We have posted a short preview of the Worlds, click Read More to read it.

In 2006 the IFMAR 1/8th scale Offroad World Championships was won by RC legend and veteran Mark Pavidis. A thrilling final which witnessed Frenchman Yannick Aigoin lead by a lap until 45 minutes in he suffered heartbreak as his engine stalled costing him any chance at victory. Pavidis, having TQ’d qualifying had a poor start, falling back to 10th but kept his head down and won the title he so longed for, one that has eluded him for a decade.

Two years on; the 1/8th offroad climate has radically changed; the evolution of car design pushed by the arrival of the Losi 8ight has upset the classic Kyosho/Mugen power struggle over the past 10 years. The new kid on the block was shortly joined by the boys in blue from Associated, arriving ‘fashionably late’ to the party with the RC8.The story is a little different in Europe; the top two drivers from the past years are both younger than 22 and drive for Mugen (Savoya) & HoBao (Batlle), Losi snapped up Yannick Aigoin in October 2007, but Yannick has yet to emulate the form he showed in 2006, winning the Euros and 15 minutes from a Worlds title. Thus the European racing scene has yet to experience what Losi & Associated have accomplished together stateside, albeit as fierce rivals. There have naturally been wins for both sides in Europe, but no real ‘breakthrough’ victory which would confirm their stature amongst the European RC Racing public.
This brings us nicely to the 2nd shift; the ascendance of the US ‘super league’ of elite drivers. Sourthern California has become somewhat of a factory in producing race-winning drivers for 1/8th offroad. The proportion of SoCal based drivers in the top 40 at any ROAR nats is undeniable, however in the last two years the arrival of several Offroad Electric drivers have had a profound effect; essentially accelerating this development as a small group race against each other week in week out honing their abilities. Debating ability and talent of a driver from the USA vs a European or Asian is possible, the point is that the sheer amount of ‘talented’ drivers from the US that will be present at the Farm II on Monday is significantly higher than from other regions like Europe, Asia or even S.America. However that doesn’t guarantee we will see a US winner next Sunday…

After 8 years the Worlds returns to US soil; The Farm II track in Charlotte, North Carolina USA hosting the 12th edition of the IFMAR 1/8th scale Offroad World Championships. 216 drivers from 30 countries are expected to attend the bi-annual flagship event. The race takes place over 7 days, a crescendo starting with practice (Monday, Tuesday) Qualifying (Wed, Thurs, Friday), Lower finals on Saturday and the Final at 16:00 local time on Sunday the 21st September. Track owner Lance Norick coupled with the experienced Farm II crew have prepared for this race for almost 24 months, Races at the Farm II are known for unpredictable weather, the first worlds warm up held in October 2007 was a celebration of mud, Renaud Savoya claimed victory on the last lap from Losi’s Mike Truhe, however the race was overshadowed by the weather as many top drivers had problems keeping the their cars running. Rain is anticipated next week but when and to what extent are the main questions that will determine if the race will be a straightforward battle of pace, consistency or a question of keeping a 5kg mud-equipped car running for 60 minutes. The 2nd Worlds Warm up had much better weather; held earlier this year in July, Jared Tebo looked to have the measure of the competition but a dying battery allowed Jammin & home driver Taylor James claim victory. At the same event another race was held; Ryan Maifield showed his hand TQing and winning on his debut with the new Reedy engine by Associated. Picking a single driver out of the possible 25 that have a realistic strong chance of winning is a big call, but Neo Buggy readers voted on it here
Note a lowly 3 votes for Chad Bradley – the only guy to make the last 3 Worlds finals…!