Hot Rod Hobbies, a local business in Saugus, held their 20th Annual Off-Road Shootout this Sunday on their dirt race track located just behind the storefront.
The Shootout is a unique opportunity for local remote control car racers to hone their skills, compete for trophies and learn from professional racers firsthand.
“This is our annual summer race,” said Jimmy Babcock who has owned the store for the past 14 years. “We started it 20 years ago and it (has) built up to what we have today.”
Racers had the chance to compete in 13 different categories, many of which were sponsored by R.C. companies and component providers.
Scattered among these races were participants with many different backgrounds and levels of experience.
“It ranges from amateurs and rookies to pros who can make six-figure salaries from racing” said Babcock.
For Tanner Stees, a 19-year-old competitor who has already accrued 12 years worth of racing experience, the goal was simple – to win.
But for others, the competitive zeal takes a backseat to innocuous fun and family bonding.
Frankie Contreras and his 9-year-old son, Frankie Jr., share a special bond over the sport which Frankie Sr. first picked up in the late 1980s.
Frankie Jr., one of the youngest racers at the event, competed in two separate classifications, buggy and stock, while his father gave his advice and support.
“There was a track by my house that got me involved, and so obviously I passed it down to my son” said Contreras.
Hot Rod Hobbies’ raceway is open to aspiring competitors on Tuesday nights at 7 p.m. and Saturday nights at 6 p.m.