By Aaron Waldron
After a landmark decision finalized this morning, ROAR (Radio Operated Auto Racing) will no longer recognize the 1/8-scale "truggy" or 1/10-scale stadium truck classes. The sanctioning body for RC racing in North America is expected to announce that the racing divisions will be removed from the 2016 Nationals electric and nitro off-road events.
"It's time to put these classes out of everyone's misery," said ROAR technical director Rob King. "It just didn't make sense to keep trying to enforce rules for classes that we couldn't even agree on a name for. We don't race in stadiums, so "stadium truck" seemed silly - but "racing truck" is even worse. And what the heck is a "truggy" anyway? I'm pretty sure RC racers are really the only people who even use that word."
He's not far off - here are the search results for the word "truggy."
ROAR competition director Alex Sturgeon had an even more practical reason for getting rid of the classes: consolidation of racing programs. "This cuts outs three classes of 14 entries each from Electric Off-Road Nationals, saving the program over four hours over the course of the weekend," said Sturgeon. "I don't think anyone is going to complain about getting out of the track over an hour sooner every day."
The sentiment was echoed by sanctioning director Nick Lefebvre, who said, "this also opens up new opportunities for the poor classes stuck in our 1/8-Scale Electric Nationals. We could choose to combine 4x4 Short Course with the Electric Off-Road Nationals, making it the same as literally every other electric off-road race in the country, and move the electric 1/8-scale buggies in with the nitro cars. Last year we only had four 1/8-Scale Electric Racing Trucks sign up anyway, and one of them was a 6-year-old with an Axial Yeti. Apparently some people call rock crawlers "truggies" too."
"Once we looked at the facts, it was unanimous," said president Steve Mruk, "except for Fuel Section chairman Tim Long, who complained that Mugen's new MBX7TR is really good - but he doesn't get a vote anyway." Mruk added, "It's exciting to be more closely aligned with what the rest of the planet does in terms of racing classes, and I think getting rid of dead weight will make our events more enjoyable. Besides, they've looked stupid for years."
Just before this article was printed, two drivers who intended to enter the 13.5 Racing Truck class at this year's Nationals reportedly asked ROAR how they could appeal the decision.