Craig Drescher wins the Invitational Class with a prototype Factory Team TC4May 28, 2005
Event Name: Reedy International Touring Car Race Of Champions
Event Location: Aliso Viejo, CA, Tamiya USA
Held in honor of Mike Reedy, the Reedy International Touring Car Race of Champions brings together the best touring car racers from around the world to compete in an eight round face-off of driver, equipment and team. In the end, only one combination could be crowned champion and by Mr. Reedy’s own admittance, "This is the best group of drivers ever assembled for an event like this."
Like the three previous years, the event was held at the Tamiya test facility in beautiful Aliso Viejo, CA. Known as one of the best tracks in the World, the Tamiya track combines raw horsepower with patient technique to bring together one of the most balanced permanent layouts in R/C today. Backed by an outstanding event organizer and crew, world famous announcer Scotty Ernst was brought in as race director to keep the event on schedule and bring the excitement as only Scotty can do.
Going in to round one there were a group of drivers that showed they might have what it takes to contend for the overall title, so naturally most eyes were on their heats. As the races progressed through the second round, each of the completed eight heat races produced a different winner. Some of the favorites had already had mechanical troubles or poor results, and with six of the eight runs counting for the overall, having a throw-out in the first few races spells almost certain doom. As the day progressed through the four rounds, a glimpse at the final overall standings started to immerge that included Craig Drescher, Atsushi Hara, Marc Rheinard, Rick Hohwart, David Spashett, David Jun, and Jilles Groskamp.
As day two rolled around everyone began looking at the heats to see when these drivers would face off head to head. Many times one round can take a competitor out of contention for the title. As rounds five and six were run, a few of the front-runners had poor results, and the field for the overall was narrowed to Drescher, Groskamp, Hara, and Rheinard. In the eighth and final round, Drescher and Hara faced off head in the third heat of the invitational class. Both drivers got away clean off the line and were separated by only a few seconds the entire race. Drescher was working his way to the front of the pack, but had an unfortunate incident that lost him some positions. Now Hara was just ahead and if Drescher had any hopes of the overall he had to get around Hara. In a side-by-side pass through the carousel corner Drescher got by Hara and secured second for the heat. Now all the Brit could do was turn marshal the fourth heat and see how the event played out. In the final heat of the final round, Groskamp needed a first place to win the event outright and found himself racing with some of the toughest competition in the world. As the laps fell off the board, Groskamp worked his way in to fourth place and a position that tied him for the overall title.
At this event, ties are resolved by taking the six best finishes and seeing who has the most firsts, if there is still a tie, how many seconds and so on. Using this system, both Craig and Jilles had three firsts and three seconds. The final tiebreaker in this scenario is determined by the single fastest laps and time from the six best finishes. In the end, Craig Drescher and his Reedy-powered Factory Team TC4 were crowned champion over Jilles Groskamp by 0.393 seconds.
Congratulations to the 2005 Reedy Race Champion Craig Drescher on a long-time-overdue win!