2018 - ONETEN SERIES, ROUNDS 1 & 2

2018 - ONETEN SERIES, ROUNDS 1 & 2

OCT 6-7, SHANGHAI, CHINA

A new arrival on the Chinese RC scene, the electric onroad based OneTen Series held its inaugural race weekend in the city of Shanghai. Organised by RedRC Events, it is made up of four events (2 in China and 2 in Hong Kong) but each weekend consists of two completely separate rounds. Another unique aspect to the series is that Saturday's opening round format gets changed for Sunday's second encounter. The first challenge of the weekend for drivers is the more traditional 3 rounds of qualifying, albeit they are 6-minutes long, followed by triple Mains of 4-minute duration. Sunday's schedule then puts drivers through four 4-minute qualifiers with a single 8-minute final. If qualifying didn't go your way there is the chance to bump up through Sunday's finals. Excited to be the title sponsor of the OneTen Series, we sent Akio and Jin to represent us with their IF14s and it turned out to be a very successful trip to the indoor RCI V2 track.

Round 1 - After topping the 2-rounds of practice on Saturday morning, Akio continued that form throughout the day. In the opening qualifier, he was the only driver to post 35-laps over the 6-minutes with his fastest lap 1/10th faster than anyone else. Behind, Jin posted the second fastest time, a result they would repeat in Q2. The final qualifier was to be the fastest of the day with Akio managing to complete a clean sweep of 35-lap runs, no other driver able to break that barrier.  For Jin, he just missed out on another P2 in Q3 to Jan Ratheisky but it didn't effect the overall grid and he lined up second behind Akio. With the A-Mains 1-minute shorter than usual, it was important to get a good start and that is exactly what Akio did from the TQ quickly opening up a gap over Jin that meant he was never challenged. A2 again saw the leaders maintain position and even after having a few moments in traffic, Akio won comfortably with 3.1-seconds in hand over Jin to give him the overall Round 1 win. Choosing to run A3, even though he already had the maximum championship points, Akio was on target for the perfect race day until little after the half way stage when he made contact with a car he was lapping allowing Jin to get passed for the win to lockdown an Infinity 1-2 overall. You couldn't ask for a much better start to a new series - TQ in qualifier, 1-2 on the podium!

Round 2 - While Sunday's format included an extra round of qualifying it was still 2 to count. Continuing his previous day's form Akio again laid down the benchmark over 3-consecutive laps by topping the single round of practice from Jin. With Akio easily topping Q1, Jin felt he needed to improve the stability of his car opening qualifying with a P3 behind Ratheisky. Working with Kotonori San, he was to make changes to his car every run. After another P3 in Q2, he was happier in Q3 securing second but retiring from the final qualifier he had to settle for 3rd on the grid while Akio made his second TQ start having topped all four qualifiers. With just a single A-Main deciding the Round 2 outcome, Akio did all his work on the opening laps to pull clear of Ratheisky and once happy with the gap he just paced the rest of the race. Changes to Jin's set-up for the final resulted in his car being the best it had been all weekend. It allowed him to make a charge for second but given the tight track, overtaking was alway going to be difficult and he finished third. Two cars on the podium two days in a row is not a bad result to have in the books come Sunday evening and is the kind of form the guys will be aiming to maintain. Rounds 3 & 4 of the OneTen Series will take drivers outdoors and onto asphalt at the TRC track in Hong Kong in earlier December.

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2018 ENS SEASON FINALE

2018 ENS SEASON FINALE

SEPT 20-23, FIORANO, ITALY

The Euro Nitro Series reached a conclusion at a favourite among racers - Mini Autodromo Jody Scheckter, Fiorano. Having claimed the first title of 2018 after Arie was crowned the inaugural 1:8 40+ champion at the previous round in Austria, the team travelled to the fourth & final round in the hunt for top honours in 1:10 and 1:8. After securing his second win of the season at Round 3, Jilles was going for his second ENS title with Dario, the winner of Round 2 in Germany, also vying for his second title in 1:8. Despite it being the end of September, the weather in Italy was to bring glorious sunshine over the weekend with temperatures hitting 30 degrees. The stage was set for a thrilling finish to what is already the fifth season of the ENS.

As is tradition on ENS weekends, Thursday is a day of free practice but for Dario it was to bring a frustrating start to an important weekend. Unfortunately he would collect a car that after having its own came across the track and into Dario's path with the impact destroying his race car. Not what you want on only your second run of the day. It would take some time for Dario to get back up to speed with him only 11th fastest at the conclusion of free practice at midday on Friday. Carmine however ensured the IF18 was at the sharp end posting the 2nd fastest time with Jessie also up there in P5. In 1:10, Jilles finished free practice fourth quickest with Teemu taking his IF15 to the the second fastest time.

With two controlled practices to determine the heats for qualifying, Friday's action to end the first of the four rounds, Carmine maintained his form with the 2nd fastest 3-consecutive laps. Getting his car more & more close to what he had before his previous day's crash, Dario showed he was back in contention as he improved to the 3rd fastest time.  In 1:10 it was a similar story with Teemu again the fastest Infinity driver in P3 as Jilles seeded 5th in the 11-car top heat for qualifying.

With the evening timing of Q1 making for a cooler track, Jilles kicked things off with a P3 run ahead of Teemu. Francesco put in the fifth fastest time with Andy completing the Top 6 for a strong start to qualifying.  In 1:8 40+ Arie opened with a TQ run while Dario capped off the days action with a P2 in front of Carmine. Alberto made it three cars in the Top 6.

With another sunny day greeting drivers on Saturday, an early mistake from Jilles left his with a P5 for Q2 but a strong performance from Teem netted him second with Francesco improving to go 4th fastest. Unfortunately in 1:8 it was to a be a frustrating finish to second qualifier for Dario as he was hampered by traffic over the final two laps while on the TQ pace. Having been on for the fastest time of the weekend, his car enjoying the cool morning conditions, he ended up P2. The third round netted a clean Infinity sweep with Teemu, Dario and Arie all topping the times.  Arie's third TQ run of the weekend, it secured him pole for the A-Main while the result gave Teemu and Dario a chance of the overall TQ. Warmer track conditions fir Q4 however meant getting the time needed to take the tie breaker would increase the difficulty of the challenge. In the end, Teemu was 3rd fastest on his final attempt while a 110% push from Dario, knowing he needed the quickest time of the weekend, resulted in a mistake. Overall both drivers would start 2nd while Jilles would go for the title from 4th on the grid. Doubling the number of IF15s on the grid, Francesco and Andy secured 6th & 7th respectively. In 1:8 the IF18 was even better represented with Carmine starting 4th, Alberto 7th, Lamberto 9th and Jesse 10th. In 40+, while Arie completed a 100% TQ record for the season securing his fourth pole position and Bo starting directly behind him, the big news was that Kenji had made his first ENS A-Main qualifying 9th!

First of the A-Mains on Sunday would be the 40+ and it would be incident packed for our guys. Starting to pull clear, Arie was denied taking win No. 4 after contact with a lapped car. Dropping him to the back and having to pit for repairs he found himself 3-laps down but over the remainder of the 30-minute final he was able to recover to grab the final podium position only 1-lap down on winner Andrea Hächler. Unfortunately for Bo, having taken the lead from Arie, his hopes off a first win ended rather suddenly with contact with the pit wall with 10-minutes to go. Still, having missed Round 3 in Austria, the points for being classified 9th in Fiorano would lead to Bo becoming Vice Champion. For Kenji, while it was a rather hot A-Main debut, he progressed two places to finish 7th.

With a noticeable heightening of tension ahead of the 1:10 final, given the title stakes, for Jilles the approach to the race was 100% strategic. Even his rivals predicted a very calculated race from him. At the start, with Top Qualifier Dominic Greiner running wide into the second corner, Teemu seized the opportunity to make a pass for the lead. Getting down the inside under braking he didn't have enough brake to get stopped resulting in contact with Dominic that dropped him to the back. For Jilles the start was trouble free and he set about his 'long game' which even if Greiner took the win required him to only need second. The first to pit for tyres, Jilles opted to change just one side and when his rivals later changed all four tyres with no significant advantage in their pace, Jilles knew he just needed to keep the car on track to get the P2 he needed. Unfortunately for Teemu, while he would set the fastest lap of the race, an off resulted in a flame out and he finished 7th. Up front however Jilles and his pitman Felix executed the perfect race to give us our second ENS title in 1:10.

Now the question was could we do the triple? For Dario the scenario was simple, he needed to win. At the start Dario shadowed Top Qualifier Simon Kurzbuch with both drivers pitting at the same time for fuel. On the second stop however his pitman Massimo found Dario a few tenths with a super fast stop. Coming out right on Simon's rear wing it was enough to make a pass possible on the out lap and once in front Dario never looked back. The race later became a matter of finishing once Simon hit mechanical problems. Our third ENS title of the season, it was extra special as it was our first time to lift the 1:8 Championship, the class in which our company's journey began. Also adding to the celebrations was that Carmine made it a 1-2 to finish out our amazing 2018 season.

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2018 EUROPEAN REEDY RACE OF CHAMPIONS

2018 EUROPEAN REEDY RACE OF CHAMPIONS

SEPT 13-16 , NURBURGRING, GERMANY

The legendary International Reedy Race of Champions for touring cars is traditionally held annually in the USA at the end of May but 2018 presented the opportunity for a European edition of the unique heads up race format event. With the Euro Offroad Series returning to the world famous mecca of motorsport that is the Nurburgring, running as part of the full size Blancpain GT Series weekend, the use of the 1,950 square metre Ring Arena meant enough space for a unique rc event. Building an offroad and an onroad track side by side. Looking to showcase the hobby in the best way possible, the Reedy format fitted the bill perfectly. As back to back reigning champions of the International Reedy Race of Champions with Marc, Infinity was excited to be part of European edition and the challenge to go to Germany and do the double.

18 invited drivers would do battle over 12 races with Thursday a practice day to get used to the carpet track. With the iconic Tamiya track in California bidding farewell to the Reedy Race this year, the track sold to become a self storage facility, the organisers at the Nurburgring tried to replicate the layout of the outdoor asphalt track and while not quite the same as the real thing the carpet kink copy did manage to catch out many drivers. Joining Marc, who knows a thing or two about winning the Reedy Race as he has been champion a record 7 times, to represent us was Yannic. The event marked both his international race debut with the team and his first ever Reedy appearance.

Day 1 began with the perfect start for both drivers, them each winning the first of the day's four rounds of racing. Yannic backed that up with second places in the next two rounds while Marc got a fourth and a second. The day ended with Yannic adding another P2 as Marc finished second behind Freddy Sudhoff in his final race.  Sudhoff held the overnight points lead but Yannic's consistency meant he was second overall with Marc third with a long 8 rounds of racing to go.

Saturday was to be Yannic's shining day as he completed a clean sweep to register the best score possible of 4 points from the four races. This put him top of the points and he further endorsed that position by opening the final day with another win. A tough Heat 10 followed with a P5 but able to drop two rounds, this would be the first potential throw out. Coming back with a third from his 11th race, the final race of the event was to be his worst with a P6 but counting as his second dropped result it didn't matter - he was champion with a total of 15 points. Behind it was a three way tie for second with Marc ending up on 19 points along with Ronald Volker and Sudhoff. After many calculations and re-checks of the points table it was Volker who was declared second with Sudhoff completing the Top 3. Unfortunately Marc was one win short in the tie break to make the podium.  

For Yannic the result is a great start to having him onboard our EP team and comes as a great boost ahead of the start of the Euro Touring Series which gets underway next month on carpet in Austria. Yannic has at least a now to remind Marc that he has the better Reedy Race record.  You can't better a 100% winning record!

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2018 ITALIAN CHAMPIONSHIP Rd.3

2018 ITALIAN CHAMPIONSHIP Rd.3

31/02-09-2018 MINIAUTODROMO M. ROSATI - GUBBIO

In the first weekend of September Italian season restart after the holiday break… In the beautiful location of the club Automodellismo 5 Colli was held the last round of National Championship to decide “who’s the fastest” of 2018. Our team drivers seemed in good position to bring home both titles but “racing is racing” and we never know what could happened during the weekend.

The track, that already host the 1:10 Worlds in 2016 was complete resurfaced with an amazing job of the organizers that completed the job only one week prior the event. Not a lot of entries this time probably because the date was too much close to vacations. Dario decided to attend 1:10 scale with Francesco while Carmine and Lamberto tried to secure the Championship after their 1-2 in Fiorano.

As often in 2018 main character of the race was again the bad weather: as we had super nice conditions Thursday and Friday for Saturday and Sunday the forecast carried tons of water… For this reason the timetable was modified starting qualifying on Friday afternoon to finish all the Amains before 17.00 when a big thunderstorm is expected.

In the three rounds we have a dominance of our drivers with Balestri fastest in 1:10 and Raiola fastest in 1:8;  both secured the TQ winning all the rounds. Tironi wasn’t completely satisfied of the matching car/engine on his IF15 and after the podium spot at EC in Portugal again finished 3rd. Collari tried different things to challenge Raiola at his best and took the 2nd spot for the Main. In F2 category the young Antonio di Martino, already semifinalist at EuroB in Cassino succeed to place the number 9 on his car for the final.

1:10 Expert Amain started at very strange hour for our hobby: at 11.30 in the morning the drivers were called on the rostrum and few minutes later Dario “take off” at the tone with an evident supremacy… Francesco stay in his roots together with Mazzeo for a while before flipping the car entering the main straight… This accident suggested more “care” and safer pace to our driver as he need only to control his competitors for final win. Tironi dropped 7th but in 15 minutes the chase for the podium was completed. Position were stable, strategy almost the same for all when entering the straight other candidate to final title Giliberto “spun” just in front of Balestri that hit him full speed… Dario retired, Mazzeo took the win and Francesco with 2nd place is the new Italian Champion! Well done Franci!

In 1:8 F2 Antonio makes a really good first half of race driving constantly in the midfield with good pace and consistent driving… unfortunately the 2nd set of tires wasn’t good as the first one and after a big accident at the end of the straight he must retired when a final 5th place still be possible… Will be for the next year…

The 1:8 Expert Amain confirmed the good intuition of organizers as 3 minutes to end of previous F1 Main a shower wet deeply the track… Race director decided to start any weather conditions after few minutes as forecast was even worse for the rest of the day. Raiola repeat the same theme of Dario getting the lead at the tone; Collari wasn’t comfortable as his team mate but stay in second until the first pit stop; Carmine open the gap driving fast and consistent whit Salemi that recovered strongly from the back of the field. As often happened Lamberto choose the “long run” strategy to try to fight  swapping leading and position for first 25 minutes when Carmine suffered couple of episodes that we could define as “bad luck”: he hits a stone and of the straight going longer close to the wall and few minutes after an umbrella used by Marshall to repair from the rain, due to the wind cross the track hitting the orange Infinity IF18… Fortunately nothing really happened aside little time lost and even with a bit of heartache for his pit crew he quickly recover the lead to win the race and the title finalizing the “perfect” weekend. Lamberto succeed to step on the podium in 3rd for another 1-2 this time on the overall ranking. IF15 and IF18 are Italian Champion… congrats to Francesco, Carmine and the whole team for the efforts and the very good result!

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Yannick Prümper

Creation Model is proud to welcome Yannic Prümper as new member of INF1NITY Racing Team. The German talented driver already proven his ability with important results in the last years and will be a great asset at race & development side to EP touring staff for the future. He will run the IF14 platform  from tomorrow at EWS series in Aigen and for upcoming years. Good luck Yannic and welcome onboard!

 

 

 

 

Sahashi Brothers

INF1NITY staff is really happy to announce the addition of Sahashi brothers to official Racing Team. The "fastest" family of R/C community is well known for their racing results in both categories 1:8 and 1:10 and we are confident they could achieve new trophies worldwide using our nitro platforms. We can't wait to see them at next WC in Homestead late October using the new IF15. Welcome to the team Tadahiko & Yuya!!!!

 

 

 

 

2018 EFRA EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIP 1/10

2018 EFRA EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIP 1/10

VILA REAL PORTUGAL 6-11/08/2018

Just couple of weeks after 1/8 Euro’s in Cassino the other bigger appointment for European Federation was held at Vila Real in Portugal… Race location was very nice, laydown in the mountains, not so far from Porto, that was already theater of 1/8 championship few years ago. The track was huge, especially for 1/10 Nitro touring cars, with very fast layout and many different racing lines options. From first day of practice on monday the biggest problems to face was an overall lack of traction and some wind breeze that suddenly arrived without notice to disturb the drivers. Entries was around 60 with the best European drivers in attendance. Our Official team attended to shake down the new IF15 for first time; Teemu, Dario, Francesco, Jilles, Carmine and Andy spreads many effort in practice days to collect as many info possible to prepare the World’s Championship in late october.

After three full days of practice and opening ceremony Wednesday afternoon on Thursday morning the race officially started with 2 control practice and 2 qualifying rounds. After reseeding all our drivers was classified in the 2 best heats with surprising 15 years old Milan Holthius from NL that get a place in fastest one. In qualifying Pietsch looked as the most comfortable driver on the track TQing 4 rounds and jumping directly in the final. The closest driver to challenge his speed seemed Leino that in some occasions was really close (in 3rd round only couple of tenths with faster laptime) and was second overall. Balestri, after struggling a bit in first heats, improved a lot seating in 3rd once gained the last round moving straight to superpole… Groskamp also struggling searching best setting of his materials on the track but with good driving consistency finished 7th just in front of Tironi 8th and Moore 9th… 5 cars in top ten looked very good but was even better looking at Raiola that finish 11th after a bad start and Holthius that get a Semi’s spot 15th nine days after he finished to build the car. All IF15 are in semifinals!

Superpole was a very competitive show… Highlights start with Alessio that repeated his trick to cross the line full speed (as he makes in Gubbio 2 years ago) setting 20.8 in hot early afternoon conditions… but the best had to come: Dario was confident to have a chance to jump in front “cutting” as much possible the racing line of the big sweeper: in the two first attempts he suffer the loosing of the rear-end but at third lap he hold on FULL throttle sliding a bit for an astonishing 20.6! Teemu had safer approach and was forced to pass trough the semis.

For the final day temperature raised a bit giving to all drivers more concerns about fuel milage and tire strategies… 21 sec lap times didn’t allowed any risks in pit stops and due to fast layout (amazing sweeper before finish line airpin) the different wearing of tires inside/outside was unusually high. All solutions are possible: 1 full, 1full and 1 outside, 2 full. SemiB was the first with only Francesco for Infinity that start safe, drive smooth and consistent with a super 5minutes refueling strategy… 3rd place and Amain bump up for him! SemiA saw five of our cars at the start… Teemu put “cruise control mode ON” and drove safely first place tone to tone. Unfortunately for Andy first and Jilles later a stop caused them to finish here their race. Carmine suffer a problem in the beginning but he managed to arrive at his first refueling, tuned the engine and then started to chasing the field with nice pace having clearly in mind the overall time limit of SemiB… the 4th place with faster time gave him the Amain spot; even Milan was faster than other semi but he finish only 6th slightly missing the Final but bringing home the European Junior Title; congrats to you and your father!

AMAIN: Four drivers with IF15… after presentation and warmup, Final starts in the hottest hour of the day… As described before the strategies will have maximum importance in these conditions hoping to avoid any failure. At the start Dario passed Robert in two corner showing great confidence in his package; Teemu avoid any problem or contact early stage and drop down 2 position just behind Francesco and in front of Carmine. At 6th lap a little fault of Balestri allowed Pietsch to lead again the field; at first fuel stop Dario’s race was decided by a lack of fuel (or power) forcing him to get marshaled and loosing lot of time… Tironi with his  fuel strategy quickly recover positions taking the lead often when rivals go to the pits and Leino drives his way to the front with consistent pace.  Raiola suffered couple of stops in the pits that didn’t allowed him to express all his potential. Tire change was the turning point: Robert, Francesco and even Dario that chasing the group trying to recover positions planned 2 full set change. Teemu and Alessio  that were in front only 1 full… And was the winning choice; smooth driving of Leino with used tires compared to competitors on fresh set show the great consistency of the Finnish driver; a great pit work completed the job. Pietsch hold on fighting for a while then he had to pit long time to fix a problem; Mazzeo spread all his energies to fill the gap but when he catched Leino, 3 minutes to go, he had to “splash” to complete the 45 minutes. Francesco sure of podium spot cruised to finish line taking care to avoid any problem and Dario finalized his chasing with a final 4th place. Congratulation Teemu! And Thank You Very Much to you and Milan for this European Titles! See you at the Worlds in Homestead!

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1:8 IC EFRA EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIP

1:8 IC EFRA EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIP

L.COLLARI TRACK - CASSINO - 16/21-07-2018

After one year “jump” due to World Championship held in Europe in 2017 the most important continental race come back in one of well known “speed temples” located in Italy… RME Cassino is, without doubts, a beautiful track in middle of Italy and its club President Gianluca one of the “media innovators” of our hobby with all the organizers really passionate and dedicated. Almost 100 entries for an A & B Euro champs combined with a nice surprise of 9 under16 new drivers. Infinity attended the event with good part of European team looking to confirm the latest good results of our IF18…

Monday and Tuesday practice all drivers had to face the track little bit dusty that cannot give the necessary grip for 1/8 category; most of them mainly concentrate choosing engines and body shells. Even the weather doesn’t helped with some brief showers that stops practice heats often… As happened frequently in last races our fastest guy was Dario already engaged in an hard fight for the lead with Simon… All lap times are VERY close; a blink of an eye can decide five positions difference.

In hot weather conditions (average 35˚C whole week), after two Control Practice that see our drivers seeding in fastest heats, Thursday Qualifying starts again with that duel: first round go to Swiss driver with Italian 2nd (0.041 sec) due to a lack of fuel in the last corner followed by Teemu in great shape for the 3rd position. The second round of the day saw Balestri super fast getting 18 laps but in the last lap a misunderstanding between him, Pietsch and Haclër (already stopped) in the sweeper probably costs him the overall best performance in 4 minutes. Leino 4th, Picco 7th and Raiola 8th the other Infinity drivers classified in top10.

Friday morning the battle starts again with Simon faster six tenths on Dario… a good 10th place for Francesco that improve a bit his ranking. In the fourth round Balestri restore the tie situation postponing to last and “hottest round” the final verdict for the TQ; Leino, Picco and Raiola again in the top10 to secure their semis. As often happens when the expectations are high something happens… Pietsch takes the 5th round gifting to Kurzbuch the TQ and relegating Dario to SuperPole. Teemu for 1point was 6th, Alberto 8th and Carmine 9th. In semis also Nicola 11th and Francesco 14th. Lamberto had to start n˚1 in the quarter finals due to some setting problems.

The Euro “B” had some of our customers fighting for the top positions: Kammer drove really well his Infinity winning 2 rounds and get overall TQ for 1 point in front of Mazza a fast local driver. On third spot sits another Infinity car of Wehiert that improved every phase and won the last round of qualy. Bo Nielsen from Denmark sits in semis and young Di Marino (14 years old) in quarters so will be the first to start in late afternoon helped by Raiola’s family.

Superpole Challenge: Dario starts as last and needed only few laps to set the best chrono jumping directly in the Amain. In the B championship Dennis suffer a technical problem in the warmup of his timed laps and loose his chance to bump up direct in the final. In lower mains Di Marino succeed to bump up for another Infinity in semifinals.

Saturday morning weather is still fine with sun and hot temperature; Lamberto was the first to hit the track winning his B quarter in style tone to tone. B Semifinal went really bad as all our drivers cannot bump up for different problems: Leino stripped a gear when was easy 2nd, Francesco lost his Amain spot crashing while trying overtaking a competitor in front and Lamberto suffered a lack of performance compare to his 1/4 pace. In B Semifinal was the opposite: all our Infinity drivers managed to bump up with Picco 2nd, Marrone 3rd and Raiola 4th even if they had to face some critical moment during the competition. In the EuroB Antonio had a terrible crash at the end of the straight while Dennis dominated  the field managing a number 4 for the Amain; in the other semi Bo wasn’t lucky enough to solve some problems happened.

EURO B AMAIN: the race was intense and not extremely lucky for our colors… Kammer loose the lead in the first lap but followed Mazza with good pace until lap 72 when he had to retire for some radio problems. Wehiert unfortunately was hit by other car around lap 40 and he had to pit to repair the body shell: also with lot of time lost he comes back to track pushing maximum hard to recover as much possible… His chasing saw an happy ending when, almost one minute to go, succeed to pass Wintzerith for the 3rd place. Congrats!

EURO A MAIN: the most awaited 45minutes of race was delayed first and cancelled later after few laps due to a storm that wet the track for a while… In that slippery conditions Dario showed good confidence overtaking the leader and controlling the pace but couple laps later race director stopped the race  setting a complete new start for the 17.00 in any weather conditions. At the new start Balestri was again in the tail of Kurzbuch sometimes giving the feeling to can overtake in some points of the track; Nicola wasn’t far in fourth when he has to retire after only five minutes. Unfortunately Dario’s race didn’t last longer and come to an end after only 9 minutes for an engine failure. Picco showed a good pace and lap by lap recovered many positions until to arrive at 2nd place; meanwhile Raiola had to fight  hard in the back to recover a decent position… at this level is really hard to overtake even if you’re the fastest on the track (13.927 for Carmine). With different pit strategies position can vary every minute: Alberto after his tire change was 4th with little gap from 3rd when also his engine stop. Carmine was again the first of our team (5) while Simon and Robert fight for the win till the last lap with less a second distance.
See you in 2 weeks for 1/10 EFRA EC in Portugal!

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2018 JMRCA ALL JAPAN CHAMPIONSHIP

2018 JMRCA ALL JAPAN CHAMPIONSHIP

JULY 20-22 , TAKAHARA, JAPAN

The Japanese National Championships are particularly special for Infinity. As a Japanese company, given that the JMCRA title is the top prize RC racing has to offer in our home country, we take extra special pride in this prestigious title. Having made our JMRCA EP debut in the event last year, the introduction year of our IF14, we achieved the perfect result. Akio became the champion with Naoto making it an Infinity 1-2. So no pressure then as the team travelled to the 2in1 Circuit in Takahara Resort as the defending champions. This year however we bolstered the team with the addition of Jin Sawada and that was to reap the rewards.

After the single round of seeding practice it was Naoto who led the way for the team with the second fastest time over 3-consecutive laps. Behind, Akio managed third fastest with Jin right behind so everyone was feeling confident ahead of the six rounds of qualifying that lay ahead. In the opening qualifier it was Akio that had the best pace posting the 2nd fastest time by less than 3/10th of a second ahead of Jin with Naoto fourth following a late error. A solid Q1 performance, the drivers could push harder for Q2 and that is exactly what they did to take control of the remaining 5 qualifiers. Naoto claimed the first Infinity TQ when he led a 1,2,3 for the IF14 ahead of Jin and Akio in the second round. Next it was the turn of Jin to go to the top while Akio added a TQ run in Q4. The penultimate round saw Jin again go fastest to become the first to double up as Akio had a P3 run.

With 3 from 6 rounds to count, the final qualifier would decide who was going to be Top Qualifier with four drivers in contention. Akio would come out on top taking Q6 in front of Jin to put the pair equal on points. Jin's time from the previous heat however was the quickest of the weekend and he was the one who would start the triple finals from pole ahead of Akio with Naoto lining up 4th.

The opening A-Main started with Jin and Akio pulling clear of the pack but on his third lap Jin lost the rear of his car spinning out and allowing Akio go to the front. While Naoto had got passed 3rd place qualifier Yugo Nagashima for 2nd, the gap to Akio was considerable. With a super fast car he closed him down to run on his rear bumper, even giving Akio a tap to doubly make sure he knew he was there. With four laps to go Akio clipped the curbing entering a corner causing him to run wide on the exit as Naoto slipped through for the win.

After ending A1 down in 5th, Jin made sure he didn't repeat his error in A2 and claimed a tone to tone win despite also getting a tap from behind from Naoto. Naoto again had another strong race from fourth on the grid to finish second having got by Akio on the third lap with a nice pass down his inside coming off the main straight. Closing right in on Jin, he couldn't find away through and soon found himself under attack from behind from Akio but the order stayed unchanged to the end. So like qualifying it was all going to come down to the last race to decide the winner.

Jin again made a good start but so did Naoto who was quickly battling with Akio for second - Akio having to work hard to keep him behind. Lap 4 brought the change as Akio ran over the curbing in the section before the main straight spinning across the bow of Naoto. While Naoto somehow avoided contact the following pack was less lucky. Hunting down Jin, Naoto would close the gap but not as quickly as he needed, eventually running out of time. Jin took the A3 win and with it the JMRCA title. A successful defence of the title as a manufacturer, the result was even more special than last year because we achieved a dream full Infinity podium with Naoto finishing second and Akio third. In the open class we also had a strong representation in the A-Main with Ion Shionoya and Shin Sawada, Jin's younger brother, finishing 7th and 10th respectively.

A brilliant performance from all the team, it is going to be hard to better the result in 2019 - but we sure will try!

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2018 ETS ROUND 6

2018 ETS ROUND 6

JULY 13-15 TRENCIN, SLOVAKIA

Round 6 of the Euro Touring Series took our EP team to the World famous Hudy Arena for the finale of the championship's 11th season. The sixth time the ETS has travelled to the Slovakian venue, racing at your rivals own test track always makes the prospect of an end of season victory all the more challenging. That said, the weekend got off to a promising start in free practice. After seven runs, both Marc and Akio produced Top 3 pace with Marc just a tenth of a second off the top of the time sheets.

In controlled practice, while Marc would struggle to get in three fast consecutive laps, Akio maintained his form at the front. Second fastest in CP1 he was just 0.038 off the top. Changing to a harder front spring for CP2, Akio didn't like the change but with only 2-drivers in the Top 10 managing to better their times he seeded 2nd for qualifying. Having opted to run ARS on his IF14 for the two seeding runs, Marc ended up P8 leading him to revert back to running, as he did in free practice, without ARS for qualifying.

With the weather hot and humid, this would influence qualifying. With plenty of fast moving clouds above, breaks in this coverage brought almost instant temperature changes effecting the traction levels. In Q1, after switching back to the spring with which he set his best seeding time, Akio struggled with a lack of steering. For Marc, the first of the four qualifiers showed improvement but a bad last lap cost him positions and he ended up P6. With Saturday's action concluding with Q2, before the drivers could enjoy a beer or two at the ETS' end of season presentation night, Akio would bounce back with a P3 run. A small set-up change and a cooler track making for a better car.

Q3 on Sunday morning would prove to be Marc's best. Opting to use his third set of allocated tyres he was third fastest. Having pulled up in Q2, this was an important run to lock him into the A-Main. With the final qualifier dominated by drivers who saved their last set of new tyres, the final ranking left Akio and Marc to line up 8th and 9th respectively - difficult positions from which to make any impact on the race.  Akio would manage a P6 in A1 and after a DNF in A2 he was again able to make up 2 places in A3 to finish 6th overall. For Marc they would be tough finals. Finishing 10th in A1, A2 & 3 ended with DNFs. A season that started so well with Marc winning the opening round of the championship it was not the end we had worked. Still we could celebrate the overall standings as Marc took second, one better than the season before, with Akio's efforts securing him 8th for the season.

In 40+ Masters we also claimed a season end podium thanks to Beni. Winner at the previous round in the Netherlands, he qualified 4th and was able to move up a position in the finals thanks to an A3 win that helped him cap off the season with another podium and 3rd in the overall standings.  In Formula, Jitse didn't have the best of finals having qualified his IF11 8th but he ended the car's debut season with a promising 6th overall. In Pro Stock, Dominic flew the Infinity flag in the A-Main ending his ETS season 8th overall in the championship's biggest class.

Our first full ETS season as a touring car manufacturer, we have to give a special thanks to all our drivers for their commitment and effort over this campaign. Our quest to become ETS champions continues so bring on ETS Season #12.

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2018 ENS ROUND 3

2018 ENS ROUND 3

JULY 06-08 AIGEN, AUSTRIA

The Austrian track of Aigen was the setting for Round 3 of the Euro Nitro Series. Situation 600 metres up in the picturesque hilly countryside, the track has been a happy hunting ground for the team with Teemu securing our first ever ENS win there in 2016 en route to becoming the overall 1:10 champion. Unfortunately Teemu's chances of a third win at the 290 metre long technical track weren't to be as he took sick and was unable to join Jilles and Francesco for the weekend's racing. With our drivers coming into Round 3 leading the points standings in all three classes, Dario and Carmine would lead the charge in 1:8 while our big Dutchman Arie made the trip already with one hand on the 40+ 1:8 championship trophy.

Thursday was an opportunity for everyone to get in some good mileage ahead of the main event. With Jilles the only one of our drivers to attend the race in 2017 when the track had just got a completely new surface, for the others the day was an important chance to get a feel for that new asphalt. Previously somewhat of a tyre eating track, the new asphalt has proven much more tyre friendly with it now creating low wear. On to Friday, and while the day started off dry, just after the drivers' briefing as everyone got ready for the two rounds of seeding practice Mother Nature paid yet another visit to a race this season to wash the track! Starting off gently, the rain soon reached maximum power. While it stopped and there was hope of getting a dry track, when it started again the decision was called that no more racing would take place for the rest of the day. The wait was somewhat less boring than usual as the super nice staff of the host club put the Uruguay - France World Cup football game on their large full colour timing display.

Thankfully Saturday was a dry start and that was how it would remain for the rest of the weekend. Having re-scheduled to begin the day with a round of free practice to get back up some traction after the rain and then run 2 seeding rounds, the track would turn out to be considerably slower. With this in mind, free practice was extended and the heats were made up from the dry free practice times of Thursday and Friday, most drivers posting their best 3-consecutive laps on Friday morning. Francesco had managed the 4th fastest time with Jilles not quite having found the perfect set-up and posting the 7th quickest time. Dario had produced the 2nd fastest time in 1:8 with Carmine 7th and Arie quickest in 40+. Following the rain delays from the previous day, the 5 planned rounds of qualifying was reduced to 4 all of which would be run after lunch with the best 2 to count.

The first of the those qualifier saw a solid start with Jilles 2nd fastest in front of Francesco while Dario was third quickest and Arie posted a TQ run. Jilles had improved his IF15 over practice but was now having to deal with the car getting loose in the middle of the run. With the track different to Thursday's free practice, when his car was very good, Dario tried something for Q1 declaring it 'OK' but he needed to change more for the lower grip that resulted from the rain. Q2 netted Jilles another P2 time while Francesco was 5th locking both of them into the A-Main. Unfortunately for Dario a plug issue left him with a DNF with 30-seconds left on the clock. Carmine would improve on Q1 with the fifth fastest time. The third qualifier was a much better one for Dario but a lean engine forced him to have to back off and he missed out on a TQ run by less than 2/10ths. In the last qualifier he had the opposite problem with the engine too rich but despite the 'troubled day' he would line his IF18 up third on the grid for the 45-minute main with Carmine starting 8th. In the third 1:10 qualifier, Francesco had a more consistent car after changing to a harder rear diff and ran another Top 3 time. With a rich engine, Jilles struggled to match the early pace and opted to stop after the first minute. While much happier with his car now over the second half of the qualifier in Q4 but failing to better his previous runs, despite his two P2 times the points system put Jilles 4th on the grid directly in front of Francesco but both driver were confident of making ground over the long final. In 40+, Arie bagged his 3rd TQ of the season to move another step closer to becoming Champion with a race to spare.

A driver who is known to worry his rivals because of the strategies he is willing and able to execute in finals, Jilles decided this time he was playing it super safe and it was to pay dividends as others ran into trouble. With a front wheel nut causing trouble during his tyre stop and looking to have scuppered his chances of the win as Jilles said afterwards, 'You first have to finish to finish first'. Otherwise having a faultless race, when others had engine issues he was adding laps and this was rewarded at the end by him taking his second win of the season. After some drama at the start, Francesco also had a well executed final and it was that consistency that netted him second, finishing on the same lap as Jilles to be part of our first ever ENS 1-2 finish. A very special moment for everyone involved in the IF15 project, the result now means Jilles is strongly positioned to take the overall crown at the season finale in Fiorano.

Next up was the 40+ final and Arie continued his domination winning the half hour encounter comfortably. Maintaining his 100% winning record, win No.3 means he has sealed up the title and becomes the inaugural champion of the newly introduced class. Unfortunately the victory hat trick wasn't to be in Aigen with the 1:8 A-Main proving a difficult race for our guys. Dario suffered an early flame out loosing a lot of time as a result of some very slow marshalling but he recovered well and was battling for a podium when contact caused a breakage on the car putting an end to his race with 10-minutes to go. Carmine managed to finish the race 2 places higher than he started with 6th. While not the result Dario had hoped for, he still goes into the final round with shot at the overall title. While there is a big gap before the ENS finale in September, with a European Championship to contest in the meantime, the preparations for the ENS title challenge have already started.

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2018 EFRA EUROPEAN TC CHAMPIONSHIP

2018 EFRA EUROPEAN TC CHAMPIONSHIP

JUNE 28 - 30 WIENER NEUSTADT, AUSTRIA

Austria was the destination for the 2018 EFRA 1:10 Electric Championships and for the first time in recent years the event attracted a capacity entry over the 3-classes titles that were up for grabs. Hosted by the home club of Dominic Vogl, 1.MRC Wiener Neustadt, our Pro-Stock front runner decided to step up for his home race and join Marc in Modified class. As has become a regular element of outdoor racing in Europe this season, rain would play its part in restructuring the timetable with drivers arriving to a track that was literally underwater! Thankfully with the rain subsiding and the track drying things could get underway after lunch on Thursday with a single round of practice followed by two seeding rounds. For Marc, the weekend started out strong with him able to set the third fastest 3-consecutive laps with just 4/100ths of a second covering the Top 3 drivers. Dominic would seed in the second fastest heat after recording the 16th fastest time.

With the first round of Modified qualifying due to conclude the first day of action, the rain decided to return with only 3 heats needed to complete the round. Frustrating, but despite putting on a well organised event the weather is one thing outside the club's control! After a round of free practice Friday morning, qualifying would start with Q2, the opening round rescheduled to run at the end of the day. Marc got a P4 for his first effort but an error in Q3 resulted in a P8. Coming back strong with a P3 in Q4, this ended up being his best run of the weekend and combined with another P4 run the fifth round, it secured 5th overall on the grid for Saturday's finals. For Dominic, while he showed good speed in qualifying he had some bad luck when on target for top time and the result was he ended up 6th on the grid for the B-Main.

While Marc had good speed at the start of each run, he faced a big drop off in pace towards the end of the 5-minutes. In the finals this meant, after starting out strong, he soon found himself having to defend his position. Finishing A1 as he started, in A2 and A3 he would finish both races 4th but overall his 2018 European Championships would end with 5th overall while Dominic was classified 17th. For sure not the results Marc and Dominic had hoped for, we thank them both for their efforts in representing the Infinity Family at the Euros.

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ITALIAN NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP

ITALIAN NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP

30 June - 01 July MINICAR FIORANO

Last weekend the 2nd round of Italian Nationals was helded in the beautiful track of Fiorano close to Ferrari factory. For 1/8 expert category only, this is the first leg as Sicilian round was canceled. Almost 80 entries in different classes for both categories 1/10 and 1/8. Our Italian team attended the race with enthusiasm preparing the most awaited commitments of summer season. Weather was really hot with average 30˚ in the air; rules are little bit different to what we are used to as tires are “free” and tire treatment is allowed. Also “racing side” is bit different with “Rocket Round” to count for the TQ and 4 fastest directly in Amain. Dario, Lamberto, Carmine and Alberto were powered with IF18 while Francesco officially “shake-down” the new IF15.

From the beginning Balestri and Raiola were the fastest on the track with Collari and Picco little bit slower but still close; in 1/10 Tironi hardly fought with usual contender as Mazzeo and Loppini. Qualifying was super close in both categories with Dario fastest in 3 rounds (on 4) followed close from Carmine that showed a good pace. Lamberto and Alberto was in semifinal; Francesco took 2nd place overall after leading for most part of the day in 1/10.

In semifinal Collari start first and leaded tone to tone; Picco suffered some troubles but get the bump up spot for Amain. In Junior class (F2) the young Antonio di Marino get an honorable 9 number plate for his Amain; during his final Antonio showed often good speed but also some mistakes that only allowed him to confirm his starting position. Tironi played his strategy very well using all his knowledge of tire consumption: his move is to not change tires while competitors did… He leaded for most part of the race but few minutes to the end he suffer engine cut-off twice during the refueling allowing Loppini to recover the gap and leaving him the win.

Best part of the show will probably be the 1/8 expert Final… Balestri show the “muscles” trying to pull away from the field at early stage… Raiola was in Dario’s roots with his rhythm without really taking care of competitors but really concentrate on his pace… Collari gained a position at the start but stuck too long behind Salemi to claim the victory. Different strategies make this race awesome with Dario, Carmine and Lamberto swapping the lead many times; Dario was the first to change only outside tires to try something different from “safe tactic” he used in last races that seemed to penalized him; Luck wasn’t on his side and he has to stop after only 20 minutes. Raiola “make it happen” driving carefully and controlling the recover of Collari that arrived 3 seconds behind for a 1-2 Infinity podium. Congrats Carmine! Summer season is on the way… Stay tuned!

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ETS ROUND 5

ETS ROUND 5

JUNE 22-24 APELDOORN, THE NETHERLANDS

A favourite among drivers and rightly so widely regarded as one of the best tracks in Europe, Apeldoorn was the venue for the penultimate round of the 2017/18 Euro Touring Series. Last on the ETS calendar in 2013, our drivers travelled to the Netherlands with a strong previous track record. On the track's championship debut in 2009, it was Jilles who took the win with Marc winning all three following visits. For Marc, the weekend presented a slim chance for him to force the championship title to go to the final round at Hudy Arena next month. Jilles was aiming to repeat his ENS Netherlands success hoping to again take advantage of the very supportive Dutch crowd who are among the best when it comes to supporting one of their own. Fresh from claiming his first international nitro race win at the EFRA GP Series in Switzerland, Naoto was hoping to emulate his ETS Andernach performance on his first visit to the Apeldoorn track.

Unfortunately one of the biggest challenges of the weekend would be the weather. Thursday's free practice would end early due to rain and drivers woke to a wet track Friday morning but luckily the track had one impressive feature - its ability to dry super quick. Resurfaced since the last visit of the ETS, once the rain stopped the track's fine grade asphalt almost magically dried in front of drivers' eyes. With track action able to resume at lunch time on Friday, the delay meant just one round of free practice before two seeding rounds and hopefully the first round of qualifying. After the seeding, it was Jilles who was fastest taking his IF15 to the 3rd fastest 3-consecutive laps with Naoto and Akio joining him in the top heat. For Marc it was a tough seeding with him unable to get a set-up that was to his liking meaning he would run his four qualifiers in the second fastest heat group. All set to put Q1 in the books, the liquid from the sky returned and the decision was made to reschedule the run for Saturday morning.

Finally getting down to the serious business of qualifying at 08:00, Jilles was able to continue his practice form. Running a Top 3 time, a few rough laps at the end of the 5-minutes dropped him back to 5th but overall it was an encouraging first attempt. In Q2 it was Naoto who was fastest with a P5 run after opting away from running ARS on his car. With the rain delays leaving him to use the first two qualifiers to try different set-ups, in Q3 Marc found a direction he liked and that was reflected in him setting the second fastest time. With no new tyres for the final qualifier, a number of drivers having saved their third sets, Marc would manage an impressive 5th fastest time on used tyres allowing him to drop his P7 from Q2 to line-up 5th overall on the grid. Managing a P3 run, Naoto would also improve his ranking securing 7th on the grid while Jilles completed the A-Main line-up. The B-Main would contain a number of A-Main regulars given the level of competition and the closeness of the times around the large track.

In terms of the Infinity driver most deserving of a beer at the end of Saturday's qualifying that honour went to Beni. A veteran of the ETS, having raced across Europe as an early member of the 'ETS Family', he secured his first ever ETS TQ of the championship claiming pole for the 40+ Masters class which had attracted a massive 65 entries. He would be joined in the A-Main by Søren and our ENS 40+ championship leader Arie, who was enjoying his first ever electric race. In Formula, Jitse put further mileage on what is very close to being production version of our IF11, qualifying it 3rd. Making sure we were represent in all the A-Mains, Dominic lined up 7th posting a P3 time run in Q2.

While drivers enjoy driving the track, in terms of racing on it, the fast flowing layout doesn't create many opportunities for overtaking. In A1 however, Naoto made up four places to finish third but admitted he didn't actually overtake anyone rather they made mistakes. An early incident dropped Marc to the back while Jilles came through for 5th. A2 would prove an uneventful race with the Top 5 finishing as they started, Naoto the highest mover taking 6th behind Marc. Wrapping up the weekend, A3 would net Marc a fourth but despite an early incident ending his challenge it was Naoto who was our best overall finisher as he secured 5th with Marc 6th, his title hopes over, and Jilles 9th. While not the result we had aimed for going into the weekend, the guys will take the positives from the weekend and try to ensure they  cap off what is only our second season of the ETS as a manufacturer on a high note in Slovakia.

There was still plenty to celebrate in the Netherlands because after his TQ Beni would complete the perfect weekend and after years of trying he is finally able to call himself an ETS race winner. After contact in A1 sent him on to the grass, the second A-Main produced a good battle for the lead with Christian Drießle managing to squeeze through for the win setting up a three way fight for the overall win in A3. Beni delivered when it counted most with the perfect race to get the job done. A great job from Beni. In Formula, Jitse started out well with a P2 in A1 and P3 in the second but a rough A3 meant he just missed out on the podium. Dominic held his own in Pro Stock starting & finishing the opening two finals 7th and getting a 6th in A3 but in the final order he was classified P8. With the organisers doing yet again a great job managing the challenge presented by the weather, it was another fantastic ETS event and Apeldoorn's return lived up to expectations with the AMCA club great hosts.

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