2014 HB HPI Challenge Series, Round #6 at HPI USA,
Foothill Ranch, CA, Saturday, May 10,
The sixth and final round of the 2014 HB HPI Challenge Series took place on May 10th at the HPI USA Headquarters. This would mark the third time the series visited the Foothill Ranch, California office. Six racers would be crowned 2014 HB HPI Challenge Series Champion under the sunny Southern California skies. By 7:00 AM, racers had already turned out from all over So Cal ready for a fun day of racing. Definitely what you would expect from attending a HB HPI Challenge event!
With practice underway, racers had a chance to roam around the pit area and stop by the HB booth to check out the new releases. While scoping out the awesome kits and raffle prizes, two full-size Subaru Impreza STI race cars were brought out for display for everyone to enjoy. Both Super Taikyu Spec Imprezas raced in Japan! It was time for the driver’s meeting and HB HPI Concours Challenge. Bill DuBois claimed the victory and took home a collectible Falken Tire bobble head doll for his efforts on his HB Subaru Impreza Type B body. After the final group photo of the series, it was on to see who would take the pole position in their respective class.
A film crew from one of the largest Spanish networks in Southern California Univision 34 was on hand to capture some action. Racers did not disappoint for the cameras, as they laid down fast times in both rounds of qualifying. Top qualifiers for the Season Finale were Christopher Rodriguez (Electric Sport), Chris Cabrales (Electric Pro), Thad Garner (Electric Open & Rallycross), Todd Marshall (Nitro Sport) and Jack DeAnda (Nitro Pro). With the field set, it was on to the main events. The points champion in Electric Pro and Rallycross was still unclear coming into Round 6, so the A-Mains were going to be thrilling.
In Electric Sport, the Championship already belonged to Christopher Rodriguez. Rodriguez had won every round so far in the series. Eight year-old Jacob Dee started third and challenged Rodriguez in the first minute. After getting around Rodriguez, it appeared Dee would be on his way to his first victory in the series! Rodriguez would not have a perfect season, as his motor did not endure the entire six-minute main giving Jacob Dee the victory. Jeremy Dee, Jacob’s father, would go on to finish second. The point’s race in Electric Pro was very close. Chin Luc, Charlie Barnes and Cody Secara were all in hunt to take home the Championship plaque. The spoiler of the Electric Pro class would be Chris Cabrales who would take the TQ and the win with his HB TCXX. Cabrales’ victory left Secara to finish second with 99 points and Luc finishing third with 98 points. After tallying the points, Cody Secara and Chin Luc would be Co-Champions in 2014! In Electric Open, Mark Dawson locked up the point’s championship after finishing second to HPI R&D’s Thad Garner in the A-Main. Since Garner is not eligible for points, HB Infantry Team Driver Jarrod Kadonaga would rack up 99 points for second place. Kadonaga worked hard all season long with his HB TCXX and ties with fellow Infantry Team Driver Carlos Franco for second overall in the series! Finishing third overall in points would be Charlie Barnes. In the Nitro classes, we would see longtime HB HPI Challenge competitors Todd Marshall and Nestor Rinonos take home Nitro Sport and Nitro Pro titles respectively. Marshall would take the overall win on Saturday as Nitro Sport and Nitro Pro mixed together for an exciting main. Rinonos would battle lap after lap trying to catch Marshall but would finish second overall on the day. The chase for the 2014 HB HPI Rallycross Champion would go down to the final minutes. Frank Liu and Jerry Holsti would go head to head for the title. Holsti earned 100 points on Saturday, just enough to edge out Frank Liu for the Rallycross title!
The 2014 HB HPI Challenge brought an on-road series to Southern California that beginners and experts alike could enjoy. We would like to thank all of the racers, race directors and track owners that helped the series succeed!