THE Cub Report, Version “Cub Awards” 2008
As I sit here writing the last of this years Cub Reports, I can’t help but to wonder what lies ahead in 2009.
Will we see any of the big name manufactures close doors due to the economy? Will the sport continue to trend toward the “basher” side of the product lines? Will the Dream Team at Kyosho put out a car the average consumer can’t wait to buy? Will 8th scale brushless ever come to fruition? How many Slash clones are on the way? Will we see an avalanche of litigation towards lithium battery resellers? Will attendance at sanctioned racing events continue to fall? Will track designers ever start putting more thought into track layouts so that more than one racing line is available? Will nitro fuel ever spike in price? Will Losi continue to put out a new car/truck every couple weeks? But perhaps most importantly, will BigSquidRC see yet another huge leap in web-views like in 08? (2008 was AMAZING for BigSquid!) Any which way, 2009 begs to be a pivotal year in rc.
With no further ado, here is my list of the 2008 Cub Awards. The winners are solely based on reader submitted votes, with my personal picks mentioned separately.
08′ Car/Truck of the year- Traxxas Slash. Hands down winner here, with over 90% of the vote. Awesome price point, rugged, stylish, the list could go on and on. An awesome truck that is affordable to buy, and to drive. And above all, it’s just plain trick, no matter how bare-bones the design.
08′ Car/Truck of the year, Cub’s pick- I can’t argue with the public on this one, the Slash simply PWN’d 2008. The first time I saw the truck, I thought it was a born loser, but after seeing how the public has reacted, seeing sales numbers, and getting to drive one, I’m totally on this uber fun bandwagon.
08′ Worst Car/Truck of the year- Losi Desert Truck. Readers were wildly split in this category, with the Desert Truck narrowly edging out the win. It’s not that it’s a bad truck, as it’s based off a great platform. It’s only major downfall being that it’s just not a Slash. The narrow body, and legit 10th scale truck racing chassis (not scale) puts it just enough off the mark to leave a sour impression in readers minds.
08′ Worst Car/Truck of the year, Cub’s pick- I know I caught a lot of slack earlier in the year when I sung the idiocy of this buggy (truck?), but I sternly stand by my call here. JConcepts really is a cool company, and every other piece of gear they put out is outstanding. But, their “J82” eight scale electric buggy conversion just makes me say, “WTF were you thinking?”.
08′ Best piece of rc gear of the year- Spektrum DX3R. The DX3R seems it has won over the hearts, and hands, of our readers. Fast response, light in the hand, and utilizing the kick ass Spektrum 2.4 GHz technology, puts it to the top of the heap. Best transmitter ever? I don’t know, but I can say it easily won the Cub Award for Gear of the Year.
08′ Best piece of rc gear of the year, Cub’s pick- Castle Mamba Monster. Yes indeed, the Monster had teething pains when released to the public (to say the least), but in the wider scope of things, it’s exactly what was needed to get every 8th scale buggy in the country converted over to electric. It’s big, it’s beefy, drives awesome, and like all other Castle products, it’s available at a very reasonable price point. Regardless of the tough initial release, the Monster is what was needed to continue the evolution of our sport.
08′ Biggest POS rc gear of the year- Our reader submissions in this category were all over the place. No one item got more than 5 votes, so I’m throwing them all out. I did get a readers submission that I took to heart though. It wasn’t about the Biggest POS piece of rc gear, it was about the Biggest F’en A-hole in the sport. This anonymous reader suggested that the fluff-boy that sued several American companies over the “made in the USA” logo truly earned such an award. To all those sue happy pricks out there, this birds for you.
08′ Zero to Hero of the Year (person or item that came out of nowhere to pwn)- Hands down winner here from our readers- Atsushi Hara. Now, it’s not like Hara was an unknown, he certainly wasn’t. Hara has been one of the most elite racers in the world for years. BUT, his win at this years 8th scale worlds shocked the world. An “on-road” guy putting it to the world. A foreigner smoking America’s best on home turf at The Farm. And even more surprisingly, the Hot Bodies D8 he used to win has a Ridiculously low price point.
08′ Zero to Hero of the Year, Cub’s pick- I gotta go with the readers here, what Hara pulled off will be talked about for decades to come in our sport.
Drum Roll Please…….
08′ RC Man of the Year- Seems our readers liked to vote on this category, a Lot. Everyone that voted, penciled in a vote for Man of the year. While the head man at Traxxas doesn’t seem to go out of his way to get his name in the headlines, his products, and his people have made a huge statement in 2008. The Traxxas T-Maxx changed the industry years ago, showing that something new and different could set sales records. For years now, the industry has waited for the “next big thing”. Incredibly, Traxxas pulled another ace out from under it’s sleeve with the Slash. So Mike Jenkins, and the rest of the team at Traxxas, this “RC Man of the Year” is for you.
08′ RC Man of the Year, Cub’s Pick- No, he’s not some crazy snow boarder/skier/mountain biker/X-Games medalist. But, he is Shawn Palmer. Inside the industry, he’s known as the guy with the big smile, great British accent, and marketing man guru. To consumers, he’s the guy that’s willing to do anything for the goodwill of our beloved sport. In 2008 Shawn Palmer went a long ways to increasing the awareness of ROAR, Schumacher USA, and the sport in general, to hard core hobbyist as well as laymen. He’s exactly what this sport needs more of, people going above and beyond simply for the good of the sport.
Congrats to the winners, that’s all for this year Squid readers. Tune back in first week of January, Friday the 2nd (look for all 09′ Cub Reports on Friday evenings!), for the next edition of The Cub Report. Till next year, thanks for reading, support your LHS’s, and support your local tracks!
Your Cub Reporter