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  • Writer's pictureRyan Lutz

PNB 2024

The 2024 PNB is done and dusted and a cool 400 drivers comprising 920 entries which made for some long days, but that is what we expect when attending the PNB. With 23.5 hours of practice available, scheduling your sleep to be fresh is a big key to this event. They implemented some practice 'blocks' mid practice program this year which was a nice touch overall, allowing everyone to practice with their skill level for a particular amount of time.

PNB 2024 Track Layout

During practice my cars were super good. I was primarily running Clay compound Diamanté and Lux tires and I was the first to crack the 40 second barrier in Nitro buggy. The track at this time had a bit more moisture content and the tires were working great. I was primarily working on trying out the new Kyosho lexan wing which made the rear of the buggies a bit more nimble than the plastic one but I for sure need to do more back to back testing on other tracks to see what I really prefer. However I did end up leaving the lexan wing on the nitro buggy for the duration of the event.

Ryan Lutz Kyosho MP10 TKI3 with Texan Wing

Qualifying was just two rounds taking your best single qualpoint. The track was in general a bit drier during our qualifiers than it had been during practice. I still was sticking with clay compound, primarily the Lux in the buggies and scribbles in nitro truggy. In etruggy I chose to try out different compounds to see how they compared, using SSLW during Q1 and S during Q2. Finding the best feel with the Soft in Q2 in which I would TQ the round and take the overall TQ as well as capturing some onboard footage.

For the other classes I would qualify pretty well with a 5th in Nitro truggy, and 6th in both buggies all continuing to use the clay compound.

Ryan Lutz Qualifying results at PNB 2024

Sunday brought about the mains and first up was nitro truggy. I opted to stick with scribbles but because the track had dried out so much I went with SSLW (I probably would have chosen SLW if I had brought any, and furthermore probably would have chosen regular soft if I had any after what I learned later). Either way my truggy was decent but I often do struggle a bit at PNB on main day with being a bit too grippy and not having enough initial give in the tires. My truck was very sensitive on the steering and caused me to turn in a bit too early at times hitting some pipes and overall just didn't quite have the pace I would have liked. I did manage to not have any major issues early and was able to stay up near the front. With about 5 minutes to go I accidentally tagged Ronnefalk in the top right corner going away crashing him. I had it in my mind if he caught back up I would let him go. I ended up making a mistake with about 2 laps to go and he got into my wing during my crash and I made sure I stopped and let him go and then followed he and Fuller who had gotten by until the last lap when in that same top right I guess Ronnefalk got into Fuller and they were upside down and I was able to drive around them and back into 4th on the last lap there. Pleased to have gotten the positions back but a little bummed how the race went.

Ryan Lutz Kyosho MP10T 4th Place PNB 2024

Next was nitro buggy and I opted for SLW Lux. I had also gone up a bit in diffs and lowered my rear link on the tower. Also due to the warmer Sunday temps (around 70) instead of 50 I went up on shock oil all around 50cst as well. My buggy felt ok, but I wasn't completely comfortable. In this one I did have early mistakes that cost me greatly. Within the first 7 laps I had two long crashes loosing me 13 seconds and having me down in 15th. I had a pretty steady middle of the race in which I made inroads and it looked like it was possible to get around 5th - 6th but with about 5 minutes to go one mistake led to another and I had a terrible finish which is something I haven't done to that extent in a long time. I would settle for 9th with a battle across the finish line with Ogden getting beat out by .011 of a second. For sure wanted more in this one, but it's another top 10 result and again great performance from my Alpha Falcon engine in both nitro classes.

Ryan Lutz Pit Set-up at PNB 2024

Next was ebuggy and I opted to use the same set of SLW Lux I had used on Nitro. I also went up on front sway bar to 2.6 from 2.4 to try to mellow the initial twitch. It seemed good and my warmup lap felt good and my first 1/2 a lap was great as I was pressuring Phend and felt more comfortable. But I landed on my front edge on the back left and it broke my front arm and that was that.

PNB 2024 concrete section

Finally I finished out the night with Open Etruggy. This was an excellent race. I went with Soft Gridiron's in this one and I think the pin being able to move around and a regular compound that's not long wear gave a bit more forgiveness for me for the surface. I probably would have liked to have tried soft grids or similar maybe even in the buggies. Something I need to work with more when conditions have this feel to them. Anyways I had a great start and moved out to a 1 to 1.5 second lead and held it pretty steady in front of Fuller and Phi. Until about 5 minutes in when two lapped cars were crashed in the double double and I was somehow able to get through it but it allowed Fuller to be on my tail and he followed close for 3 minutes until I got out of shape on the front left and he got by. I chased for the next lap and a half and he dug his nose in, in the center single and did a quick flip giving me the lead back with just over a minute to go. Then on the final lap on that ever tricky top right Fuller got under me and pushed me out wide but as he did I stayed more in the line as he was a touch out in the dust and I got back under him and held him off on the last corner to take the exciting victory!

Ryan Lutz TQ + Victory Open Etruggy PNB 2024

PNB 2024 Open etruggy Podium

Set-up Notes:

As you can see on each sheet. 1* of outboard toe is achieved by the rear rear arm insert being long and the front rear arm insert being middle. I feel this is giving better corner exit traction and then can run the 2.5* or less rear toe in the inserts which should help in bumps.

Nitro buggy: After running the main and then doing the heavier front bar in ebuggy, I feel I should have done that for nitro as well. So I probably would have gone to the 2.6 front bar for Nitro buggy.

PNB 2024 MP10 TKI3 Set-up Sheet

PNB 2024 MP10Te Set-up Sheet

PNB 2024 MP10T Set-up Sheet

PNB 2024 MP10e TKI2 Set-up Sheet

Ryan Lutz Kyosho MP10Te

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