RC PRO has completed this great interview with Kyle Skidmore who is the 2007 Gas Truck National Champion. Click the link below to read the interview in full!
How long have you been in RC?
I have been in RC for about 13 years.
I know your Dad has always been your pit man at the races I have been at did he get you into RC or did you get him into it?
My dad got me an rc10t sport for Christmas one year; it took us I think, 5 or 6 months to build it. I was only supposed play with it in the yard, but I wanted to go to the track and race when we got it done. And the rest was history.
Can you remember your 1st race?
Yes I remember my first race, it was novice at RCRC, and I got into the lead on the first lap and then broke shortly after that.
How long have you been driving for Team Associated?
I think I have been running for Associated for 9 years.
After winning the Gas Truck Championship last year it seems your concentrating on 1/8 scale at least in RC Pro this year. Is that your preference or is that an effort to promote the RC8 more?
Yes I have been running the rc8 more this year to promote it. It is one of the biggest classes in racing right now, and with Associated being new to 1/8th, they want to focus on that class.
What other classes do you run?
The other classes that I run are just about every class the AE has a car for. I race electric TC, 2wd, and Truck. I will be racing truggy when the AE truggy soon.
What’s your favorite class?
My favorite class? That’s a good question, I think it might be a class that I don’t get run much any more, nitro tc.
Traveling the way you do means going to a lot of tracks for the 1st time. What do you do to learn a new track?
I like to watch a few other cars run laps first, to see the possible different lines on the track. Other than learning the layout, getting use to a new track just takes running laps.
Being someone that runs both on and offroad does one type help the other?
Yes, I think that running both onroad and offroad help each other. In onroad you have to get the setup perfect, and it helps with your reaction time. In offroad you have to have throttle control, timing, and being able to adapt to the changing track.
From what I’ve noticed it seems the guys who run onroad also are more precise about hitting the optimum lines on the offroad. I attribute that to racing onroad too. Does that make sense?
Yes it makes perfect sense, in onroad hitting the right line every lap is very important, and you also learn how the find the fastest lines too.
What do you do when you go to a track for the first time? Do you use a standard setup?
Yes I use a standard setup, run the car a few times to get a feel for what the car needs to do different, and start tuning on the car.
What do you normally change 1st?
The first thing that I change is my Proline tires. What tire, then it is the compound. It is usually one of three tires Crime Fighter, Bow Tie, or Hole Shot in ether M2 or M3 compound. If you don’t have the right tires on your car, it is hard to know what to change on your car.
I’ll ask the question that most people are asking about on the forums. When is the Associated Arena Truck coming out?
The AE arena truck? They are working on it; they are saying that it should be out around the end of the year, hopefully earlier.
Most racers are hoping to get sponsors. So from someone that has been sponsored for many years can you give some advice on what is involved in having a sponsor and what most companies look for when looking to sponsor someone?
Companies are looking for good representative to promote there cars. They need those drivers at the tracks that can help other drivers with their car, not necessarily the fastest guy. From what I have seen people don’t always buy the fastest car on the track, but the one that they can get the most help with. Although, there is that saying “What wins on Sunday sells on Monday” lol.
Yes what wins at certain events does seem to sell well even in RC!
You’ve been in the industry for quit a while how have you seen the industry change?
It has changed quite a bit since I started. With running both on and off road, I have seen classes grow and die. I think the biggest change is in the quality of the cars. With more technology being introduced into the hobby, the cars are not only easier to build, but they are working better too. When I started racing the cars needed a lot of work to be put together the right way, the better that you were at building the car, the faster you were. Now someone can build a car put a setup on the car and it work the same as everyone else. I think that this helps new drivers not to get as frustrated as easily as in the past.
What do you feel is the next step for the industry or where do you feel it needs to head?
That’s a tough question. It is started down the right path with what you are doing with RC-Pro, and other races like the IIC. Putting the hobby in the public eye, getting people that have never herd of it to watch races. I think that is what the hobby needs to grow.
Yes but that is a long tough road making that happen.
I see several of the RC companies are getting involved in full scale racing.
Have you ever tried full scale racing of some sort?
No I have never done any type of full scale racing, I was very close to racing go-carts before I stated racing rc cars. My parents decided that they did not want me to getting hurt, so they got me an rc car, and the rest was history.
Is that something you would like to try?
I would like to try some type of full scale racing some time; I think it would be a lot of fun, maybe some day?
It’s about time to wrap this up. Thanks for taking the time to do this interview and once again congratulations on the National Championship. It looks like you have a good start on going for that 1/8 Expert Championship in 2008.
Please feel free to list your sponsors or anyone else you would like to thank.
Thank you Carlton for doing the interview. I would like to thank Team Associated, Reedy, Pro-Line, Futaba, O.S., Rocket Science Fuel, LRP, Avid, my dad, and God. With out help from all of these people, I could not do this hobby that I love!
Thanks Kyle and I’ll see you at the next race.