you don't need the newest esc and the newest batteries....
im running an novak gt7 and orion 3300sp2s, but im using a new trinity co27 motor and trinity cobalt mods too....the most important thing is a good motor with the correct gearing....good batteries and a good esc are important, if your running the rtr esc and 3300 stick packs you will see a disadvantage...
just as good as the novak gtx for club racing
best stock motor available in my opinion (except for the epic xx stock - illegal motor - has ball bearings)
great packs for club level racing i have 6 packs that im still using, all take 3000-3200 charge after 2 1/2 years with voltages from 1.180 to 1.197