TQ and victory in the World GT class. The only driver to stay close to Wayne all weekend was Tom Firsching. The former champ had his car flying during qualifying however an early issue in the A-main forced Firsching to fight from way back in the pack to gather 2nd position for a CRC 1-2.