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Old 2018.07.02, 04:40 PM   #1
EMU
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HobbyTown, Toms River NJ

I had a chance to visit the HobbyTown in Toms River yesterday. Its about an hour and a half drive from Manhattan without traffic. There are two tracks on premises, one large track downstairs for events, and a small track upstairs for club racing and practice. The amount of stock that they have for RC, and hobby in general was really jaw dropping. There was a 1997 BMW Kyosho RC collectors item that caught my eye... but I told myself before going that I was not allowed to buy any more RCs...

I met my longtime racing buddies TommyGreeneyes and GIHOSU at the track just to chat, and do a little prep work on my car for the July 29th trophy race that will be held there.

The surface is CRC carpet, the "golden" black carpet loved by so many 1/10 scale racers around the world. Grip is consistently high for carpet, and the pile low so it doesnt suck the speed out of the car even with stock motors.

I started upstairs, where the pit area is. The downstairs track was used for a morning tank battle event, which I was disappointed that I had missed. I mean, who doesnt like scale RC tanks battling through a city landscape to the death!!! Lazers, did I mention that these shoot lazers???

Ok, back to Mini-Z. The upstairs track uses RCP rails with velcro to hold in place on the carpet. This means that layout options are open to the imagination and not restricted to tile width. I tried my box stock car first, 3500kv Mazda 787 just to feel out the tires. The rear LM 20 slicks were loose. I swapped on some Kyosho 20d radials and the car came to life. The speed of the car was perfect for the size of the track. I could place it within a quarter inch of where I wanted due to the consistency of the carpet and Kyosho tires.

Anyone that knows me, knows that I have been known to sleep on rcp tracks from time to time... so, just testing the comfort level, and its EMU approved!

I dropped a wheelnut at one point in the pits, and was shocked by how fast I was able to find it. Their pit space is immaculate, with a diamond stamped surface, with a relatively rough textured gray paint. At many tracks, it may have taken a few minutes to find a dropped screw or nut, but it took all of 5 seconds and I was back to wrenching.

While I was turning laps upstairs, the event track was being converted to a high speed track layout. I didnt get a track measurement, but besides the 2010 world championships, this would have to be the largest layout that I have driven a Mini-Z on. There were 2 turns, a right and a left. The right had 4 apexes, the left.... 8 apexes. And was roughly 12-13 second laps with a AAA Reflex Racing MR03 with Atomic AD Stock 41t motor that was about the limit of power that I could put down on the surface. I was running short on time, since I needed to get back to NYC to return the rental... and asked them not to vacuum the track despite debris blasted off of buildings from where the tanks were battling just a few hours before.



The layout was very deceiving, it looks so simple, but is tricky with so many apexes and high speed. The setup of the car was a little stiff, and 360GTC body (no lexan windows, which was used for a spec ASC class prior) was a little too high center of gravity for such high speed sweeping corners. With time running out, we wanted to get a video shot... so hopped on track, started running some laps. GIHOSU was in a Box Stock LM car, I was in my AD Stock AAA Reflex MR03, and Tommy was using his Atomic SZ car. Once the camera started rolling, GIHOSU lead us into the first lap, I was following looking for a move, with Tommy behind me... I made a wide move on the sweeper around GIHOSU, and Tommy went tight and went under both of us. I managed to square off the next corner well and carried better speed around the long left hander and went inside Tommy into the braking zone for the final left apex... but overshot, and Tommy passed me again. We did 4 or 5 laps, with about 6 overtakes per lap... some of the best driving that I have done personally, and some of the best that GIHOSU and Tommy have done as well... all for the video.

We went to go watch the video, and when we went to look at it... it was a picture. My heart dropped. There is no way that level of driving would be replicated, I know that I had given my maximum, and my tank had run empty. We shot a second video, but were unable to get anything even remotely close to the level of intensity that we had in the first run. I had to quickly pack and get out of town to return the rental. Picked up a few white bodies that I didnt have (NSX Concept, 98mm SC430, and a white 787B) and a new transponder before leaving. I left with a grin that hasnt left my face yet a day later, despite 100f temperatures doing everything that they could to make me feel misery.

I was assured that the layout would be a little more technical, but flowing for the big race. But wont be overly technical to be welcoming for racers that are newer in the hobby. Kyosho competition Box stock and modified are the classes that will be raced. Box Stock will be restricted to Kyosho rubber tires, and AAA batteries with unmodified bodies. Modified will permit LiPo, lexan bodies and open tire rules, although no silicone tires or traction compounds are permitted to protect the racing surface. I will try to link more information about the race.

I am super stoked for the trophy race that they will be hosting on July 29th, and hope many locals, and out of towners can come race to make this a great event. Just make sure you have good trunk space, because you may not be able to resist the temptations of what this store has. I even saw some Kyosho Moto-Racers... and almost bought it, but I had to smack myself on the hand as it reached for the wallet and say STOP.
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Last edited by EMU; 2018.07.02 at 04:56 PM.
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