best esc for no prep drag racing

6 Best ESC for No Prep Drag Racing: Meet the Beasts 

Drag race is one of the coolest racing sectors in RC racing. No prep drag racing takes it even way further. Are you interested in RC no-prep drag racing? Then the next thing you are surely looking for is the Best ESC for your RC motor.

As a newbie no-prep drag racer or a professional in the track, you just need to know which is the Best ESC for no-prep drag racing. Because you really need your motor to perform at its maximum power on the track. And, without a perfect ESC, that’s not possible. 

Now there are tons of ESC out there available in the market. So, it is quite normal to get overwhelmed.

Hence, we did research on 25+ products to find out the best 6 ESC. Also, we’ve added some key points to help you choose the most suitable ESC for drag racing.

So, without further delay, let’s check these ESCs out!

How do ESCs work?

The Full form of ESC is Electronic Speed Controller. Which is an electronic circuit. It helps change the speed of an electric motor and change the route. Also, it works double as a dynamic braking system. ESC basically works with radio control. 

An ESC works with three crucial components like voltage regulators. Which are also called BEC- battery eliminator circuits. A processor And some switching that involves FETs. Now, let’s talk practical. Basically, the ESC works both with the engine and breaks combinedly. So it controls the throttle and wheel’s break.

Source: Amazon

Types of ESCs for Drag Racing

Basically, there are only two types of ESCs manufactured in the market for Drag racing. One is the brushed version and the other is the brushless version. 

Both are equally strong in terms of Drag racing. But you need to buy the correct ESC regarding your Motor type. 

How No Prep Drag Racing Differs from Drag Racing,

First of all, you need to understand what a prepped track is. And what is a non-prepped track? A prepped track is basically prepared for drag racing purposes. Where you can let your RC rip and it will surely stick on the ground. The track’s conditions are checked properly, and its surface is maintained for better traction. 

Where it is completely different in a non-prepped track. The track isn’t prepared for drag racing. Like it can have potholes or muddy conditions.  So, you have to be fully aware that things can go wrong in a second. In no-prep drag racing, it is all on the driver. The driver has to be smart and has to control the RC on the track surface. So, no-prep drag racing is more of a challenge than just racing. 

Comparison Table



Throttle response



Hobbywing QUICRUN WP 1080 ESC

Faster acceleration

2.06 ounces

Hobbywing QuicRun 1060 ESC

Faster acceleration

0.8 ounces

FullfunRC Waterproof Brushed ESC

Strong Mid power 

1.76 ounces


Faster acceleration

3.7 ounces

Castle Creations Sidewinder 4 ESC

Best mid to top end

3.52 ounces

Traxxas Velineon Electronic Speed Control

Strong mid-range power

6.8 ounces

Best 3 Brushed ESC for no-prep drag racing

Now, in this segment, we are about to review the 3 best brushed ESC which is the best option right now to pair up with your brushed motor. 

Hobbywing QUICRUN WP 1080 ESC

The very first product we are about to review is the Hobbywing QUICRUN WP 1080. Hobbywing has been manufacturing awesome ESC and steering servos for years. They offer good power and ensure the best quality. 

We will start with the dimensions. Dimension and weight are a big concern in drag racing. Cause it might make your car slow. The ESC has an overall size of 1.43 x 0.67 x 1.24 inches. And it weighs around 2.06 ounces. Which is decent

Although the body of the ESC is fully made of plastic, it’s pretty tough. And if your RC vehicle shell is a tough one then you probably won’t have to think about durability. 

Then the question arises how do you fit it on the outer shell? The installation process is super simple on this. It takes roughly three minutes altogether with putting back the outer shell. 

Coming to its performance, When we took the test on a track, It did perform decently,  the throttle response seemed okay, and it had a powerful kick at the start. So definitely it will give you edges in the head start department. The turbo timing in this model was also good enough. 

The ESC comes with 15 programmable parameter items. Adjustable freewheeling capability. The drag brake rate has 9 levels. Electronic switches and aluminum heatsinks for better heat dissipation. 

Overall it’s the best Brushed ESC you can buy right now for no-prep drag racing.

Room for improvement

The heat dissipation is not that good. This ESC tends to heat up too much when running for too long. And it’s a big of concern. So, you might check the other options with wider heatsinks such as Hobbywing QuicRun 1060

Hobbywing QuicRun 1060 ESC

The second product on our list is the Hobbywing QuicRun 1060. Which is also made by the same manufacturer as the previous product. This one is the younger brother of the 1080 model. 

As we know, dimension and weight are big concerns in drag racing. So let us start with the dimensions first. The ESC has an overall size of 1.4 x 1.27 x 0.71 inches. And it weighs around 0.8 ounces. It’s way too little in weight than the older brother. So definitely it won’t make your RC heavy. 

Just like the previous one, the installation method of this item is also simple. All you gotta do is take a piece of electrical tape and attach it to the body. Then solder the wires with your motor and battery and you are good to go. 

Performance-wise, there is not much to say about this product. This is a slightly toned-down version of 1080. The Initial throttle is good, and the turbo timing is also decent. 

Room for improvement

Off-the-line performance is what it lacks. However, go for the Hobbywing QUICRUN WP 1080 if you think it’s a major issue.

FullfunRC Waterproof Brushed ESC

The third place is taken by the FullfunRC Waterproof Brushed. Besides this one costs less just like the previous product. Let’s go find out more about this product. 

This ESC has an overall size of 5 x 4 x 0.05 inches. And it weighs around 1.76 ounces. The form factor of this ESC is a bit big compared to the first two products. But surely it will fit your RC. So, no big deal. 

Besides, its weight is decent. So, you won’t have to worry about your RC getting slowed down by the weight of your ESC. Compared to the first two products this one is a bit out of the line in performance. 

This one also suffers badly in the turbo-tuning sector. But coming to its durability, it goes head to head with the first two ESC.

Besides, in our opinion, this ESC goes on with the second product in Off-the-line performance. 

It’s a 45A Brushed ESC compatible with 540, and 550 sizes. Also, it has waterproofing, voltage cutoff, overheats cutoff Practice mode, and many more. 

We won’t recommend it over the first HobbyWing 1080. But when the concern becomes budget, This one is a pretty solid pick. 

Room for improvement

Lacks a bit in the turbo tuning department. If it does bother you you can catch the previous one – Hobbywing 1060

Best 3 Brushless ESC for No-prep Drag Racing

We have reviewed the best 3 brushed motors compatible brushed ESC available out there in the market. Here we’re gonna review the 3 best brushless options for those of you guys who have brushless motors. Without further ado, let’s go check them out. 


So, entering into the Brushless department with another HobbyQuin product. The Hobbywing QUICRUN 10BL120 ESC stands First. Let’s go find out what it has up its sleeve. 

Let’s start again with the dimensions. This ESC has a form factor of 5.25 x 3.5 x 2.25 inches. And the overall weight of the product is 3.7 ounces. As we know the brushless ESC has finer technology so these tend to be bigger and heavier. 

And, heavyweight might make your car feel slow, But don’t worry this ESC has excellent Power.

Talking about compatibility, this ESC rocks. This ESC is compatible with most of the brushless motors out there available on the market. 

The durability question arises now. The ESC is made of solid plastic. The build quality is decent.  This ESC is top-notch when it comes to durability. 

Coming to the pricing, This one is not cheap but is somewhere in the middle in its segment. 

Coming to its performance department, It does have some slight kick in the launching time. The turbo timing is okay. Overall this is a solid choice for your brushless motor. 

One thing that adds an extra plus. It is the integration of an active cooling fan for better heat dissipation. And it saves your ESC and motor from catching fire. 

Room for improvement

The off-the-line performance is a bit off in this ESC. If this bothers you go pick the Castle Creations Sidewinder 4.

Castle Creations Sidewinder 4 ESC

Coming to the 2nd position in the Brushless department, We have the Castle Creations Sidewinder 4. This one stands like a champ in its segment. But the pricing is a concern. Let’s go find out more about the product.

Let’s start again with the dimensions. This ESC has a form factor of 3.13 x 6.13 x 2.13 inches. And the overall weight of the product is 3.52 ounces. As we know the brushless ESC has finer technology so these tend to be bigger and heavier. 

But don’t you worry. Your RC has enough room for it to fit nicely. Besides, the weight won’t make RC slow cause they have put enough power into it. 

As we already know the brushless ESC needs a lot more cooling than the brushed one. So Most of the ESC use an additional cooling fan over the main circuit board. This one is no different.

The sidewinder 4 has cryo drive software. It lets the ESC get cooler when it’s getting hot. The software enhances the cooling ability of the ESC. This allows you to run for a longer period. Catching fire is a myth in this ESC.

Overall this ESC is the best in its class, The turbo tuning is fantastic. The performance is also satisfying. And the heating department is top-notch.

Room for improvement

Although it has a large fan on top, still it gets a bit hot. However, want to pick something cooler? Then go for the Hobbywing QUICRUN 10BL120 ESC.

Traxxas Velineon Electronic Speed Control

Coming to the main part. The most amazing thing about this ESC is, that this model has no active cooling fan on top of the mainboard. A few brushless ESC comes like this and it is one of them. But no worries this one does control heat by far the best even without a fan. 

In terms of installation, this ESC is such a headache. One of the challenging things about this ESC is to get this on your RC vehicle. 

The overall performance of this ESC is relatively good. The initial throttle response is quick. The turbo tuning is well tuned up. One thing it lacks behind is in the off-the-line performance. 

In conclusion, this is a heavy-duty ESC. Although we keep it in the last position, by any means this thing is not bad.  

Room for improvement

The installation is not an easy job with this ESC. If you think it will be a problem then go for the previous one – Castle Creations Sidewinder 4.

Why You Should Pick Brushed ESCs for Drag Racing?

Picking an ESC for your motor is quite challenging. Brushed ESC works by chopping up the flow of electricity to throttle the motor. If your motor is a brushed one then you obviously have to buy a brushed ESC. This is the most basic thing for buying an ESC. 

Now for drag racing, you can’t go wrong with either of the setups whether the brushed one is brushless. Just you need to pair the ESC that suits your motor better. 

how to brushless motor and esc work

Source: How to Mechatronics 

Why You Should Pick Brushless ESCs for Drag Racing

As we already know, brushed or brushless ESC. Choosing between these options heavily relies on your Motor. If you have a brushless motor, you must pair them up with the Brushless ESC. Brushless ESC also works to throttle the motor like brushed ESC. But it works slightly differently because there are 2 components.

And for drag racing, brushless is not bad. But as we know in drag racing, heat is the most crucial concern. And brushless Design can’t handle much heat. So before buying make sure the one has a good heating system on it.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) 

Can I use any ESC with any motor?

No. Not all brushless motors are compatible with all the brushless ESCs. And you can only pair a brushed ESC with a brushed motor. 

What ESC should I use?

You should select an ESC based on the peak current rating of the motor and voltage. Better choose an ESC with at least 5A more capacity than the peak rating of the motor.

Do I need an active cooling fan for brushed ESC?

The answer is no. Brushed ESC is capable of handling the heat. They usually come with a heatsink for better heat dissipation. Only brushless ESC needs an active cooling fan and most of them come in stock. 

Can I drag race without an ESC?

Yes, you can certainly run your motor without an ESC. But it won’t be a wise idea, Because just using a switch instead of an ESC may cause serious trouble, Like it may burn your motor.

Final Words

Well, that’s everything summed up for the Best ESC for no-prep drag racing. Before buying your ESC go through the facts discussed in the article.

We have already explained every topic that might need to know before purchasing the product. Hope you get all the information and now it’s your turn to pick the best one. So, Good Luck!

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