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2016 Dirt Nitro Challenge – eBuggy

Maifield last lap win from champion Tessmann
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Ryan Maifield snatched a last lap eBuggy victory over defending champion Ty Tessmann at the Dirt Nitro Challenge to successfully convert the first of the three TQ starts the TLR driver has secured this weekend at the Fear Farm. Leading the first 3-minutes of the race, a mistake by Maifield at the second step up would hand team-mate Dakotah Phend a lead. Starting 7th on the grid, the 19-year-old would only stay out front for a lap before he crashed coming into the right side triple. Allowing Tessmann to the front the Canadian looked like he would successfully defend his title as Maifield trying to put a pass on his team-mate at the berm caused the two cars to tangle. But with a lap to go the race would come alive as Maifield caught a slowing Tessmann making contact with the HB twice before the World Champion got out of shape allowing Maifield through for the win into the final corner. While further crashes would drop Phend back to 7th, a recovering Ryan Cavalieri who started third would complete the podium for Team Associated.


With the crowd appreciative of the exciting finish, Maifield was ‘stoked’ to add his first DNC eBuggy title saying the track conditions were ‘really crazy’. ‘Super tense’ early on in the race, the Arizona driver said couldn’t find his rhythm adding this was compounded by the electric buggies having ‘so much fricken power’. Describing his error on the left side step as ‘retarded’, he said he was searching all over for the right line through the difficult section and once he started using the far end side his 8ight 4.0 was dialled, as highlighted by his penultimate lap on which he set the fastest lap of the race. Catching Tessmann, who he said drove a good race’, Maifield said ‘While I didn’t set out to get into him it was the last lap and we had a big enough gap over third so I went for it. When we did hit I let him go. Then he cased the step-up and I could get by. Describing the race as ‘intense’ he said his car and electrics where dialled adding he ‘had plenty of battery left’.


Running two short packs in his Orion powered D815, Tessmann said the race was the best his car has been but he knew because of his batteries he had to drive more conservatively than before. However at the end his power started to fade with him having a cut out at the step-up leading to his late error. Declaring himself happy with how he drove he added ‘it just wasn’t to be’ but after his performance he said ‘Truggy will be good’. Commenting on the two incidents with Maifield, he said ‘he bonzai’d me. The first time it back fired and he took out Dakotah but he got me with the second one’.


Getting past Tessmann on lap 1 before settling into third, Cavalieri said his race started off good until he crashed at the step up. Dropping back to 7th, he said with ‘bobbles from a few guys in front’ helped him make his way back to third and he was able to ‘hold on to it’ until the end. Behind Cavalieri, 2014 Champion David Ronnefalk would finish 4th the HB driver having held a podium placing before a mistake with 2-minutes to go. Tekno’s Joe Bornhorst and Kyosho’s Jared Tebo completed the Top 6.

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