2013 British Drift Championship Round 1 – Lydden Hill (Day 1)

So, here it is: the first round of the 2013 Maxxis British Drift Championship. After months of hype building, Facebook discussions/arguments and frantic builds by many teams, the first round was finally upon us. While I was looking forward to the event, I was also dreading it for the simple reason of how much work it creates for myself and a number of others!

While traditionally I would have written a report for an event such as this, I’ve found that I’ve already exhausted every metaphor, simile and superlative in my somewhat limited dictionary in the reports and PRs that I have written for other teams and/or companies this week alone. As a result, my coverage from the first round (and presumably all other rounds as well) will be more of a blog based post as opposed to a run down on each and every result.

Things for myself kicked off on Thursday afternoon along with Andy and Ant as we embarked on the mammoth journey south with the Japspeed Impreza in tow. After making a strong dent in the hotel’s beer supplies along with a few others on the Thursday night we awoke a little bleary eyed on the Friday and dreading the forever tedious task of setting up gazebos.

My first port of call was the Car Loan 4U guys who, with the exception of Joe and Matt, had also made the mammoth journey down from Manchester the previous night.

It was at this point that I discovered that Joe Ankers isn’t the cheeriest of guys when he has been driving since 3am…but then again, when hasn’t he got something to complain about!? I’m kidding Joe, promise!

Fair play to Alex for rocking what was definitely the best fitment I saw on a competition car all weekend.

Brad “SmileyBrad” Wallbank’s S13 was looking as awesome as always, although this year he’d decided to discover paint and fashion up a Team Rampstyle livery for his and his team mate’s cars.

Team Lassa, pretty in pink.

Simon Perry has definitely been very busy with his R33; I especially liked the exhaust setup designed to completely clear the rear diffuser. I’m not sure how well it will fare in a heavy shunt to the rear corner though.

V for Vendetta.

Haha, hi Alex.

The Japspeed Scooby was sporting a new 3.5″ shotgun system which sounded particularly lairy.

David Waterworth’s V10 Viper powered S15. I’m not particularly fond of the livery but, from an engineering point of view, it is still a fantastically impressive car.

Jack Tonkin’s RB25 powered S13; such an awesome car and one that is piloted by a very, very committed driver.

Posh wheels, excellent fitment, superb choice of aero and, probably most importantly, superbly built. I’m not jealous at all…

The engine bay of Mark Luney’s Lucas Oil Supra – need I say more?

One very popular topic of discussion was scrutineering and, more importantly, the rules that were being enforced. It isn’t really my place to comment on what is right, what is wrong and what should be different, but there were many drivers left with changes to make to their cars prior to the next round.

Good to see Joe representing!

Although it didn’t stop him from leaving scrutineering with work do to before round 2.

Nathan Chivers’ supercharged, LS powered Sil80.

Paul Conlan’s S15.

I last saw Wes Keating’s incredible 180SX at the Autosport show but it was something else to witness it outdoors in its natural habitat.

I don’t think I really need to say much more other than Rocket Bunny, SR22, mental lock, paddle shift and centre lock wheelnuts. Yeah…

I wandered back over to the Car Loan 4U pits to find Ant from Panther Detailing treating all three cars to a much needed detailing session in order to keep their vinyl wraps up to scratch. I couldn’t fault his commitment and he did an absolutely fantastic job.

Jody Fletcher’s S15.

It didn’t look like the dry weather was going to hold out much longer…

Now that’s a rear wing setup, seen here on Matt Campling’s S13.

Brett was enjoying his new race suit a bit too much…I don’t think he took it off all weekend!

Ant spent most of Friday giving Gaz Taylor a hand with welding his GTR diff.

Chris Hawkins’ awesome RB25 powered S13. I liked Chris’ driving style, although this was probably due to the fact that he did a lot of rolling burnouts and other cool stuff that gains massive cool points in my books.

As I wandered back over to scrutineering I got a sneaky pic of Wes’ lock modifications. I can’t remember who makes this kit but I saw it on a couple of the Irish cars throughout the weekend and all I can remember thinking is how expensive (yet awesome) it looked.

Brendan Stone’s rear wing: wild. What lies beneath: even more wild.

Paul Smith finally granted us with his presence as the sun went down. Friday afternoon traffic is never pleasant on the UK’s ever worsening motorways.

It seems the Irish brought a nice sunset with them?

Paul Cheshire’s G35. Polo didn’t have the greatest of weekends but I’ll cover that more in my next post.

The Low Brain/Achilles PS13. I could easily open a giant tin of worms with regards to Julian Barnes and Low Brain Drifters but in all honesty I was much more interested in seeing a cool car piloted by a very talented driver (Martin Ffrench).

The S13 of Acorn Motorsport driver Ian Waddington. Ian’s fabrication work on this car is undoubetdly incredible and he’s a cool guy and everything…

…but I just wish he’d lower it!

Shane O’Sullivan’s S15 was still absent but at this point the man himself was due to arrive at the hotel in an hour or two’s time, along with his partner in crime Shane Finn. Predicting that a particularly lively (for want of a better word) evening was on the cards for us all as a result of this, I called it a day and headed back.

Stay tuned for Part 2!