Yearly Archives: 2014

2014 European Championships – Keep Moving Forward

This was my 13th European Championships, and my 4th with my own car. This year I was looking to get my best Euros result to date, but unfortunately it was not to be.

This year’s Euros marked the beginning of JQRacing, and our next step in establishing ourselves as an RC Car Racing Company. We now had a competitive car, and provided our racers with our new Pit-tents and other racing accessories. Unfortunately, our new team clothing that had been ordered already in June did not show up in time :-(. But in any case, as slow as it feels to me, we are making progress on every level! Just from last year, we have an improved car, more drivers, a clear presence at the races, and every indication that we are on the right path. This year, with 9 drivers present, we are tied for 4th, after Kyosho, Mugen and Xray, for number of driver’s at the Euros. Not bad!

We also had a bunch of new stuff! New shock towers, with an insert system for the upper link instead of the regular swiss cheese technology. Stiffer front and rear arms, and a bunch of white plastics. More about all that stuff later on when we get some pictures taken and get it all released. You can see the towers HERE.

It’s 9 not 8, I swear!

Winning in the pits! At least we win something.

Qualifying went well for me, and specially the 2nd round where I qualified 3rd. It was very hard to get a clean run in, and I had either traffic, or a mistake of my own in every run. Regardless of this, I was able to already secure my top 10 qualifying result during the first day. This was good, as now I was able to try some things on the second day of qualifying, without risking anything. Rayan Medjoubi also started off really well in qualifying, fighting for the last positions in the semi final. Unfortunately he did not get the one perfect run he needed on the second day, and just missed out, ending up in the quarter final.

Arto: “Ok I think I figured out these inserts.”

Max: “Arto, you have the wrong insert you retard, use this one.”

Jaanus Tiit (Plural form “Tits”): “I wish I was at the beach.”

An interesting point from qualifying was that Scandinavian drivers dominated, with Teemu Leino from Finland TQing one round, and David Ronnefalk from Sweden taking the remaining 4 rounds. And with 4/12 drivers eventually in the final being from Scandinavia, we must be doing something right up here in the north!

Team Finland, JQ and Teemu Leino

Check everything carefully for the finals Max, or I won’t give you any more white parts.

The finals were not very good for the JQ drivers. No one managed to bump, which was a real shame, bumping up is part of what makes 1:8th racing so great! Fortunately, when it came time for the semi finals, things changed, and I was able to bump into the main. I was quite slow in the semi final practice, and even after making some changes, I knew that I could not afford to make any mistakes if I wanted to make the main. I drove a consistent race and avoided mistakes, and managed to bump quite easily after all.

Even though he is Top Privateer, Coffe stopped by to soak in some Factory Team atmosphere.

What’s going on?

Ok I see, that’s ridiculous…There will be 100pcs for sale, may or may not go online on Monday…

For the final I knew I needed to make some big changes, as my pace just was not good enough to make any sort of challenge. I changed pistons, front link position, and tyres, but that was not enough, and unfortunately I just did not have the speed to do anything in the final. Martin Bayer had obviously also got something wrong with his setup as him and I drove around in last place far behind the others. The most boring race for me of my whole career. At least I beat all the French drivers 🙂

Thank you to all of our supporters and drivers. We believe that this was the beginning of our serious racing efforts, and next time, we are sure our newly married team manager Ilias Arkoudaris will be happy to join us. We are heading in the right direction, thank you to everyone who has stuck by us for all this time. We will get this all figured out, we are going to be successful, help you be successful, and have a lot of fun in the process, promise!

Jesus is my mechanic. Beat that! He believed in me so much that he left before the final.

R2D2, the race is over, if you haven’t figured out which way to put the inserts by now, I can’t help you.

 View Image Gallery Here (Thank you neobuggy.net and redrc.net)

My White Edition at The 2014 Euros

Neobuggy.net posted this “under the hood” of my car!

Oh Great it’s Monday Tomorrow!

After many weeks of hard work doing things I don’t really want to do, I can’t wait to get back to what I do want to do, design stuff, research and learn to understand what’s going on with the car, and figure out ways to improve it in every way! The past weeks I have been busy planning, thinking, worrying, and implementing a few of our major ideas, the first (and not as exciting imho) of which will be revealed tomorrow. When working for so long on new ideas, specially when any actual financial benefit is first of all not guaranteed, and secondly far away, one really has to have a strong belief that everything will work out one day, and it will all be worth it. Sometimes I wonder where the motivation comes from, but it just does.

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The title of this post is not exactly fitting, because the truth is, it just happens to be Monday tomorrow. You see when you start your own company you are on the clock 24/7. Normally you start a company because you want to do something you enjoy, and you want to make money doing it. This means that you don’t ever get a case of “the Mondays”. However, it also means you never get to disconnect completely, you never get that sense of freedom on a Friday or a week end. But if it was easy everyone would do it…

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I have heard from a number of sources, that when you start your own company, you can forget about your own racing. It’s just not possible to race seriously and run a serious company. Well, I think I will have to disagree, or do the impossible. Simple as that! So, I will take advantage of the upcoming week of rain, and work my arse off, figuring things out and designing stuff, so when sun comes back out, I can go to the track. There is no Solution Shop for this, like the one I discovered in Africa. There are no easy roads to success, or ways to avoid doing the things you don’t like, or ways to avoid working hard. If you want to have a chance to succeed, you have to have ambition, be ready to work without any tangible benefits for extended periods of time, and accept that it may or may not work out.  And you also need a dirtbike, so when you feel like quitting, you can go and ride, and everything’s good again 🙂

jq-bike

 

Keep Moving Forward

THECar - Advert

Stay tuned for more news over the coming weeks and months. It’s time to take the next step forward. It’s been long enough!

Dream Big

Get off your behind and get it done! No one said it was going to be easy, but that doesn’t mean it is impossible!

Open Letter To RC Community

Hello,

I am writing this as JQ the RC Driver, JQ the Pro RC Driver, and JQ the RC company owner. The more I think about this, whatever position I think of myself to be in, the end result is the same. Something is wrong right now, and we have to fix it. We, as in the people actually racing at these events can do so, if we just voice our opinions together!

So what is the problem, it is pretty simple. I wanted to book my flights for the 1:8th Offroad Worlds, but I realised that I do not actually know which days the event is going to be! I have heard that the worlds will be extended, running for 11 days instead of 7, I have also heard it is just a proposal, I have heard that it will be just one week because “everyone complained”. But the point is, I have not heard anything official, and I would really like to book my flights and hotel!

THE Problem

It had been decided that there would not be any Worlds Warm up, or extended practice sessions at the Worlds venue in an effort to save costs. This sounded great, until Ifmar announced that the race would be extended by 4 days, for more practice. How this is supposed to save costs I do not know. 4 days more hotel, rental car, tyres, fuel, and most importantly, 2 weeks off work, instead of one. This is a HUGE mistake in my opinion. The reasons are:

– Additional practice, for what? No one I have spoken with wants more practice. We already have enough (too much).

– Additional practice, for what? No one I have spoken with wants more practice. We already have enough (too much).

– It is hard enough for many people to get 1 week off work, now they have to get 2 weeks off? In addition the added cost, it is not good for the average racer. I have heard drivers say they won’t go because they would have to miss the practice, and feel like they will be at a disadvantage. Is this the idea of a WC?

– Added costs for the manufacturers will be substantial, fuel, tyres, parts, and all on a track that wears out tyres in 1 run? How will a person paying for his own stuff afford to go?

Why would 4 extra days be GOOD?

I tried really hard to think of reasons, these are the only two reasons I could come up with:

– Someone wanted a longer all expenses paid holiday.

– Someone wanted a longer all expenses paid holiday.

– Someone has struck a deal with local hotels. Count for yourself how much money 4 extra days brings the hotels…..(Disclamer: This is based totally on speculation, as I said, I tried really hard to think of reasons :-))

So, people, if you agree with me that you don’t want to spend the extra money, you don’t want to take the extra time off (or on), and you don’t want to spend 11 days at ONE EVENT, please let’s stop this from happening!

I love the Worlds, it is the best race, but after Argentina, now this? We can do better….

And let’s leave these other problems for another time shall we?

– “No worlds drivers will be driving on the track before the worlds” Oh really? So no Italians are going? I seem to recall that the Italian nationals were recently held on the same track.

– The track layout/surface needs to be renewed by at least 60% – The organiser themselves told me nothing would be changed.

– The surface needs to be at least 50% natural soil. – It is apparently 100% concrete and carpet.

#facepalm

THE Future

Let’s try to remember why we race RC Cars, it is supposed to be fun! Let’s make these events affordable and enjoyable for everyone. Let’s visit locations with a large local RC scene, easy access for everyone, and great facilities. Let’s promote the event locally, and involve local media. Let’s shorten up the program, and cut costs. Why don’t we do this so that the RC scene can grow! Racing at remote locations, for almost two weeks, is not a step forward. The manufacturers, or the sport in general gains nothing.

One happy child is better than nothing…

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When you travel, you have two choices. Either travel with your eyes open on your eyes closed. Eat at McDonalds, or eat local, hang with your friends or meet locals too, go to the up scale mall or shop where the locals shop. Learn local culture and learn their stories or don’t.

I think it is obvious what my choice is. When Bongani rocked up with this get up, I decided that we couldn’t let this boy walk around with his arse hanging out. Turns out Bonganis lack of decent attire was due to the fact that he didn’t have a mother or father. At 10 years old, that is a bit of a crisis.

This is where people have a second choice. Do something good, or just ignore it. Most people choose to ignore, but what if everyone instead did one good thing for someone when they traveled. Instead of exploiting the cheap sex workers in 3rd world countries, what if some money was spent on something good? I didn’t cure the Aids epidemic, or raise the standard of living, but with 30 minutes of my time and less than 15€ I made one boy very happy because now he has shoes and his bottom isn’t hanging out when he walks around.

JQ Products Training Camp in Africa

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The first ever JQProducts training camp is well underway, and has been great. No rest here. Rain or shine we are at the track. I got us all notebooks and made sure the team learns the importance of documenting what we learn. We are doing short sprint races, 30minute races, best lap challanges etc. And of course we have fun off the track too. Tomorrow morning we watch the F1, and then off to the track again. We all want to win, and to do that you have to put in the work!

Set ups worth trying so far:

THEBaird 3-3-1 diffs.

THEFrenchStyle, laydown shocks, inside on front tower and 1 in from middle on rear tower.

Let me know how those work!

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JQ IS AN ASSHOLE!

homeland

I need to explain something. After traveling around the world for 10 years now, and after meeting a lot of people,and learning to understand the local customs and culture, I have realised, that unfortunately most people need to wake up and see the big picture. Patriotism is fine, being proud of your home country, culture, people, whatever it is, is fine, but only as long as it doesn’t turn into “either you are with us, or against us”, or “we are number one, and no one else matters”. Every country, every culture, has good and bad sides, some more good and some more bad. But if you break it down, a culture is built up of people, and people are all the same on the inside. We are all human.

As a visitor, some of the things I witness, that are so so important to the locals, or if not important, then accepted, “this is how it has always been”, seem completely nuts to me. I feel: “How can these people not see how unimportant this is?”. Or “How can these people not see what is really going on?”. So I often make fun of these things. And inevitably people think I am an asshole. How dare I have an opposing opinion! What an asshole I am!

I do this because it’s funny to me, but also in the hopes that some people would wake up and think a little. Going through life without even once considering the values and reasoning we use, is dangerous. If you are brought up in a racist family, maybe it would be a good idea to think for yourself if being a racist in 2014 makes any sense. If you are brought up in a religious family, maybe you should think for yourself and decide if it is your thing.

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MY POINT IS: If there is someone out there that thinks that I am an asshole because I hate religious people, or Americans, or fat people, or people with no sense of humour, or people who like semi automatic weapons, or assholes, you couldn’t be further from the truth. I am a lover not a hater. We can disagree on almost everything, and still be friends. I will give you a lot of shit for it, but we can be friends, I can take a lot of shit too! Maybe you can wake me up, there’s a thought!

None of my opinions exclude other people. I never say F that opinion, kill them, that opinion shouldn’t exist, as long as we remain within general moral principles. I respect people who are true to themselves and make up their own minds, even if we do not share the same beliefs. I believe that the people who get offended are the ones who need to be offended. They are the ones whose opinions exclude other people. They believe what other people and society tell them to believe, and they need to be challenged to figure out their own true opinions. After all, if you are intelligent, and have reached your beliefs through critical thinking, how can you even be offended by someone else’s?

I believe that the people who get offended are the ones who need to be offended.

However, if you think I am an asshole for some other reason, you are probably right! So why the hell are you reading this?