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Old 11-28-2004, 08:12 PM   #1
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Default Indoor Champs vs. Snowbirds

I've now been fortunate enough to attend both of these races. All week I couldn't help but think of the differences in what has become two of the biggest R/C events. Submitted for your approval - my .02.

Prestige of the event - This is hard to gauge. Champs has been around forever, but you can't argue with the fact that The Snowbirds gets way more entries. You get all the factory talent at both events. Call it even.

Track - This is a hard one too. If you like tight technical tracks, then Champs wins. If you like wide open horse-power layouts, then its the 'Birds.

Accommodations - The Holiday Inn is much nicer than the Ramada, but there is way more to do in Orlando than there is to do in Independence, OH.

Practice - I personally liked the Champs format of running with your qualifier for the practice rounds. You got to know who to look out for and who was fast in your heat before it actually counted. However there is something to be said for the 'Birds format where you have an opportunity to run more often. Also, the warmup "Club Races" at the Snowbirds is cool.

Information/Promotion - Hands down Mike Boylan KILLS Mr. Bill in promoting the event. The Snowbirds website is up all year and is updated constantly. The Champs website is no more than a link to a bulletin board. The packet that I got in the mail for the Champs had inconsistencies and wrong information in it. It actually said practice started on Thursday, not Wednesday as it actually did. Also, changing the ride-height rule in TC at the last minute?

Pits - For both events you pit in your room. However, its so cool at the Snowbirds to have all the factory drivers pitting out in the open so you can see them and approach them and see what they're running.

Atmosphere - I like the 'Birds better. I like the fact that the fastest on-road AND oval guys are at the same event.

Level of insanity - This one is close, but racing 24 hours straight for 5 days at the Snowbirds takes the cake.

Announcers - Again, super close, but you can't beat hearing practice heats being announced with old-school hair metal playing in the background. Advantage, Champs.

On-site Hobby shop - Snowbirds offers a fully-stocked hobby shop with parts for every car. Champs didn't have much in the way of parts unless you ran a Calandra car or wanted hop-up TC3 parts. I can't believe I couldn't buy a Jaco Foam tire.

Agree? Disagree?
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Old 11-28-2004, 08:42 PM   #2
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I have only been to the Champs 2 times and enjoyed it fully but i do know of guys locally going to the birds and from what they told me and what is available on the web ill add this:

-Birds runs to many classes(like everyone comes out a champ) Champs is clear, mod,stock old guys

-Location... if all u want to do is race it dont much matter, but something tells me the ladies are not in parkas and tuques in Florida

-Hobby shops big disapointment at the CHAMPS, 100$ Diff kits for TC3 and buds plastics is not too exciting. For a big event there should be more, most go down with a wad o cash hopping to get some deals. From what i heard it used to be much better 10years ago

-PRO DRIVERS: Pitting in the open would be the best, i must say it feels strange being in your room wondering is Kinwald in the room next to me? LOL IT would be kool to have them setup in the public eye. If not at least i think these events should hold an evening of meet and great where you are encourage to mingle with the pros, i had even heard of events in the past where the pro drivers would attend drivers meetings where regular joe racers could ask them questions. I think its good for the hobby and the sponsors.

-WEB SITE: Champs is terrible and the brochure thats mailed out is poorly written and never updated. Only this year was there a site that was worht visiting and it linked us to nashracer who did the real work all weekend,
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Old 11-28-2004, 09:32 PM   #3
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Champs all the way!!! Nuff said. At least you can get some sleep there.
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Old 11-28-2004, 09:49 PM   #4
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Ground round-very interesting thread. I have been to both once, and I pretty much think you hit everything on the head. Here are my takes.

Difficulty of making the "A" goes to the champs. The birds has a layout that allows for MINOR mistakes, as in disks around some corners, and a little wider lanes (traffic negotiation). If you make small mistakes at the champs, it can pinball you, therefore breaking yourself, or possibly someone else as well. If you compare just road course at the birds the entries are pretty close.

BUT, the key factor that will keep me at the birds every year, is the fact that it's more of a TRUE vacation, (because after all it's vacation days from work that you are using). Nothing like leaving home where it's 35deg high temp and changing into your shorts and T-shirt as soon as you get there!!!

Accomodations don't matter to me, they could leave dead animals in the room and it would still smell like wintergreen .

Both races are equally hyped, but I have to give the overall FUN FACTOR to the birds. Just my .02
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Old 11-29-2004, 05:17 AM   #5
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Brandon -
I agree with you. Its harder to make the A at the Champs. I couldn't believe the caliber of non-sponsored racer. One mistake, especially in stock and you're done.
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Old 11-29-2004, 08:20 AM   #6
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Well...I've been to the Birds several times and plan to again in Feb. I 've never been to the Champs and don't think that I will ever. I guess the main reason is because it's during Thanksgiving. I'm away racing from family and friends enough as it is already. Thanksgiving is a nice break from racing....however I did end up at the track this past Saturday.

For those of you who haven't been to the birds...what are you waiting for? As long as you don't sign up for too many classes then you can have both a race week and a vacation week. I can guarantee that the women are much more attractive down in Florida (if anything...it's cuz you can see more skin....LOL).

I've been around Independence, OH...and there isn't jack to do there. At least in Orlando you have quite a night life there....either in downtown or you can even go to Pleasure Island. I like the fact that even if you car is sucking or you are......then at least you can go out and have fun and at least go home with some stories and good memmories. Oh yeah...you also gotta give it the WingHouse Girls!

My only complaint is that I wished the banquet room was a little bigger.
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Old 11-29-2004, 08:36 AM   #7
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I agree with almost everything said...Especially about the ladies....Orlando in Februaury is not that bad....girls in bikinis, good nite life.....The hotel is not the best of places but all you do is sleep there anyway...the Ramada in the dark looks just like the Ritz Carlton in the dark....now in the light its a different story, but I bet we have ALL stayed in worse places...I mean some of the hotels I stayed at for spring breaks make the Ramada look like a Marriott !!!.....oh the race is awsome too....Mike, Kenny and all the guys that put that race on are GREAT...They get the least rest out of anyone and they always seem to have a smile on their faces....I love BOTH races...but my vote goes to the Birds....sorry Mr. Bill... .....

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Old 12-05-2004, 08:58 PM   #8
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eddie all you do is get drunk there anyway but we still like you see you at the birds

you go to cleveland to race
you go to the birds to loaf
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Old 12-05-2004, 09:31 PM   #9
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Adam - Have you ever even gone to the Birds???...lol...

Birds all the way!! Where else can I run 5 classes in 1 weekend and never sleep!!! All I need now is to be able to run my 1/8 car in their and it would be THE perfect event!!!.... Yep, too much paragon and nitro fumes.... Don't try this at home kids....lol...
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Old 12-05-2004, 09:32 PM   #10
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Keep in mind that the Ramada isn't the Ramada anymore !! I think the hotel will be a surprise for all the Snowbird racers this year. Should be nice......now if they can do something about that odd wintergreen smell wafting through the air !!!
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Old 12-06-2004, 07:02 AM   #11
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nashrcracer - Well yeah....but no....This year im going to be racing 12th scale on-road so I have to be some what sober you know....I ALWAYS have fun at this race...well ewvery race for that matter.....C U there....OUT

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Old 12-06-2004, 07:25 AM   #12
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Josh, I agree with you. Hartzell must be on something that blurs his vision.
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Old 12-06-2004, 01:07 PM   #13
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i lwould have to agree with josh to i have been to both races and i do like them the same but look at the location and classes we can run edge to the birds
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Old 12-06-2004, 01:13 PM   #14
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Snowbirds hands down!! Mike, Kenny and the whole crew put on a spectacular event year in and year out!!! Besides....outdoor pools in February? You can't beat that!!!!
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Old 12-06-2004, 01:26 PM   #15
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I did the BIrds last year and the Champs 4 x I think.

I think the Birds sleep deprivation borders on insane. Sure maybe when I was 20 years old, but I feel too old for it now.

BIrds-only 3-qualifiers and resort after the first round. I think the resort will be at the second round ths year-but after all that travel and loss of sleep-shouldnt there be 4 qualifiers?

The laptimes are much tighter at the Champs in stock classes. But-I am sure it will get more competitive every year.

Yes-I agree-Mr Bil needs to flip a fish to someone to have a website every bit as good as the Birds-which is awesome.
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