Category Archives: rant

Flying Sucks!

You know what, forget about the blog today!

Websites

So half my website just disappeared. NICE!

SoCal Nitro Shootout #1

Out here at ProLine Raceway for the 1st ever Socal Nitro Shootout. It has been a lot of fun in the pits, but the racing has been terrible for me. I have been having motor issues, which are hopefully solved now, for tomorrow. When the motor actually ran normally I had fast laps, so if the issues are now over, I should be ok in the B or A, whichever main I ended up in. The results aren’t posted…..

It’s hard to pinpoint some engine issues, air leak, fuel tank, fuel line, carb, it’s just a mess. Seems to work fine, then the race starts and it’s all over the place. It’s just impossible for me to time anything or get in any kind of rhythm.

The track is super fun I think, I can’t wait to race tomorrow. I think it’s good this race has “heads up” qualifying, so no ifmar quals, just racing head to head. Unfortunately this was wasted on me this time. But I do hope more races use racing as qualifying in the future.

 

What Motivates Haters – Other Than Me.

How sad does your life have to be, in order for you to truly be happy at someone else’s misfortune? There are people I don’t like, and sure, I’ll snicker at their failures, and I’ll secretly hope they aren’t successful, but do I really care? No I don’t. It doesn’t make me happy to see someone struggle, or fail, I won’t post about it or write something shitty to them. You know what I do to people I don’t like? I ignore them, because I don’t want to waste my time.

I honestly don’t get it. Look at the comments section on youtube, look at comments on fb, what is wrong with people? I really don’t understand where all this energy and motivation to actually post hate comes from. Some of you may think, but JQ, you hate on your blog all the time. No I don’t, I write humorous blog posts about all kinds of stuff, and a lot of different people, but I don’t celebrate people’s short comings or failures to put them down, because that isn’t funny. I take a grain of truth, and make it funny by blowing it up, I write about a real issue, I take a person or situation and attempt to reel them back to reality. I have never written something to the effect of: “It was awesome to see this person fail because he is a fucking idiot. It made my day. I hope his mum gets cancer too.”. That’s not funny.

My point is:

If your happiness is dependent on others, or dependent on other people’s misfortune, then you my friend have a problem!

 

Watered Tracks – Icecream or Cancer?

On a scale of 42 to your mum, how annoying is track watering?

The thing about watering is it makes racing a lot harder, not only does your car need cleaning all the time, you are picking tyres like you pick lottery numbers, and it extends the day by 7 hours. It’s actually impossible to figure out how to set your car up, because not only is the track different beginning, middle and end of a qualifier, each of the times you hit the track, the beginning, middle and end are different too.

“It’s the same for everyone, quit complaining”. Yes, well it’s just that it’s not the same because of this thing called talent. We have been over this. Talented drivers adapt fast, non talented drivers don’t. Search “talent” in the blog, I have written about it.

Why isn’t watering consistent? Partly because of time of day, partly because of stupid decisions being made, water every heat, water every second heat, re-seed, water this heat, water that heat, but in the end because of saving money. When a toothless sign spinner from Hemet can’t figure out how to use a hose, don’t be mad at him. He is, after all, a sign spinner. When the rastafarian at the other end of the track is so baked out of his mind that when he actually is there, he can’t tell the difference between the sky and the track, don’t blame him, because…

After all week, mudbog in practice, mudbog to just damp in quals, then figuring out how the track works in a long main when wet, basically drying, becoming dusty, then slick as an ice rink, you know what would really be a genius move? How would you really then prove to the entire world how ridiculous the whole event is when it comes to watering, and putting on a fair and just race? After all this watering of the damn track all week long:

Do not water the A main, at all.

There, prepare for that suckers! Now the track is different again, and I guess an airport shutdown imminent! What is the explanation for this? How does it make sense NOT to water for the A main, when you water every single other race? There is none, it makes 0 sense. This is why racing in America is so hard. There are no rules (except for Truck tanks), no schedule, no consistency, and you just don’t know what you are gonna get, like ordering at the drive through at Taco Bell.

But please do water the PNB as it is indoors, and the dust is deadly! HAHA

#JQwatergate

I will start off with a quote from Jeff Bowland, whom I do not know. Basically he wrote everything you really need to know, but I will give you my version too:

JQ didn’t do anything intentional, it was a borrowed truck and the tank swelled. Degani used ice water to shrink the tank back down….. Go look in half of the coolers in the pits, Drakes included (who got the bump because of the DQ) and you are sure to find a a bottle of fuel in more than one. JQ has a target on his back because he goes against the grain and does/says things his way. We should encourage that, not target it.

-Jeff Bowland

After rather amazingly making the main in Truck, beating many established truck racers, my tank was then found to be 1cc too big. Eventually I was DQ:ed. Let’s begin by establishing a few facts:

  • There was no intentional cheating regarding tank size, I borrowed a truck, raced it at DNC, returned it, borrowed it again, and raced it at SS. I took the body off once at SS, to change my clutch before the main, I never checked the tank.

  • There was ”no advantage”, 1cc is about 3-4 seconds of runtime. Oh huge, specially since I stopped at 7:30 and my runtime was more than enough. It’s not like I cared enough to ever check it.

  • I really didn’t care, I enjoyed the B main, because I was actually competitive, and because I beat good drivers that actually care about truck. I didn’t even want to do the truck main after I made the main in Buggy, I just wanted to prepare and focus on that. So if you are one of those people that are so happy because I got screwed, this is not a great opportunity to do that.

For the entire debacle of #tankgate, I was actually sitting in the pits, gluing tyres, and preparing my buggy for my B main, as it was coming up. Degani went to tech to see what was going on. 1st attempt, failed 1cc over, 2nd attempt after a cool down period, failed. Then, for whatever reason a 3rd attempt was offered. Before the 3rd attempt Degani got the fuel bottle to the pits and filled it with ice cold water from the cooler. The cold water would cool down the hot tank making it smaller. Now thinking back, had he in his rush realised to mix in 10% blue sidewinder, no one would have been the wiser, but he didn’t, it was probably 98% water. 2% fuel. The tank is checked for a 3rd time, and low and behold, it passes! Terminator Tech guy called it, it’s a pass. Degani picks up the truck and walks back to the pits, it’s all good. The beaker is still on the table, and Maifield and Tim Long are feeling it, looking at it, tasting it, and figure out its ice water, and they say it’s not legal. So I get called back to tech. The tech guy picks up the truck again to be tested. It never get’s tested and I get DQ:ed. Had Degani emptied the beaker, again I would have been fine.

So what’s wrong with this situation? Everything.

  • In America there are ”no rules”. Where is the rule book for Silver State again? What Roar rules are enforced, what rules aren’t? No one knows, it’s just do whatever, and you may or may not be illegal or legal, jump the start, cut the track, run a different car, take someone out, get extra practice tickets, whatever you want. Rules, procedures and penalties are all made up as they occur.

  • At least there is this rule, 150cc for a truck tank, that’s simple, but then you have to have a procedure you follow to then determine that a tank is definitely legal or illegal.

  • Have the right beaker, so you can tell a 0.5cc difference easily, it needs to have a thin spout.

  • Have a horisontal surface.

  • Actually follow a procedure, how many times to try it, how long and how to let the tank cool down, and don’t let people interfere. Don’t let Degani put ice water in the fuel bottle, don’t let someone drop something in the tank, and don’t let the people who would benefit from a disqualification mess with the results either.

  • If you did that you wouldn’t pass a car, and then 5 minutes later DQ it anyway because someone complained.

Why was I OK with Degani doing what he did, if I’m so honest and I don’t cheat? Because tech in America is a complete joke. Jason Ashton won the ROAR Nationals, the biggest race in America with a fueltank that was 3-5cc’s over the limit. Why wasn’t he disqualified? Because he was fast and deserved the win, he was a nice guy, he was a local guy, I don’t know, because it was a cool story or because he pitted at 5 minutes? I was OK with what Degani did because there are no written rules at these races and the rules they make up as they go along aren’t enforced fairly or equally. Show me the Silver State rule that states that you have to tech fuel, we are checking for capacity, the liquid doesn’t matter. I have seen 2 minute calls be ignored, and I have seen 2 minute calls turn into, let me change this servo. After you tech your car before a race, not that there is a reason to, but you could actually switch to a completely different car. Same after a race, you could hand tech a different car. No one would know, there is no system. I don’t even know why they bother with tech.

Do you think the ice water idea was just invented? Even your hero Adam Drake mentioned that he had employed the ice fuel trick before. When in Rome, do as the Romans.

Controversial Topics – A Sign of What?

After visiting 34 different countries, and many of them repeatedly, and some of them for long stays at a time, I have discovered something interesting. I think it is a sign of something, but I can’t exactly put my finger on what or why.

One thing about people, is that the more intelligent they are, the less small things will bother them, and the less controversial certain topics will become. For example, in the past when there was thunder and lightning, some people would be worried, they would pray, they would maybe wonder if they didn’t offer the right things or enough to the gods, and that the gods were angry now. Well today most of us don’t give thunder and lightning a second thought, we know this is just part of nature, it happens. The same kind of thinking can be applied to many topics that are big issues in some countries. In others they aren’t even up for debate, people and society have moved on.

Different countries have very different cultures and the societies have developed to much different degrees due to the history of the region. If for the most part an individual person’s lack of intelligence is mostly harmless, when it comes to society it seems to be much different. Among friends the lack of education becomes apparent as arguments or stress over absolutely trivial and simple things. Things that are so simple and straight forward one has to wonder what sort of thought process the people are applying to the problem. But when you look at the bigger picture, you can see that in less developed and thus less intelligent countries, the controversial subjects are both more numerous, and more dangerous than in the developed, wealthy and more educated countries.

For example, there are countries where a controversial subject could be whether or not a woman should be stoned to death for adultery, including if she is raped by someone other than her husband. Or it could be the question of if homosexuality is legal or not, or if homosexuals should be sentenced to death or just life in prison. I feel like if it wasn’t for society, no single human being would just come up with something like that on their own. It has to be ignorant people in a group, building off each other’s ignorance, greed and lust.

So to get to my point, I decided to list the topics that are clearly controversial in a country. Topics that would immediately create a heated debate, with people divided on either side, or maybe mainly joining forces on one side. Topics that get people all bent out of shape, topics that if you mention them after a few beers, shit will get real serious, or if you post them on FB, you are sure to get a ton of comments. For Finland the list would look like this:

  1. Immigration
  2. Welfare bums
  3. Racism and race related stuff
  4. Taxes
  5. Government corruption and politicians salaries.

Those are the topics that would get people hot under the collar. And having traveled all through Western Europe, the list for those countries is quite similar. Those are the sort of things you can see in the media, those are the kind of things you hear people discussing passionately.

So now finally we get to my point, the one that I don’t exactly have an answer to. Why is it, that there are wealthy, democratic, free and developed countries, with the highest technological and human understanding, where the list of controversial topics is long, and growing increasingly dangerous. Almost like society is moving backwards instead of forwards? And is this a reality, or just an impression?

This is a list for one such country in the world:

  1. Immigration
  2. Welfare bums
  3. Racism and race related stuff
  4. Taxes
  5. Government corruption and politicians salaries.
  6. Abortion
  7. Gun control and related topics
  8. Prisons for profit
  9. Political party affiliation
  10. Sex education
  11. Evolution
  12. Police brutality
  13. Terrorism
  14. Presidents heritage
  15. Minimum wage
  16. Universal healthcare
  17. Climate change
  18. Gay marriage
  19. Death penalty
  20. Historical facts, slavery, war etc.
  21. Flags and historical symbols
  22. Israel
  23. Free education
  24. Mass shootings
  25. News channels
  26. You get the point…

Fulfilling Yesterday’s Promise

I just refuse to face reality.

1. How it feels to suck:

To do your best and still get beat badly, to fall short of your goals, and to fail in general, is a terrible feeling. There are only 2 possible outcomes, there is no middle ground. Everyone hates the demoralising feeling of failure. The more you have invested, and sacrificed, the worse the feeling is. Option one is to quit. Most people do that. Others get motivated to work harder and succeed. I guess there could be a 3rd category, reserved for idiots, who change nothing, and just go through life failing repeatedly and hating life.

For me I think setting goals and constantly failing to achieve them is really motivating, it pisses me off so badly. I feel so terrible already that whatever spiteful stuff haters write, really doesn’t get to me, because they can’t make it any worse. Friendly banter and shit talk helps to lighten the mood a bit.

Having said that, looking at the big picture, THECar and my driving have improved a lot in the past year. I am now able to match the best on lap time when things are right, and am able to stay within a few seconds over a qualifier, and occasionally beat them, which was not possible a year ago. Even at this race, although I did not achieve it, due to another car cartwheeling across the track taking me out in the process, I was still on a 10lap run on the 5th lap of the 2nd qualifier, and my best lap was a 32.6 vs 32.3 from David. Had I achieved that 10 laps, I would have been 3 seconds or so behind David’s TQ time. 3 seconds over 5 minutes is in the ballpark. That was not possible a year ago. So there is that.

2. How I suck, and what I need to do in order to suck less:

The difference between very good and great is a slight difference in corner speed and controlled aggression. It’s not a massive difference, it is tiny, but over one lap, it builds up. It is most evident in sections of track where there is a combination of corners that require being stringed together. What great drivers do so well, is pinpoint the limits of the car, and then maneuver and dance around the track without exceeding them, but also staying as close as possible to them. This means going as fast as the conditions allow, without loading the tyres too much where they will lose grip, or pushing the car too much to where it will not stay within the pitch, roll, weight transfer, camber change range that provides the best performance.

This means going as fast as the conditions allow, without loading the tyres too much where they will lose grip, or pushing the car too much to where it will not stay within the pitch, roll, weight transfer, camber change range that provides the best performance.

Basically I can’t do the above as well as the best, unless I get my car really good, and I practice a lot in the exact conditions that a race will be in. I can’t adapt as well. I can match the best at times, and those are the times when everything is perfect. So the way I will become better, is to improve my setup, and make it less “knife-edge”, where you lose speed if you make a slight error. I can already go for as long as needed, being extremely consistent, I can hit the same line for a whole main, I can avoid mistakes. That’s not the problem, I need to be a bit faster all the time, and that will come from a better setup, and learning to identify where I am pushing the car past it’s best performance, and scrubbing speed, and focus my practice on avoiding that.

At this race, I already know what I should have done differently. The track had a lot more grip than I expected, so my setup was too soft. I needed thicker swaybars, and thicker diffs. Now I would go into a corner too hard and the car would roll too much and scrub speed, or I got on the gas a bit too hard and the car would squat and diff out, and I would lose drive. Nothing major, we are talking small errors like that. David could have taken my car and done the same as he did, I’m sure, but I can’t do that. I need to get those things spot on, and then I can be more competitive.

3. Why I think David Ronnefalk will be the most successful 1:8th Offroad driver over the next 5 years.

There are a number of reasons for this, I had an idea for a future blog post about this, that’s why I have been thinking about this subject. I will list the reasons:

  1. Obviously, as far as talent and speed goes, he is right up there with the rest of the best , Maifield, Boots, Battle, Tessmann, Cavalieri etc. One thing he has going for him compared to many of his competitors, is that his clear main focus has been, and more than likely will continue to be 1:8th Offroad, instead of spreading out his time on many classes.
  2. Unlike most of his competition, we haven’t seen the best of David yet, because up until his recent switch to HB, he had never been a paid professional RC racer. Kyosho didn’t pay him a salary, he lived with his parents in Sweden, and went to school. The closest track was almost 2 hours a way. Add to this the short Swedish season, you can see that practice has been limited, and it’s not really until now that his program is getting to the point where he truly is well prepared for the races.
  3. He is still only 20 years old, still freshly motivated as a paid professional, and thanks to his parents I would suppose, clearly understanding and appreciative of the situation he is in, and the opportunity he has.
  4. I don’t see anyone with equal talent, that also has the same level of commitment and dedication as David at this point in time. There are no distractions, there is no family, there are no kids, there are no larger plans outside of winning every race, and that’s a scary prospect for his competition. He is looking at possibly moving to Spain in order to be able to practice and race more, against better competition, and all the year round. He is practicing, racing, or working on his cars almost every day now, unlike before. He is investing in his own career.
  5. He has a solid crew behind him, with HB/Orion fully committed to keeping him winning. His father has been his mechanic since the beginning, and Adrien Bertin has been guiding him for a long time, and is a great help when it comes to approaching the races, motor and car set up. It’s a team effort that is working.
  6. Finally, one thing that I think is very important for continued and constant success, is driving style and setup preference. David’s driving style, as well as the way he sets up his car is very solid, and safe. Some great drivers are so extreme in their preferences that it’s just not going to work out every time, or in the long term, if something changes, like the tracks or the tyres we race, or the car they race for example. I’m not saying anyone can pick up his car and go fast, but what I am saying is that it’s nothing crazy or extreme in one direction. The car does everything well, jumps, corners, turns, it has traction, it stays flat and balanced, it’s not super low, it’s not super high, it’s not super soft, it’s not super hard, it’s a good compromise of everything, that will work on any track, US style or European, and his controlled yet aggressive driving style complements it perfectly. You don’t have to hit your marks perfectly, the car will still handle it, and on the other hand, if need be, he is still capable of pushing the pace to a higher level, he isn’t maxed out all the time.

I would draw a comparison to Ken Roczen, young fast, very confident, very strong program, very solid style, with the difference that no injury will sideline David, so I predict he will be the most successful 1:8th Offroad racer over the next 5 years.

 

Being Shit, Getting Lapped, & a Prediction

Tomorrow I will describe how it feels to give it your best, and still get lapped in 20 minutes. I will explain why I suck and what I need to do to suck less. I will also tell you why I think David Ronnefalk will be the most successful 1:8th offroad racer in the world over the next 5 years.

But now I need a few beers. I haven’t had beers in about 3 weeks, at least. So now some Supercross and a few beers. No, many.

The Polls Are Rigged – Epic Fail

You bastards! Here I was thinking I had a way out, an excuse to stop posting blogs every day. But no. It seems that people want more. After analysing the results, it became obvious, that the only people to actually vote no, was the entire Xray team, along with Cameron Neff. That’s a pretty good situation to be honest. I’m sure I can piss more people off by the time I hit the 2 year mark.

On that note, I can tell which posts are the most popular, but I would like to know from you. What do you want me to write about? Comment below.