May 31, 2013

A visit to Shepherd Micro Racing


With the weather forcing Day 1 of the new Euro Nitro Series to be postponed, Red RC took the opportunity to go and visit the headquarters of Shepherd Micro Racing, a company who has played a big roll in the creation of the ENS.  Located less than 10km from the Hockenheimring, the venue of the opening race of the ENS, company boss Patrick Schafer was on hand to greet us and show us around their impressive building.  Originally opened by his father as a model shop in 1998, complete with its own indoor asphalt track & pit area, the building took on its current guise in 2005 when Shepherd Micro Racing was formed, then as the distributor for the Speed 1:8 Onroad chassis produced by the famous Picco engine company. Taking over that project from the Italian company, in 2007 the company produced its first car the Velox V8 and now as an established onroad nitro manufacturer also produces a 1:10 200mm chassis.


What was the hobby shop has now been turned into the offices & nerve centre of the German company which in addition to creating its own cars is also a distributor for Awesomatix electric touring cars, Matrix tyres, MLC Fuel and Sonic Engines.  The track at the rear of the building now houses the kit packaging area, stock warehouse, a small machining area and a self contained race team workshop. With all part production outsourced, the only manufacturing done in-house is that of the brake pads due to the specialist material & process these require.


An established racer on the international onroad nitro scene, his interest in car racing starting in 1989 when he took part in the then popular Santa Claus Cup, Patrick Schafer’s key role in the company is design.  Graduating with a Masters degree in Mechanical Engineering, he is responsible for creating all the CAD drawings required for the production of the various parts that go into each kit.  In terms of staff Shepherd employ six full time staff in addition to having a number of part time workers.


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