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Several RC magazines around the world have asked us to write a monthly column. With the kind permission we will re-publish the column at our web site too so all of the XRAY fans can read the latest news and behind the scenes information. Enjoy.

Column #1 - Behind the Scene Stories

Column #2 - Worlds Flashback

Column #3 - T2'007 Debut

Column #4 - Designing the T2'007

Column #5 - Worldcup Review and NT1 Testing

Column #6 - Developing and Designing the NT1

Column #7 - Developing and Designing the NT1 - Part 2

Column #8 - Back to the Races

Column #9 - XT8 Truggy Development

Column #10 - Touring Car Development

Column #11 - Bling-bling Mentality

Column #12 - Hot Summer Washout

Column #13 - New Electric Touring Car

Column #14 - Off-road Development

Column #15 - My micro love

Column #16 - Back in the Dirt

Column #17 - Worlds Preparations

Column #18 - 808 Tests & Stress

Column #19 - Excited for the Worlds?

Column #20 - Statistics, Expenses Sheets, Production Analysis, Calculations…

Column #21 + Column #22 - Euros + Euros + Worlds

Column #23 - The Busiest Season Ever

Column #24 - In Between the Worlds

Column #25 + Column #26 - Well Developed or Overdeveloped?

Column #27 - Back to The Future

Column #28 - 2009 Kick-off

Column #29 - Crazy what?

Column #30 - Last indoor race of the season

Column #31 - Getting into summer season

Column #32 - Heading for the Euros

Column #33 - Testing - Always last minute, always new ideas

Column #34 - European Champion - title celebration

Column #35 - Time to move on

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In all my previous columns I usually give you the latest updates and stories on what I and my nearest R&D and racing team experience and enjoy in recent times; I bring you my visions, plans, opinions, expectations and of course a bit of background of my daily life in this hobby. As a racing-oriented RC model car company we have to live a very fast-paced and pulsating life deeply involved in the racing world and usually we focus, prepare and participate in the largest most important and competitive races.

With XRAY’s increasing portfolio — getting into new and more different racing categories — it makes our already overloaded schedule even more crowded and exhausting and there will of course come some new categories soon. So already now with covering main events and races in 1/8 off-road, truggy, 1/10 nitro touring, 1/10 electric touring and recently 1/12 pancar as well, you can imagine how busy the factory has to be to keep up. With so many categories and so many races, priorities always have to be adjusted.

This of course goes hand-in-hand with the most important races, which naturally are the World Championships, European Championships, and US Championships; then there are the main international races in each category such as LRP Masters, DHI, Snowbird Nationals, International Indoor Championship, Neo Race, EFRA races and all the XRAY Challenge races around the world. So you can probably understand that our calendar is completely booked a long time in advance, and understand where our attentions and efforts are oriented.

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Being away at races, test sessions, or warm-up preparations, nearly every weekend is spent away at some event. The racing though is not only about the Worlds, Euros, or International races — those are really just the tip of the iceberg — but there are also hundreds of other races going on every week… club, local, and regional races and of course the numerous national race series in every category in all countries around the world. The XRAY national and regional teams around the world have been well known for their very active work and racing during the whole season, and we do our best to publish all the latest news on our Web site. I closely monitor all race reports coming from around the world and I am always very happy and proud for every single XRAY victory no matter where it comes from. With the great performance of the team during the entire summer season, I expected some great overall results from across the globe.

However, recent news and reports coming in are exceeding even my wildest expectations! In this column I want to share all the great results and achievements that the national XRAY team has gained recently.

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USA Nitro Touring National Champion:
After the win of the European Championship in both A and B categories, as well as gaining the Junior Champion title, I was looking forward to how the US team would be performing this year at the most important US race, the USA National Championship. Last year the title slipped through our fingers but the NT1 already had the previous 2007 USA National champion title on account. I dreamed to end this successful 2009 season with another good result at the US Championship. The USA nationals were held at the end of August and all the factory teams were present to battle for the title. After very competitive qualifiers, Paul Lemieux grabbed the TQ and in total 9 Team XRAY drivers qualified into the A-main. After thrilling finals, Paul captured the USA National title with Ralph Burch making another podium finish for XRAY in 3rd place. An excellent result about which I am not only very happy but also very proud.

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Finnish Off-road National Champion:
The last deciding round of the championship was a brilliant double victory for the XRAY team with Ari Heinonen taking the National Champion title, making it the 3rd national title in a row for the XRAY team. Moreover, 7 drivers running the XB808 qualified into the main final and 6 drivers made their overall championship standing in the final top 10, with XRAY factory driver Teemu Leino in 3rd third spot… an admirable result for the whole team.

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International Indoor Champion – Double Victory:
The annual International Indoor Championship taking place in Las Vegas every September is one of the largest and most competitive races in the electric touring and 1/12 category. This year more than 350 drivers participated at this famous race and the XRAY team was there as usual to reconfirm the domination of previous years. The XRAY team already has an extensive lineup of titles at this race — winning in ’05-’06-’07-’08 — and with the great performance of the T2 this year I was expecting that the XRAY team would once again be the one to beat. Paul Lemieux showcased a great result and took the TQ and win in the Modified category, so I was very happy not only for another title in a row but especially knowing that T3 prototype parts worked so well at such a large event and confirmed we had a good direction with the new car design. Drew Ellis from RCAmerica lined up with another TQ and win in the Stock category making it a nice double victory for the XRAY team. A great start to the winter season.

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German Nitro Touring National Champion – Triple Victory:
The German Nitro Touring Championship in the beginning of September finished up the summer season in Germany and this final championship was one of the most competitive ones. The German XRAY team has been very successful in recent years, picking up the EC “B” title wins in 2009 and 2008 as well as the EC 2009, and of course winning and dominating last year’s Nationals as well. This year the Nationals took place at the very nice track in Turkheim and I could not believe the great news from this race. The XRAY team placed 6 cars in the main final, setting the TQ, grabbing the entire podium and gaining the National title, Junior title, and Senior title… a triple victory for the NT1 this season in Germany! This time Dirk Wischnewski (2008 EC B champion and recent EC A champion) was unlucky after glowplug trouble in the final which, after setting the TQ, took away his chance for another triumph this year. Fortunately, young XRAY team driver Thomas Gunsel was ready to battle the crowd and he cruised to victory, making it another German national title for the team. A well-deserved result and achievement for the entire team.

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Italian Nitro Touring Champion – Double Victory:
When it comes to the most competitive on-road nitro racing there is probably not a more competitive environment than in Italy. The Italian XRAY team has already shown strong performance at the recent European Championship where Biagio Spataro took the European Junior title. The Italian Championship consists of several rounds and is divided into several categories. Biagio Spataro showed his talent and consistency once again and took a well-earned National title in the F1 class. Another full XRAY podium in the last round of Nationals and another win for Marco Zagni brought him a National Champion title in the F2 class, making it a double victory for the XRAY team and NT1 in Italy.

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French Nitro Touring Champion – Double Victory:
After previous victories of the NT1, I knew I should hope for nor even expect more wins for the NT1. The French Championship consists of several races during the season and the French XRAY team was doing a great job by winning several rounds and setting the pace during the entire season. The NT1 has had the French National title from 2008 and I hoped that the French team would this year claim the title once again. I looked forward to final (fourth) round of the French Nationals which took place in September. After an exhausting weekend race, Arnaud Chaussard took the title in the National category, with the young Anthony Bruyer taking the win in the Elite category making it a double win for the French XRAY team.

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Danish Nitro Touring Champion:
The list of NT1 National Championship titles was added to after the 5th round of the Danish Championship series where Claus Ryeskov took the National title.

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USA Electric Touring Indoor Champion – Triple Victory:
The USA Indoor Championship takes place in October and starts the indoor racing season in the USA. Most of the teams prepare for this season opening race and for us it was no different; we pushed our production department to have T3 pre-production parts ready for team. Unfortunately, I have (as usual) made some last minute changes to several main parts which resulted in redesigning all the bulkheads and graphite parts and as such there was no chance to make the parts for the whole team. So I decided to send my own car to Paul for the nationals. Paul got the car while heading to the race and since it was fairly worn out — no wonder after hundreds of hours of track time at the factory track — Paul combined his own car with the T3 parts and I was in constant touch with Paul via e-mails to get the latest updates and news from the race.

In the qualifiers, the XRAY USA team grabbed the TQ in all the 3 touring car categories and after the final races on Sunday I was very happy to hear that T2 and T3 won all 3 categories: Paul won in Modified, Mike Herald won in Stock, and Robbie Dodge won the SuperSock category making it a triple USA Indoor Champion victory. Over the last few years the XRAY USA team has been unbeatable in gaining 22 USA National titles and now adding another 3, making it 25x USA National Champion titles for XRAY! I believe that every RC car designer and company would be extremely proud of such an astonishing achievement and you can be sure that both my personal and professional satisfaction could not be higher. It is a well-deserved result for the all of the exceptional amount of effort, work and energy that the USA and our R&D teams have put in during the last years.

The above mentioned race results are just the latest and freshest reports we have received from the XRAY team from around the world. Of course there are MANY other victories, wins, triumphs and reports coming from XRAY drivers all around the world and it would take many more pages to list all of them. So I apologize to those I did not mention in this column, but our space is limited so my gratitude goes out to all local, regional and national heroes who spend their time, resources, efforts and energy in this hobby making it more exciting for everyone.

The indoor season has started and we are finishing T3 production and will export the new kits ASAP. I am very excited for this coming winter season and I hope that the T3 will continue the heritage that the T1 and T2 platforms set and maybe be even more successful.

See you around the tracks. Enjoy the ride and ‘til next time…

Dipl. Eng. Juraj Hudy
XRAY Chief Designer