By Tyler Hooks
After a day filled with traveling and reflection it is time to recap this past weekend's ROAR 1/8th off-road nationals. Ty Tessmann is now officially a 2 time 2018 ROAR national champion, and CJ Jelin is the 2018 ROAR Junior champion. Tessmann just looked to be at 110% this weekend pun intended. Ryan Cavalieri and Spencer Rivkin mounted charges but the Canadian never really looked phased or desperate. With the worlds coming up later this year in Perth, Australia will anyone be able to stop Ty Tessmann and his family or will he become a two time world champion?
In the 30 minute Truggy main, Tessmann lead from wire to wire. Ryan Cavalieri would attack early but towards the end would fade back to 5th. Ryan Lutz would seemingly remain in the shadows quietly putting in laps and plugging away ultimately taking 2nd while Jared Tebo and Ryan Maifield would fight for 3rd with Tebo ultimately taking the final spot on the podium.
The mains weren't without controversy, the decision to switch to an A,B,C format was not welcomed by racers at the track. Short of the top 10 racers which would qualify directly to the main, that format would make for a much longer road to the finals for every other driver at the event. ROAR then made the decision to change the finals back to the ladder system which left most everyone much happier with the exception of maybe Ryan Maifield who was leading his semi final when a crash with two minutes left to go left him with a flame out and a finish outside the top 6 ending his weekend before the main event started. CJ Jelin who was also comfortably in a bump spot in the semi final would also suffer failure at about the same time Maifield did ending his weekend early. An extremely promising weekend it was though for young CJ. After the semis were over it was interesting to note that the even semi final was much faster than the odd final. This would mean the top 5 finishers on the even side which included major benificaries of the ladder system Joe Bornhorst and Ryan Lutz would qualify 2nd through 6th for the main. The top 5 in the odd semifinal would line up 7th through 11th with Cole Ogden being the quickest 6th place finisher in the semi finals lining up 12th.
In the 45 minute Buggy main the path wasn't so easy for Tessmann. Ryan Cavalieri would put up a solid fight for nearly the first 30 minutes of the main where we would see him capitalize on rare Tessmann mistakes to take over the lead on occasion. He ultimately would finish 3rd after hitting the wall on the back jump section and getting stuck. Spencer Rivkin would mount a late race charge to see him get within one second of Tessmann, but mistakes wouldn't allow him to get close enough to attack leaving him 2nd. Jared Tebo would finish 4th with Alex K taking 5th a career high for the Team Associated driver.
In the junior final CJ Jelin would take a fairly commanding win over Aydin Horne. Brandon Rose would climb from a 10th place starting position to finish 3rd overall.
From all of us here at LiveRC, we hope you enjoyed the coverage. See you at the next one!