Racing Legend series : Marc Rheinard interview

We have managed to catch up with the 1/10 Touring car legend and 4 times IFMAR world championship winner (and top bloke) Marc Rheinard f...

We have managed to catch up with the 1/10 Touring car legend and 4 times IFMAR world championship winner (and top bloke) Marc Rheinard for a chat about his career, and to get some advice for all of us racers looking to improve our game whilst enjoying our hobby. 

TheRcRacer – how did you get into the hobby?
Marc - My father had a big hobbyshop from 1994 – 2000 with an indoor and outdoor asphalt track. So after school I always went there to drive RC and I really liked it!

Marc with his Parents after winning his first world championship in 2004.
TheRcRacer - When you were young and developing your skills, who did you look up to in the racing community and why?
In the beginning I raced in the Tamiya cup, this was between 1994 to 2001. I used a range of Tamiya club chassis, but it was after that when I first used the TRF414 in the open modified class in Germany. At that time I really looked up to Masami Hirosaka and Atsushi Hara.

TheRcRacer - What is the one moment in your career that you realised you would be racing for the rest of your life?
I think this was after my first World Championship title in 2004, after the win I got my first professional contract from Tamiya. Before the worlds I just got sponsored from Tamiya with free parts,… . When I won the Worlds, I got all travel costs and monthly salary from Tamiya .
Marc celebrating his first world championship.
TheRcRacer - Out of all the places you have raced, what's your favourite track and why?
My favourite track was the track from the Worlds 2008 in Bangkok/Thailand.  The place was just fantastic, not too big and very nice people. And for sure I have really good memories there, a shame that the track is not there anymore.
Marc with his brother Toni after his 2008 world championship win.
TheRcRacer - When you work on your car, what's the most important aspect of pre race preparation for you?
To me its important to have a fresh car before a big race. So I check my car and replace parts which I think are worn out.
TRF team member Kiyo works with Marc at large events to help prepare the cars.
TheRcRacer – When not at a large race meeting, what are the other tasks you do as a TRF Team driver?
When there is no race for a while, I do some practice and also talk to Tamiya Japan and the other TRF Drivers how we can still improve our cars to get them even faster !

TheRcRacer – Even though you have won multiple world championships and a large amount of trophies, do you get nervous before an important race?
Its normal before a race, that you are a little nervous. For me its always before the first round of Qualifying, it is important to get a good start in the event and from there on you are more relaxed once you have had a good Q1 !
Marc with his 2010 winning trophy.

TheRcRacer - Making a small mistake when driving at your level can really cost, so what's your advice for people when they make a mistake and are under pressure to perform during a race?
Making a mistake is always bad, but you should never give up during a run, this is the most important thing for a racer. There is always the chance that other drivers can make mistakes and you can still get a decent result. NEVER GIVE UP !
Marc giving it 100% all the way.
TheRcRacer – What do you think is the key to improving a drivers skill on track, is it track time, set-up or something more esoteric?
Its for sure track time, the more you are on the track, the more you improve your driving as well as learning how the car works and how to set up the car. Its also good if you practice with a team mate or a friend together on the track to learn to drive in a battle on the track. Between qualifying and finals is a biiiiig difference. Many people are good in qualifying but in the finals they are not used to fight with an other driver.

TheRcRacer – With more and more new manufacturers creating 1/10 onroad cars, we have seen a range of design innovations, recently flex has become a popular trend in chassis design, what other types of innovations do you think we could expect in the future?
I don’t foresee that any radical changes will happen soon. At the moment still the same cars and manufacturers are on top of the board. But its also nice to see that some other companies try something different instead of copying the cars which are already successful. The chassis flex is for sure a big thing how the car handles.

TheRcRacer – Your winning race against Atsushi Hara in the 2008 worlds in Bangkok is regarded as one of the best RC Races ever, can you describe the feelings you had when battling on the track and ultimately taking the victory?
Yes, this was for sure my best ever race I think. I just knew, if I wanted to win the Worlds title, that I would need to win the last Main ( A3 ), as well as get a faster time than Hara had posted in A2 assuming Hara finishes 2nd in A3 behind me. 

Right from the start I had a good feeling with my car and could really chase Hara. I was faster and knew it, so I just had to wait for the perfect moment to try to make a move. Then it came end of the straight to my best move I´ve ever done, Hara was just a bit wide and I took the chance and went side by side with him and found the way through to pass him. It was an all or nothing move, but that’s what racing is all about I think. 

After that, Hara made a small mistake coming onto the straight and I had some breathing space for the last 3 laps. Hara dropped back to 4th after his crash which meant, that I just needed to drive the last laps clean without a mistake to take the title. It all worked out and I was really happy. I just felt sorry for Hara in this moment as he got 4th overall, not being on the podium after such a great fight for the overall win, was not the right result for him in my opinion, he deserved it same as me to be on the podium !
Great rivals on the track and true sportsmen.

TheRcRacer – What words would you say best describe your driving style?
Not sure, I think its always better when other people judge about that. I just can say, that I love final racing, I like to go to the maximum and put other driver under pressure, like a samurai ;)
Marc's World championship winning cars and trophies.
TheRcRacer – You have raced many of the TRF onroad chassis cars, excluding the TRF418 which one do you have the most fond memories off, and why?
Its for sure the TRF 415, the car I used at my first WC title in 2004 and then the TRF 416 from the Worlds in Bangkok 2008 as well as the TRF 416X from the Worlds 2010 in Germany. I hope to add the TRF 418 to the list in 2014 at the Worlds in Florida ;) But all the cars I have used over the last 10 years are great. Tamiya has claimed 5 WC titles out of 6, this is a great achievement I think :D
A closer look at Marc's 3 World championship winning chassis, TRF415, TRF416 and TRF416x.
TheRcRacer – 2014 is another world championship year, how are you going to prepare for the worlds and what challenges do you foresee ahead?
I´m really motivated for the Worlds in 2014. We (The TRF team ) will go to the World championship warm up in April and return another time to practice before the Worlds starts. I´m going there with good memories as I won my first title at exactly that place back in 2004 ! Its gonna be difficult as the competition is the best its ever been.

TheRcRacer - RC racing can be just as technical as racing full sized cars. Have you ever tried racing full size cars? If you had the chance would you have liked to have been an F1 driver or perhaps something else?
I love what I´m doing and I feel I am doing well in my career. If I could have chosen what I can do in my life, it would have been a professional Tennis player as I love the sport. F1 can be pretty dangerous if something goes wrong, so I´m happy to not sit in a real race car… ;)

TheRcRacer - For many of us racing RC cars is a hobby but for you it's your job. So what are your hobbies and how do you relax away from the track?
When I´m not racing, I love to hang out with my friends as well as playing soccer, tennis and for sure going to a club and drinking some beers ;) Vacation is also in my schedule when I´m not racing.

TheRcRacer – You have recently been driving Tamiyas new 1/10 touring car, the TRF418, what are your initial impressions of the car?
The new TRF418 is a really good car. It’s a big step forward to the TRF417. The 418 has a lot of potential and I hope that we can show it the coming year with some decent reults.
The TRF418 is a big jump from the 417, our review will be coming soon :)
TheRcRacer – Any TRF418 tips or Set-ups that you are willing to share for the carpet season?
The TRF 418 is good out of the Box, if you need some tips for set up,.. . just check out my Facebook Fanpage, I always post short race reports as well as setups,… .
The TRF418 ready to challenge for the 2014 World championship!

TheRcRacer - What's the one bit of advice you would give to new people interested in starting Racing RC cars?
RC Cars are like real cars just in miniature. You can adjust the same features as on a real car, so people who want that experience but do not have not the chance to race real cars should join the RC family, you will enjoy it for sure.

TheRcRacer - This year Santa will be bringing some of us RC goodies (hopefully). I guess you probably have all the RC goodies you could wish for already so what are you hoping Santa will bring you this year?
To be with the family and friends at Christmas is the most important thing. So I don’t have any big wishes, just to be healthy and successful for my future.

Thanks to Marc Rheinard for the interview, the guys here all wish you the best for 2014 :)
You can follow Marc via his facebook page here and check back with us for the TRF418 review coming soon :)
Worlds 8143980727916225490

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  1. Thanks for the interview. Marc seems like a cool guy. I still want to do videos with Team Engel so maybe when I go to Germany to shoot videos with them; maybe Marc will be in-town/country.



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