Like many others, I was first introduced to drifting during the “golden era”, otherwise known as the early 2000’s. Initial D, D1GP, Drift Showoff, The Big X, and of course, the Signal Auto twins showing everyone in Hawaii how it’s done (rest in peace Kuroi) were just some of the many pieces of this never ending puzzle. I was hooked and I wanted to see more. Thankfully, Video Option, Option2, Drift Tengoku, JDM Insider, and Grip Video were among some of the big names that continued to feed this addiction to the other side of the ocean, but as we all know, the early 2000’s was a long time ago…until recently.
There’s been a big “grassroots” movement sweeping through North America in recent years, and for the most part, the folks over at Final Bout are mostly to credit. Like any other sport, drifting has evolved quite a bit over the years; angle kits, hydro e-brakes, and godly amounts of power are among the norm these days, but back then things were much simpler. You just did what you could, you drove what you had, and you had fun doing it. These days the sport has essentially turned into its own business, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but some of that “fun” aspect seems to have been lost along the way. Despite the inevitable evolution however, there’s been a certain selection of drifters who have held dearly onto that golden era spirit of drifting, and thank goodness for that. These are people doing what they love just because they enjoy doing it. It’s that simple.
Admittedly we are lagging a bit behind in the style aspect (except for Brandon Strong and Nato). While we are still slowly catching up in that area, for the most part I felt that grassroots spirit again recently at the Spec-D Strato Bash 2 event. Just like last year, this was a two day drifting fest held at Stratotech Park hosting over 100 drivers, many of which came from out of town and even brought out their families to enjoy the action. Honestly it’s refreshing to see when the whole family comes out to share and enjoy this passion of cars together. There were lots of good conversations with some familiar faces, some stickers being exchanged, and of course, plenty of great driving. Everyone was out to just have a good time.
Like last year, I was on hand to help out my friend Eric who was participating in his Midnight Purple 240SX. Unfortunately, some unknown issues that we couldn’t figure out would put an abrupt end to our Sunday, but he was at least able to get a full Saturday in first. Big thanks to everyone who swung by to try and help us out, and also to the nice gentleman with the blue S13 with white roof who gave me a ride back to the pits from the far side of the track. Hopefully we can get Eric’s car sorted for next season and drive the whole weekend event, but until then stay safe out there everyone.