main

EventNewsReviews

Spanish paddock , part 1/2

28th June 2017 — by Ruben Langa

miranda_20170407osd_2017_0047-960x640.jpg

A short walk along the spanish drift paddock. Cars, drivers and battle for the first podium spot.

The Spanish paddock grows at a speed that is impossible to follow. This year I have attended two rounds of Open Slalom Drift, our national competition, one in Miranda de Ebro and another in Valencia. In parallel with the second round, the infamous King of Europe. The progression is very clear in the improvement of the cars and drivers.

The first improvement are the categories AM and Semipro. Here, these categories comprise of stock cars which has created a rivalry between atmospheric and turbo that has been forged with time. In the first round, the podium was for naturally aspirated BMW’s, Aitor Galan , followed by Diego Sáez and in third, Aitor Sánchez.

The PRO category is booked on cars with swap, wide direction angle, bodywork of fibre, etc. All types of projects where we found the guys from Drifting Barcelona, a BMW orda with V8 engines. These included Oscar Ruiz’s Subaru Viper, a pilot who has greatly improved in the past two years and Jonathan Hernandez, champion of the OSD last year riding on the spectacular e46 LS (white). 

If we go by the paddock, our attention is immediately drawn to the brothers Caballer, Joan drives a s13 RB25 (white/blue), second last year in OSD, in his Palm can be proud of his second place in the Spanish round of the KOE 3 years ago. Xavier leads a s13 ca18 in Semipro and his driving skills grows day by the day.

If we look for brothers, we find the Angels Team Drift , Ivan Bolaños in SEMIPRO with an e36 M3 and Ruben Bolaños in PRO with an e46 2JZ(white/orange). Ruben came up to the second spot on the podium in Miranda de Ebro after some of the tightest battles that I have seen in a while. 

One of the most established of veterans is Alberto Canedo, facing monsters like the previous ones with an e30 M3 Enekos since my first time on a circuit, below the average of horses but compensating with spectacular driving.

 No more than two steps in and we can find the winner of the first Round, David Infantes. He is a veteran of the Championship, driving an s13 by a small circuit school close to Igualada. One day he surprised me with a PS13 LS (black/green/white). Personally this is one of the best car/pilot combos in that paddock, I couldn’t take as many photos as I would’ve liked because he lives away of my town but he is my favorite for this season. 

Check back very soon for the second part of my coverage with more pilots and photos of the last two Rounds including the King Of Europe.

Bonus pics:

miranda_20170408osd_2017_0051
miranda_20170408osd_2017_0054
miranda_20170408osd_2017_0062
miranda_20170408osd_2017_0063
miranda_20170408osd_2017_0065
miranda_20170408osd_2017_0096
miranda_20170408osd_2017_0100
miranda_20170409osd_2017_0005
miranda_20170409osd_2017_0032
_MG_4719
_MG_4737
_MG_5093 copia
miranda_20170408osd_2017_0095
miranda_20170409osd_2017_0033
miranda_20170407osd_2017_0049

Event

Sunshine and Tyre Smoke

21st June 2017 — by Ben Gaut

IMG_9250-960x640.jpg

The day before Drift Cup Round 3 was an invite-only practice day at Rockingham Race Way. For me, this was my first time ascending on Rockingham but I had heard amazing things from fellow Fueltographer Shooting Dave. I was so hyped to get down and see what it was all about. Being the second practice day I had shot this year, I was ready to see some action!

Now it’s safe to say the weather was the polar opposite of when I had my first outing of the year, it looked like I had traded in the snow and freezing temperatures for some amazing sunshine and a full on heat wave! Perfect for some smoky door to door action!

The main man behind Drift Cup ‘Sweeps’ had laid out a seriously awesome track which was perfect for the drivers. He also threw in a few hard hitting walls for good measure. It’s safe to say I didn’t see a single car without a dent in their rear quarters by lunch time, everyone was gunning for them. Just gradually edging closer and closer, before well you know the story!

The driving was on a whole different level, some of the best drift trains I have seen in the UK for a while outside of a show demo or major event!

As the weather stayed on our side and just got hotter and hotter, so I thought I would take the time to get off track side and out of the oven and into some cars and see how the track felt from the drivers perspective. It certainly didn’t disappoint, everyone was hunting for doors and pushing their cars to the absolute limit!

I managed to jump out with Monkey London, now this was an experience in itself, if you haven’t already, then do head over & check out his youtube channel. However I am telling you now, jumping in the car was like I had just stepped into a drifting documentary with David Attenborough! I then looked to my left to see Phil Morrison from Driftworks, hunting down my door and the adrenaline kicked in. I had only one option, to do what I do best, grab the camera and start firing.

The Practice day also meant that some of the Drift Cup drivers could get a day on track before the big event the following day and you could see for some of them just having that extra seat time really pulled through on the Sunday!

Now for me, I am pretty much out of words for this one – but thank you Sweeps and the team for an awesome day. Below are some more snaps from the day.

Event

‘Grass Roots’ At Drift Cup Round 3

21st June 2017 — by Ben Gaut

IMG_0031-960x640.jpg

Sun, Smoke, Walls, Battles and even a proposal! That’s right a proposal but I will get on to that later, Drift Cup Round 3 had it all! 

As this was my first Drift Cup event, I had heard mixed things about the series from both drivers & a plethora of random people throwing in their two cents. This aside, I went in with a clean slate to see what it was all about for myself. I dragged myself out of my comfy hotel room, grabbed a coffee + croissant and headed to the track. With the guys from Drift Cup having run an invite only practice day on the Saturday which you can read about here! It’s safe to say I wasn’t going to be disappointed by what was in store and had a good idea of what to expect!

The level of driving from what is classed as a ‘grass roots’ event was just insane, door to door action all day, non stop! Throw in a couple of walls as they make their way round just to up the ante that little bit more. I don’t think a single person drove away with a pristine rear quarter.

Open practice was running all morning for the drivers to get used to the track, With the sun beating down it truly was a smoky morning! From watching the practice you could see everyone was hungry for that number one spot!

Moving into qualifying the driver level just stepped up even further, was seriously blown away with the lowest score in the top 32 being a 68.5!

With qualifying over we heading into the driver briefing room to hear the feedback and find out who would be battling who. This is where the shock of the day happened, after everyone knew what was going on for the day ahead, Frazer Jamieson wanted to say a few words, little did we know he got down on one knee and proposed to his other half as the whole room erupted in a huge cheer! This is what drifting is about, it doesn’t matter if you make the final battle just being there and supporting all your fellow drivers in everything they do. Was a real moment and memory for all the drivers and staff there and of course the happy couple!

Jumping straight to the battles, the fight and pressure was on, everyone was driving to win! The pressure and talent was on a whole different scale, everyone wanted that podium spot not a single person was holding back.

Leading into the top 16 things started to get really interesting, With everyone from the top 8 being given the chance to drive at the eagerly awaited BDC street round! It’s safe to say the heat and battle was well and truly on!   I for one would have not liked to be sitting in the judging tower trying to call some of the battles!

Top 8 WOW, the hunger was unreal with drivers putting everything on the line and hunting the walls and doors of the lead like nothing I have seen from before in ‘grass roots’ drifting!

Now it came down to the final battles. The drivers showed no signs of stopping the fight for that top spot! It was bound to be an awesome show and they certainly didn’t disappoint!! The final battles were seriously something incredible with both the crowd, judges and commentators on their feet screaming the house down.

Oliver Bolton took the win is his awesome S13, bearing in mind he’s only been driving the car 3 months and this was his 3rd competitive event, safe to say we have a star in the making here on English soil! Time for the Irish to move to one side this is one to watch!

I would just like to finish off by saying a massive thank you to Sweeps and the team over at Drift Cup for putting on a seriously epic event! Entertainment value and driver skill was through the roof, more than enough to rival some of the biggest names in competitive drifting!

Event

Young gun takes on the Quick Draw

16th March 2017 — by Fueltopia Events

17036812_418909621792102_1218491355_o-960x640.jpg

It’s a first for Formula G but in attempts to make motorsport accessible to all, we are for the first time opening our doors to the unlicensed and that means a young lad making noise in Scotland can make his way down south for his first outing on the Formula G track in his 1.8cc Mazda MX5.

We are excited to see Ben Dryburgh take to the track this weekend and show that a 14-year-old can take on the obstacles just as well as his dad Alan, who took on the Gymkhana Grid Gauntlet finals in 2016.

Bens MX5 has been built especially for him to compete this season and he was truly gutted to not have it 100% for the first Barrel Sprint and Formula G rounds at the beginning of March. However freshly fitted with a new ECU, Bens fully prepared to join the fleet of MX5s, now leading in the gymkhana championship.

This however wont be Bens first outing, having competed all last year in the Scottish Gymkhana Cup, driving regular Formula G driver Adam Elders Nissan  S14 and taking third place in the championship and being named Best Drifter by Fast Car magazine at Crail last year driving his dads 650BHP Supra.

Ben will be competing in as many Barrel Sprint and Formula G events as he can this season, making him not only the youngest competitor in the field but also the furthest to travel.  We hope many will come out to show support to our newest competitor.

For others looking to get involved in both the Barrel Sprint and Formula G please contact event manager, Becci Gilbert, at  becci@fueltopia.co.uk who will help you with all the necessary details for entry.

Photos provided by Ben Dryburgh

Topic

Five radical drifting hot hatches

9th February 2017 — by Black Flagged

gatebil2013_3357-960x640.jpg

A hot hatch isn’t your default car for drift, but it doesn’t mean its not the right path to smokey tyre enlightenment – after trawling through our Fueltopia file of rad images, I’ve pulled out five the naughtiest drift hatches that have slayed rubber

Roger Holland’s twin engine Toyota Starlet creates plumes of crowd pleasing tyre smoke into the 50,000 strong crowd at Gatebil, Rudskogen. Dave Cox caught the double packing, drifty, hot hatch action on his last visit to the show they dub the  greatest in the World. We’d definitely want to get up  close and personal with this car next year

This list wouldn’t be complete without one of the most iconic drift hatches ever… The Driftworks AE86 – LS powered and classic lines makes this drift-hatch one of our favourites of all time and that distinctive orange livery is hard to miss.

A personal favourite is Dan Firminger’s little Volvo. This car might be small but it packs a punch with it’s V8 heart up front. Dan has been peddling this car on the car scene for a while in drift and gymkhana and it’s always great to see it decimate opponents on track.

This literally blows my mind,  Danial Björk’s Ford Fiesta lays down smoke like a total badass at events like Gatebil. The Blue Oval  brands engine has been cast aside for a native Volvo B230 Turbo engine that pumps out  a staggering 500hp or in this case moose power.

In at five and rounding off this blogs five radical drift hatches is another little 1986 Volvo 360 owned by Mark Vissers from the Netherlands. A respectable 357hp and 388lb/ft of torque makes this a fun, handling, tyre, shredding machine to be feared. If you fancy giving it a run then make sure you scope out the Drift Championship Netherlands.