First round of Drift Allstars reminded me an EEDC (Eastern European Drift Championship) event in Riga in 2014. There very few drivers, but the quality of them was on the highest level. Lack of entrants was due to Gatebil event in Sweden and British Championship happening on the same date. Biggest upset for me was the absence of Polish drivers: Pawel Trela, Piotr Więcek, David Karkosik – we want to see you at every round of DA events. This time round it were Janis Eglite, Luke Fink and “new flying finn” Juha Pöytälaakso who were trying to apply pressure on raging 2014 champion James Deane.
1. Event was held at Arena Essex Raceway. Track is spectator orientated, it was very easy for everybody to see all the smoky action.
2. I arrived early in the morning, just in time for first practice laps. At that time all the drivers and spotters were checking out how their colleagues are coping.
3. Everybody were putting their markers onto the track.
4. Organisers built a custom tarmac section in the middle of the raceway. It had a bump on the way in and out, I believe it didn’t cause any difficulties for Janis, since Bikernieki track, is his home circuit in Latvia. It has a very similar “feature” closer to the end of the drifting section.
5. It was nice to see a FD car in the mix. Asian Formula D, but still.
6. Event also brought drifters with fewer experience, Leonard Kepert was one of them. He did good, and finished in Top 8.
7. Kepert was battling with this rad MX5, but Mazda driver made a mistake in the second battle.
8. In this moment I also thought, that Dr. Martens are not a bad idea to where at such events, my feet were aching while being in sneakers all day.
9. Janis Eglite was asked, what he thinks about his new tyres. Well, they are completely ruined after 1 minute of drifting
10. Even though racetrack was outside London, I noticed more people than at the London event last year.
11. Doors got opened just in time for the first practice of Luke Fink, driving Low-Brain Drifters’ Nissan. He is one of the Drift Allstars champions of the past. They went to the track with Janis, and again, completely ruined few more sets of tyres.
12. James Deane was on the mission, making perfect runs one after another.
13. It seems Drift Allstars broken few track rules that weekend: marshals were standing behind pit gate
14. And I definitely saw some donuts and wheelspins..
15. It was great to see that Niall Gunn brought Bryn Musselwhite on board as a commentator, he’s one of the Speedhunters and newer stops talking, in a good way.
16. I think this is what European drifting is all about, sorted out BMW’s slaying tyres…
17. … and technical tracks with wallride action
18. Just don’t get too exited with kissing the wall
19. Terry Grant had the best spectating position while waiting for his show to start.
20. I saw him already two times this year, looks like I’m choosing to come to correct events
21. And it’s always nice to see a Skyline competing
22. Oh, the smoke! How many times I was asked why do I go to see this and I still don’t have a proper argument.
23. Even guests from Abu Dhabi “rented” a car to join the Europeans
24. Lucas “Bandana Boy” working very hard for all of us, bringing video action to your screens.
25. Dmitriy Illyuk’s nickname “Ukrainian Missile” sounded great before the recent events. He had a hard time at British DA in a borrowed right-side-steering car.
26. Main action started well in the evening, unfortunately, I needed to go earlier, in order to catch the plane back, so I got only some action from drifting in the night.
27. Few crashes made the event longer as well
29. This one goes to the Fail Crew fans, we still don’t know what they’re up to this season
30. Already in the airport I read that it was indeed Luke Fink who took the win, Janis Eglite was second and James Deane third. Juha finished 4th.
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