RC club racing can be a bit confusing and a little daunting at times. It can be a very costly hobby, but it really doesn't need to be.
While most of the cheaper toy grade stuff out there isn't suitable for club racing, there are some great entry levels options, catering to different skill
levels and budgets.
On-Road Spec Classes
For on-road tarmac racing we have the Tamiya TT02 and Mini classes, which are a lot of fun without breaking the bank. The rules require the cars to be built "from the box", with a limited number of Hop-Ups (upgrade parts).
This keeps everyone the same speed and makes for close racing. It’s less about the budget and more about the driver. Plus you get the beauty of a "real" GT body in the TT02 class.
The HBRC 'TT02 Spec' class and 'M07 Mini' class rule sheets are available below, on race days, or along side kitsets, parts, and tyres at
CoolToys in Napier.
Off-road dirt racing classes are generally split into "Stock" and "Modified" flavours of each car type, with Stock classes running a higher
turn (slower) 17.5t brushless or older style brushed motor. This gives drivers more manageable handling on the loose dirt, and a much smoother driving style.
The 4WD Stock Buggy and Short Course Truck classes are ideal for beginners. While these classes can include the latest and greatest chassis',
there are "Ready to Race" kits, that come with basic electronics and a transmitter, won't break the bank, and are still competitive! The Kyosho "Dirt Hog" 4WD Buggy and the
Traxxas "Slash" Short Course Truck are both great examples, and are also available locally.
Tools, batteries, a battery charger, and a transmitter (radio controller) are also required. Most decent transmitters have multi-model
memories, meaning they can be used for several cars. There is no need to have separate radios for each car.
A small Personal Transponder is recorded by the lap counting system as the car crosses the start/finish line. Each "PT" has a unique number code.
While you can race without one, you will require one for your laps to be counted and for qualifying rounds to matter.
You also need a table and chair, and potentially a marquee. It can be a long day at the track, and the Hawke's Bay sun is often too much to endure without
All of the fancy extras such as laptops, tyre warmers, and set-up stations are not required for getting started.
We are extremely lucky here in Hawke's Bay, with two dedicated national event level track locations. We have a dirt off-road track located
at Showgrounds Hawke's Bay, and a tarmac on-road track located at the Sylvan Road Netball Court facility in Hastings. With club race meets
alternating roughly every two weeks, and track access for members to practice, there's no shortage of track time available.