Kyosho Optima Mid 2022

A new old car!

Bought as a Re-Re kit in May 2023, the Optima-Mid scratches a couple of itches for me. The Salute is a wonderful car to own, but I worry about getting parts if I damage it racing. It’s also arguable whether the transmission is up to modern brushless motors without a slipper clutch. Being a re-re, there’s much better availability of spares for this, and a proper slipper clutch out of the box.

It’s also a car that I never owned back in the day, having always been a Schumacher fan boy.

  • Some Happy Snaps from the Weekend at Tivvy

    Me in my happy place, on the rostrum πŸ™‚

    Andy takes a tumble, I take a very wide line and give up a place to John Howe to stay out of trouble.

    But by the bottom of the hill, I want that place back…badly!

    A moment later, John backs out of the tangle with the heavier car.

    And that’s 8th Place from 10th on the grid. Lovely Jubbly!

    And here’s a photo of Finchy and Farringdon’s Orbs…

  • COBRA Club/Vintage Day 21/01/2024

    I haven’t got around to writing up the last round of SWORD yet. Suffice it to say that I’d kind of lost my way with the b6.4d. I’d been playing around with some settings and confusing myself a bit. Not to mention, Driving the b74.2d, or the “Turbo Nutter Bastard” as I’m beginning to call it, allows you to drive it so aggressively that going back to a 2wd is a harsh contrast.

    Anyway, I went closer to a kit setup when I prepped it yesterday. But with 400wt front and 375wt shock oil in the rear. 12mm ride height all round, Yellow Springs, and 1.6 & 1.7 Two Hole Pistons in front and rear respectively. There were some hardly used Proline Prisms in the Hauler, and these seem to work quite well with the Fuzz Bites on the front. So stiffer, more pack, low and high roll centers.

    The Mid didn’t need much fuss, lowered the ride height, put the transponder in. Jubbly!

    Optima Mid

    Practice was pretty predictable, I seem to have mislaid the fittings for the rear roll bar, so I had to stand on the brakes at the end of the straight, or it rolled too much. Aside from that, it just needed pointing at the apexes and it did it’s thing.

    Fast Lap:


    Avg. Lap:


    Avg. Top 5:


    Avg. Top 10:


    Avg. Top 15:

    Top 2 Consec.:


    Top 3 Consec.:


    Std. Deviation:




    ο‚€ Lap Times


    The First Round had two rather obvious cock ups, but still managed >90% consistency. Good enough as I’d never driven the thing on Carpet before.

    Round 2 started well, the timing said I went from 6th to 2nd. But…

    Fast Lap:

    Avg. Lap:

    Avg. Top 5:

    Avg. Top 10:

    Avg. Top 15:

    Top 2 Consec.:

    Top 3 Consec.:

    Std. Deviation:


    Β Lap Times



    Ah well, not an expensive breakage, and I proved there is potential there.

    Associated B6.4d

    Practice was a relief. It seems like I’ve got back on track (pun sort of intended, soz) with the config. As I found in Round 1, Something needed warming up. Not much, I don’t know whether it was tyres, diff, slipper, shocks, motor or a combination of these. But it just got better throughout the race, more consistent and predictable as the laps clocked up. I dropped a couple of places and ended up with a 14 that felt like it should have been quicker. But the consistency was >90% so I’ll take that.

    Lap Times

    Round 1

    Round 2 was a case of finding the pace but lost the consistency on two dumbass arguments with corner markers. But a 15 was as faster than I’ve gone all winter by some margin, so chuffed. Without the mistakes on lap 6 and 12, I’d be in the 16s. Exactly the reason i set my consistency target at 90% or higher.

    Lap Times


    The Third Round was slightly less pacy but the consistency was back over 92% again, a nice neat drive.

    Lap Times

    Round 3

    Round 4 and I’d done my quali work. Slipped back down to a 14 because of scrapping and steering round trouble.

    Made the C Final Mid Pack, which is much more like it. Thankfully, there were two rounds of finals. I say thankfully because I drove like an incompetent tit in the first final. Best to skip forward to the second final.

    Very chuffed indeed with the Second final. Didn’t pussy out on the start, 6th to 3rd on the first lap and settled into a nice groove as the car warmed up. Clipped a Corner Marker out of a switchback on Lap 5 which opened the door for Fran Bravery to pass. James Harris Spent the next 8 or 9 laps trying to give me heart failure, but eventually both he and Fran made mistakes that cost them both, and rewarded my re found consistency with a 3rd place. Only 6 seconds off a 16, >95% consistency, little fist pump as I stepped off the rostrum.

    The rear wear pattern on the Prisms tells the story of my day, it looks like I’ve found the rear config I’ve been looking for with the B6. Much more wear on the inside to center line without the car diffing out or oversteering under braking. Looks like 2 Deg of camber is about right.

  • Results of the Mendip & Tiverton 2023 Summer Championship

    Time to take a peek at what I spent my summer doing. First off, the 2wd Championship at my local track, Mendip.

    First off, Congrats to Keith Halsey. Seeing off stiff challenges from Dane, Gavin and Neal while spannering 3 or 4 cars at a time is no small feat, nice one!

    And shouts out to Andy Nelson, Chris Law, Mike Halsey and Steve Pollinger. All of which have had strong seasons after I had pipped them last year. Must do better next year!

    And obviously, I need to find a special way to send commiserations to John Farringdon for beating him by one place and 7 points. I’ll let Mr Bean do the talking…


    Summer Championship 2023

    Best 4 Rounds To Count. Tie Break: Countback

    2wd Buggy

    1Keith Halsey100%4049692101101101990101
    2Dane Winterson96%389000980989697
    3Gavin Knight95%385090990009799
    4Neale Carbis95%38400939599979293
    5Michael Halsey95%383888290949893098
    6Chris Rollins94%3788985950096980
    7Chris Law90%3627973789192888391
    8Andrew Nelson89%35984788909589086
    9Steve Pollinger89%358000097868689
    10Alistair Munro88%355074859091878187
    11John Farringdon86%348827679093907983
    12Wayne James83%33783797300858584
    13James Santer83%3347771868900820
    14Harrison Polinger81%3290670090827879
    15Miles Harris78%317072800890760
    16Martin Owen97%293989400010100
    17Adam Roulston94%28694096000096
    18David Bueno92%27800910095092
    19Dale Calder90%27408394970000
    20David Allen90%27200000918794
    =21Matthew Hodges89%27193869200000
    =21Oli Davies89%27100819609400
    23Ian Russell88%26800009486088
    24Leon James77%23306900083081
    25Tommy Hall100%202101101000000
    26Jamie Hall97%1969799000000
    27Harry Mears97%1959996000000
    28Ryan Lees96%19409300001010
    29Martyn Hadley96%1939509800000
    =30Chris Cooke93%1870000960910
    =30Stuart Ball93%1870000092950
    32Ted Calder90%1810088930000
    33Dan Hurrell89%1809000000900
    34Paul Rose87%1760880000880
    35Ollie Davies87%1758600000890
    36Gary Simmons84%1690000008485
    37Andy Leach82%1650818400000
    38Sophie Calder81%1630808300000
    39Stephen Needle78%1580076000082
    40Joe Ball78%1570000080770
    41Stephen Carpenter75%1520074000078
    42Liam Bard73%1470707700000
    43Jacob Bard71%1430687500000
    =44Phil Vickers98%99000990000
    =44Dan Harding98%99000000990
    46Tyler Liddle97%98098000000
    =47Ben Smith96%97097000000
    =47John Tucker96%97009700000
    =49Eugene Galley94%95095000000
    =49Michael Evely94%95000000095
    51Shaun Ogden93%94000000940
    52Charlie Klinkenberg92%93000000930
    =53Dan Osborne91%92920000000
    =53Terry Leach91%92000920000
    =55Nick Dunstan90%91910000000
    =55John Pape90%91091000000
    57Richard Evely89%90000000090
    58Mike Moyse88%89089000000
    59Jamie Stringer87%88000880000
    =60Daniel Vickers86%87870000000
    =60Roger Mills86%87087000000
    =60Reece Needle86%87008700000
    63Ken Fung84%85850000000
    =64Phil Chapman83%84084000000
    =64Mat Mead83%84000008400
    66Greg Lane81%82008200000
    =67Andy Leech80%81810000000
    =67Chris Horsley80%81000008100
    =69Trinity Ley79%80800000000
    =69John Howe79%80000000800
    =69Lee Benneworth79%80000000080
    72Oscar Mills77%78780000000
    73Martin Williams76%77077000000
    74Nathan Jarvis74%75075000000

    Next up Tiverton 2wd

    Congrats to Jordan Newbery on a pretty much immaculate season.

    And a shout for Luke Bradshaw, looks like I’m going to get overtaken again because this is big step in performance to nearly get me this year.

    And obviously, well done to John who used his cheaty Orb to paddle his way to beating me through the wet summer. Oddly, I found a gif of Mr Bean impersonating the Orb. The resemblance is uncanny:

    TRCCC 2023

    Best 6 Rounds To Count. Tie Break: Best Points


    1Jordan Newbery100%1195200186198200199199197199194197
    2Dan Harding99%11881981910195192199199197198197
    3Keith Halsey98%11751931941980000196194200
    4Gavin Knight97%1164190186188194194194194196192191
    5Bryan Burrows96%11521891951890192196184190190186
    6Paul Rose95%1138185186168190152190185190189193
    7Dan Hurrell93%112018418818501851881851880186
    8Chris Busby93%1116190176171189179186188184172175
    9Chris Rollins92%1103176166185188018719001770
    10Paul Hopkins90%108318517417618418501750170178
    11Carl Davis88%10551641730182000178172186
    12Dan Warner87%104617217317001761791731730171
    13John Howe86%1033155166157177173173170169153171
    14Dave Berry86%1029158158151172166174172169156176
    15Keith Jenkins85%10151560162177017017517500
    16Paul Bradshaw84%101101571661741591721640170165
    17Kev Dymond84%10071700160180153016901750
    18Andy Leach84%10051660173001661721701580
    19Neale Carbis83%99114715301671661681550164171
    20Paul Field98%98319601941981990196000
    21John Farringdon81%972136000153163160158167171
    22Steven Hull78%9331441621501691570151000
    23Adam Roulston93%93118001841900019201850
    24Alistar Munro77%92814015314816401541531551490
    25Luke Bradshaw77%92301471401601451601480144163
    26Stuart Ball92%92001881800187017800187
    27Chris Law76%90713314813801470154152147159
    28Oli Davies88%88316917400183184017300
    29Michael Halsey86%85817116816800001761750
    30Ollie Davies93%745000019417800186187
    31Nick Dustan90%717176178001761870000
    32Andy Nelson78%624144000150167016300
    33Wayne James77%618001490001621601470
    34Harry Mears99%5950197198000002000
    35Alfie Ball71%570014113501380000156
    36David Murphy69%555128142000001481370
    37David Bueno88%5260017600001821680
    38Chris Cooke83%5010015201670001820
    39Trinity Ley82%4920000163000160169
    40Reece Needle77%4650151000001550159
    41Andrew Stone-Wright75%4521380016315100000
    42Stephen Needle75%4480144000001500154
    43Mark Martin70%4210013501351510000
    44Rob Pinkney81%32301560167000000
    45James Santer75%30200015814400000
    46Liam Bard75%29900143001560000
    47Terry Leach74%29500000015501400
    48Ben Reed74%29400001401540000
    49Adam Mozes72%28713200001550000
    50Joe Bristow71%28600000000134152
    51Martin Owen100%199019900000000
    52Steve Ashton95%191001910000000
    53Jonathan Wolfe94%188000000018800
    54James Westmoreland88%176000017600000
    55John Finch84%168000016800000
    56Bradley Satterley83%166166000000000
    57Ben Winters82%164000000016400
    =58Dale Calder79%157157000000000
    =58Dan Vickers79%157001570000000
    60Jos Hooper76%153153000000000
    61Mike Evely76%152000000001520
    62Ted Calder75%150150000000000
    63Leon James74%148000000148000
    64Mark Bennett73%146146000000000
    65Richard Evely72%144000000001440
    66Chris Thomas71%143001430000000
    67Lee Benneworth69%137000000001370
    68Lincoln Blight68%135000013500000
    69Jacob Bard66%132013200000000
    70Luke Harding65%131131000000000
  • Maintenance Corner News! Optima Mid Re-Re ESC Mount

    The only little niggle I had left to fix with the Optima Mid was how the modern brushless ESC was mounted in the Chassis. As you can see below, even when you cut out the top deck as the manual suggests, the upward curve on the lower deck edge makes it very awkward to fix it in place. I had been using several layers of thick nano tape, but was never happy with this compromise.

    Thankfully, I’ve got a new 3D Printer to replace the CR-10 that recently gave up the ghost. On Thingiverse, I found a design for a part that fixes that issue nicely.

    I had some Orange PETG hanging about, so I printed a bunch of them off. And I’ve mounted one in the Optima Mid to very pleasing effect.

    All that was needed was 2x M3 4mm CSK screws. Perfect!

    If I can get permission from the designer, I’m thinking of selling them on the website. In the meantime, if you’d like one, let me know and I’ll sort one for you!

  • Tiverton Summer Championship – 09/07/2023

    Kept putting the wrong tyres on all day. Really shit performance. I’d rather do it today than at the reigional.


    Picture is Taki Inoue, because I was as bad as he was today.

  • Maintenance Corner – 01/07/2023

    Optima Mid

    Last time out at Mendip, I pulled the lower steering hub king pin screw out with a glance along the straight barrier. Again. Looks like this casting is a bit Dairylea. Yeah Racing do a CNC aluminium replacement. Nobody had stock of just this part, but it is included in a kit of upgrades. The kit upgrades the steering hub, the ‘C’ upright, the rear hubs, the front hub/’C’ hub inserts to brass, and puts UJs to replace the dog bones in all four corners. All upgrades I was considering, can’t wait to see what they all do in concert. Old parts in the right hand photo, new bits that replaced them in the left.

    Mardave Mini

    Fitted Phat Bodies Β£2 Wing and gave it a good clean. Looks like the wing was worth it’s weight in gold. A really good clean of the motor, front king pin polish and a new set of tyres and a new Mardave body in time for next week.

    Associated B6.4d

    Off to Swindon this week, so I’ve prepped for a High Grip Setup. Laydown transmission/Gear Diff back in. New JC Carpet wing set at 0Β°. Back Pill settings Set to current in the below pic:

    If there’s as much grip as I’m expecting, I might have to take a bit of that toe in off. But that’s a racing thing πŸ™‚

  • Mendip Summer Championship RD4 – 17/06/2023

    You have to read this report in the context of me not only running 2 cars (The B6.4d and the Optima Mid), but also running the meeting! Honestly, I don’t know how Gary does it. Also it was warm, windless and very humid, so with all the running around I did, I was pretty much physically clapped out by lunch time.

    Quali went fairly badly for the B6.4d. I left the Tivvy settings on the car, and with no time to change anything, it just didn’t go anywhere.

    Qualifying – Round 4

    Round By Round. Best 2 Rounds to Count

    4wd Buggy

    PosNameBestTie BreakPointsR1R2R3R4
    1Keith Halsey16 / 315.7803020
    2Steve Ashton15 / 308.8014 / 301.5326302
    3Mark Cox15 / 316.4514 / 314.2520233
    4Jamie Stringer12 / 312.6462445
    5Alistair Munro12 / 316.2484554

    2wd Buggy

    PosNameBestTie BreakPointsR1R2R3R4
    1Keith Halsey15 / 303.4300000
    2Phil Vickers15 / 310.4242222
    3Oli Davies14 / 305.9563337
    4Michael Halsey15 / 320.9289563
    5Ted Calder14 / 311.1584445
    6Dane Winterson14 / 309.54107674
    7Neale Carbis14 / 315.851051058
    8Dale Calder14 / 317.19126986
    9Terry Leach14 / 327.1416107109
    10Chris Law13 / 301.751688910
    11James Santer13 / 310.3513 / 310.352211111212
    12Alistair Munro13 / 311.0013 / 313.552213121111
    13Jamie Stringer12 / 307.342512131313

    I felt like I could have driven a 14, but just couldn’t get it there. The upside was the Proline rears were a good shout, So I’ll be running them here and at Swindon if it’s dry now.

    Quite happy to just have fun running the Optima. Very chuffed I could keep up with Jamie’s modern Associated.

    Less pleased with myself for clouting the the barrier on the straight like a clutz and ripping out the lower kingpin bolt and stripping the thread in the last round. TIT! More about that in the next Maintenance Corner.

    The Finals went a bit better in 2wd. James let me off the hook a few minutes into the first leg.

    Finals – Round 1

    Race 2 – 2wd Buggy – B Final

    12Alistair Munro13 / 306.9523.3022.85
    21James Santer13 / 323.0923.6622.29
    33Jamie Stringer12 / 317.5725.6024.54

    The second leg was a titanic struggle, with James and I trading the lead a bunch of times, and on track rather than due to mistakes. Made my day that race did, despite losing it. Fair play James.

    Finals – Round 2

    Race 2 – 2wd Buggy – B Final

    11James Santer13 / 311.9423.3222.41
    22Alistair Munro13 / 312.6123.3622.69
    33Jamie Stringer12 / 314.3224.7623.79

    In the third, I was very lucky that James got a bit scrappy in the first half of the race, because my slipper was too loose and overheating after I took the cooling fan off. Thankfully, because it was the AVID 3 plate, it held on to the end and bagged me the final. Another confirmation that it’s better than the kit slipper.

    Finals – Round 3

    Race 2 – 2wd Buggy – B Final

    12Alistair Munro13 / 315.3224.0123.07
    21James Santer13 / 321.2324.0222.85
    33Jamie Stringer12 / 315.6825.5324.87

    Don’t recall ever being as knackered as when I got home after that lot. But all good experience.

  • Tiverton Summer Championship RD 4 – 11/06/2023

    Busy, busy day. In the height of summer, RC meetings tend to be a bit less well attended. Either folk are on holiday, or they are going to the bigger events further afield that take advantage of the better weather. So running two cars and having to be either driving or marshalling for 4 of the 5 heats means you can be run off your feet. You pretty much have to rely on one, if not both cars running well with the settings you installed before you arrived.

    As much as this held me back a bit in 2wd, it was worth it to get the Optima Mid out for its second run.

    The short wheelbase conversion on the B6.4d wasn’t as much of an advantage as I had hoped. I’ve since seen Tommy Hall’s Mendip setup, and it only cuts 2mm off the wishbone, not 4. I might get another set and try that. I did try out some Ballistic White Spikes in the last heat and Final, and that gained me a place at Neal Carbis’ expense. So I might get some more of those for Tivvy.

    The Mid ran very well in vintage. Yellow Mezzos on the rear, Yellow Cactus Fusion on the front and softer (Medium) springs all round. I’m in two minds about the front roll bar. 3rd Overall was very pleasing for first time out.

    Wish Tivvy had published their results, which is what delayed this article, but hey ho!

  • Maintenance Corner 08/06/2023


    The main whip came back from Mendip caked in a nasty coat of black fine dirt and sand πŸ™ The box seems free and smooth still, so a full gearbox rebuild wasn’t needed, but the shocks and suspension needed some attention. I’ve made a short wheelbase mod to the rear lower arms that was suggested by the UK AE Team Drivers, and while doing that, I found i’d made a mistake on the last rebuild, and an under piston washer had fallen into the piston and was restricting the droop travel on one side, so correcting that was satisfying.

    Also the Wheel hub bearings on the right side were quite gritty and not really free, so a run through the bearing blaster and re-lubricating was nice to get done. On the front, I found I needed to be using the +5 lower spring cups to get the full droop travel.

    Both quite important spots to make sure the car rides bumps and lands after jumps correctly, so all good work.

    Kyosho Optima Mid

    The first run of a new car will always throw down a bunch of small issues that need attention. The Mid had two handling issues that should be quite eaily solved. In Kit form, the chassis ride height was quite high, and the car seemed to bounce over the bumps, rather than absorb them, so softer springs seemed a good call. But that conflicts with solving the other problem, “Grip Roll” and generally biting front end. which would probably be exacerbated by softer springs. For that problem, I’ve fitted a front roll bar.

    The steering knuckle hinges were a problem, specifically, the left upper knuckle screw undid itself with vibration and the collar dissapeared, so that had to be replaced and the screws threadlocked in. I hate using threadlock, because it makes stripping the car down later a pain, but sometimes there’s just no better option.

    Next up was the central steering linkage, just about the only part on the car that I thought was below par. Its job is to link the servo output from the left side of the mechanism, to the right side. But it comes as a worringly flexible strip of plastic. So I got the OTW143 kit, where the link is a nicely machined alloy part, and the two brass bushes are replaced with bearings. As soon as you put the part on, the whole thing seems more positive and defined.

    At the back, two screws holding the wishbone hinge pin retainer seem to have gone AWOL, so I replaced them and again threadlocked them in place.

  • Mendip Summer Championship RD 3 – 05/06/2023

    At Mendip, we have a Gary. Garys are useful things that restart generators all day when they keep conking out, patch in spare generators when the first one permanently pegs it, and a billion other things that you don’t realise need to be done until somebody points it out. I wasn’t Gary-ing yesterday, but I will be in a fortnight. So I kept myself as much out his way as I could, and got on with the business of competing the B6.4d and giving the Optima Mid it’s first run out.

    2WD first. I shoved in a good first session using Tivvy settings. 13 laps when the best was 14, so happy with that. I don’t really want to talk about the 2nd heat, because on the first corner of the first lap, I stuffed it into the outer fence like a dickhead.

    I completely broke the servo horn, which was obvious on first inspection. Not so obvious was I think I damaged the actual servo. It worked, but seemed a bit wonky. Bugger.

    Luckily, The next two Quali sessions went more to plan. Despite the slightly wonky servo, 2 sucessively quicker 13 lappers. Without the servo breakage, I wonder if I could have qualified 2nd or 3rd in the B Final. But as it happened there was enough to take 7th, which was enough. The finals were good fun, and hard fought despite the dropouts. The generator problems and the very sunny, warm day, caused a very long day and quite a few to get headaches and so forth. But perseverance eventually yielded an extra place on quali, and the knowledge that, without the servo issues, and if I had used a second set of tyres, there was a lot more to come.

    The Optima Mid was just a giggle. Once I twigged that the steering Servo was essentially buggered, It went around lovely. A bit twitchy on turn in, a bit high on ride and rolly, but nothing that can’t be cured.

    Overall, a great, knackering, long, tiring, excellent day. πŸ™‚

  • Kyosho Optima Mid … DONE!

    The Optima Mid is done! Below I’ve got a little piccie of the Top Desk cutout I made to accomodate the ESC. I think it worked out quite neatly.

    The paint job looks even better in real life. The red is Hobbynox Red Pearl. An it has a very fetching colourshift effect between primary red, and it mostly is in the pictures, and a bright hot pink. Very chuffed with the results.

    I’ve also swapped out the receiver and servo, which I hope will give a better result.

  • Mid Nearing Completion

    So the chassis is done. not sure about the servo and receiver which I might have to swap out. I have a Futaba Receiver in the Mission FT and a spare Etronix Servo left over from when I first got the KD. I think I might do that Saturday before I prep for the first run out at Mendip on Sunday.

    The build was quite easy. The only niggle was not being able to fit a modern ESC anywhere on the lower chassis without fouling the upper. The manual says it’s fine to cut a small slice out of the upper deck to fit one, so I got the dremmel out and did that.

    The body is coming along well. The usual livery but with Hobbynox pearl paint. Just the white coat to go.

  • Perfect Saturday πŸ™‚

    Managed to restrict myself to just Bags A & B yesterday so that I can geek out with Practice and Quali for the Monaco GP on the Telly while getting on with Bag C. Heaven πŸ™‚

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