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Aug 06, 2010, 01:49 PM
Electric Coolhunter
Thomas B's Avatar
Thread OP

First US Electric Formula 1 race: August 15th, Fort Worth, TX

Short notice, but wanted to get the word out to those not following some of the eF1 threads.

The first US electric Formula One race will be held Sunday afternoon Aug 15, starting around 1PM, at the Fort Worth Thunderbirds field at Benbrook Lake, TX.

This race will run concurrently with and will have alternating heats with a race for the local Q-25 glow powered series held in the North Texas area.

Field location is here:

Rules can be found here:

Discussion of aircraft found here:

The new Horizon Hobby LR-1A Pogo is a legal design for the races. There are a couple of legal motors discussed in the threads.

The current expectation is to have somewhere between 4 and 10 participants in this historic event. Hopefully, the heat will not be too bad a week from Sunday!

Would love to have anyone interested to come on out and observe or even help out!
Last edited by Thomas B; Aug 16, 2010 at 05:23 PM. Reason: typos
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Aug 13, 2010, 05:10 PM
Lost in the Sky
Richard N's Avatar
Happening this Sunday at 1pm.
Aug 15, 2010, 09:04 PM
Electric Coolhunter
Thomas B's Avatar
Thread OP
Just home and recovering from the first official US electric Formula One race!

We got three of four planned rounds in. With the heat index at 115 or higher, we caved in and agreed that three rounds were enough, at about 4:30 or so.. Due to race course layout and sun and field location, the races do not start until 1:30PM...not great in the summer heat!

We ended up with eight attendees with thirteen airplanes: Myself, Jerry Small, George Parks, Jon Jennings, Steve Westerfeld, Blake Arnold, all from Texas, plus Norm Johnson and Chuck Anderson from Oklahoma.

Four of the models were the new E-flite LR-1A Pogo, two from the production kits plus two of the original hand build prototypes: one of Jerry Smalls and one built by George Parks. The pogos did quite well! Without digging out my notes, there were several of Jerry's Outragous designs, Jerry's Rivets, Jon Jennings' Little Toni, George Parks' Proud Bird. That covers most of them. I was there with my box stock production Pogo.

The race course was the same two pylon 450 foot long course as used by the Q-25 folks. Pilots and callers were in the normal flying stations along the runway. No flagmen. Pylon judges were located even with each pylon, on the pit side of the runway.

This course was a bit of a challenge to some of the long time racers....lack of flagmen and pilot station arrangement relative to the course were different that what was normal to the race folks there for the first time with eF1 models. Took a little getting used to. Some of the real racing veterans were right on Pylon 2 and cut it a few times, resulting in a number of goose eggs.

And now for the results!

In First place: Chuck "No Cut" Anderson from OKC, flying an Outragous! Fast, smooth and consistent. Chuck used an Eflite Power 25 1250Kv, and 8/8 E APC prop.

In Second place: Steve Westerfeld, flying a loaner: Jerry Small's original plain white prototype E-Flite R-1A Pogo with an E-flite Power 25 1250KV and an 8/8 APC prop. This was Steve's second race ever and the first in many years, but he is a veteran and skilled flyer.

In Third place: Blake Arnold, a local T-bird Q-25 racer. He was flying another loaner: Jerry Small's first production LR-1A Pogo from the first batch of kits. Again, power was the E-flite Power 25Kv and an 8/8 APC prop. His third heat was a thing of beauty to watch...awesome flying!

I think I was either fourth or fifth or so. A zero in the first race due to an ESC timing problem cost me! I was flying a box stock production E-Flite LR-1A Pogo, with..guess what....An E-Flite Power 25 1250KV and an 8/8 APC prop!....

As you can see, the E-Flite Pogo and Power 25 1250KV combo fared quite well!

Some carnage probably affected the results, along with the cuts. Jerry lost his Outragous on the back side of the course, where there were some fairly tall mesquite trees that reached up and grabbed it. Also, the tall mesquite nabbed Norm Johnson flying Jerry Small's Rivits. Good altitude control on the back course was a must! George Parks had a Turnigy motor failure in the first heat that cost him as well.

I ought to have some pictures posted by tomorrow....Richard Ng was there and got some great action shots, currently being edited.
Last edited by Thomas B; Aug 16, 2010 at 05:25 PM.
Aug 16, 2010, 10:54 PM
Registered User
Thank you Thomas for the kind words, and Richard for posting pics. Wow.... THAT was FUN. During the race I could feel there was some close competition, but seeing the pics really puts it in perspective. The LR-1A I was racing had the orange tape added to the right wing, Jerry was flying the #50 Outrageous, and John I believe was flying the red Lil Toni. I have to thank Jerry for offering a plane for me to fly along with battery's, and Steve for lending a Spectrum transmitter. The Pogo was very competitive with the Eflite motor! If I remember correctly, I won 2 of three heats, and cut out of the other. That is significant in the sense that the hand build "cooler" looking planes are no faster than the readily available Pogo ARF from Eflite!!
Aug 16, 2010, 11:00 PM
Registered User
I do need to add that the pylon judges and lap counter's mentioned that when the two Pogo's were in the same heat, it was very difficult to differentiate the two, even with the tape on the wing. Maybe there is a way to make the next ARF designs colors schemes more simple, which in turn would make them customizable by adding trim colors.
Aug 17, 2010, 11:26 AM
Electric Coolhunter
Thomas B's Avatar
Thread OP
Not too hard to strip part or all of the wings and redo the trim colors on the ARF Pogo. Given that only some percentage of the models will ever actually race, that will likely be the most common solution. You can also mask off some of the covering, hit it with some scotchbrite and degrease it and spray on some trim colors right on top of the covering.

I was going to strip the underwing color and part of each upper wingtip and change it to red on my model, but did not have a chance to do so.

If this really catches on, perhaps Horizon will consider offering a model with a plain white painted cowl, gear and pants and no covering. However, it will only be a touch cheaper than the covered version and Horizon would have to stock two versions of the same model, one of which might not seel that well.
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Aug 17, 2010, 04:20 PM
Lost in the Sky
Richard N's Avatar
How about this for a race airplane ID solution:

Pick four very different florescent colors that will be standard for the four lanes and have a self adhesive swatch that will be applied to the upper and lower right outer wing panel of each competing airplane. The swatch needs to be big enough alone to ID the plane regardless of the planes colors and markings and that will allow pilots to color and mark their airplanes to whatever makes them happy.

Then, the pylon callers would only have to say "Red" just cut instead of having to figure out which blur corresponds to which airplane to which lane to call in to the Scorers.

The colors could be (all florescents) Red (1), Green (2), Blue (3), and Yellow (4).

Aug 19, 2010, 01:02 AM
Registered User
Richard, that is a dang good idea, especially since once a lane is designated you remain in it all day. The color could correspond to the lane. It would be important to find a material that would be easy to remove.

We did this before in some fashion (monokote) before we moved to numbers in Q25, but it was a bit of a pain for the organizers. (to supply the monokote strips)

It is very important to remember that most all of the work is done by a handful of dedicated people, of which all are volunteering their time, and sometimes money to make this happen. We began Q25 in 2007 and Texas Wings was club racing for a few years before that. Most likely none of the EF1 guys were around to see those early days, but the operation has grown from four or five workers, to around fourteen. Three of them racing too. It is obvious it is a great undertaking to keep the Q25 up and going, and to expect them alone to add a whole new class may be a little too much to ask.

I had a ton of fun flying the Pogo, and just tonight almost finished rebuilding an airframe Jerry gave me. I have all intentions of participating in any EF1 race that is within a couple of hours of Fort Worth, and maybe even farther if possible. My feeling is this could keep growing, but only if clubs will host races. This could be made possible if maybe there was a way to have a "traveling coarse". You know, pylons that are mobile, along with the other supporting equipment. Also, have a respectable entry fee that goes to the club, with simple trophy's for the top three. Then maybe the club would see a benefit to hosting the race...
Aug 19, 2010, 09:41 AM
Fly R/C writer

Just for info, E-FLite already offers a white only cowl for the Pogo, as well as an un-painted canopy cover. Unfortunately, they do not offer any "plain Jane" wings or fuselage sections as yet.

At our small EF-1 event in Whittier on your same weekend, we did have the flourescent swatches of color on the Pogo's, and even at that, it was difficult for the judges to identify the planes that may have cut a pylon. Thankfully, nobody really cut, save for mine, which tore the flag clean off the the #3 pylon. The flag acted like a parachute and my plane had very minor damage only. It required only 15 minutes of repair work to be airworthy again. By all rights, it should have exploded!
Aug 19, 2010, 10:27 AM
Kinetic Sculptor
Originally Posted by DBA-FW
My feeling is this could keep growing, but only if clubs will host races. This could be made possible if maybe there was a way to have a "traveling course". You know, pylons that are mobile, along with the other supporting equipment....
Here ya go! These work great, and they're cheap to build!


Aug 19, 2010, 10:49 AM
Registered User
Duane, that is a great link, thank you!
Sep 23, 2010, 04:54 PM
johnnychimpo's Avatar
Was anyone flying 424 there or were they all q25?
Sep 23, 2010, 08:00 PM
Electric Coolhunter
Thomas B's Avatar
Thread OP
All the glow racers were Q25.
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