Wicked Weekend report1

Race report by Billy Easton:

This years Wicked Weekend was held in Gainesville Georgia at the Chicopee Woods Agricultural Center. The race itself is put on by RaceTime Entertainment which is the same group of guys that bring you the Psycho Nitro Blast. Their track layouts are generally a mix between wood and dirt jumps and typical a variety of obstacles. This would be the first time I have ever attended this event at this facility. There was a lot to be learned and very little time to do it in. There was 640 entires and the race program had to be condensed in order to fit the curfew of the venue. We had 2, 7 minute qualifiers in all classes, triple a mains for e buggy and a 30 minute final in pro nitro buggy.

The facility was really nice, huge metal structure, onsite concession and a huge track surface to navigate. The dirt here was a little less red and a little more dirt, which packed in really nice. The track itself was pretty smooth in over 90% of the layout and was pretty high speed in the end. It had a couple large jumps with a couple singles as well, a couple rollers and a surfs up section to round it off. Overall the layout was not very difficult, but going fast as usual was. The talent pool of people racing 1.8th nitro buggy and E buggy has grown significantly over the years. It has become more and more difficult to be fast in the pro classes as there are so many talented drivers racing. There were three Professional drivers in attendance and that included Ryan Lutz, Joe Bornhorst and Cole Ogden. These guys are always in the hunt for a podium.

Wicked Weekend report2

Lets get started…. At this event I started where I left off from the summer scorcher and would continue to develop my setup. During the open practice on Friday it was a mad house to get in line and wait to get on the track. My nitro buggy though was actually really good. I had good steering and traction, and at that time felt I was running some of the top lap times on the track. At this time the traction was lower, and I felt my setup matched the condition better. As the track got more and more grip, I had to look for a little bit better balance in the suspension. I found that heavier oil improved the car at high speed and a softer front springs improved the turn in. In the end, I did not really vary my setup too much from where I had started. I though the car was working well. I did test the rear camber link and found #2 was better than #1, so in the end, #2/B was ideal. I actually tested the clutch at this track and found I preferred the alu 4 shoe over the alu 3 shoe. The engine seemed find its power band better given the condition.

I did test all the tires, and found that the Proline X3 was the compound that provided the most grip on the track. I chose holeshots for qualifying and Blockades for the final. I ran the emulsion shock caps at this race and thought they might have been better on the left side of the track, but it was not a huge difference, so the jury is still out on that one. In the diffs I felt that 7/7/5 was working well and would stick with that through the duration of the event.

Wicked Weekend report3

Qualifying had its ups and downs, but overall I had 2 good runs, 1 in each class, and based on the way the Rocket points system worked that is all I needed to ensure I would have good starting positions in the finals.

The E buggy class has generally not been my best class and with very time to test and tune it, I never expect much from it. The car did handle well in the high speed sections of the track, but was struggling a bit in the lower grip areas. Generally I was happy with the car, but would have liked to have more rear traction. I will have to work on that at the future races. I finished 9th overall in E buggy which for me was a good result.

As for the Nitro buggy I actually only qualified 11th as I crashed one time in my good qualifier and that put me down the food chain. Being in the main though was good enough as my car was actually working quite well. I had a little bit of a rough start falling back to last, but put my head down and picked off one car at a time to end up finishing 4th overall. This is my best finish to date at a major race with really talented drivers. My car ran really well and my race program is steadily improving race after race.