Tennison Willis used the all new VP-Pro Ultra Flexx 809 Blade tires to take TQ in the 1/8 Open Class at the Dirt Nitro Challenge held at the Nitro Pit in Surprise Arizona last weekend. After taking TQ, Willis switched to Ultra Flexx Turbo Trax for rain destroyed, bumpy track to take the Win in the A-main event. The new Blade tires will be available at VP-Pro USA this April both belted and non-belted. Congratulations Tennison on your impressive TQ & Win with VP-Pro Tires at the biggest race of the year in the USA!
Race report by Tennison Willis:
For the first round of practice I decided to go out with Medium Flexx Axman. Because the track was sonew and not yet broken in, there was allot of ”loose” stuff still on the track. The tires were good but alittle edgy, even with the track being so loose. So that ruled out Axmans for me. By the second roundof practice the track was developing a nice groove and you could tell there was going to be plenty of traction. My fist thought was to try Turbo Trax, but I really wanted to give the new Ultra Flexx Blades a try. I had a new
set mounted in time for the second round. Plus I wanted to get a feel for how the tires were going to be
and get use to them before the qualifiers, so I went out with the Blades. After that last practice round I
knew blades would be the tire I was going to run for qualifying and the main event.
(Friday buggy qualifying)
By Friday the track had a huge groove in it and most people were running “small pin” tires and I was second guessing going with the Blades over Turbo Trax. After talking about it with a few other people I decided to go with my gut and run the Blades. They felt so awesome in practice I just could not see the Turbo Trax being any better and my plan before I even showed up to the track was to run the same tires in the main as what I qualified with. With that in mind the Blades would be a much better choice for the long 45 min main if I were to make it. So for Q1 I mounted up a fresh set of UF Blades and went out, the tires were even better feeling than in practice. Just enough of everything, side bite, forward traction and stability. I TQ’d that round.
After inspecting the tires for wear I noticed how great the wear characteristics are! They were fine to go another run. Actually they still looked brand new. After I cleaned them you couldn’t really tell they were even
used! So I went out for Q2 full of confidence that I had the secret weapon called VP-Pro Blades! Unfortunately I had some bad luck with a marshall and made a few mistakes trying to pass cars, that cost me the TQ for
that round. I ended up qualifying 2nd for that round. So it came down to the last round of qualifying. The guy who tq’d round 2 had a 2nd in round 1, so we were tied for the TQ spot. I was a little nervous before the start of my 3rd qualifier, but I just said to myself, “Hey I already made the main, just go out and drive”. I ended up having a great run and taking the TQ for that round and the pole position for Sunday.
(Sunday bloody sunday, buggy mains)
Showed up Sunday morning to the track to find out we’re running rc boats instead of buggy’s! haha. It had rained all night and the track was destroyed. My first thought was this changes everything. I didn’t know what tires to run now, especially since they shortened the main to 30 min instead of 45 min. We decided we just had to monitor the track and hopefully make the right decision when the main is up. So as the day went on the track got dryer and dryer, more rutted and more rutted. By the time my main was coming up the track was pretty bumpy and there were allot of sharp “edges” everywhere. I was afraid the Blades would be to aggressive and catch ruts. So I got out a set of UF Turbo Trax and me and a buddy started cutting the outer and inner pins off to make them less likely to traction roll. It worked like a champ, the car and tires were as good as I could ask for, especially for how bad the track was. I made a few stupid mistakes in the beginning of the race that forced me to calm down and luckily I was able to fight past my nerves and drive like I know I can and take the win. As for tire wear on the Turbo Trax after the 30 min main, it was very minimal, I can still use them for club racing!
For more information, visit www.vp-pro-usa.com