There aren’t many movies or TV shows that are dedicated to the hobby and sport of R/C racing, so when you find one, you just have to watch it. Having read about a documentary that followed the indoor carpet-racing “tour” for a year, I knew I had to find out more about it. No matter where your love for radio-controlled cars sits on the spectrum of hobby passions, Carpet Racers: A Crash Course, by Jay Thames, is a great viewing experience.
With so many aspects of the hobby to explore, having a documentary zero-in on one form of racing not only helped me understand the details that go into indoor, on-road, carpet racing, but also put faces to some of the names of not only racers but individuals within the R/C industry. Names such as Gil Losi Sr (and Jr.), Ernie Provetti, Paul Lemiux, and Joel “Magic” Johnson are ones that I have heard of and heard from (thanks in-part to the Radio Impound Podcast), and getting a glimpse into their personalities was worthwhile.
Watch the trailer for Carpet Racers
As far as documentaries go, this one is well-shot and keeps you entertained throughout. If I have one complaint, it would be that only three races were covered/featured during Jay’s tour of the 2007 indoor circuit. The 2007 and 2008 Snowbird Nationals and the Indoor International Championships in Las Vegas were the featured races. While those events filled the time of the movie well, seeing one more event would have added a little more flavor to the mix.
Even though this movie is a few years old (which is evident by some of the electronics and gear being used by the racers), it’s a great way to learn about the hobby from a sport/performance perspective and get to know some of the names that you may have heard of before (and possibly a few you haven’t). Perfect to watch on a rainy day when you can’t get to the track, or just to have on when you’re wrenching on your next build, this is a fun movie to check out.