Having announced an expanded calendar for the 2024 Asian Buggy Championships, Scotty Ernst has confirmed Kyosho 1:8 Offroad star Ryan Lutz will make the trip to New Zealand for the opening round of the season next February. Round 1 of the 4 round championship, that also includes races in the Philippines, Australia and Indonesia, takes place on February 8-11 at the Counties RC Car Club with Lutz set to compete in Nitro Buggy and E Buggy thanks to his sponsors Alpha Plus, Futaba and Kyosho. Extending the ABC’s reach in 2024, an overall point series has been introduced for Season No.2 with other top international drivers expected to be announced to make appearances over the championship.
Genius Racing’s Alex D’angelo is the 2023 AMSCI Italian 1:8 GT Nitro National Champion. Top Qualifier at the 1:8 GT World Championship in Australia in October, he secured the title with a second place finish behind Schepis Model driver Rosario Giaimo at the third & final round of the championship at Miniautodromo Vallelunga RC. Going into the season finale, a number of drivers remained in contention for the title including Round 2 winner & Raptor driver Loris Luise, Xray’s Natanaele Senesi and Capricorn’s Alessio Mazzeo. In qualifying it was Mazzeo who took the TQ from Senesi and D’angelo but in the 45-minute final it was Giaimo from p9 on the grid who came through for the race win ahead of D’angelo and Mazzeo, second being enough for the Gimar engine GT8.23 of D’angelo to secure the title. In 1:8 GTe, it was also Mazzeo who also took the TQ honours again from Senesi and he duly converted it into the win after taking both A1 and A2 to secure the overall 2023 title for Capricorn.
Kyosho’s Ryan Lutz completed a triple victory at the annual Fall Brawl which ran at its new location in Lake Waccamaw, North Carolin, over the weekend. Attracting over 440 entries, the 22nd running of the event saw Lutz master the rough track conditions for the finals to take the wins in both Pro Nitro and eBuggy as well as victory in Open Nitro Truggy. Starting from the TQ in eBuggy and Truggy, Lutz had to start the half hour Nitro Buggy final from P2 behind HB Racing’s Cole Ogden. Unfortunately the expected battle between the duo didn’t materialise as Ogden’s race ended with just over 5-minutes remaining,allowing Lutz to cruise to the win with his Alpha Engines powered MP10. Behind HB Racing’s Collin Weatherholt who take second a result he would repeat also in eBuggy. Sworkz’ David Olsen was the runner-up in Truggy.
Australia’s Large Scale touring car young gun Cooper Harris has won the 2023 RCRA Australian National Championship. This year’s RCRA National title was decided at the Radio Racing Cars S.A. Inc. track in Littlehampton, South Australia and in qualifying it was reigning Champion Andy Bishop who secured the TQ ahead of Harris and Craig Hawkins in 3rd. With a clean and competitive half hour final, the battle for the win lasted the entire race with 17-year-old Harris posting the fastest lap on his way to securing 1st place with his Mecatech Fwo1 SWB powered by Abbate engine and PMT Tires. Joining Harris on the podium was MCD driver Andy Bishop in 2nd with third place going to George Tsakanias driving a Genius chassis. Next year Australia will host the IFMAR Large Scale World Championship from October 20th to 27th in Sydney.
Bruno Coelho has taken the 4WD Buggy win at the EOS season opener in Hann Münden, Germany. The Xray driver led a 1-2 for the Slovakian manufacturer ahead of new team-mate David Ronnefalk with Saturday’s 2WD winner Michal Orlowski completing the podium for Schumacher. In qualifying it was Ronnefalk who topped the first of the four qualifiers. Having TQ’d 2WD, Orlowski went fastest in Q2 before Ronnefalk hit the top again Q3. With Coelho taking the final round it was overall TQ for Ronnefalk ahead of his team-mate with Orlowski lining up P3 ahead of the Team Associated of newly crowned World Champion Davide Ongaro. In the first of the finals it was Coelho who eventually took the win. The former World Champion went to the front after a roll over from Ronnefalk approaching the half way mark but was overtaken again by the Swede when he had a mistake of his own a few laps later. With Ronnefalk out front and looking like he had the win, another mistake in the dying moments was enough to allow Coelho through to take it. A2 would see Ronnefalk again lead out the field but again a mistake allowed his team-mate through to the front only this time the Portuguese ace kept things clean to the finish for the overall win. Winning A3, Ronnefalk would finish second with Ongaro completing the podium line-up.
Infinity team driver pairing Jesse Davis and Brayden Stanley are the 2023 Australian Nitro Onroad Champions. This year’s Speedy RC RCRA National Championships took place at the MRCCR track in Melbourne with qualifying seeing recent 1:8 World Championship 4th place finisher Davis securing the overall TQ with a dominant performance that saw him top all 5 rounds with his O.S powered IF18-III. In 1:10, it was 17-year-old Stanley claimed 3 of the 5 rounds to secure the TQ with his Ielasi Tuned IF15. Unfortunately rain would prevent the running of the finals with the results being declared on qualifying and joining Davis each side of the podium was Infinity driver Nicholas Salib (2nd) and Capricorn’s Peter Jovanovic (3rd). Behind Stanley on the 1:10 podium it was his Infinity team-mate and partner in crime Tate Firth who was runner-up with the Serpent of Jeffrey Mackie completing the Top 3. In 1:8 GT, it was Jovanovic who took the 2023 National title.
ROAR, the the sanctioning body for RC racing in the United States & Canada, has announced the track locations and dates for its National Championships in 2024. The season kicks off with the 1:10 Carpet Onroad Championship at 997 RC Raceway in Pennsylvania on March 7th-10th and will see a further 6 events held across the year. A powerhouse nation in the world of offroad racing, the 1:10 Offroad Nationals will take place in April at Beach RC & Hobbies in South Carolina with the 1:8 Nitro Offroad one month later at HRCR in Idaho from June 19th-23rd. While the venue for the Paved On Road Championship is set as N-Control RC Racing Circuit the date is to be confirmed while for nitro onroad ROAR is still actively looking for a host track.
In a significant driver announcement, Toni Gruber and Capricorn have agreed a new contract that will see the German ace continue with the Italian chassis manufacturer for the 2024 and 2025 nitro onroad seasons. After 4-years with Shepherd, Gruber joined forces with Patrizio Rossi’s team for the 2023 season with the 27-year-old going on to have an outstanding season. In 1:10 Nitro Touring he secured the European Championship title which he then followed up with the TQ and a podium finish at the 1:8 Onroad European Championships. Adding his first ENS Championship title in 1:8 and then becoming the 1:8 GT World Champion in Australia with Hong Nor, he was to be title contender at the 1:8 Onroad World Championships. Having made his first World Final appearance at the previous World Championships in the United States in 2019, in Japan he was in the mix from the start and after one of the most intense and heavily stacked Main Finals in the category’s history he finished Runner-up just 7.5-seconds off Dario Balestri after 1-hour of racing. After such a season the continuity with Capricorn and also engine sponsor Ielasi Tuned should see Gruber become even stronger in 2024.