Driver Spotlight: Jimmy Deprez

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Name- Jimmy Deprez
Age- 36
Location- New Mexico, US
Years racing: 15-20

How did you get into RC?
I had a friend I played baseball with who raced RC. I always helped him work on his cars and we made tracks in his back yard. I saved for two years starting when I was 10 and was able to buy a RC10 T2 setup when I was 12. The local track closed six months after I started racing and I had to save for another year. When I was 13 I bought a Kyosho Impress F1 car to race at the local on-road club (RCCAR)/Castle hobbies in San Jose CA.

Biggest race attended?
Kyosho Cup World Finals in France 2006 and Austria 2008 and 2007 Roar Nitro On-road Nats. I finished in the A-mains at all these events.

Favorite Track you have raced?
MAV in Aigen Schlaegl, Austria

Favorite Driver ever?
My good friend Joel Johnson

In your years in RC how has it changed for the good and bad?
I would say that variability in racing has gone down. What I mean by that is, everyone has access to a lot of setup information, perfect track conditions, better equipment, etc. While I think this increases the racers chances of having a good time and being successful, it also takes a lot of the work (fun stuff) out of racing. I really enjoyed when everyone worked on their own setups more. A lot of times club racing is no longer a chess match to see who can do better with a specific amount of time on a track that is never the same with limited equipment that wears out. This is why I have come to love Offroad Nitro so much. There is still a bit of variability. I can show up to a track that I know people don’t already have 1000 laps on, where Cavalieri’s setup probably isn’t going to work completely, and where always fresh equipment they got for 75% off isn’t going to help as much. I can’t purchase an engine tune, I have to make sure the car stays together, and I have to adapt to the ever changing outdoor track conditions to be successful. That for me is where the fun is at. I could talk all day about the good and bad.

Persons in RC you look up to?
Joel Johnson (For the help he has provided me throughout the years)
Eric Vasutin (For the RC community he is able to build)
JQ (I chose school but always wanted to do what JQ has done)
August Macbeth (He races GT cars professionally now in Europe, but he was always a big influence)
Gil Losi Jr. (For the help he has provided me this year and for his accomplishments in the industry)
Keenan White (For being the best team manager I’ve had)
Kyle Layton (When Kyle wins, I feel like I win, he’s helped me a lot)
Ron Atomic (Kyosho team mate that I went to a lot of races with)

Most memorable moment in your time in RC?
Anytime my dad was at the track with me.

Advice for younger drivers ?
I quit school when I was 22 to race RC full time. I got really close to winning some bigger events but I did not become a paid driver. I also saw drivers that were paid struggle quite a bit through the recession. Have a plan B. Educate yourself in something you can use to support yourself outside of RC.

Any hobbies outside of RC?
Mechanical Engineering @ UNM, Formula SAE, MMA, Race Simulators, Occasional Snowboarding, Ultimate Frisbee, Baseball, Bowling, Watching F1, MotoGP, and FIA Rally.

Anything you wish to add from your years of experience in the hobby?
If you are lucky enough to find good people who will sacrifice their time and bottom line to help you go racing, remember to always support those people through their ups and downs. They aren’t taking away your discount because you didn’t make a main. Your loyalty shouldn’t get taken away for the same reason. If you want the freedom to run whatever don’t ask for sponsorships.

Shout Out /thanks to anyone? List of sponsors
JQ Racing
Sidewinder Fuels
Cheater Racing
My Wife Ash
My Dad
My JQ team in New Mexico, Jeff Amos, and Mike/Shannon Norris.