click for homepage How, Where and Why click for homepage

Click to Jump to a section - [Top] [How] [Format] [Where] [Why] [Banter]

How we Race

A video of one of our Supastox races shows a typical race:

We all arrive around 7pm on a Monday evening (except Bank holidays) and get the track out, this consists of un-rolling 4 big rolls of carpet, and marking out the track with plastic 'guttering' turned upside down and held with velcro onto wooden corner pieces.

Track layout at Trull, oval for V12s

We have transponder lap counting equipment, so each car has a small plastic personal transponder box (smaller than a postage stamp) mounted on it. Every transponder has a unique 7 digit number, so as each car crosses a wire loop under the finishing line, the computer can count every cars lap to within 1/100 second, and show lap by lap results for every race and driver.

Race control desk with computer lap timing

The track alternates between oval and circuit layout for the Mardave V12s, SC10 trucks always run on circuit layout, so on oval nights, there is a circuit layed out within/around the oval with ramps which is used for the SC10 class, the first and third Monday of the month are circuit racing evenings where we mark out a more traditional circuit of left and right corners for both Mardave V12s and SC10s, which requires a very different style of driving to the basic oval.

Offroad circuit with jumps for trucks

Car to car contact is allowed and positively encouraged (for Mardave V12s only, not Supastox/Trucks), so our racing is fun, and action packed. The Mardave cars are very tough, and so can withstand huge accidents, and just keep driving round.

Click to Jump to section - [Top] [How] [Format] [Where] [Why] [Banter]

Race Night Format

We run the same racing format as almost every other model car club in the UK, with heats to qualify for a final split by qualifying times.

Each driver gets 2 qualifying heats of five minutes duration. The aim of the heats is to complete as many qualifying laps as possible during 5 minutes, as this will determine which final you are in (A final for top 6 drivers, then B final etc), and your qualifying position within your final (fastest car is Number 1, then 2 etc). In the heats its important to remember that you are only racing against the clock, not other drivers, so daring overtaking moves which cause you to crash are not recommended. The results are shown as a number of laps, and a finishing time, ie 24/306 which means 24 laps in 306 seconds, obviously if you cross the finish line within 5 minutes you get to complete the lap you have started, so the faster 'split' time wins, ie 24/306 would qualify ahead of 24/308, 25/309 would beat them both due to extra lap completed.

We then run five minute finals (V12 B final, then V12 A Final, finally Trucks A Final - and sometimes B), and for the Mardave V12 finals the cars line up in reverse grid order (Pole position starts at the back), this is to make the race more interesting and to give a headstart to anyone who had problems qualifying, as the fastest cars have to make their way through from the back. The final is a proper race for positions, so you can crash and bash your way past other cars if thats what it takes to get in front, as the finishing position is what determines each drivers points score.

To make the racing fun and challenging right through the field, we race in divisions, in the V12 heats each division starts a quarter of the way round the circuit, so the Division 1 cars (Marked with Red roofs) effectively have a 3/4 lap handicap, followed by the Division 2 cars (Blue roofs), and Division 3 drivers (Green roofs), any novice drivers start right at the very front, and wear white roofs. All drivers are supplied with a suitably coloured roof panel to stick to their car.

We run quarterly racing seasons, and the top and bottom 2 drivers in each divisions are promoted or relegated respectively. The idea of divisions is to give everyone something to race for, whether it be to get promoted from Novice, getting up into Division 2, right up to fighting at the top of the league table to become club champion, and race with a gold roof for the following season.

The best qualifying time is known as fastest time of the day (FTD) and takes pole position for the A final, and scores 1 bonus league point, league points are then awarded from 25 points to the A final winner, reducing by one point for each driver through each final.

We have a friendly tradition that the loser of the lowest final takes home the rubbish bag for the evening, this alternates between V12 (Oval nights) and SC10s (circuit nights) to keep things fair, new members are excluded from this the first time they race, so don't be put off!

Pit area is on stage

We normally start racing at 7.45 approx and finish at about 9.50 (ish). Drivers must marshall the heat following their own, to pickup cars which get stuck or come off the track, so the last heat marshalls for the first one. When you have finished your race, please try to get your car on charge and get back to your position to marshall the next race, so we can keep things moving along, and finish on time.

Click to Jump to section - [Top] [How] [Format] [Where] [Why] [Banter]

Where we Race

Taunton Ministox Club race at Trull Village Hall in Taunton Somerset, see the map below (click to zoom in).

Map showing Trull Memorial Hall location, click to zoom in
The entrance to the hall is opposite Trulls All Saints church, so you can get location info and directions from any UK postcode from by clicking here

Click to Jump to section - [Top] [How] [Format] [Where] [Why] [Banter]

Why we Race - by Colin Woodford

Well that's an easy question to answer....because it's fun!!

The real question is Why is it fun?..... Another easy's fun because it's cheap!!

The following views are mine personally and do not reflect the views of any other member of Taunton Ministox Club.

I've been racing model cars in one form or another since 1977 so know that Radio Controlled Model Car Racing can become very expensive especially if you want to be competitive. Believe me I've been there and done it!! I have almost 'Maxed' my plastic to stay competitive, then along comes another model or motor or battery etc etc.

At the end of the day, we race Mardave V12 cars at Taunton Ministox Club because it's cheap, in fact it's the cheapest form of competitive radio controlled model car racing in the UK.

A FINAL THOUGHT....... What's the biggest GRIPE that makes people COMPLAIN and SHOUT and have ARGUMENTS in the pits at model car clubs? It's easy, CAR TO CAR CONTACT. You must have seen it.... 'YOU TOOK MY CAR OUT WHEN I HAD THE RACING LINE!!' 'HOW DARE YOU!!'.

Well the easy answer is.....race at our club, car to car contact IS ALLOWED and positively encouraged and there are no arguments!!! We race every week, so whoever puts you into the wall this week, you can get them back next week, and its all good clean fun, and no-one takes it personally !

Click to Jump to section - [Top] [How] [Format] [Where] [Why] [Banter]

Banter on the rostrum

Part of the fun of full contact racing is the 'banter' between drivers on the rostrum. Obviously its all in good fun, and as we encourage car to car contact, there are no real arguments, as everyone knows that contact is allowed and encouraged.

To help new members out, here is a list of common banter from our normal racing, so you can join in, and not be too startled during a race when the drivers seem to be spending as much time shouting as racing.
Stage is used as drivers rostrum

Click to Jump to section - [Top] [How] [Format] [Where] [Why] [Banter]

Webcounter current hits count display