Local Focus: Bay of Plenty Radio Control Car Club roars to 2022
The Bay of Plenty Radio Control Car Club is set to benefit from future TECT Park upgrades.
The Bay of Plenty Radio Control Car Club has enjoyed consistent traction over the decade it has operated from TECT All Terrain Park.
Nestled in the bush between Tauranga and Rotorua, its regular race meetings are as family friendly as motor racing.
“The club has been around for about 12 years,” club chairman Michael Strong said.
“A lot of it is family-based. It’s passed down from dad to big brother or uncle and the little ones follow and then they get a remote control in their hands.
“The parents wish they hadn’t because six months later they’re already getting beat up by them.”
Men, women, boys and girls all run twice a month in different classes, and several improvements to the park are planned for this year.
“The lease is permanent,” Strong said.
“The council invests a lot of money in good buildings and service areas for all motorsports here, which luckily for us are just the other side of here.
“When that happens it will have a huge impact on all motorsport.
“It’s a huge development and it’s something all codes call for; good power, water, a place to maintain and a clubhouse to use for the awards show.”
A cash outlay is required to start the race, Strong said.
“Between $1,500 and $3,000 you’ll get a car and some electronics to get you started.
“Once you have it, that’s it for a while – just minor breakages and maintenance.”
Strong’s best advice for beginners is to not put the pedal on the metal.
“You have a lot of rookies trying to go fast and aggressive.
“The cars spin around a lot but if you focus on keeping your car in the middle and going a bit slower it’s amazing how quickly you can catch up to other players’ ranks.”
A promising young driver drives all the way from Hamilton for race days.
“I got into RC from my dad when I was seven,” Logan Toia said.
“I love meeting new people. It’s very family-friendly and there are lots of new people you can talk to.
“I’m definitely looking to be professional. It’s something I’ve always dreamed of and it would be very cool to drive around the world in RC cars.”
For Welcome Bay resident Michael Orme, RC car racing has helped him recover from injury.
“I broke my back and I really couldn’t do anything physical. A friend of mine was doing it and I just followed.
“Some guys spend thousands of dollars and then there are guys like me who do it on a budget.
“After every race I clean everything up, spray it with WD 40, then pull it out with an air compressor, take it apart and check for bits like loose screws,” he said. -he declares.
Information about the club, including race days, can be found on its Facebook page.