As we hit the third round and the halfway point of the Maxxis British Drift Championship, the pressure is officially on within the BDC. Drivers and Teams are eagerly checking the score tables to see who’s in front and who’s snapping at their heels as they look to climb the table and fight off their opponents in the hunt for silverware.
This round was particularly special because it also played host to the Team Triple Drift Event on Sunday. The Annual event is always a real spectacle as Teams get wings on doors as they navigate around the track. Before all that, we had an important Championship round to deal with, so we poked our nose into the driver briefing sessions.
Then it was time for us to take a wander around the pits to see what people were up to, before heading out onto the track for some practice sessions.
The weather was nothing short of freakish. We experienced all four seasons within an hour and it continued to change like that for the remainder of the day. It caught a few drivers out as they slipped off the track and lost a bumper or two.
Several cars were undressing themselves out on the greasy surface, the tyre’s took a pounding.
One shocker during practice was Paul “Smokey” Smith coming off the track at high speed and seriously smashing his S15, to continue drifting he was able to use his team-mate Shane Lynch’s V8 TT S15. Once the practice sessions were over, it was time for qualifying to narrow the field down to the final 16. The weather was once again playing havoc as dry lines formed around the standing water, making it incredibly tricky to judge the surface.
After practice the track was shut for a brief break which allowed the Teams to partake in a track parade, or rolling burnout depending on which lunatic was behind the wheel. Then once parked, the spectators were invited onto the tarmac to meet and greet the drivers.
It was popular with the fans as they all flocked over to get up close and personal with their favourite drivers and cars. After the meet session was finished it was onto the Championship round and twin battles for the remaining 16 drivers in each class. Starting with Semi Pro and working up to Super Pro.
The final 16 battles were closely fought, the standard of driving in the testing conditions made it a thriller! At the end of a true world class drift event, everybody worked their way over to the winners podium to hear those all-important results.
Once the final drivers names were read out the hallowed podium became a sea of champagne.
After two days of solid drift action, that would normally be enough, but Round 3 at Teesside also played host to the Annual Team Triple Drift Event! Something both fans and teams had been itching to get involved with, it’s a special event that always proves to be a real spectacle! The contest follows the same BDC format of qualifying runs, then narrowed to a field of 16 teams which then get two judged runs, the team with the most points will progress until we have a winner. Some of the triple drift formations really were on each others wing mirrors!
One team that became an instant hit with the crowd was the very retro “All or Nothing” Team.
The Team Triple Drift Event pushed drivers to the limit and produced some amazing drifting, worthy of a standing ovation! Some of the smaller teams really performed out of their skins and produced some giant-killing runs.
Once the field had been thinned down to the top four and the judges had selected the winners, they allowed the top teams out onto the track together, it produced a spot of carnage before the awards!
By the tightest of margins it was Team Japspeed who just nipped in to claim the bragging rights from the event and to lift the trophy.
The winners podium did get slightly crowded before the champagne was sprayed!
For more detailed event reports, current championship standings and details on Round 4, log onto www.thebritishdriftchampionship.com