Our webmaster Brandon Campbell introduced me to this video, and I thought it was too good not to share. HBTV presents another episode of Depth of Speed. Josh Clason revisits Eric Bizek from JDM Legends in Utah. In this short video doc, Eric shares his passion and love of vintage Japanese cars. He takes an in-depth look into the quality and craftsmanship of the vintage cars along with his own personal restoration process. (more…)
Recently we met up with our friends over at Japanese Nostalgic Car Magazine for this year’s Toyotafest (watch for the upcoming story), and they told us the epic news about the “hush-hush” project they had been working on with Hot Wheels!
Now we can finally share the great news with all our readers, and the above picture shows you the outcome. Hot Wheels is producing the legendary Hakosuka in die-cast form! Just to be clear, this isn’t a KPGC10 Skyline GT-R, it is actually a KGC10 Nissan Skyline 2000GT-X. One of the coolest things about this die cast project is the JNC inkan on the doors. Congratulations, guys!!!
The detail on the car is really nice! It has exterior oil cooler hoses, headlight covers and the interior is fully caged. JNC says it’s heavier than your typical Hot Wheels car so you KNOW this car is gonna fly down the track! Any one still have their orange Hot Wheels track? (more…)
"Drifting will continue to grow, but that's only if we continue to support drifters on the amateur level, and most importantly, the people who organize the grassroots drifting events. After all, it is those people who are building new drifters and teaching them how to drive." - Antonio Alvendia in Drifting: Sideways from Japan to AmericaDespite the obvious plug (forgive me), what Antonio said in 2006 is evident five years later. These grassroots events are where many of the nation's best drifters first made their marks. While Japan was fortunate to have small, frequent drift events, Americans were left to figure out ways to get their tracks open to such a sport. Now, after years of consistent growth and the expansion of our own small drift events, we've come to see plenty of tracks around the nation become accustomed to drifting. These events have been paramount in molding skilled drifters, some of whom have made it in the big leagues. However, for many years now, the San Francisco Bay Area hasn't been able to provide a consistent outlet for its "home grown" talent. Sure, the ThunderDrift events are great, but those are nearly two or three hours away from The Bay. Many drivers simply don't want to make a four-to-six-hour round trip. Now they won't have to. Read more...
Well, once again, I happened to be in the land of the rising Haggis (click here if you're unfamiliar with Haggis), and thought it would be cool to catch up with some of the guys and see how their cars were getting on! I hope you enjoy the dramatic "black and white" theme - it seemed to go so well with the cars and the scenery of Edinburgh. Read more...
This year, unfortunately, it was a bit wet with the sun only barely shining though the thin veil of overcast clouds later in the day. Weather aside, this year was just as packed as previous years with three main lots filling up. The parking overflowed along the street for at least a half mile. I could tell it was going to be a meet well worth checking out! Read more...
The majority of the cars were European, such as Volkswagens and BMWs, and I have to confess I didn't know a lot about them. So I'll keep it short and show you some cars that really stood out for me at the meet! Read more...
It has always interested me to watch the background area of a competition, and all that is involved to bring it to life.
Formula D has so many people working, moving, going… There is a full TV show being produced, professional race event taking place, thousands of fans… And yet, it seems like most things move at a different pace in Las Vegas. The cars are still in a rush, but everyone else, everyone behind the scenes…
Once I started editing to this song (Sundriped), I felt the pace change from some of the other videos I have done more recently, so I countered with a different choice of footage out of my stash.
In the last video, I featured Justin Shreeve, Joe Ayala and Yoshi Shindo. In this video, I threw in a quick clip of Abbitt Wilkerson, another Northwest videographer. His older brother, Walker Wilkerson, acquired an FD license at the final Formula D event in Irwindale. Keep an eye out for what Abbitt, Shreeve, myself and the rest of YAER Productions will do for Walker’s upcoming 2011 driver package.
Ian Dillon, of Factory 83, also collaborated with YAER Productions, providing graphics for this and other upcoming edits.
:: Ryan Davis
The Formula Drift Finale at Toyota Speedway in Irwindale, California was mind-blowing. I’ve never seen such aggressive driving, nail-biting tandem battles, or brutal wrecks in one weekend.
This being my first time to Formula D at Irwindale, I had no idea what to expect. I arrived Wednesday night with enough time to head to Long Beach for a few hours with Ross Fairfield and Casey Liston of OMGDRIFT and my good friend, Joe Ayala, to hang out with the likes of Dean Kearney, Eric O’Sullivan, and the rest of the Irish fellows at The Auld Dubliner. It was at this moment that I realized how quickly the 2010 Formula Drift season had flown by. It felt so familiar to be sippin’ on a Guinness surrounded by live music and friends in that Irish pub, though I hadn’t been there since Round 1 in April!
Thursday, Joe and I headed to the track to catch some practice driving, as well as to meet up with more friends. I’m so happy to have made so many new acquaintances in the industry this year. People can hate all they want on professional drifting in all it’s seriousness, but the amount of genuinely good people who congregate at these events is astonishing.
Thursday through Saturday proved to be a grueling test of physical strength as I walked the course day after day, under the hot sun of Southern California, my ears nearly bleeding from the up close action Toyota Speedway has to offer, and covered (more so than ever before) in tiny chunks of spent tire. I was even hit in the eye by a flying piece of tire that was hot enough to burn both my top and bottom eyelids somehow. Haha! That’ll teach me to film burnouts!
Overall, I couldn’t have asked for a better conclusion to an incredible season of professional drifting, although I’m sad to see it end. All I know is that next year will be bigger and better and I can’t wait! Also, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the entire MotorMavens Crew for all of your support and the means to accomplish so many of my goals. I couldn’t have done it without your help. Thank you.
I can’t believe its over! The 2010 Formula Drift season went by so quickly! The Wednesday night before Formula Drift Irwindale, Justin Shreeve, myself, and some guys from OMGDRIFT went down to Long Beach to hang out at The Auld Dubliner. At the time, It seriously felt like we were just there for the Formula Drift event held back in April! So much has happened since then. It was so cool seeing almost everyone that I’ve met throughout the entire season come down for one final showdown. The hard fought battles and the high speed drifts at a wall that would eat your soul if it had the chance. Watching the Pro-Am drivers work for their potential spot to compete on the next level in the 2011 Formula Drift season. All of this made for one spectacular event.
MotorMavens literally came from throughout the entire country to cover this event. From the east coast to the west coast, which means lots of coverage. I titled this video “The Prelude” because to me, its just an introduction to all the coverage we will soon be seeing from our fellow photographers and videographers. Enjoy!
:: Joe Ayala
Formula Drift made its yearly stop in Sonoma, California last weekend. I’ve been looking forward to this event, simply because I live less than an hour away and I had a guaranteed bed to sleep in. However, the weekend was not without snags.
Upon my arrival, I found that I was not on the list for media, since KP Race and Victor Moore were unable to make it to Sonoma – this rendered my credentials were void. Therefore, I made the best of my bad luck and decided that if I couldn’t get the really close action shots, I would take a few steps back and shoot a different perspective. The next morning, I drove down to Borrowed Lenses in San Carlos and rented a tilt-shift lens. Over the past few months, my interest in these lenses has grown quite a bit and when I saw Mister Geoff Pitts from Thunder Drift taking photos with one at Formula D Las Vegas, I knew I had to try it. Fate truly couldn’t have presented me with a finer opportunity. Enjoy!
:: Joe Ayala
I don't like to do things by halves and I couldn't leave you readers hanging on just one feature. So, while I work on the photos from Silverstone, here are the highlights of what happened on day two of JDM Allstars at Wembley Stadium. Read more...
Wembley is THE event to go to in the JDM Allstars calendar. Drifters from all over Europe and even outside of Europe flock to Wembley to step up to the plate and show their talents in the competition. So bright and early (way too early) Saturday morning, I headed down into London to check out what was going on.
Usually I like to hang around the pits for a while to chat with drivers and friends, but with briefings to attend to and with the large amount of drivers competing, practice had to get underway pretty sharpish and I didn't want to miss out on any of the action. So I made a move out to the track and started shooting. So here are some photos from practice and qualifying! Read more...
My recent trip to Las Vegas for round 5 of Formula Drift was one of minimal luxuries. Joe Ayala and I could only afford one night in a hotel and a rental car was out of the question. Day one, we got up around noon, grabbed some “breakfast” at the Blueberry Hill next to the hotel, and began our journey to the track at around two. The trek consisted of roughly 2-3 miles, on foot, in 108 degree weather. Luckily for us, we found a shopping cart to carry our backpacks, camera cases, laptop bags, and of course my skateboard. Before long, we had covered the cart in MotorMavens cards (gotta represent) and found fun stuff to do on the way, such as drifting and dirt dropping the cart on the side of Las Vegas Blvd. Joe and I had fun overall, but boy were we glad when an old woman (with a legit mustache) stopped and asked us if we needed a ride. She drove us about a quarter of a mile to the gift shop of Las Vegas Motor Speedway, complaining the whole time about how she would be late to work. Haha!
Anyone will tell you that there’s really no way to describe a trip to FD Vegas other than “hot.” I had a great time making new acquaintances, like when my buddy Josh Herron took us by Forrest Wang‘s shop to BS and look at all his rad cars. I also had fun catching up with friends, like when the amazing Drew Fishbein and Ross Fairfield from OMGDrift let Joe and I stay in their hotel room because 18andFamous Abbitt Wilkerson was too busy napping to answer his door. Haha!
Regarding the video, I apologize for taking so long to finish it. The song I chose has a small introduction that requires specific footage to go with the audio. Hobo and I had arranged beforehand to film what I needed while in Vegas. Unfortunately, the lovely security team at Las Vegas Motor Speedway was very strict about when and who could drive in or out of the gates, so we just couldn’t make it happen. That being said, I had to acquire the help of up-and-coming photographer, videographer, actor, and stunt driver Joe Ayala to finish the timeline.
Special thanks to Jason at ContourHD for hooking us up with the cameras. These things are a blast to use! Definitely one of the most fun moments of the trip was running around the grid, sticking cameras on cars. Thanks again!
:: Justin Shreeve
Abbitt Wilkerson needs no introduction. You know who he is. 18 and famous. Haha! Anyway, check out his new cut from Formula Drift Round 4 at Evergreen Speedway in Monroe, Washington. Better late than never and definitely worth the wait. This video has great energy and had me excited from beginning to end. With plenty of creative shots and a surprisingly appropriate song choice, I couldn’t be happier with this video. Good work, Abbitt!
Last weekend’s Formula Drift Seattle event at Evergreen Speedway in Monroe, Washington was unforgettable. Tons of familiar faces and unusually warm weather made for the best FD experience I’ve ever had. Since I’ve been shooting at this location so much lately, I was able to take my time and really enjoy the event, rather than scrambling to get shots.
Last weekend also marked a milestone for me, as it had been one year since shooting my first FD event with a media pass. FD Seattle ’09 was also when I met quite a few friends in the industry, such as Antonio Alvendia, Larry Chen, Drew Fishbein, Ross Fairfield, Will Roegge, and Josh Herron, among many others. Last year around this time, I knew next to no one and now I can comfortably say I feel at home in the professional and grassroots drifting communities.
With this video, I chose to take a much lighter approach than last year as a representation of the comfort and relaxation I now feel among my fellow videographers, photographers, and drivers who congregate for these great events.
This year, I also met a guy named Jason from ContourHD/VHoldr, who was nice enough to let me test out a couple of his HD 1080p wearable/mountable POV cameras for some of the shots!
I would also like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has supported me along the way, especially the MotorMavens Crew, Formula Drift, Evergreen Drift, and KP Race. Without all the love, it just wouldn’t be worth it.
What I am getting at is simply that Formula D is a big thing here in the North West. This year FD has formally made the event a two day spectacle where you can come on Friday and witness the practice and qualifying - But, really, we've been going to the track on Friday to watch these pros rip it up on our home track for about three years now. Did they start the Friday thing this year because of us? Probably not, but it's awesome for the fans to get the full picture of the field of drivers that so desperately want to make it in the big Saturday show.
Now, for the first time since Seattle has been a stop on the pro drift series, we have our home team: Nikolay Konstantinov, Ian Fournier, Victor Moore and last, but certainly not least, Roland Gallagher. Four local guys we can cheer on and share in their glory and accomplishments. It's hard to believe these guys are stepping up to a national stage - ready to make their dreams come true and, whatever the outcome, the NW is proud of them. Read more...
The fact that Nissan itself was down to hold a drift event outside one of its factories was pretty cool. But the actual location to me was even cooler. Set on a section of land that usually holds hundreds and hundreds of freshly built Nissans, we were surrounded by factory buildings and trees with giant wind turbines looming over head. It's a testament to the JDM Allstars team that they can turn something as bland as a car park into an exciting place to hold their competition. Read more...
I later heard that the plan was to hold it on something called the Donington Alpine Circuit. I had no clue what that was until I came along to the shoot of the promotional video a few weeks back. Then it all became clear. On the outskirts of the main track and the Launch Pad is a fast, wide, almost mountain road-like track that the JDM Crew decided to use. It's made up of four corners and a steep uphill straight where the cars seemingly come out of nowhere and fly over the top. There's a right transition into the second turn, aiming for a clipping point close to the deadly armco, then a transition left into the third turn where you plant the throttle and bring the rear of the car to the armco on the straight, leading to another transition right into the final hairpin turn.
Fast corners, armco barriers on all sides and beautiful scenery all around. This was looking to be one of the most unique and exciting drift events in the JDM Allstars calendar. Read more...
For those that don't know, Comrades started from humble beginnings when four local drift teams decided to unite under one banner years ago. Now that banner has grown to include all NW grassroots drifters from Oregon to Canada.
May 15th set a new benchmark for drifting in the NW when the Comrades were invited to tear up the track at Pacific Grand Prix in Kent, WA. New Pros and old schoolers came out to drive on this newly created track, owned and operated by Paul Zalud, that spans a little less than a mile with a layout "that kinda gives you that Bihoku vibe."(Haha, it's a reference to a Japanese race track, Bihoku Highland)
The Mighty MotorMavens Crew was out in full force as well. Covering the entire event from the driving (by me), video from Abbit Wilkerson and Justin Shreeve to, of course, photos from Yoshi Shindo and new comer Jeff Santiago - both armed to the teeth with their new Canon EOS 7D cameras. Read more...
The first Pacific Grand Prix Drift Invitational was a blast! So many good people, live DJ, beer garden, skateboarding, dirt drops, four car tandems. What’s not to love? If you haven’t been to this track, make plans to attend a future event. This thing is beautiful! Super clean grass; I can’t believe dudes were dirt dropping in this shit!
Filming, on the other hand, was quite a challenge. With only a 15mm F/2.8 and a 50mm F/1.4, the strict media regulations made it difficult to shoot good footage without breaking the rules. The super bright sun half the day didn’t help either.
It is what it is. Enjoy.
:: Justin Shreeve
Most of the cars on the track were the competitors for the WTAC, but since it was technically an open practice drive day, several non-competing cars were also out on the track. Let's take a look at some of the cars on the circuit from today! Read more...
I’m beginning to notice a trend. It seems as though during my adventures with Formula Drift there is never any down time, sleep, boring moments, or lack of awesome activities to shoot.
For me, Formula Drift Atlanta this year began with a cross country journey involving three layovers and an entire day of flying. After losing three hours, getting no sleep, and feeling noticeably more sick, I touched down in a little town they call Atlanta, Georgia. Just kidding! That place is huge!
This being my first time visiting Georgia, I was sure to soak it all in. The hot, humid air and enormous, flying insects were easily overshadowed by the incredible scenery, delicious sweet tea, and of course that good ol’ Southern hospitality. (more…)