Having earlier lost his Truggy title to Dakotah Phend in a thrilling race, Ty Tessmann would come out the better of an epic Buggy battle with Ryan Maifield to claim his second US National Championship in nitro offroad’s premiere class. Starting 3rd on the grid, the HB driver mixed it with the Associated of Maifield for 55-minutes of the 1-hour, after Top Qualifier and early leader Phend suffered a massively costly off. In the end the race would be decided on the last lap. With Maifield leading, Tessmann made a move down the inside coming up to the Thornhill Racing Circuit’s large step-up, a move the 2006 Champion would try to block resulting in the two coming together. With both buggies needing to be marshalled, Tessmann got away first setting the stage for a final dash to the flag but two corners later a mistake by Maifield would leave his buggy on its roof allowing Tessmann to win by 4.8 seconds. Behind the intense battle, Team Durango’s Ryan Lutz completed a successful day as he claimed his second podium of the day with a repeat of his Truggy 3rd place finish.
Declaring the win as ‘one of the toughest ones’, Tessmann said going into the final he didn’t have a lot of confidence adding he was feeling ‘a little down after how Truggy ended’. Maintaining his third place starting position over the opening laps, the 21-year-old said when Phend dropped back he started to get more confident both in himself and his OS Speed powered D812. Running with Maifield just as he did with Phend in Truggy, the Canadian said he had a couple of mistakes as a result of the track’s increasing ruts but he knew he could take the battle to the end. Commenting on the difficulty of the track and the fact that there was no time between the Truggy Main and the Semi-Finals, the 2012 Champion said the two races in a row made it extra hard mentally. Asked about the deciding moment, he replied it was ‘nothing dirty’ and ‘just close last lap racing’. Seeing opportunity to get down the inside he said Maifield came across on him and they both just got into one another.
‘Went good, better than I thought it would’, was Maifield’s reaction to the nail biting race. The Arizona driver, famed for his hard charging driving style, said after the Semi he knew his Novarossi powered RC8.2 was good but just not how good until he ran with Phend & Tessmann. ‘Ultimately’ he said it was his mistake on the right side of the track as the race entered the final quarter that cost him the win adding that without that ‘the result would be a little different’. Holding a comfortable gap over Tessmann, he would get it wrong over the speed bumps section leading to the back straight with his buggy coming down on its roof costing him almost 9 seconds as it was marshalled. Saying it ‘sucks to lead on the last lap but not cross the finish line first’, he said the last lap clash was ‘ultimately my fault’ adding had they not needed to be marshalled he would have waited on Tessmann. With world famous race commentator Scotty Ernst describing the race as one of the greatest nitro races of all time, Maifield said he was ‘overall happy’ with second.
‘I’ll take that’ was how a very pleased Lutz summed up his third place finish after the long race. Starting from 5th on the grid, he said he had a solid start ‘holding position in the freight train’. Running a Mugen fuel tank in his Alpha powered DNX8 Prototype, he said his only real drama of the race was his second fuel stop when he suffered a flame out during the refuelling. Saying the tank doesn’t seem to like the fuel gun his pit crew switched to a fuel bottle for the rest of the race. Having to run his own pace so as to look after tyres and mileage he was happy to stay ahead of the recovering Phend who kept catching him up only to crash and fall back.
After the joy of winning his first nitro title just a couple of hours early, it was bitter disappointment for Phend in the main event. Leading the race, on lap 8 his Orion powered 8ight would shoot off the track coming onto the fast back straight. Disappearing down the side of the track, the incident would cost him 15-seconds and drop him to 9th. After the race the dejected teenager said he must have hit a rock there as he didn’t do anything different to how he had taken the corner all the previous laps. While he ‘tried (his) best best to make back up the time’, setting the fastest lap of the race in the process, it was too hard to make up such a loss and he began to overdrive, this leading to mistakes.
Winner of the Warm-up at the Hutto, Texas, track last month Cody King would come home 5th. Running one less stop than his rivals, Kyosho’s former World Champion found himself in a Top 3 position as the leaders made their first stop and then again later in the race. Feeling he made progress with buggy, having originally started out qualifying waiting for the track to come to the buggy, the Santa Ana driver said his ‘stuff was good’ in the final. Then he continued saying the only negative of the race was a late mistake, in which the marshal fell as he went to put the Reds Racing MP9 back on its wheels, which cost him the chance to continue to battle with Lutz and Phend to the finish.
Completing the Top 6 was Ryan Cavalieri, the Team Associated driver describing the race as ‘pretty decent’. The 2011 Champion, who started 9th, said he ‘didnt have the best first lap’. Feeling his Orion powered RC8.2 was ‘a little off here and there’, he said he was still able to maintain a decent pace over the race allowing him to recover from having fallen back to 13th at the start.
A-Main Buggy Result
1.(3) Ty Tessmann – HB/OS Speed – 78/1:00:40.098
2.(2) Ryan Maifield – Associated/Novarossi – 78/1:00:44.918
3.(5) Ryan Lutz – Durango/Alpha – 77/1:00:15.057
4.(1) Dakotah Phend – TLR/Orion – 77/1:00:18.855
5.(6) Cody King – Kyosho/Reds Racing – 77/1:00:32.114
6.(9) Ryan Cavalieri – Associated/Orion – 77/1:00:33.542
7.(8) Billy Fischer – TLR/Novrossi – 75/1:00:02.553
8.(12)Jared Tebo – Kyosho/Orion – 75/1:00:31.304
9.(10)Mark Pavidis – TLR/OS Speed – 74/1:00:00.744
10.(7)Adam Drake – TLR/Novarossi – 74/1:00:18.148
11.(15)Josh Wheeler – Xray/OS Speed – 74/1:00:22.729
12.(13)Josh Glancy – TLR/Novarossi – 72/1:00:48.539
13.(14)Tyler Vik – Xray/FX – 67/55:09.434
14.(4)Carson Wernimont – Mugen/OS Speed – 31/24:25.773
15.(11)Austin Blair – Mugen/OS Speed – 8/6:46.748
Report thanks to Red RC : http://events.redrc.net/2014/06/tessmann-wins-epic-us-nationals-buggy-final/