Race for FREE!

Racing costs money. In fact, it costs enough that the expense actually keeps some people away from the track. Would you like to race for free? I thought so. Well, read on and I’ll show you how you can race for free.


No Fee Racing. Running a hobby shop with a track is extremely fulfilling and a lot of fun. It’s also a huge hassle. Make the hobby shop owner’s life easier and you’ll be his new best friend. Approach the hobby shop with a deal. Offer to exchange your services for race fees. Track owners need to run the store, groom the track, take race entries, work the computer, water the track, etc, etc. Offer to do the dirty work. In exchange for no-fee racing, tell him you’ll come early and rake out the track, water it and then stay late to pick up loose trash, empty trash bins, etc.

Free Fuel. If you race nitro, there is an easy way to take nitro fuel out of your expenses–offer to pit for a guy or two in exchange for free fuel on race day. Finding someone to pit for you can be a hassle, so nitro racers will likely take up on your offer with no debate. Most racers bring a gallon or two with them, so they are unlikely to notice the difference. Just use only the fuel you really need for racing and they’ll most likely keep doing the exchange.

Marshaling is Gold. I don’t know if all RC racers are lazy, but if the desire to corner marshal is any indicator, you could make the argument. There are a number of ways that you can use corner marshaling to make loot. If your track awards gift certificates/store credit for the top three finishers in each (many tracks do), strike a deal with a hot shoe racing. Let him know you’ll corner marshal for him all day if you can have any winnings he earns. If your track doesn’t do the store credit for winning thing, do an even but modest exchange for your corner marshaling services. Many racers won’t bat an eye at shelling out $5 or $10 to have corner marshaling taken care of for them.


There you have it. Those real deal are your money ticket to free racing. Give it a shot. Your wallet will thank you.

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  1. Nice article and some great ideas. I would gladly be doing the things you said to start a track, but around here racing is a no-go and I just don’t have that much time on my hands. Maybe in the future though…

  2. I wish this was the case with all our local tracks. Some want this type of labor AND track fees–IN FULL. They even say if you don’t help out, you don’t race, even if you paid. Not everyone in Canada has figured this scene out yet. Some have. Some view these “services” as mandatory, and that’s ok, but when they still have a hefty entry fee, then that’s when guys “snub” the process. This topic alone could get as heated as “marshaling” and as far as “Free Fuel” goes, this is completely out of the question around here. You PAY to PLAY. They say.

    1. Every track and track owner is different. I’ve seen good and bad as I’m sure you have too. Helping is on a volunteer basis, or at least it should be in my opinion. If racers want a perfectly groomed track for each round, most track owners will point to the rakes. I get that. That said, if some 16-year old kid says he’ll show up early and rake out rocks, water the track and then stay to pick up garbage, that should be worth letting the kid race a few classes for free. Seems like good business to me.

  3. I race at RCMadness, Wolcott, and Other hot spots in the area…. I think next time i go racing i am going to bring a sign that states: “Marshal for me: $10 day” haha awsome idea!!

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