Maifield Puts On A Show At AMS 3.0
Race: 2012 AMS 3.0
Track: Cullman Co. Agricultural Center
Date: June 8-9, 2012
For the 3rd year in a row the AMS event in Cullman, Alabama, has brought out a huge crowd of racers, spectators and world class competition. The dream event put on by David Watson and crew has turned out to be the Summers premier 1/8th event in the country with over 500 entries. With increased competition from the likes of Jared Tebo, Ryan Cavalieri, Adam Drake, and IFMAR World Champion Cody King, defending champion Ryan Maifield had his work cut out for him.
Practice started on a beautifully prepared race track with banner, flag and a graphical presentation very rarely seen at a one off event. JConcepts Start / Finish line and the Tekin High RPM berm were the highlights to the challenging track setting and layout. It was apparent early with the dryer track conditions the surface would produce a few more ruts and bumpy sections than previous years and tuning and driving line selection would factor into the results more than ever. The unique triple step-down section was a blast from the past and challenged the best in attendance.
Ryan Maifield rocked qualifying by wrapping up TQ in the 1/8th buggy class early winning rounds 1 and 2 easily to take overall TQ. 1/8th truck was a hard fought class with Maifield taking round 1, Adam Drake round 2 and Jared Tebo in round 3. Ryan’s consistency with a 4th in round 2 and a 2nd in round, 3 missing TQ by .089 of a second, earned him a 2nd overall TQ of the day.
JConcepts / Mugen driver Barry Pettit took the TQ in the Pro 1/8th E-Truggy class by taking 3 straight rounds of qualifying. JConcepts drivers Martin Harrison and Daimon Borkowitz qualified 2nd and 3rd making it a JConcepts sweep at the top of the field.
In the 1/8th E-Buggy class, 6 JConcepts drivers qualified directly into the A-main, featuring Jeremy Kortz 2nd and Michael Paige, Barry Pettit, Justin Cranford, Max Flurer and Matt Gosch sitting in the 8-12 positions.
3 total qualifying rounds completed and 108 heat races wrapped up on Friday evening all finished ahead of schedule with the last heat of Pro buggy finishing around 11:30pm. Race directors Jimmy Babcock and Nick Black ran an excellent show all day long switching off every 12 races giving racers a different voice throughout the day.
Mains – 1/8th truck
The main events started at 8am and while the A-main drivers were not up for many hours the bump-ups began and drivers scrambled the pits to inch closer to an A-main finish. Around 4pm the A-main warm-ups took place for a solid hour allowing drivers to test and tune on the latest surface to get ready for later on in the day. The drivers were announced to the spectators and fellow drivers and the engines started to fire. The official A-main warm-up began for the 1/8th truck class with 2 quick minutes to sort out the race program and strategy and then it was down and quiet.
The 1/8th truck main started with the TQ Maifield getting a great start and Tebo just behind. The 2 drivers slightly pulled away from 3rd place Adam Drake who was also running very well. Maifield stretched to an 8 second lead while drivers entered the pits for the 2nd time. Coming out of the pits Ryan encountered a ghost flameout and his speedy pit crew fired him up right away and he was back out and in 3rd place. Possessed driving put Maifield back into 2nd very quickly and gaining each lap on Tebo. The comeback of the year was in full affect as Maifield chipped away at Tebo’s seemingly insurmountable lead. As the lead dwindled to 11 seconds Tebo remained strong during a long stretch while Maifield entered some traffic and routine pit stops.
Maifield put in another serious push cutting into the lead once again getting under 8 seconds as the 2 drivers got closer and closer. With about 3 minutes to go Nick Black announced that “it’s on now” and Maifield was right on the bumper of Tebo looking to make a pass. Ryan made a move and took the lead for a brief moment only to have Tebo pass him back off the step-up near the back section. Ryan regrouped once again and made a charge down the step-downs and while whipping it out on the front-side double took the inside line away and regained the lead once again. This time with only 1 minute remaining Maifield made the pass stick and pulled a small gap and held the lead position all the way to the finish line. Taking the victory in style Ryan Maifield took 1st, Jared Tebo in 2nd and Adam Drake 3rd. Ryan Maifield’s truggy was equipped with JConcepts Punisher RC8T-CE body, Hybrids tires in green compound and Elevated truggy wheels during the amazing comeback victory.
Mains – 1/8th buggy
Fresh off his confident win in the 1/8th truck class Ryan Maifield again took the lead in the 1/8th buggy class and a 3 or 4 car race emerged in the opening laps. Once again Jared Tebo and Ryan Maifield broke away from the pack and a tight race between the 2 drivers was on. Maifield established a solid lead during lap 29 and continued to pull a larger lead lap after lap. The dusty and deteriorating track conditions seemed to affect many drivers who fell behind many laps to Maifield during the grueling 45 minutes. Maifield continued to push well into a 107 lap pace lapping drivers consistently as the race wore on. Maifield crossed the finish line taking his 2nd win of the day, continuing his domination of the AMS event. Jared Tebo finished 2nd and Cody King finished 3rd. Ryan Maifield’s buggy was decked out with JConcepts all weekend including Hybrids tires in green compound and Finnisher RC8.2 body.
Mains – 1/8th E-truggy
Barry Pettit dominated qualifying and earned the # 1 grid spot for the A-main. A-1 was a walk-away for Pettit while the rest of the field battled for 2nd and 3rd position. Pettit crossed for a easy A-1 win with Daimon Borkowitz taking 2nd and Chris Lopez in 3rd. Drivers aligned for the all important A-2 and once again Pettit shot out into the lead. Daimon Borkowitz got tied up on the first lap and shuffled back into the field. With Pettit out front and cruising, Borkowitz made up a lot of time and got back into 2nd. A few rough traffic laps for Pettit allowed Borkowitz to close the gap but in the end the JConcepts equipped Mugen truggy of Pettit was too much and crossed the finish line for a convincing overall victory. Daimon Borkowitz finished 2nd with the RC8T-CE and Chris Lopez finished 3rd. After the race Barry pulled off his trademark truggy back flip perfectly down-siding the back jump. A near miss by most accounts but witnessed on video as a perfect back flip. The top 2 drivers relied on JConcepts all weekend with Punisher body and wing combination with Hybrids tires mounted on Elevated wheels gripping the dirt in green compound.
The AMS 3.0 continued the tradition of a large scale event on the east coast and with well over 500 entries the competition was fierce all weekend. The race direction of Jimmy Babcock and Nick Black combined with the hospitality of David Watson and the entire AMS crew made this 3rd annual event one to remember. As we look forward to AMS 4.0, congratulations to all the winners and a tremendous event.