With the typical UK winter weather taking its toll the RC Pit Box team had struggled to get racing in 2017 so last weekend we decided to brave the cold and head to Ledbury for round 4 of the popular AWS (Astro Winter Series).
Representing RC Pit Box we had the following drivers in Nitro:
Milan Dragojlovic - HB Racing - Maxima Engines - Maxima Fuel - Hipex Pipe
Ben Billing - Kyosho - Maxima Engines - Maxima Fuel - Hipex Pipe
Matt Box - Soar Seiki - Soar TRS Engine - Maxima Fuel - Hipex Pipe
Nathan Powney - HB Racing - Bullett Engine - Hotfire Fuel - Hipex Pipe
Elliott Jones - Kyosho - ielasi Tuned - Maxima Fuel - Hipex Pipe
Simon Davies - Soar Seiki - ielasi Tuned - Maxima fuel - Nova 9901 Pipe
Andy Prosser - S Workz - Ielasi Tuned - Maxima Fuel - Hipex pipe
In the E Buggy class we had Chris Lovell, Fresh from his victory at Swindon the previous day running his Soar Seiki 998 TD1 '17 Proto powered by Corally Lipos and Hobbywing ESC and Motor.
So after we had set up camp it was time to move on to qualifying. The track looked slick after an overnight frost so grip levels would be a bit of a mystery until we hit the track!
First up was Chris Lovell in the E buggy class. Chris drove a steady qualifier which put him 2nd in round behind Dan Austin, this pattern actually continued throughout all 3 rounds of qualifying meaning Chris would start the E buggy final in 2nd place.
Next up we would have Milan (Yes Milan in the first Nitro heat!). Even in slick conditions with horrendous traffic Milan managed to grab a 3rd in round showing he would be a real contender at his local track. Milan would go on to grab a TQ and a 2nd in round to place him P2 in the A main behind Michael Lightfoot and ahead of Darren Bloomfield on the grid. Also in heat 2 we had Andy Prosser, Andy would end up qualifying 3rd in the E final and on the lookout for a bump up on his local track!
In heat 4 we would have Nathan Powney with his fine looking HB D815. Nathan would end up dominating this heat taking the win in every round. This placed Nathan straight into the A main and would line up 4th on the grid. An excellent display.
On to Heat 5 and this would consist of 3 RCPB drivers. Matt Box and Simon Davies both driving Soar Seiki and Elliott Jones running Kyosho. Matt would take 2nd place in this heat in each of the 3 rounds of qualifying not quite matching the pace of TLR man Elliott Taylor and would line up in pole position for the B final, missing out on an automatic A main spot by just 1 point. Simon, First time out with his Soar buggy would line up 2nd in the D final and Elliott Jones after some great mature driving would line up 4th in the C final.
So in heat 6 we had Ben Billing with his Maxima powered Kyosho MP9 TKI4. Ben drove a really consistent qualifying session in all 3 rounds and was rewarded with an automatic A final spot lining up 8th on the grid.
Onto the finals and first up we had Mr Lovell. Chris lined up 2nd on the grid for the 15 minute E buggy A final but had a disastrous start pushing him to the back of the grid. Chris pushed hard racking up some impressive lap times but couldn't quite catch the eventual leader Dan Austin and came home in 4th place despite more bad luck, this time a PT issue resulting in missed laps.
Next up we had Andy Prosser in the E final. Andy drove a great race and got the bump up he was craving coming home in 2nd spot to progress to the D final.
In the D Final we had Simon Davies and Andy Prosser. Simon had an unfortunate issue on the start line and after returning from the pits he was a full lap behind the leaders. After getting his head down and finding a rhythm he finished a respectable 7th place. Andy started and finished 12th.
Onto the C final and here we had Elliott Jones. After a great qualifying session Elliott had an unfortunate incident and had to return to the pits for almost 4 minutes which put paid to any chance of a bump up into the B final. Hard luck Ell, there's always next week!
In the B final we had Matt Box on pole. Matt almost completed lap 1 with no dramas until the final triple! After getting this slightly wrong he dropped down the field but managed to claw his way back up and took the final bump up position on the last corner to progress to the A final.
So on to the main event of the day! After qualifying and bump up finals RCPB would head into the A main with 4 drivers starting in the top 14. Milan starting 2nd on the grid had an unfortunate tangle on lap 1 dropping him down to 13th position but quickly regained focus and pushed hard to finish 2nd overall just 1 second behind the eventual winner Darren Bloomfield. Milan set some very impressive lap times along the way! Matt Box would come home in 7th place from 14th on the grid. Ben Billing would bring his car home in 10th spot with Nathan Powney in 14th after an unfortunate rare breakage on his HB car after setting some very quick laps along the way.
So a pretty decent days racing for the team! Next up we will be heading back to Ledbury for round 5 of the Nitro X Cross series on the 29th January. All of the products used are available through our website and our team are very approachable track side. So if you need any help or advice with your Soar Seiki, Kyosho or HB buggy please come and see us.