What a way to spend your Monday…
I love drifting. Ever since I figured out what the hell it was on Need for Speed Underground all those years back (2003 depressingly), it quickly became the preferred method of competing. Showboating and reaching ridiculous angles was flatteringly achievable on that game, and it was always the more graceful and artistic way to watch a car move around a track; rather than just apex-hunting!
Today, it was time to try it out for real…
Arriving to the smell of burnt rubber at a track always gives you a warm feeling. High speed drifting videos from Chris Harris weren’t applicable here though; not today, not for us newbies anyway on this oval track.
The tutors who sit through it all with you however, they’re seriously talented – and what a job!
The cars in question were Nissan S14 200 SX’s – and only one of them had a turbo fitted. That’s right, these stock 2.0-litre models were all you needed to have some serious RWD fun; 150bhp, a welded diff, and away you go….
Our half-day session comprised of 3 parts:
Doughnuts > Figure – Eights, the Slalom course, and High – speed passenger laps.
For someone coming from a FWD perspective, it was an alien experience putting your foot down to encourage the rear of the car to come around you – it was just against all forms of habit!
You then deal with the steering having a mind of its own as the rear pivots around, and while I perhaps did over-think it, I was never sure which direction I’d be drifting off towards when I did decide to catch the wheel.
Of course, the option of throttle-steering is there and you have a sizeable window to react anyway for it to all work out but…. when it all comes together, it can become overwhelming enough for you to mess up the whole sequence!
It’s a good test of discipline. Whilst you await your turn, you’re just excited and want to get on with it… and once you’ve had your go, you’re considering finances and space for a second car purely for drifting purposes.
The high-speed passenger laps were simply a riot. Doing ~60mph sideways is far more exciting than doing it in a straight line. Especially when your neighbouring view is this:
Drifting wasn’t easy, but being unable to master the art in one session would be missing the point. Would I do this again? Absolutely. But this could become an expensive hobby…
High Speed Laps
High Speed Laps – from the Inside!
Casual strolling amongst some drifters…
That ‘bang’ at the very last second was a blowout!
Don’t believe us? See what Mike Musto says….