Assisted vs. Non-Assisted R/C Drifting

September 10, 2021

Assisted vs. Non-Assisted R/C Drifting
I should start by going on record stating I am in no way trying to take away from today’s style of R/C Drifting. Rear Wheel Drive R/C Drifting with a Gyro has come a long way and is a ton of fun. There is no arguing it has brought the R/C Drift Scene to a point many never imagined. Anything I state is not knocking Gyro users. I will however be expressing how I personally feel, and it may feel like an attack, but it in no way is meant to be taken as such. I will refer to Gyro and No-Gyro as Assisted and Non-Assisted Drifting since that’s really what it is.

Past Experience with Non-Assisted R/C Drift
As many of you may know, I have ventured into Non-Assisted R/C Drifting a couple times in the past. What is probably not so clear is why. To put it simply, I feel this huge disconnect while using a Gyro. Everyone told me the Gyro was necessary and I heard a ton of explanations as to what and why it does what it does. It simulates this, your brain can’t do that, etc. I just could not get past the fact that the car is doing stuff for me that I am not in control of.

When I first started out, I instinctively wanted to counter-steer. I had to unlearn this instinctive reaction. Isn’t that what drifting is at it’s core, getting your car to slide, and you counter-steer into the drift? We aren’t supposed to do that though because the Gyro is acting like a real car with the tendency to self-steer? This self-steering people speak of, does it also keep you from spinning out? At any rate, I’m sure we can all agree that the Gyro is at least PARTIALLY driving the car for us. On a side note, I kept thinking about the days of Off-Road and how I was able to drift around all the corners without a Gyro, easily. So why am I using a chassis specifically for drifting, but I NEED a Gyro to just drive around the track, even at slow speeds. It just doesn’t make sense.

Futaba GYD550 – Mindblowing Control, Overdose DAIS -So Good, Yokomo V.4 – Good and Simple

Dissecting the Gyro
I’ve always been the type to admit when I’m wrong and when it comes to what the Gyro does, I have to admit in my previous write-up I over-simplified the role the Gyro plays in Assisted Drift. When I was finally able to drive without it, it was clear the struggle was to keep a balance between the throttle and steering. What wasn’t so clear was just how far off I was from actually having it down well enough to make it a thing. This time around I had to break it down to it’s core, and I have to admit the Gyro is a technological marvel. It is doing more than what anyone is really giving it credit for, and also in my opinion the Gyro is what is driving the whole speed drifting thing. Seeing people practicing “backies” and “360 entries” is a indication that Assisted R/C Drift has become too easy for a lot of people. It seems a good number of people are in search of that next challenge.

So what is my point?
There is so much that is intertwined here, I think it will be best to break it down into sections. In my opinion, just about everything we have been doing up until now has been based on the Gyro and it’s limitations. The better the Gyros get, the more extreme the tuning gets. The more extreme the tuning gets, the faster the cars get. The faster the cars get, the slower of a tire is needed. So since Assisted Drift has begun, it has been a constant chase of the next slower tire. It’s just a vicious cycle. If you took a chassis from the start of RWD R/C Drift, and put the hardest tires we have available now on it, it wouldn’t even be able to get out of it’s own way. With a modern day chassis, you put those same tires on, you will be just a tad slower than the fastest guys. That’s technology at work.

My Journey
There are many moments that seem insignificant to most, but can spark something in others. This journey of revisiting Non-Assisted Drifting was triggered by a post Bob Rock had made a few months back. The topic was, What is next for R/C Drift? I posted Gyroless Drifting. Bob’s response,

”I think you may be on to something there. It’s going to be a big challenge to drift Gyroless and as much as my mind is telling me that it can’t be done, I really got to simply think back. When you do that, one realizes that there have been numerous difficult obstacles and challenges that have been overcome from a point where something was deemed impossible. So I think that perhaps now is the right time to explore Gyroless drifting. The advancement of drift tech and products may possibly make it easier to get this right. The process should definitely be documented to which I hope you would do so that we can follow your progress and then join in.” – Bob Rock

Up til this point the response has always been, “Meh, go ahead and try.” ::Rolling Eyes:: Finally, someone viewed it the same as I. To make a change, it’s not going to come easy, but it needs to be done if change is to happen at all. I knew at this point if I was going to make another push, I needed to document it. So to do this, I needed to really understand what was going on. Challenge accepted!

The Chassis
I wanted to choose a platform where I felt changes would be simple and quick. With my past experience, I was prepared to change my entire setup if necessary. At the same time I felt our tuning has gotten to a point where it’s pretty refined. I chose the Usukani PDS Mix for my starting platform. The main reason was I have been using this chassis as my personal driver and I really like the steering system and the ease of setup. I knew I could make quick changes which is essential to deciding which setting is better. I have it outfitted with Tamiya TRF dampers and N.E.R.D. Adjustable Piston/Shafts to further speed up my tuning. In addition, I choose the Acuvance Xarvis XX ESC and Fledge 10.5T Motor since I wanted the smoothest setup I could get. Finally, I chose the Futaba CT700 Servo to use with my Futaba 7PXR Transmitter so I could adjust all my electronics on the fly. My hope was my setup would be really close to what I need to start laying down some serious laps right out of the gate. WRONG!!!

The Format
Since my schedule is pretty stacked throughout the day, and our track is open just about every day now, trying to get any R&D time for something as unstable as this, is really tough. Trying to get on the track and figure this out would be highly disruptive to our customers and was not an option. So if I were to do this, the only way it was going to work was to show up an hour earlier in the morning and get my Non-Assist Drift session on. This worked out well. It allowed me to document my time into this, which would be a good indicator for others as to the difficulty level associated with making the switch. As much as I would have liked to put more time into it, it was limited. I believe the switch would have been much quicker as far as days are concerned, if I could have had solid 2-3 hour sessions, rather than the 1 hour sessions. Although I made a daily log of the journey, I will spare you the wrong paths I had gone down. (There are many) A few have made me want to quit, but as any tuner knows, you have those days where you make break throughs and others where you try to make one more step forward and you end up taking 10 steps back. You can’t enjoy the sweet without the bitter so they say.

Starting Out
Since my chassis was set up pretty well and I could kill it on our track, I removed my gyro, plugged directly in to my receiver, and I was good to go. At least that’s what I thought. Right away, it was comedy hour. Spinning, crashing, just overall struggling was going on. I realized my suspension was setup extremely light. I had a lot of snap-oversteer going on, and not much damping at all. I started to think about the progression we have made over the years, and looking back on when we started, we were all running stiff suspension and pretty heavy damping. There was a lot not making sense to me. I needed to really take a step back and figure out what was going on here. All I was certain about at this point was nothing made any sense.

The Colin Chambers Approach
A few years back my good friend Colin (who was active in R/C Drift and helped write the Super Drift Challenge Rules) used to come in after his 1:1 drift events with video of what he was doing out there. He was just starting out and he was always excited to show us his progress. Was it spectacular? Was it crazy? No, not at all. In fact, it was the opposite, but it always showed progress and how much fun he was having NOT being a pro driver. One day he came in and was excited about being able to finally tandem with is friend. It wasn’t like Formula D, but it was my friend having a blast. That’s what it’s all about, right? Having fun? Colin showed me you don’t need to be a superstar to have fun, and everyone needs to start somewhere. There’s no shame in that, and everyone needs to go through these stages before they get to the top. So why was I out here trying to pull Pro Driver Justin Pawlak type of laps, when I’m not even close to that level. I mean, I can’t even go down the straight cleanly. I should be taking it slowly and working my way up. Non-Assisted Drifting is something totally new it seems. It was time for the Colin Chambers Approach.

A New Perspective
Since I was now in the mindset of starting over and figuring this out from the ground up, I reflected on something my friend Randy had mentioned to me years back. I don’t even think he knew it even made an impression on me, but it did. He basically said, if you are having a hard time with a track, drive it slowly at first. Keep speeding up, and eventually you will be drifting it. This is exactly what I set out to do.

A Revelation
So I started out again fresh without any type of preconceived path. I started out slow with the goal of driving around the track slowly. I found I needed to go EXTREMELY slow. Slower than I would have thought. This again didn’t sit right with me. How slow do I actually need to go to make it around the track? Maybe a scale 5-10 mph. You mean to tell me I need a Gyro to drive at a moderate speed just to make it down the straight? It really felt as if I was driving on ice. WAIT!!! ::LIGHTBULB::

Do 1:1 drifters drive on ice? Of course I can’t drive around the track! I can drive any other R/C Car with no assist around the track with no problem, but I can’t drive my Drift Chassis around the track without a Gyro? With little to no traction it’s going to be difficult, if not impossible. Has the Gyro made the impossible possible? Yes, it definitely has. The modern day gyro is so good, it has made it possible for us to basically drift controllably on ice. Without a gyro I can’t make it down the straight, but with it I can go as fast as is physically possible with no issues. Still feel it’s not like auto-pilot? The gyro is driving the car down the straight, allowing an extremely hard flick into the corner, and keeping it in control the entire time. For me that would equate to auto-pilot. Something that is out of my control. Not just simply simulating some sort of auto-centering or auto-steering, but full on auto-pilot. At this point I am simply adjusting the direction and speed.

The Game Changer
After realizing we are basically trying to drift on ice, I spoke with Wee from DS Racing. I explained my findings and my theory that what has been hindering the advancement of No Assist Drifting is the tires. I felt I needed something with more traction than what we have been using, but still hard enough that we could slide them without too much effort. I gave him a few examples of what I was doing and what I felt I needed, and he said he had exactly what I was talking about. He sent 5 different compounds to try. My man! When I think of companies who support the R/C Drift scene, DS Racing is always among the top few.

Tires – The real game changer! DS Racing HF-1 and HF-2 are the magic compound for Super-G

TIRES (or more traction)
This was the missing link the entire time! The point where RWD R/C Drift started from, right after CS (Counter Steer) we were already headed in the wrong direction. Since we were dealing with AWD, the speeds were high, so we were already using slick tires to slow the cars down. Then when we went to RWD, we all threw on Gyros and slapped on slightly grippier tires, and we were on our way. That was already too slick! We already had considerably less traction than the old HPI T-Drifts. Everyone accepted the fact that RWD was going to be slower than AWD, but look at us now.

The DS Racing HF Series is the ticket!
They have a higher friction coefficient than what we have been using all along. This has made all the difference and now EVERYTHING makes sense. I don’t know of another tire that would make this possible since all the tires available are either grip or slip. DS Racing’s HF-1 and HF-2 for our surface has really opened this up. With the added traction, “Driving” the track is no problem at all now. My car feels like a normal R/C car that I can drift. With the change to the new tires, it has become obvious we have been tuning around the Gyro. The car now reacts very realistically. Remember how realistic Assisted RWD Drift was when compared to AWD? Non-Assisted vs. Assisted Drift is at least equal to that or even more. 

Chassis Setup
Now that we have a solid starting point and I can actually drive around the track like a normal car can, it’s time to start setting up to be Drift specific. The first thing I noticed is the chassis is very unstable. With the added traction it is even more apparent. Snap oversteer is huge. Soft rear springs, light damping, rearward weight bias, I can’t event come off a corner without the rear end snapping the opposite direction. Time to slow the suspension down and add more damping. In fact, things got a whole lot better as I stiffened everything up a bit. The bouncy, floating stuff just doesn’t play well without a Gyro compensating. I also went stiffer and slower on the springs and that added to the stability as well.

ESC and Motor
ESC and motor settings are also important. At least in the beginning stages, limiting the output is huge for me. I am running no boost and low turbo. I am finding I need to modulate the throttle quite a bit since I am basically steering with the throttle and making small adjustments with the steering (Like a real car), but when I want the back end to hang out, I go full throttle and have the turbo kick in and keep the wheels spinning. Too much turbo timing and it will induce a spin. Not enough and it won’t be enough to keep the back end out.

Drag Brake plays an important role as well. There is a sweet spot where it will pull the car back and save it from spinning. Too much Drag Brake and you’re spinning. Too little and you’re gripping up and going straight or fish-tailing out of control. I’m running a 13.306 FDR All this keeps the power delivery smooth and manageable. Maybe in the future I can turn things up, but for now, I need to keep it on the conservative side.


Servo
I have also played with servo speed and I have found with the Futaba CT700, a slightly slower overall speed seems to work well for me. Not a slow setting, but I definitely have taken the edge off. I found once I went too slow on the servo, it would want to spin very easily. Probably due to not being able to keep up with the angle.

Ackerman
I have played around a lot with parallel and positive ackerman and have concluded for myself that some positive ackerman works best for me. It allows me to continue to push the back end out, vs. trying to keep things balanced all the time. It’s working best for me right now, but who knows in the future. This has changed since the last time.

Weight
Weight plays a pretty big role as well. Since things are more and more like real 1:1, I am finding that I need some added weight to keep the car moving when it’s sideways. Too light and the chassis wants to stall pretty quickly. Too much weight and it wants to keep going. So there is a balance I still need to fine tune. More weight = more stability, but also more inertia. As far as weight bias, my current setup is 35/65 and it seems to work well. I briefly tried 50/50, but found it wanted to straighten out more. I did not try any tuning around this setup, so I would say closer to 50/50 weight bias has not be explored on my end yet.

Low Motor vs. High Motor
I always prefer Low, so this is what I have started out with. I recently set up a Yokomo SXIII and it seems to do well also. I will be experimenting more with that in the upcoming sessions to see where I am at with it. There are definitely some major differences and I’m not quite sure if it’s beneficial or not. 

Not there yet, but getting there.

The Video
With the limited time I have had as far as track time, I still get nervous when the camera comes out. I’m not about editing or putting together a video to show “how good I am”. If that was the case, I would keep doing takes til I put together some laps that are as smooth as if I were using a Gyro. Those times are more often than before, but not predictable enough where it wouldn’t take some serious effort to capture it. What I really want to show is how an average set of laps comes together for me at the moment. I will have days I’m smoother and days I am twitchier, but this is what I put down today. The twitchiness you see is not necessary, it’s just how I’m driving today for some reason. I am still experimenting with the setup, and I recently pulled one of those 1 step forward, 10 steps back tuning days.

Looking back, I wish I took video of my progress. It would show how much I struggled, but then overnight things just clicked. This video is with me having 17-20 hours of drive / tuning time. Right now it feels as normal as it could possibly get. This feeling came after about 7-8 hours of not touching a chassis with a Gyro. 

Comfort Zone
The reality of Assisted vs. Non-Assisted is the room for error. The use of a gyro allows you to be very free with and dare I say sloppy when compared to Non-Assisted. Any miscalculation without a gyro to make the impossible possible and you are going to crash. Coming in too short, you’re not correcting it. Committed to a shallow line, you are going shallow. Manji too hard, you’re fish-tailing out of control. Didn’t get the weight to transfer on your initiation, you’re going straight. Lift in the corner and you’re out of control. It’s really real world driving.

Conclusion
Now it’s really a matter of getting that seat time in, but that’s just not a possibility at the moment. 1 hour sessions broken up by days is a little rough. I can say with all seriousness, there has been nothing more satisfying than pulling a perfect lap without a gyro. Knowing it’s all me has me driven to be able to do that every lap. That challenge is addicting for sure. At the moment we have 4 people who can drive decently with no gyro. I actually believe this has real potential to become the next step. It just depends how many are up to the challenge.

Super Drift Championship 2021 SoCal Regional Champion!!!

September 11, 2021

Presenting The SoCal Super Drift Championship 2021 Regional Champion and Drift King
Alfredo Chan III
Team RAZR / Tech 1 Drift

Your Champion for SoCal Super Drift Championship 2021 – Alfredo Chan III (Team RAZR / Tech 1 Drift)

If you have been a part of R/C Drift in the United States, you no doubt have heard of Alfredo Chan III and his team, Tech 1 Drift. He has been a part of the scene since the early days, back when Sprint 2s were all the rage. Maybe even before that when we were putting electrical tape on the tires. Since then, Alfredo has been traveling and winning comps just about everywhere he goes. The Super Drift Championship Series has been no exception. Alfredo is always up in the mix with his awesome R/C skills and ability to adapt to any situation. This season he really stepped it up and made a conscious decision to win. He obviously wasn’t joking and when he put his mind to it, he made it happen. In fact, he has been traveling between Super-G and Slidelines in Las Vegas and has been putting it down in both regions. Since SoCal was his first comp in the Super Drift Championship 2021 Series, this is where his points will stay, but it will be interesting to see if he can take double titles. This would be a first! He has already established he can take home the most Top Qualifier Titles, as well as accumulate the most points to take the title of 2021 SoCal Drift King! He has really left his mark on the scene for 2021 already! Congratulations to Alfredo on some huge accomplishments thus far!
Can he pull it off against the best the U.S. has to offer? We’ll answer this next month!!!

The Top 3 for SoCal – First Place – Alfredo Chan III (Team RAZR / Tech 1 Drift), Second Place – Mikko Yang (Team ReveD / Team DStyle), and Third Place – Aydin Angulo (Team Super-G / Futaba USA / Acuvance)

The Top 3 finishers for SoCal
The SoCal Regional Champion, The Drift King of SoCal – Alfredo Chan III (Team RAZR / Tech 1 Drift), 2nd Place – Mikko Yang (Team ReveD / Team DStyle), and 3rd Place – Aydin Angulo (Team Super-G / Futaba USA / Acuvance). All 3 of these guys have been putting on strong showings and pushing the limits of R/C Drift in SoCal. Congratulations guys on a hard fought season!

Super-G hosted the SoCal Regionals
The SoCal Regionals did not disappoint this year. Even with a rocky start with COVID and all, the turnouts were great! We watched many new comers greatly improve with each round! It was a very exciting season for R/C Drift in SoCal.

The Super Drift Championship 2021 U.S.A. Finals

The time is finally here. The regionals are wrapping up and the Super Drift Championship 2021 U.S.A. Finals are upon us! Since we announced the dates back in January of this year, we have been in contact with many who plan to come to Los Angeles to throw down with the best the U.S. has to offer. It’s all coming together and it appears everything is a go. This promises to be the event of 2021 for R/C Drift! The sponsors are really taking notice of the Drift Community, so make sure you don’t miss it!

The Official Super Drift Championship 2021 U.S.A. Finals Page

Aydin Angulo (Team Super-G / Futaba USA / Acuvance) (L), Alfredo Chan III (Team RAZR / Tech 1 Drift) (R)
The Final Battle of the 2021 SoCal Season
AMAZING DRIVING ALL SEASON BY THESE TWO GUYS!

9/11/21 Super Drift Championship 2021 Round 8 Regional Finals (SoCal)

September 11, 2021

This weekend was the Super Drift Championship 2021 Round 8 for the SoCal Region. This was the finals for SoCal and also the Double Points Round.

This round started off interesting to say the least. The weekend was hot so we made sure we had everything setup before the heat set in. As we hit 5:30pm and were ready to get things underway, we were struck with some technical difficulties. Our broadcast system was over-heating and so things didn’t want to get going as normal. We started 30 minutes late and there was a lot going on at that time. Our normal person who we have come to rely on for the Driver’s Meeting was not present, and I was pulled in all directions trying to get things going. Needless to say, I was not in the correct mindset to do the meeting and I must apologize to everyone in attendance. I had a lot to say being the last round, but I was so preoccupied I really fell short and forgot a lot of what I wanted to say. Again guys, I apologize.

As we kicked off the day it was clear everyone present was ready to really throw down. Double points meant this could really make or break the season for a few people. I had decided to use the track layout I had planned for The Finals in October to really put everyone to the test. It is a good combination of high-speed, low-speed, technical, and timing critical driving. It was no surprise the drivers were more than up to the task.

Mark handing business with the Scale Reflex Claw

The Judges
The Judges for the event were no strangers to the Super-G competitions. Shaine Colins (Team D-Style), Ted Britt (Team Bubblemilk), along with myself Steve Fujita would be overseeing the competition and enforcing the rules. We owe a huge thank you to Shaine and Ted for taking on the such a intense role in the comp. It wouldn’t be possible without them.

Qualifying
The Qualifying was as serious as it gets. There was no mistake, everyone was here to show their stuff. Even though there was a lot of great qualifying runs, there was one that stood above the rest. Jason Fordyce (Team Super-G / Futaba U.S.A. / Acuvance) had a mishap on his first run, tapping the wall on his entry to the first sweeper earning him a zero for that run. I think everyone expected him to go conservative on his second (last attempt), but instead, in Jason style, he sent it! His confidence paid off and netted him Top Qualifier position, and the winner of the Hoonigan TQ of the day award! Jason has earned the reputation of one of the most dynamic drivers in the scene, and he did not disappoint! Congratulations to Jason for a job well done!

Hoonigan Top Qualifier for Round 8 – Jason Fordyce (Team Super-G / Futaba U.S.A. / Acuvance

Tsuiso (Battles)
EXPERT

Next up was the what we had been waiting for all season! Next to the U.S.A. Finals, the SoCal Regional Finals is the biggest event for SoCal. It all came down to Kris Steel (Team Outbreak) vs. Jason Fordyce (Team Super-G / Futaba U.S.A. / Acuvance) for 3rd and 4th, and Alfredo Chan III (Team RAZR / Tech 1 Drift) vs. Aydin Angulo (Team Super-G / Futaba U.S.A. / Acuvance) for 1st and 2nd. It was no surprise to see these guys all up in the mix for Top 4.

First up, Kris vs. Jason for 3rd and 4th. Both of these guys have been in it for a minute and have battled many times in the past. Everyone knew it was anyone’s to win. First out of the gate was Jason in the Lead and Kris on the Chase. Both these guys were on fire today and Jason put down an awesome lead run! Kris answered back was a really great chase! There was really nothing to knock about either of these runs. Then the switched and Kris was on the Lead and Jason on the Chase! Kris put down a great lead as well and Jason answered right back with a great chase! Overall, Jason was able to put together a better lead and chase and landed himself in the 3rd Place Podium spot! Kris locked down a very respectable 4th place!

The Top Guns – Aydin Angulo (L) vs. Alfredo Chan III (R)

Then it was the battle of battles, Alfredo vs. Aydin for 1st and 2nd! Both of these guys have been on the podium all season and everyone expected both of these guys to throw down. First up was Alfredo on the Lead and Aydin on the Chase! This run was NUTS! Both these guys have a ton of speed AND a ton of angle! Alfredo put down a blistering lead run with Aydin hot on his door! It was obvious this battle is what the entire season had been all boiling down to! Both of these drivers were right at home on the podium and both have had their share of TQ titles! Next was Aydin’s lead and Alfredo’s chase! They started by wishing each other good luck with a fist bump, knowing very well they were both very capable of taking home the win. The run was incredible to say the least! Aydin put down an equally impressive lead, and Alfredo was able to maintain even better proximity and positioning the entire run! HOWEVER, Alfredo had contacted the wall at the entry to Zone 1, and this landed Aydin on the Top Podium Position of 1st Place, and giving Alfredo a very hard fought 2nd!

First Place – Aydin Angulo (Team Super-G / Futaba U.S.A. / Acuvance), Second Place – Alfredo Chan III (Team RAZR / Tech 1 Drift), Third Place – Jason Fordyce (Team Super-G / Futaba U.S.A. / Acuvance)

To say these runs were an amazing way to end the SoCal Regionals would be an understatement! The podium was no surprise to anybody and all who were present were witness to some of the finest driving we have seen so far!

Congratulations to First Place – Aydin Angulo (Team Super-G / Futaba U.S.A. / Acuvance), Second Place – Alfredo Chan III (Team RAZR / Tech 1 Drift), and Third Place – Jason Fordyce (Team Super-G / Futaba U.S.A. / Acuvance) 

Super Drift Championship 2021 Round 8 Brackets (EXPERT)
Super Drift Championship Round 8 Results (EXPERT)

Sportsman
This round we had quite a few first time competitors which is always awesome! There’s only one way to get going in the comps, and that’s to just jump in and do the do. For Sportsman, we had Rykin Settle vs. Phil Sandoval for 3rd and 4th spot, and Cody Johnson vs. Michael Mendoza for 1st and 2nd. After some good runs, Michael grabbed 1st, Cody 2nd, and Rykin took home 3rd! Great job guys! Looking forward to seeing more of you in the future!

Congratulations to Sportsman First Place – Michael Mendoza , Second Place – Cody Johnson, and Third Place – Rykin Settle
Sportsman Brackets
Sportsman Results
First Place – Aydin Angulo, Second Place – Alfredo Chan III, and Third Place – Jason Fordyce

What an awesome way to wrap up the SoCal Regionals! The level of driving and camaraderie amongst everyone in the community was something to witness all season!

Congratulations to Aydin Angulo (Team Super-G / Futaba U.S.A. / Acuvance), Alfredo Chan III (Team RAZR / Tech 1 Drift) and Jason Fordyce (Team Super-G / Futaba U.S.A. / Acuvance) for taking the podium in the Super Drift Championship 2021 Regional Finals (SoCal)!!!

Hoonigan – JDM All Stars (Super-G Field Trip) 9/12/21

Hoonigan Club Day – JDM All Stars kicked off from 9am till 11am at the Tire Slayer Studios / Bodega. Although we were up late wrapping up our regional finals for the SDC2021 SOCAL Comp the night before, we didn’t want to miss out!

For those of you who haven’t been to the bodega, theres no shortage of awesome Hoonigan merch, amazing car builds, and much more!

There were many amazing builds on display outside. A very laid back cars and coffee type vibe was present. We drifted at the Mini Super-G Drift Arena inside the bodega and wandered around to check out cars. Here are coverage photos. There were so many cars coming and going, it was hard to capture them all. Can’t wait for the next club day!

Our 2 hours was up quick! Since we were open today 11a-4p today, we had to cut out while the event was still popping off! It was nice to catch up with Larry Chen, its been been a while since he’s slid by. We also saw the usual suspects, Hert, Dan, John and even Jolly made it by the track!

It was good weather, good cars and good people! Until next time!

Futaba Hauler – The New Style!

August 26, 2021

The New Futaba Hauler!

I’m going to start by saying, I always struggle when it’s time to hit the other tracks, or go to events. I always like to travel with minimal bulk and the standard haulers are bit too heavy-duty for me. With all the wheels, extending handles, etc. the entire package gets to be pretty hefty. I always feel the hauler itself is adding most of the weight.

Boxes can be carried in the standard orientation, OR flipped on their sides to keep the chassis flat

Well it looks like Futaba was listening when they made their R/C Car Hauler. With 2 large main compartments to hold chassis, bodies, etc. and 1 smaller side compartment for a remote and smaller items, it seems to be just right. Right away I noticed the weight savings, and a quick check on the scale showed the Futaba Hauler to be a tick over 3 pounds lighter than my current hauler that has become the standard.

Small side compartment – Perfect for transmitters and other small items

I was pleased to find out I could easily carry everything I would need when visiting different tracks. 1 or 2 chassis, Transmitter, Tool Box, Charger, Batteries, and of course merch for giveaways. Saving 3 pounds overall will make a huge difference. I also has hoops on either side for a shoulder strap (Not Included) which will make it even nicer.

Fits standard drift bodies with no problem. A nice amount of extra space, but not excessive

As many have found, generic R/C haulers sometimes won’t fit our R/C Drift bodies. If they don’t, then what’s he point? The Futaba Hauler fits perfectly with just enough extra space to fit the longer bodies, as well as some extra cargo such as batteries, tires, tools, etc.

Nice padded and reinforced side compartment with plenty of space

The side compartment fits my Futaba 7PXR with the drop-down adapter and Scale Reflex Steering Wheel Grip. There is also enough space where I can carry my tool box, charger, batteries, and whatever else I want to throw in there. With the reinforced sides and bottom, I feel confident it will all be safe.

The New Futaba Hauler

In closing, I must admit I’m a fan. This is a product I have been hoping for. Light-weight, well thought out, and one of the biggest selling points for me, not branded with a chassis brand. I don’t change my brand of radio gear. I have been a loyal Futaba user from the age of 13-14. I have experimented with other brands, but I ALWAYS come back to Futaba. Now I can change chassis brands and not feel like my new chassis doesn’t belong in my old hauler. Another point I should point out is there is no nonsense going on. I never cared for a dedicated compartments to store tools in a strange configuration that I will never use. I always prefer to have my tools in a small box so I’m not continually going back into my hauler to get various tools. Get me and my gear to the track, and I’ll organize myself. I feel Futaba hit this one right. No nonsense, simple design, and at an affordable price. $119 MSRP is a smokin deal in my opinion.

Super-G will be getting their shipment in shortly. Don’t miss out!!!

Super Drift Championship 2021 Round 7

August 14, 2021

This past Saturday was the Super Drift Championship 2021 Round 7 for the SoCal Region. It sure seems like everyone is gearing up for the upcoming Regional Finals and the Super Drift Championship 2021 U.S.A. Finals in October! When I say the driving gets better every round, it really does. The skill level at the moment has surpassed any type of expectation I had at the onset of this season.

The Judges

Round 7 was the first comp in over 3 years here at Super-G where I was not a sitting judge. It was strange to say the least, but it allowed me to move about during the competition and see what else goes on. It was definitely needed and we have some plans to make it more pleasant in the upcoming rounds.

The Judges for Round 7 were Manny Campalans, Shaine Collins, and Ted Britt. If I could choose 3 people to judge, this would be it! Not only do they each have a deep understanding of the rules, but also why they have evolved into what they are today. All 3 also share the vision of serving the community and pushing the scene forward, so I could not think of a finer group to judge.

The Hoonigan TQ of the event – Alfredo Chan III (Team RAZR / Tech 1 Drift)

Qualifying

This Round appeared to the the same layout as the previous round, but everyone quickly realized it was anything but. There were a few tweaks to the layout that visually have the same appearance, but completely changed the line and flow. The usual suspects were laying down some serious qualifying runs, but there was one who really put the smack down and landed himself the Hoonigan TQ of the event, Alfredo Chan III of Team RAZR / Tech 1 Drift! If there is one thing Alfredo has shown everyone month after month is he can definitely throw down. With the next closest competitor 10 points behind, Alfredo had really established he was here and he meant business. Congratulations Alfredo for grabbing the TQ Title!!!

Tsuiso (Battles)

Congratulations to the winners of Round 7 – First – Alfredo Chan III, Second – Mikko Yang, and Third – Aydin Angelo

Round 7 was simply just an amazing display of R/C Drift Skills and drivers with nerves of steel. The battles were exciting as always and the skill was next level. By the end of the battles, it had come down to to Alfredo Chan III (Team RAZR / Tech 1 Drift) vs. Mikko Yang (Team ReveD / Team DStyle) for 1st and 2nd, and Austin Gregorio (Team Zenshin) vs. Aydin Angulo (Team Super-G / Futaba USA / Acuvance). First up was Austin vs. Aydin. Austin had been putting it down all night and appeared to really find his comfort zone. Going up against Aydin makes the best drivers nervous. Things were going great for Austin, but then it happened just as he was going to put the power down out of Zone 1, Austin had an unfortunate spin, handing over the win and a solid 3rd spot on the podium to Aydin!

Then it was time for the battle for 1st and 2nd with Alfredo vs. Mikko. Both of these guys are no strangers to the final battle. Mikko knew he had his work cut out for him as he was up against the TQ of the day, Alfredo! Out of the gate Alfredo was on the offensive with a extremely good lead run. Mikko had a decent stutter out of the gate and it seemed to set the tone for the rest of the run. With the title of TQ under his belt already, Alfredo was able to put together some great runs and lock down the win and First Place!!! Mikko took home a hard fought Second Place.

Congratulations to the Winners, First Place – Alfredo Chan III, Second Place – Mikko Yang, and Third Place – Aydin Angulo! Some amazing driving by all three!

Sportsman Class
The Sportsman Class was a little smaller this round, but that didn’t make it any less exciting. First up was Zach Watson vs. Alfredo Herrera. Alfredo was able to pull off the win, landing Zach in Third. Alfredo went up against Don Chang for the Finals. Don was able to land himself the win and First Place! Alfredo took home a respectable Second Place!

Congratulations to the Sportsman winners – First Place – Don Chang, Second Place – Alfredo Herrera, and Third Place – Zach Watson!!!

Congratulations to our Sportsman Class Winners – First – Don Chang, Second – Alfredo Herrera, and Third – Zach Watson

Next Round is the Regional Finals for SoCal! It is also the Double Points Round!
Talk about exciting. REMEMBER, there is still a chance to qualify for the Super Drift Championship 2021 U.S.A. Finals in October. Just come out to Round 8 and land a podium spot, or participate in 4 or more Regionals.

See you at Round 8!

SUPER DRIFT CHAMPIONSHIP 2021 U.S.A FINALS

The Super Drift Championship 2021 USA Finals is quickly approaching
We know people are making plans to attend, so we wanted to provide a rough schedule for the week. Some of the details of the event may change, but what is happening on the dates has been set. There will be periodic updates here as we get closer to the event.

Update October 19, 2021:

Here we are, the week of the Super Drift Championship 2021 U.S.A. Finals / Championship! Super-G will be open special hours to allow testing and tuning for the upcoming competition this weekend. Keep in mind, Super-G’s surface is polished concrete and is one of the more slick surfaces around. Please allow time to tune for this.

COVID-19 – Los Angeles County requires us to enforce a MANDATORY Mask Policy. Masks will be required to be warn at all times while inside the venue. Keep in mind, we don’t like it any more than you do. SO PLEASE, do your part to make this easy for all of us. Let’s be grateful we are able to come together and share this great hobby we are all a part of.

Spec Tire – Since DS Racing had announced the discontinuation of the Super-G Spec Tire, DS Racing Comp III LF-5, we have been working with DS Racing to come up with a solution since the LF-5 was the best tire we had used to date. Being unsure of shipping these days, we couldn’t be certain the new Super-G Spec Tire – The TSG-007 would be in our possession in time for the finals. Fortunately, our shipment has landed and the new TSG-007 tire has met all of our expectations. To level the playing field, and further remove any home court advantage, we will be using the the new TSG-007 Tire for the SDC2021 USA Finals. They will be available starting today, Tuesday, October 19th.

New Track Layout. The layout for the SDC2021 USA Championship is now live. The qualifying line will be disclosed on Friday, October 22nd. Nobody other than myself is aware of the line that will be used for the Finals. Please don’t ask, cause I like being the only one who knows.


Remember, it’s all about having fun! Can’t wait to see all of you this weekend!!!

Update August 27, 2021:

  • Driver’s Meeting (In Depth) has been moved to Friday at 3:00pm
  • Start time of the qualifying rounds on Friday, and Saturday to 5:00pm
  • Open Session (Everyone) has been moved to 6:30pm – 12:00am Friday and Saturday
  • Competition Start Time changed to Sunday 2:00pm
  • Open Session (Sunday) changed to 5:00pm to 12:00am
  • Cost for the event added
  • Link for Official Rules for Super Drift Championship 2021 U.S.A. Finals added

We have made provisions for everybody to be able to session together, Competitors and Non-Competitors, on every day of Finals Week. So if you are considering coming out, but were not sure if you would be able to drive, rest assured there will be time. 

We have worked out special pricing at the Baldwin Park Courtyard Marriott for any of our out of town guests. Just follow the link to access this:
Courtyard Marriott – Project-G Corp. Special Pricing

WHO CAN COMPETE IN THE FINALS: 
There are 4 ways to qualify to compete in the Super Drift Championship 2021 USA Finals:
1 – Champion of your designated region (Super-G will provide your lodging)
2 – Any podium finish in your designated region
3 – Have participated in a minimum of 50% of your designated regionals (*revised as of 10/1/21)
4 – If you do not have a Super Drift Championship Regional with 200 miles of where you reside (Email Steve.superg@gmail.com to confirm)

Entry Fee:
$65.00 (Pre-registration also includes Dinner and Track Fee for Thursday, October 21)
Includes:

Track fee for Oct. 22, 23, 24. (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday)
Spec. Tires (Set of 4)

FORMAT: (Depending on the number of competitors)
Qualifying
Round 1 (Friday) 
Every competitor will be given 2 qualifying runs
The Top 16 qualifiers of Round 1 will be seeded in the TOP 32 

Qualifying
Round 2 (Saturday) 
The remaining competitors (Not In Top 16) will be given 2 qualifying runs
The Top 15 qualifiers of Round 2 will be seeded in the bottom half of the Top 32
The next 31 highest qualifiers will be seeded in the Bottom 32
The remainder will be seeded in the Lower Brackets (If enough competitors permit)

Tsuiso (Battles)
Sunday
The Winner of the Lower Brackets will take the 32nd spot in the Bottom 32
The Winner of the Bottom 32 will take the 32nd spot in the Top 32 

The Winner of the Top 32 will be Crowned The Super Drift Championship 2021 USA Drift King!

OFFICIAL RULES HERE:

Schedule for the week of Finals:

Tuesday Oct. 19th
Practice Day 
(Standard Track Fee Applies)
3:00pm – Open Session (Everybody Welcome)
11:00pm – Venue Close

Wednesday Oct. 20th
Practice Day
(Standard Track Fee Applies)
3:00pm – Open Session (Everybody Welcome)
11:00pm – Venue Close

Thursday Oct. 21st
Opening Day / Meet and Greet 
12:00pm – Open Session (Everybody Welcome)
7:00pm – Dinner provided by Super-G (Pre-Registered Competitors)
12:00am – Venue Close

Friday Oct. 22nd
Qualifying / Practice / Open Session 
12:00pm – Open Session (Everybody Welcome)
1:00pm – Test/Tune/Practice (Competitors Only)
3:00pm – Drivers Meeting. In-Depth Coverage of Rules (HIGHLY RECOMMENDED for anyone competing in the Super Drift Championship Finals.
5:00pm – Qualifying Round 1

6:30pm – Open Session (Everybody Welcome)
12:00am – Venue Close

Saturday Oct. 23rd
Qualifying / Practice / Open Session 
12:00pm – Open Session (Everybody Welcome)
1:00pm – Test / Tune / Practice (Competitors Only)
5:00pm – Qualifying Round 2
6:30pm – Open Session (Everybody Welcome)
12:00am – Venue Close

Sunday, Oct. 24th
Super Drift Championship 2021 USA Finals 
12:00pm – Practice (Competitors Only)
2:00pm – Drivers Meeting / Competition
Award Ceremony to Immediately Follow

5:00pm – Open Session (Everybody Welcome)
12:00am – Venue Closed

Information subject to change without warning. Super-G will not be held responsible for any expenses, damages, etc. incurred.

FIRST LOOK: MST LBMT Mustang WIDEBODY

MST Finally drops their Mustang Widebody Bodyset. A very nice 200mm and 206mm width! The aggressive styling is a must have! One of the best looking newer gen Mustangs on the market!

Looks like it comes with some realistic light buckets (already painted black), molded flares and wing, and even a rear defroster!

Order yours today! We have it IN STOCK as of JULY 29, 2021:

FIRST LOOK: PANDORA HILUX TRUCK (89-94 PICKUP) RN80

Pandora debuts their newest body! The holy grail of 90’s mini truck, the Toyota Hilux (89-94 RN80). These are the last trucks before the Tacoma came to market. These trucks came in a variety of forms from all over the world. They had 2 door, 4 door, 2 door extended cab, and 4×4 options. However, a lot of have always wanted the infamous standard cab short bed. Here it is:

Looks like Pandora is offering these with 2 bumper styles as well as 2 grills styles. You can customize your front end as well as the rear! The truck comes with an oem style rear bumper as well as roll pan. The combinations will be endless!

They even go a step further and include a dash, steering wheel and rear view mirrors! This truck will definately be a popular choice for many people, even outside of rc drift!

Super-G Will be receiving these towards the end of July or EARLY August(depending on customs). We can’t wait to start getting these in. The MINITRUCK CARSHOW will be coming up soon. D21 HARDBODIES and these HILUX will be amazing to check out!

You can reserve yours today by checking out a preorder below:

Super Drift Championship 2021 Round 6

July 11, 2021

This past Saturday was the Super Drift Championship 2021 Round 6 for the SoCal Region. This seriously had to be the round of the season so far! It seems like every round gets better and better, but this was one action packed event!

The Regulators - Steve Fujita and Manny Campalans
The Regulators – Steve Fujita and Manny Campalans

The Judges

This round we found ourselves missing our 3rd judge. Shaine Collins had some family business to attended to at the last minute, and Ted Britt wasn’t able to make it out this round either, so after a brief discussion, Manny decided he would take the zero for the round to ensure the judging was of the level we have always upheld. We all owe Manny a huge thank you for sacrificing the possible points he could have accumulated for this round. He said he was going to win this round, but I guess now we’ll never know.

The Hoonigan TQ of the event - Alfredo Chan III (Team RAZR / Tech1Drift)
The Hoonigan TQ of the event – Alfredo Chan III (Team RAZR / Tech1Drift)

Qualifying

With all the heavy hitters coming out for Round 6, we knew the qualifying was going to be insane and we couldn’t be more right! There were a lot a good runs. Aydin Angelo (Team Super-G) threw down an awesome 93! The judges were blown away. That was some of the best driving we had seen all season. Then a few runs later, Alfredo Chan III (Team RAZR / Tech1Drift) stepped up to the plate and put down 2 back to back RIDICULOUS runs!!! His first was his best, but also the best we have seen ALL SEASON! Precise, fully in the zones, smooth, no corrections, and with speed that showed Alfredo had full confidence in his abilities. Since Alfredo’s qualifier was early on, both judges pulled back a point just in the event someone were to pull off something even more amazing, but Alfredo’s run proved to be something NOBODY was going to touch! After qualifying was finished, we as judges discussed Alfredo’s run and realized we both wanted to award full points, but pulled back for the same reasons. Officially Alfredo walked away with a solid 98. Unofficially though, he pulled a 100!!! Congratulations Alfredo for winning the Hoonigan Top Qualifier of Round 6!!!! That is an accomplishment to be proud of.

Tsuiso Battles

The battles were amazing this round as well. We had a lot of new comers joining us, which is always awesome! After all was said and done, it all came down to Mikko Yang (Team ReveD / Team DStyle) vs. Haoyan Huang (Team WallRide) for 1st and 2nd, and Jason Fordyce (Team Super-G) vs. Christian Gonzales (Team Nemurenai) for 3rd and 4th. First up was Jason vs. Christian. Christian was first to lead and he put down a really good lead. It was a bit on the conservative side, but he did what was needed to put the pressure on Jason. Then it was Jason’s turn to lead and Christian was on the chase. Christian poured on the pressure and Jason was obviously giving it all he had. Jason was putting down a great lead run, coming extremely close to knocking down some markers that would have ended his run, but he pulled it off cleanly. Then it happened, feeling the pressure from Christians chase, he made the slightest of miscalculations at one of the trickiest parts of the track, and made contact with the fence. Christian locked down a hard fought and stressful 3rd Place!!!

Hao Huang (L) / Mikko Yang (R)
Next up was the finals! It all came down to Mikko vs. Hao. Both these guys are no strangers to being in this position. First out was Mikko leading and Hao chasing. Mikko puts down a really good lead and Hao gives a pretty decent chase. Then it’s Hao’s lead and Mikko on the chase! Hao does a great job leading and Mikko does his part on his chase. The judges needed to go to the Super-G Replay System to confirm what they had believed they saw on Mikko’s lead. The replay system confirmed, Hao had made contact just before the finish line, causing his car to bounce and clearly giving Mikko the First Place finish! Hao took home a respectable Second Place, and Christian landed Third Place!

First Place - Mikko Yang, Second Place - Hao Huang, Third Place - Christian Gonzales
First Place – Mikko Yang, Second Place – Hao Huang, Third Place – Christian Gonzales

Congratulations to the winners of the. Super Drift Championship 2021 Series – SoCal Region Round 6!

First Place - Mikko Yang, Second Place - Haoyan Huang, Third Place - Christian Gonzales
First Place – Mikko Yang, Second Place – Haoyan Huang, Third Place – Christian Gonzales

Sportsman Class

The Sportsman Class was exciting as always! It all came down to DJ Young vs. Mike Ill for 1st and 2nd, and Don Chang vs. Gerald Maugeri for 3rd and 4th. First up was Don vs. Gerald. It was an exciting run, but Don was able to pull off the win and lock down 3rd Place. Then it was DJ vs. Mike. Both these drivers did their best and DJ was able to put together the win and took home 1st Place. Mike locked down 2nd!

First Place - DJ Young, Second Place - Mike Ill, Thrid Place - Don Chang
First Place – DJ Young, Second Place – Mike Ill, Thrid Place – Don Chang

Congratulations to our Sportsman Class winners!

JUST REMEMBER, THERE ARE STILL 2 MORE ROUNDS FOR THE SOCAL REGIONALS! If you have not qualified for the finals in October as of yet, A PODIUM FINISH (Expert) will earn you a spot! Regional Champion, Podium Finish, or 4 or more event participation gets you in!