Sunday, May 27, 2018
Text Size

20180308 RC Racing Alamo Palms MILLER IMG 4707Tarry Freeman tinkers with his RC car in the “garage area” of the track facility at Alamo Palms.

The fans sat in the stands on a beautiful sunny afternoon. The anticipation was growing as the race cars rubbed and raced, sliding along the track at the turns.

Suddenly four cars wiped out along one of the wide, sweeping turns. The “big one happened” and the collective gasp could be heard from the race watchers.

No, it wasn't Daytona or Talladega superspeedways, NASCAR tracks that are as infamous for their racing as they are for their crashes. The “big one” is a moniker used for the two NASCAR superspeedways, where cars have what's called a restrictor-plate installed for those races for safety as speeds began exceeding 200 miles per hour. What those plates have done, however, is create equality and it's not rare to see those cars racing at 200 miles per hour five wide down a frontstretch. Because all the cars are racing tightly, one little miscue can wipe out 10, 15 or more cars, thus the “Big One.”

20180308 RC Racing Alamo Palms MILLER IMG 4591Resident Tarry Freeman giudes his remote control race car around the track at Alamo Palms RV Park. Freeman holds the track record, running his car around the oval in 7.9 second.

But this was Alamo Palms Mobile Park and the cars were remote control race cars – a hobby that is picking up speed as quick as the feisty autos are on the track.

Opened last November, the “facility” is more than a track. The mainstay is an oval track with a figure eight track in the middle. There's a booth for the “drivers,” to run their cars from and they have added technology that would make any RC fan excited. Behind those who are controlling the cars there is a television screen that is showing data from sensors around the track. Each driver knows how quick their car has made it around the track and are provided more data that prepares them for competition.

“When we created this track, we did it with the intention of being the leader of remote control racing in the Valley,” said Park Director Rocky Ramirez. “This is the future for the new group of Winter Texans. It's a different demographic coming and this is exciting and low impact and anybody can do it.”

The park made sure anybody could compete by building handicap accessible ramps to get to the RC control booth. The park also has RC cars and trucks for rent so anybody can give it a try before deciding to invest in the activity.

20180308 RC Racing Alamo Palms MILLER IMG 4696A remote control racer uses the new air hose to clean out his car during a practive session on the track at Alamo Palms.

Not only does the racing grounds have the technology with the sensors – and plans to place cameras around the track so they can livestream races – but they also have a “garage” area where car owners can tinker with their vehicles, fixing them or making adjustments. There are also air hoses and water hoses to remove debris that can't be reached by hand.

“We want to continually innovate and give our residents and those who come to race in our park everything that they need,” said Ramirez, who thought he held the track record at 8.6 seconds around the oval until veteran RC driver Tarry Freeman told him about his 7.9-second record that now stands.

“Wow,” Ramirez said. “I'm gonna have to get that back.”

Ramirez said that Encore RV Resorts and Thousand Trails Campgrounds, the park's parent company, sent out a manual to all of its locations and used Alamo Palms' blueprint as how to start and maintain a racetrack facility.

“That's a pretty big deal for us,” Ramirez said. “It tells us we are doing it right.”

The park was part of a racing series this year with two other parks, Alamo Rec-Veh and Victoria Palms. Ramirez said he wasn't sure how many more parks would be part of the series in the future, but said several parks had visited Alamo Palms to check out the facility – and of course take their turns on the track.

20180308 RC Racing Alamo Palms MILLER IMG 4597

Rocky Ramirez, Alamo Palms RV Resort director, works on his remote contol race car at the park's racing facility.

The park has close to 30 RC car owners and Alamo Palms had about 65 competitors during the racing series hosted there.

Alamo Palms has more than just the oval racetrack however, they also have a crawler track. A crawler track is similar to an obstacle course. Instead of speed, toughness, strength and durability are used, usually by RC trucks, to climb over rocks, run up ramps with boards and other obstacles set to create barriers and make the course more challenging.

“Again, it's being innovative and making the most out of our racing facility,” Ramirez said. “We also are looking in the near future to remove the figure eight in the middle and use that for tractor/truck pulls and mud races.”

Many times, Ramirez said, there are more fans watching the racing than there are running the cars.

Maybe they're all anticipating “the big one.”

Top News

  • San Juan Gardens keeps residents active

    2018401 Shorts San Juan Gardens Ladies LuncheonSan Juan Gardens had many activities to celebrate the Winter Texan season, including a new event called Tape Measure Racing where races are held in double-elimination heats, and everyone is eligible to participate. The park also holds 30-minute low-impact exercise time every weekday for all ages, including a 90-year-old who gets… Read More +

  • Paradise Resort Estates raises money for charities

    20180401 Shorts Paradise Estates1Paradise Resort Estates in Pharr, held its annual Spaghetti Supper and Charity Auction on Friday, Feb. 16th.

    The resort’s Community Outreach Committee sponsored the event and proceeds are donated to local charities. This year’s proceeds totaled $7,000. Some of the items for auction included wood carvings and a… Read More +

  • Split Rail Party

    20180401 Shorts Split Rail Party1At the end of each season, the Split Rail Association at Split Rail RV Park in Mission throws a thank you party for its residents, filled with good food and entertainment. In mid-March, residents enjoyed a delicious catered lunch of grilled chicken, potato salad, baked beans, coleslaw and all the fixins and dessert.… Read More +

  • Southern Comfort RV Park hosts Bocce tournaments

    20180401 Shorts Southern Comfort Bocce JPGSouthern Comfort RV Park, located at 1501 S Airport Dr. in Weslaco has been running bocce ball tournaments for the past couple of years. What started as one bocce tournament in the park is now up to three and signs are that the growth is going to continue.

    Read More +

  • Winter Texans volunteer at Lutheran church

    20180322 El Buen Pastor IMG 5095For nearly a decade, Stan Kirschbaum and Bill White of Hidden Valley Ranch, and Ralph Freudenberg of Mission West RV Park have spearheaded projects at El Buen Pastor Lutheran Church.

    The congregation from Westminster Lutheran Fellowship at Pleasant Valley Ranch have collected money and, most recently,… Read More +

  • La Floresta holds tournament championship golf event

    20180315 LaFloresta Golf GAIL CATRON MENS CHAMPIONGail Catron, Men’s Champion

    La Floresta Park and Golf Course held its version of the PGA Championship March 5-8 with 32 men and 24 ladies competing in the annual event. La Floresta is located at 4140 La Floresta Road in Mercedes.

    Read More +

  • The Power of One

    20180308 Palm Resaca Single Ladiesbest2The vitality of any Winter Texan Park is the result of the positive efforts and friendly interactions of its residents. A small core of single women in Palm Resaca Park have made a tremendous effect on helping to make the park run smoothly.

    Single women account for more than 10 percent of park residents. These women have involved themselves in leadership… Read More +

  • Mexican Whistling Ducks enjoy Palm Resaca Park

    20180301 Whistling Ducks mexicanducks2Marching single file, seemingly with purpose. They are not soldiers mustering on the parade grounds or cows heading home at feeding time. They are black-bellied whistling ducks.

    As a Winter Texan from Canada, I find the birds of Southern Texas fascinating. Dozens of Whistlers dwell along the Resaca de la Guerra that flows past our mobile home at Palm Resaca Park in… Read More +

  • Canada Day celebrated at Riverside Club

    20180306 CanadaDay Riverside GU 1889Hundreds of Canadians showed up at the Riverside Club in Mission on Tuesday, March 6 to join in the fun of the annual Canada Day celebration. Everyone seemed to be enjoying the music provided by the Riverside Club Band led by Randy Dupuis and enjoying drinks and food. They were a number of… Read More +

  • Encore brings tribute concerts to RGV resorts

    20180329 Encore Abba Fab 2676The 2017-18 Winter Texan season is fast coming to a close – and Encore is quickly giving Winter Texans some great reasons to look forward to next year.

    The management group that oversees more than 200 RV resorts in 21 states has announced five tribute bands coming… Read More +

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • All
  • Border
  • Charity
  • Free Health Care
  • Groceries
  • Grocery Stores
  • HEB
  • Immigration
  • Mission
  • Operation Lonestar
  • Ribbon Cutting
  • Safety
  • Security
  • Sharyland
  • Default
  • Title
  • Date
  • Random
load more hold SHIFT key to load all load all

Login