Tuesday, October 18, 2011

nzdrift nationals 2011

I did mean to put this post up last week but I got caught up – sorry for the delay! After the CJC track day out at Taupo it was another early start for us on Sunday morning, driving up to Hampton Downs raceway for the NZDrift Nationals for 2011! In my slightly hungover and overtired stupor I found myself in a somewhat euphoric state – after two days filled with cool cars and adrenaline I was feeling on top form. This was my scene and this is what I love to do!

And so we convoyed up to Hampton, all our rides still intact and mine spraying sparks and spitting asphalt at the cars following! Every half an hour or so the car would bottom out and we would yell "F*CK!" and throw our hands in the air. Low is a lifestyle but it can be a pretty stressful one at times, especially when you have to drive on New Zealand’s incredibly dodgy roads.

When we arrived I was excited to see that some of my favourite drivers were out; Mad Mike, Bruce Tannock and Andrew Redward to name a few. Although I didn't get any good shots of her driving, I was also stoked to see female driver Jodie Verhulst out competing in her Supra. Jodie was giving it her all and showing the boys how it’s done, displaying some impressive driving technique!

Just FYI, if you ever get the chance to go in the orange scissor lift at Hampton, I would highly NOT recommend it! Two minutes into sitting up there braving the heavy winds and I had already formulated my escape plan for when it tipped over... fortunately, I didn’t end up having to put my plan into action but I know it definitely would have worked. One thing’s for sure, the view from above is certainly the best way to watch the action on the track. If you’re brave enough, that is!

During the day I spotted some pretty cool cars around the parking area...

Like this satin black AE-86. Loving the red meshies!

Clean 200SX on CR-Kais

This caged Mazda Luce looked pretty tough and if I remember correctly it had a turbocharged 20B dropped in it? Pretty dope.

Sweet roof.

This dude had an angry bird hanging under his car. LOL

Hugo drift! Hugo wasn't out competing this year; that didn't stop him from coming along to check out the action. And er... wearing this crazy hat.

After seeing the recent NZPC feature on Chuckie's FC it was cool to see the car in person.  Loving its staunch stance!

Although I enjoyed seeing some of the cars that had come to park up, the highlight of the day for me was definitely the driving! The day saw bumpers flying all over the place and a lot of car to car contact. At one point Takeshi lost control of his S13, driving straight into the barrier only inches in front of where several media personnel were stationed! Fortunately he wasn’t going too fast and everyone was alright.

Takeshi says "It’s ok!"

I don’t usually photograph on the track but on this occasion I decided to don my pink high vis and get out there to give it a shot. I’ve never been very good at panning photography but I’ve recently decided that I want to try and improve. Throughout the afternoon I was experimenting with different shutter speeds so forgive me if that is quite noticeable in my images!

It must have been a tough day for the judges, but in the end there could only be one winner! Dave Steadman took out 3rd place...

... and an intense battle followed as Fanga Dan and Mad Mike went at it for the title.

But Mikey took it home in the end!

A round of victory skids for Fanga and Mike!

It was great to see how many people made the effort to come along despite the threatening weather to see an exciting display of kiwi drifting at it’s best! Thanks NZ Performance Car, NAC Insurance and 4 & Rotary events!

Lastly, a big congratulations to Mad Mike - NZDrift King for 2011!

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