Ryan Cavalieri Wins Second Consecutive Reedy Race of Champions!

Jan 27, 2014 No Comments by

In a finish only befitting RC’s most exciting event, the 20th Reedy International Race of Champions came down to the final race in order to decide the overall champion. With clutch performances in Sunday’s final four rounds of 4WD to take the points lead from teammate Ryan Maifield, Team Associated factory driver Ryan Cavalieri joined only one other driver, Team Associated Vice President Cliff Lett, as the only two back-to-back winners.

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Day Three of the Reedy International Race of Champions is when dreams are made and broken, and former champions Joern Neumann and Dustin Evans had theirs crushed early in the day with poor finishes while early favorite Ryan Maifield missed out on a chance to seal the deal. Sunday morning started off like this:

Round Nine

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Ryan Lutz started up front but rolled over in the first corner, letting Jared Tebo by – and he’d go on to lead every lap. Kody Numedahl also capitalized on Lutz’s early mistake and held off both Cody King and Dakotah Phend, who pressured him throughout the race, to take a strong second place finish.

1. Jared Tebo (2) – 16/5:01.379
2. Kody Numedahl (3) – 16/5:06.906
3. Cody King (5) – 16/5:07.507
4. Dakotah Phend (7) – 16/5:10.350
5. Lee Martin (6) – 16/5:11.629
6. Ryan Lutz (1) – 16/5:14.404
7. Rick Hohwart (10) – 16/5:15.629
8. Billy Fischer (8) – 16/5:17.416
9. Cody Turner (9) – 15/5:01.303
10. Oliver Scholz (4) – 15/5:08.171

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The second heat of round 9 was a bit of déjà vu, as Tyler Vik too led the field into turn one and flipped over after the step-down section. Marc Rheinard grabbed the lead from outside row 1 and led throughout, first holding off pressure from Dustin Evans with Vik and Ryan Maifield before Maifield rolled and let Steven Hartson and Ty Tessmann past. Rheinard and Evans touched over the sky double on the right side on the final lap, sending Evans’ buggy into the infield pipe section – he punched the throttle and bounced off a couple of the barriers before jumping out onto the straightaway, crossing the line behind Tessmann, Maifield, and Vik, but was penalized three seconds for cutting the final corner of the track. The poor finish for Evans, as well as a clearly struggling Joern Neumann, eliminated both former champions from contention.

1. Marc Rheinard (2) – 16/5:07.801
2. Ty Tessmann (9) – 16/5:08.014
3. Ryan Maifield (7) – 16/5:08.647
4. Tyler Vik (1) – 16/5:08.883
5. Steven Hartson (8) – 15/5:09.670
6. Dustin Evans (6) – 16/5:11.901**
7. Joseph Quagraine (10) – 16/5:16.142
8. Brian Strange (4) – 16/5:16.313
9. Josh Pain (5) – 16/5:17.929
10. Joern Neumann (6) – 15/5:03.649
** Three second penalty added for track cut on final corner

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Neil Cragg led the first two laps from the front of the grid, but rolled over in the final right-hander when he misjudged the “option” bump on the inside. The win for Team Durango’s Travis Amezcua made him the first repeat winner of the 4WD portion. Cragg held off teammate Ryan Cavalieri by less than a half second to set the final finishing order.

1. Travis Amezcua (4) – 16/5:05.060
2. Neil Cragg (1) – 16/5:07.227
3. Ryan Cavalieri (10) – 16/5:07.519
4. Carson Wernimont (7) – 16/5:10.222
5. Mike Truhe (6) – 16/5:14.092
6. Tanner Denney (8) – 16/5:15.857
7. Rob Gillespie (3) – 16/5:16.865
8. Christoffer Svensson (2) – 16/5:22.212
9. Brian Kinwald (5) – 15/5:02.357
10. Barry Baker (9) – 15/5:08.603

The points standings after round 9:

2014_Invitational_Scoring_Round_9

Click to view full-size image.

Round Ten

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Lee Martin cleared Billy Fischer immediately to start the first heat of round 10 and sped off to the win, but the battle on the track was between title contenders and teammates Ryan Maifield and Ryan Cavalieri – despite setting the fastest lap of the heat during his charge from the fourth row, Cavalieri was unable to get by Maifield.

1. Lee Martin (2) – 16/5:00.530
2. Ryan Maifield (4) – 16/5:03.685
3. Ryan Cavalieri (7) – 16/5:03.845
4. Billy Fischer (1) – 16/5:09.398
5. Tanner Denney (3) – 16/5:09.610
6. Rob Gillespie (9) – 16/5:10.346
7. Travis Amezcua (8) – 16/5:12.619
8. Steven Hartson (5) – 16/5:13.090
9. Jared Tebo (6) – 15/5:10.915
10. Brian Kinwald (10) – 4/0:46.511

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Last year’s 2WD Open champion Carson Wernimont, in his first race for new sponsor Schumacher, moved into the lead on lap three and held fast in his most impressive drive of the weekend. He went too wide at the end of the straightaway with three laps to go, however, and current National Champion Ty Tessmann snuck by for the win by just seven-tenths of a second.

1. Ty Tessmann (5) – 16/5:02.714
2. Carson Wernimont (3) – 16/5:03.426
3. Rick Hohwart (1) – 16/5:09.365
4. Kody Numedahl (6) – 16/5:11.586
5. Neil Cragg (8) – 16/5:12.512
6. Joern Neumann (9) – 16/5:14.240
7. Mike Truhe (2) – 16/5:16.711
8. Marc Rheinard (10) – 16/5:17.213
9. Cody Turner (7) – 15/5:01.233
10. Josh Pain (4) – 14/4:42.724

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New-for-2014 XRAY team driver Tyler Vik too looked to have his best chance at a heat win in this round, before a daring last-lap pass from Dakotah Phend in the front hip-jump corner sent Vik’s car onto its lid. Two corners later Phend crashed over the option bump, letting Lutz go by for the win.

1. Ryan Lutz (4) – 16/5:04.372
2. Dakotah Phend (3) – 16/5:04.550
3. Tyler Vik (1) – 16/5:05.502
4. Cody King (10) – 16/5:12.371
5. Christoffer Svensson (8) – 16/5:12.490
6. Dustin Evans (7) – 16/5:12.836
7. Joseph Quagraine (5) – 16/5:14.277
8. Barry Baker (2) – 15/5:00.150
9. Oliver Scholz (6) – 15/5;01.517
10. Brian Strange (9) – 15/5:06.431

Points after round 10:

2014_Invitational_Scoring_Round_10 (2)

Click to view full-size image.

Round Eleven

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Steven Hartson burned up his local track from the front row, turning in the only 17-lap run of the weekend to take the victory over Ryan Cavalieri, who set the fastest lap of the heat, but given his third-row starting spot had to catch up and put a late-race pass on Brian Strange to move into second.

1. Steven Hartson (1) – 17/5:18.510
2. Ryan Cavalieri (5) – 16/5:02.517
3. Brian Strange (2) – 16/5:05.194
4. Carson Wernimont (6) – 16/5:05.726
5. Jared Tebo (8) – 16/5:08.934
6. Kody Numedahl (10) – 16/5:11.328
7. Christoffer Svensson (3) – 16/5:11.789
8. Joseph Quagraine (9) – 15/5:01.664
9. Barry Baker (7) – 15/5:07.807
10. Cody Turner (4) – 14/4:33.637

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Joern Neumann had a rough morning on Sunday but still took advantage of his best starting position, holding off a hard charge from Ryan Maifield after he tore through the pack, winning by less than a tenth of a second! Ty Tessmann quietly collected a third place finish by following Maifield through the field, finishing one second out of the battle for the win.

1. Joern Neumann (1) – 16/5:01.644
2. Ryan Maifield (8) – 16/5:01.716
3. Ty Tessmann (7) – 16/5:02.819
4. Ryan Lutz (10) – 16/5:03.825
5. Lee Martin (6) – 16/5:07.705
6. Oliver Scholz (2) – 16/5:12.318
7. Brian Kinwald (5) – 16/5:18.686
8. Mike Truhe (3) – 16/5:19.040
9. Rob Gillespie (4) – 16/5:21.749
10. Billy Fischer (9) – 12/4:11.544

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Tanner Denney was yet another youngster who looked poised to win his first heat of the weekend, but he went wide in one corner on the tenth lap – and that’s all that Dakotah Phend needed. Phend scooted away to win by nearly three seconds. Tyler Vik put in his best run of the weekend to that point, moving up from seventh on the grid to finish third.

1. Dakotah Phend (2) – 16/5:00.127
2. Tanner Denney (1) – 16/5:03.096
3. Tyler Vik (7) – 16/5:08.873
4. Rick Hohwart (4) – 16/5:09.289
5. Travis Amezcua (5) – 16/5:10.272
6. Neil Cragg (3) – 16/5:10.612
7. Dustin Evans (6) – 16/5:10.829
8. Marc Rheinard (8) – 16/5:13.536
9. Cody King (9) – 16/5:18.115
10. Josh Pain (10) – 16/5:19.773

Points after round 11:

2014_Invitational_Scoring_Round_11 (1)

Click to view full-size image.

Round Twelve

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Heading into the final round, Arizonan Ryan Maifield needed just a fifth-place finish or higher to win his first Reedy Race no matter if Ryan Cavalieri won his heat or not! While Steven Hartson put in another brilliant drive to edge Kyosho’s Jared Tebo by mere tenths of a second to win the heat, a last lap crash for Maifield (after starting in the back of the field) allowed Dakotah Phend to slip by for fifth.

1. Steven Hartson (2) – 16/5:01.240
2. Jared Tebo (1) – 16/5:01.660
3. Travis Amezcua (3) – 16/5:03.116
4. Rick Hohwart (4) – 16/5:05.565
5. Dakotah Phend (6) – 16/5:05.738
6. Ryan Maifield (10) – 16/5:06.309
7. Neil Cragg (5) – 16/5:10.365
8. Ryan Lutz (8) – 16/5:11.009
9. Tanner Denney (7) – 16/5:17.169
10. Carson Wernimont (9) – 4/1:22.836

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In his final race, TLR’s Dustin Evans blitzed his way through the field to capitalize on late race mistakes by the front row starters, Lee Martin and Mike Truhe, to take the heat win. Truhe’s mistake cost him more dearly than Martin, and after leading much of the race he had to settle for third.

1. Dustin Evans (10) – 16/5:09.794
2. Lee Martin (2) – 16/5:12.576
3. Mike Truhe (1) – 16/5:13.373
4. Kody Numedahl (8) – 16/5:13.559
5. Christoffer Svensson (9) – 16/5:14.419
6. Ty Tessmann (5) – 16/5:15.079
7. Billy Fischer (6) – 16/5:17.283
8. Joern Neumann (7) – 16/5:18.767
9. Joseph Quagraine (4) – 16/5:18.767
10. Brian Kinwald (3) – DNS

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The battle for the overall championship came down to the final race, after Maifield’s inability to clinch in heat one left the door open for defending champion Ryan Cavalieri – who still needed to win his heat. He did so handily, beating Team Associated teammate Rob Gillespie by a monstrous 8-second cushion to secure the overall victory.

1. Ryan Cavalieri (3) – 16/5:02.112
2. Rob Gillespie (5) – 16/5:10.308
3. Marc Rheinard (10) – 16/5:13.095
4. Barry Baker (1) – 16/5:16.582
5. Tyler Vik (7) – 16/5:17.238
6. Oliver Scholz (2) – 16/5:20.891
7. Cody Turner (9) – 15/5:00.137
8. Brian Strange (6) – 15/5:05.186
9. Cody King (4) – 3/0:59.418
10. Josh Pain (8) – DNS

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That last round win gave Cavalieri a one point advantage over his teammate Maifield for the overall championship. After being tied after the 2WD portion, Ty Tessmann edged Dakotah Phend by two points during 4WD, and both drivers leap-frogged over Dustin Evans, giving the young Canadian the final step on the podium. Here are the final points standings:

2014_Invitational_Scoring_Round_12

Click to view full-size image.

2WD Open
Though Team Associated team manager Brent Thielke started up front by virtue of his TQ performance in 2WD Open, a rough first race filled with mistakes demoted him to third behind TLR’s JP Richards and AE youngster Kevin Motter. Richards went into the second of two 10-minute main events knowing that he only needed to follow Thielke around the track and finish second to secure the overall victory, and that’s exactly what he did. Thielke’s 3-1 scores beat Motter’s 2-3 to finish second overall.

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1. JP Richards (2) – 1-2
2. Brent Thielke (1) – 3-1
3. Kevin Motter (5) – 2-3
4. Jason Corl (6) – 4-4
5. Cody Hollis (10) – 5-5
6. Chris Jarosz (8) – 9-6
7. Charles Hicks (9) – 6-9
8. Spencer Rivkin (3) – 8-8
9. Frank Root (4) – 7-10
10. Aaron Lane (7) – 10-7

4WD Open
A banzai pass attempt from Eric Albano on Kobe Yonker to start A1 in 4WD Open, which ended Yonker’s race, shook up the running order in the first main event and OCRC local Kevin Motter won from the third row after a brilliant drive, while TQ Spencer Rivkin recovered to finish second. Motter was unable to repeat the performance in A2 and after a battle between Rivkin, Yonker, fourth qualifier Max Flurer, Albano (before retiring with a mechanical failure), and Nick Wautlet settled, Flurer ended up with the A2 win while Rivkin secured the title via his 2-2 scores.

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1. Spencer Rivkin (1) – 2-2
2. Max Flurer (4) – 6-1
3. Kevin Motter (5) – 1-7
4. Nick Wautlet (6) – 7-4
5. Nolan Anderson (10) – 4-8
6. Eric Albano (3) – 3-10
7. Kobe Yonker (2) – 10-3
8. Chris Jarosz (8) – 5-9
9. Cody Hollis (9) – 8-6
10. Daimon Borkowicz (7) – 9-5

After the final trophy photos were complete, champagne bottles were handed out to the three winners (though the two Open winners, both of whom are underage, did not imbibe) for a celebratory spray down.

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And while Spencer Rivkin eventually needed assistance from Mike Truhe to open his bottle, he too got in on the fun.

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2014 Reedy Race of Champions, Electric, Event Coverage, Featured News, Off-road

About the author

Associate Editor Since receiving my first hobby-grade RC car as a holiday present from my father nearly 20 years ago, I've been fortunate enough to meet more people and experience more opportunities through the adventures I've had in the RC industry than I would've ever imagined. I've done it all - from working at a hobby shop, to being a factory sponsored racer, to working for some of the biggest brands in the industry. I've enjoyed each and every one of the dozens of kits I've built, hundreds of events I've attended, and thousands of laps that I've logged at race tracks around the world, and my passion is to share those experiences with other hobbyists so that they may find fulfillment in their own RC careers.
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