2021 Nitro Hero Challenge – RECAP

The 2021 Nitro Hero Challenge (NHC) was held this past weekend at Thunder Alley R/C Speedway in Lucama, NC. This would be the 4th running of the event.

This year set a new record for entries with a total of 117, beating the previous high of 55 back in 2019. Although eBuggy was the largest class this year with 43 drivers in the field, everyone was focused on the Pro Nitro Buggy class. This year’s lineup was stacked with heavy hitters including two past NHC champions, Jake Stikeleather (Team Associated) and Will McIver (XRAY).

The field was set based on two rounds of qualifying using Rocket Round format. Rocket Round takes your best overall run from qualifying to sort the field for the main events.

The Top Qualifiers of the weekend included…

  • Pro Nitro Buggy – Blake Pickett (Team Associated)
  • Open Nitro Buggy – Tyler Griffin
  • Nitro Truggy – Rusty Mihelich
  • eBuggy – Will McIver (XRAY)
  • eTruggy – Luis Diego (Tekno)
  • 4wd Short Course – Luis Diego (Tekno)
  • Novice – Alex Thomas

Moving on to the Main Events, all eyes were on the Pro Nitro Buggy Final. Blake Pickett would start from the #1 Spot on the Grid with Jake Stikeleather in second and Don Elliott (Agama) in third. 4 laps into the race, Pickett fell back to the #2 spot with Stikeleather taking over the lead. He would stay on top of the leaderboard for over 25 laps as they approached the next round of pit stops.

On lap 32 the leaders started another cycle of pit stops, Jake would end up running out of fuel trying to stretch an extra lap through the pit sequence. This allowed Pickett to take over the top spot about halfway through the 30-Minute main event.

From there, Stikeleather would close the gap slightly but Pickett was able to hold on to the lead all the way until the end and become the 4th Different Nitro Hero Challenge Champion! Stikeleather came home 2nd with Will McIver rounding out the podium with a 3rd Place Finish.

A-Main Winners from the weekend…

  • Pro Nitro Buggy – Blake Pickett (Team Associated)
  • Open Nitro Buggy – Maddy Long
  • Nitro Truggy – Rusty Mihelich
  • eBuggy – Don Elliott (Agama)
  • eTruggy – Luis Diego (Tekno)
  • 4wd Short Course – Luis Diego (Tekno)
  • Novice – Alex Thomas

Congrats to all the Winners, and thanks to everyone who came out to make this the Biggest Nitro Hero Challenge yet!