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FLASHBACK FRIDAY: Cavalieri and Tebo topped 2012 Silver State Nitro Challenge

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Main Photo: FLASHBACK FRIDAY: Cavalieri and Tebo topped 2012 Silver State Nitro Challenge

By Aaron Waldron 

Everybody knows that Friday is meant for reminiscing old times. Each week we take you back in time as we flashback to some of R/C racing's greatest moments, products, drivers, and more!
Flashback: 2012
Ryan Cavalieri and Jared Tebo won the Pro classes at the Silver State Nitro Challenge
Five years ago, over the weekend of April 19-22, the Silver State was held once again at Boulder City R/C Raceway - one of four facilities to host the annual event. Located about 25 miles southeast of RC Tracks of Las Vegas - and outside of the actual city - the track had also hosted a ROAR Fuel Off-Road Truck Nationals in prior years and was known for getting incredibly rough. However, for 2012, new dirt had been brought in and racers had high hopes that track conditions would be different.
Of course, it still blew out. The new dirt was better, but still nothing like what nitro off-road races are typically held on these days. A tough layout combined with huge ruts made it difficult for everyone.
Hot Rod Hobbies owner Jimmy Babcock drove up from Santa Clarita, CA to run the event, and brought some sunscreen with him.
Kyosho’s Jared Tebo - hot off the win at NEO12 - cruised in qualifying to the TQ in both Pro Truck and Pro Buggy.
In the Pro Truck A-Main, Tebo led the race early on but Team Associated’s Ryan Cavalieri caught him - kicking off a battle for the win between the two multi-time champions. Cavalieri moved out front and started to pull away, but made a few mistakes in the closing stages of the race and Tebo moved past for the win.
Mugen Seiki’s Taylor Petersen, who had bumped up from the B-Main with his MBX6T, finished just four seconds further behind in third. Naturally, Petersen was also spotted throughout the weekend with no shirt on.
Here are the overall results:
The big story in Pro Buggy qualifying wasn’t that Tebo had managed to earn TQ, but that Las Vegas local Dylan Rodriguez - driving a Kyosho buggy as part of the A Main Hobbies/ProTek RC team, had qualified second. 
Here’s Dylan’s E-Buggy flying high above the desert.
At the time, I was actually working as the Public Relations director for A Main Hobbies which, among other things, included traveling to RC races to blog about the team and help out. Here I am, putting for Barry Baker in a qualifying heat:
I distinctly remember listening to Baker talk to Rodriguez before the Pro Buggy main, telling the then-18-year-old that he needed to pressure Tebo early and not let him get away if he wanted a chance to win.
Unfortunately, the pressure got to Rodriguez and he was never a factor for the win, finishing 13th.
Out front, Tebo led for the first eighteen laps before flaming out in pit lane and dropping to seventh. Ryan Cavalieri, who had started sixth, charged toward the front and battled Team Associated teammate Ryan Maifield throughout the 45-minute final and finished less than two seconds ahead for the victory. Tebo clawed his way back to third to salvage a podium finish, over a lap off of the top two finishers.
Here are a few choice selections from LiveRC's photo gallery from the race. To view them all, click here:

Paul King preparing Cody’s vehicles; Cody finished fourth in Truck and fifth in Buggy.
Another “King,” Richard Saxton, made the Pro Buggy final but was the only car not running at the finish - scoring 14th.
Cavalieri throwing some style over one of the track’s many jumps.
Ryan Maifield doing what he does best - drive punched.
Then-15-year-old Carson Wernimont, racing for Team Durango, finished eighth in Pro Buggy.
Just over two years later, he finished third at the IFMAR Worlds.
At the 2012 Silver State, Cody King was still then known as the reigning 1/8-scale buggy world champion.
Cavalieri checking to make sure his RC8T had the appropriate ride height to navigate the ruts.
Ty Tessmann finished sixth in Truck and fourth in Buggy. This was just before his meteoric rise to the top of the off-road world.
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