Posts Tagged ‘Team Instant Party’

CENTER STAGE> Walker Wilkerson’s Autohero S13

If you dont know who Walker Wilkerson is by now - you will soon enough. From seemingly out of nowhere, he showed up to the first event of the 2011 Formula Drift season and had an incredibly strong showing. Walker outscored many Formula D veterans in qualifying, moving forward to wow the crowd with exciting tandem performances, much like fan favorite Fredric Aasbo did with his JZA80 Supra last year.

With limited seat time he wowed the judges in his purple widebody Nissan S13 240SX coupe, equipped with a stroked 480hp monster SR20DET, during qualifying. Eventually landing high at 7th place, deep within veteran territory. And with that explosive entrance in the pro arena - he secured his spot in the big show on Saturday in the Top 32. Not bad for a first timer in, well, pretty much everything for the day.   Read more...

COVERAGE> Formula D Long Beach Experience Pt.1

Right now, I'm updating the website live from the Formula D Long Beach media center (aka: the parking garage on Linden Ave), and all the drivers are practicing, so the sounds of screeching tires and thundering V8 motors are loudly echoing off the concrete walls all around me.

If you live in Southern California, you need to drop everything you're doing and head down to Long Beach RIGHT NOW. The line at the gate is already huge, and everyone is amped up from all the excitement (or it could be from all the energy drink sponsors giving out free drinks at the track). This is what Formula Drift is all about! Let's go through some of the photos that the MotorMavens Crew has collected from Long Beach thus far!   Read more...

COVERAGE> PGP Wars Episode 1 – Tandem Menace

If you are at all a drift fan, you have probably watched old Option videos on VHS or you have seen videos on YouTube or posted around the Internet. At some point you and your friends have dropped your jaws and yelled at the screen after witnessing truly epic driving. Unreal angle, physics-defying early entries, and team tandems that looked like they were choreographed in a dance studio - all things you would scream at the top of your lungs for. Well, if you were one of the many spectators in attendance at PGP (Pacific Grand Prix), then you witnessed some of the same electrifying driving that you would expect from one of those videos from way back when.   Read more...

COVERAGE> Comrades Invade Pacific Grand Prix

As with most things in life, there are goals that people set for themselves in whatever they do. Some aspire to be the best in their field and pit themselves against others to see where they stand. For others, just being a part of the camaraderie or community is enough. They participate just for the sheer excitement rather than competition. Luckily, in the North West, we have a huge mix of both ranging from the new Formula Drift Pro and Pro-Am drivers to the guys who keep it strictly fun. Whatever category any of these guys fall under, it's with great pride that I can say all of them are grassroots drivers. Which brings me to Comrades.

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...

VIDEO> Sittin Sideways w/ Team Instant Party

Sittin’ Sideways | Evergreen Invitational | TIP from Justin Shreeve Films on Vimeo.

In the last year or so, our friends from Team Instant Party up in Seattle, WA have been doing a great part in putting the Pacific Northwest’s drifting scene on the map. Their crazy style, matched with great driving skills grab the attention of anyone who lays eyes on their easter-egg-colored cars. Needless to say, after the Evergreen Drift Invitational on March 14th, I had plenty of footage of them; too much for just one video. Here are most of the leftover clips of TIP, mixed in with a couple of previously used shots, roughly cut with a bit of color grading.

:: Justin Shreeve


Justin Shreeve Films

Evergreen Drift


COVERAGE> Xtreme Drift Circuit at Irwindale

Most people that are familiar with drifting in the United States have heard of Irwindale, California. After all, Irwindale's most famous attraction, Irwindale Speedway has been home to many major "firsts" in the drifting community. Irwindale Speedway was the venue for numerous early Drift Day events; the Video Option Ikaten on January 17th, 2003; the first Drift Showoff on March 3rd 2003; the RS-R Drift Festival on April 6, 2003; the first D1 Grand Prix event in the USA on August 31, 2003; and the first Formula D homecoming at Irwindale on August 29, 2004.

I mention these particular events because they were all milestone events for the grassroots drifting community. Since then, Irwindale has become a recognized name and a home for grassroots drifting in the West Coast. This past weekend marked the first ever XDC (Xtreme Drift Circuit) event at Irwindale. Whether or not this XDC event (or the series in general) will turn out to be a major milestone in the minds of drifters in the United States remains to be seen. However, I can tell you that I observed some re-invigoration and renewed interest in high level grassroots drifting competition from some of the drivers. Hell, if having high-skill-level grassroots drivers spend the time and effort in making the journey from most major regions of the United States (and Canada too) just to compete in this event doesn't indicate what kind of hype this new series is generating, then I don't know what will. It looks as if XDC is heading towards becoming a major force in the grassroots drifting arena.

I'll be honest - when I first heard about yet another drifting series launching this year, I kind of rolled my eyes, just like everyone else did. "Oh jeez," I thought. "Another drifting series is trying to come up and compete with Formula D again?" Well, if you observed how the whole "Nopi Drift Series" turned out, you might understand where some of the drifting community's skepticism comes from. However, when I found out that this new XDC Series was actually slated as a "feeder series" which would sharpen up the skill levels of grassroots drifters across the country and allow them to graduate into Formula D competition, I thought, "hmmm... I think this might actually work out."

The Motor Mavens Movement is all about supporting grassroots drivers and local street teams and crews from all over the world. Formula D did a good thing by empowering the local drifting organizers in different regions to hold Pro Am "driver search" events (like Vegas Pro Am and Evergreen Pro Am, etc), but what I think really boosts the level of drivers that want to graduate into the Formula D series is having the ability to compete regularly on different tracks, against different drivers from different geographical regions.

This "nationalization" and/or "globalization" of competition between the drifting community's hometown heroes is the only way grassroots drivers can really prove how good they are. However, with the level of drift car builds and big money that's required to actually run an entire Formula D season nowadays, it's nearly impossible for REAL grassroots drivers with REAL grassroots style drift cars to actually compete against the Formula D series' hundred-thousand-dollar engine builds, Nascar V8s and full race cars with silhouettes of their OEM bodies dzus-fastened onto tube frames. It saddens some people to see drifting turning into a major pro motorsport like Nascar, but it's all a natural progression, I suppose.   Read more...

CENTER STAGE> A Touch of Class in the Party

Washington mornings are crisp in the fall. Past the hustle and bustle of Seattle's technology saturated east side lie country roads that meander through the landscape. The dew turns to light frost and everything seems to quiet down. So when Mark Couts and his 1997 BMW E36 328i hit the street, you hear it long before you see it.

Mark is as tall (6'7") as the reputation that Team Instant Party has in the Northwest, and despite being a relatively new crew, most have been around for a long while. He's had different drift cars in the past, and they have come and gone for one reason or another. Having drifting as a hobby isn't easy for a poor college student trying to make ends meet, as I'm sure a lot of you can relate. While making the best of it, Mark has built an amazing looking E36. Clean and mean.   Read more...

CENTER STAGE> Roland Gallagher’s BN Blister S13

As this weekend's much awaited Formula D Pro Am event at Irwindale Speedway draws near, the members of the Motor Mavens Crew from Los Angeles are getting more and more excited to see all our friends from all the different grassroots drifting scenes from all over the country.

Our whole crew has a ton of respect for all the grassroots drivers out there; they are certainly working hard to step their game up and make it into the pro ranks... and for me personally, I think sometimes watching the grassroots guys compete is even more exciting than watching the pro drivers go at it. Some people may be thinking, "What?! Are you crazy?" I know, I know... it may be a bit different to outsiders or to those who are just sitting in the stands... but for those of us who circulate through the pit areas and go to the different shops and hang out with the drivers even outside of track events, it's really inspiring to see the hard work and perseverance of normal, everyday individuals, the grassroots enthusiasts, pay off.

This is what passion is all about. And this is why I think people are crazy when people think drifting is just a fad. Maybe it is for outsiders... but for the people who live and breathe this stuff day in and day out, it couldn't be further from the truth.

One guy who lives and breathes drifting is Roland Gallagher. The first time I saw Roland drive was at Formula D Las Vegas, where he was competing to earn his invite to the Pro Am. I was standing trackside with my younger brother David, and I saw this flash of teal pass me, followed by clouds of billowing white tiresmoke. My eyes followed the tiresmoke and somehow became fixated on his WHEELS which had ridiculously fat lips... I remember muttering "helllll yeah" under my breath, because these days, it's becoming more and more rare to see drift cars with good looking wheels and stance on the FD circuit.   Read more...

CARSPOTTING> TIP Meets VIP

These days any car I see sporting a paint job from the pastel side of the palette automatically reminds of Team Instant Party (TIP). I'm sure everyone who knows or has seen Team Instant Party cars is nodding right now as they envision a procession of Easter eggs with badass offset shooting shaved rubber into their mind's eye. So you can see why this air bagged GS300 had me completely perplexed since the VIP style is the last option I would expect from a TIP member.   Read more...

GALLERY> The Irwindale Experience

Since I'm new to MotorMavens, most people don't know much background info on me. I was born and raised in the Northwest, so every time I visit California, it becomes a great adventure. The final round in the Formula Drift series was my very first visit to Irwindale. From the hot weather and good looking girls, I could tell I was in for a real treat! Not to mention all the sick cars that California has!

When I arrived at LAX on Thursday, I got my rental car and drove straight into L.A. traffic to get to Irwindale Speedway, working my way though all that traffic while trying to find a good radio station to listen to. I finally arrived at the Speedway about 45 minutes later.

Walking though the pits, watching all the vendors getting set up for the event, I noticed the pit area is so much bigger than the one we have at Evergreen Speedway where Round 5 was held . This was a subtle hint that more vendors and drivers would be attending this event than the one at Evergreen.

Another thing that I noticed was the weather. Seattle summer includes two months of decent heat and sun after which it's back to the infamous rain season that happens to have started a couple of weeks ago. So, even though I caught myself wiping sweat off my forehead every few minutes, I was enjoying every minute of the sun. I wish it was like this in the Northwest.

Fast forward to the opening day of the Final round of Formula Drift. I got there bright and early to start taking photos and meet lots of new people. Since I'm pretty new to MotorMavens, a lot of people didn't know my name or my face. I took that as the perfect opportunity to introduce myself to the locals. The attitude that California people have is really great! Everyone was friendly and awesome to hang out with!   Read more...

CARSPOTTING> Sick Stanced STi

Just a few years ago, aggressive fitment wheels were a pretty rare find on cars in the United States. Most people thought that getting wheels that "fit" well meant that the wheels wouldn't have any rubbing or clearance issues. Nowadays, the trendsetters in the scene have completely changed the game, and all the "cool kids" with the best wheel fitment are all about stretched tires and seeing how close you can get your wheels/tires to the fenders.

The owner of this slammed Subaru Impreza WRX STi is a seventeen year old (Yes, I said 17 years old!) high school student named Abbitt Wilkerson from AW Films. Abbitt has been making a name for himself; not only because he shoots some of the most popular car videos up here in the Northwest, but also because he has a driving passion for building Subarus with the common thread of aggressive wheel fitment.   Read more...

CARSPOTTING> Instant Party R32 Skyline

Thinking back on this summer's epic All Star Bash weekend, I've begun to come to the conclusion that it just might have been the best American grassroots drifting event that I've ever been to in my whole life. Now THAT is a pretty strong statement - especially when you've been to as many grassroots drifting events in different states as I have. Of course, one of the things that naturally attracts me to the All Star Bash is the presence of some pretty awesome cars, most of which are S13s and S14s.

However, there was a certain non S-chassis that caught my attention - it was a white R32 Nissan Skyline with license plates from Washington state. It wasn't until the end of the last day of All Star Bash that I met the owner of this car - Jon Jaffe from Washington's own Team Instant Party. When we spoke at Willow Springs, it was hot, so I just gave him props on his car and a couple stickers, and went on my way.

Fast forward about a month - on my way back from the Formula D Seattle trip, BN Sports Raymond and I found ourselves chillin out in Bothell, Washington with Instant Party driver Roland Gallagher and his dad. On the day I was supposed to return to Los Angeles, I asked Raymond if we could stop by Roland's house on the way to the airport so I could check out his car really quick and say what's up. Shortly after we arrived at Roland's house, Jon took a break from his workday to come over and say hello. Perfect timing. I wanted to get a closer look at his Skyline anyway!   Read more...

COVERAGE> Evergreen Drift, Round 3

When everyone leaves after Formula D in Seattle every year, many people seem to forget about Pacific Northwest drifting. Thanks to Kelly and Eddi from Evergreen Drift, the local drivers from Washington, Oregon, and Canada are able to come back to the very same track where Formula D is held at - Evergreen Speedway in Monroe Washington. This past weekend, some of the same drivers that competed in the Evergreen Pro AM came back out and tackled the 3/8s bank with all they had for Round 3 of the Evergreen Drift Championship.   Read more...

COVERAGE> All Star Bash Weekend Pt 1

All over the USA, this has been a pretty exciting weekend for grassroots drifting enthusiasts. On the East Coast, many of our good friends made the trek to Virginia International Raceway for the North vs South drifting competition. However, in Southern California, the hottest thing happening is definitely the Just Drift/Zip Tied All Star Bash drifting festival at Willow Springs International Raceway. I've been to many All Star Bash events in the past, but it just doesn't seem to get old for me. In fact, the more events I go to, it keeps getting better and better. In the United States, the All Star Bash is the closest you can get to the actual look and feeling of an authentic Japanese grassroots drifting event, like the legendary Drifting Matsuri events at Ebisu Circuit or the regional MSC events.

Willow Springs is in the high desert - the Mojave Desert to be exact. It's two hours north east of Los Angeles, and the summertime sun just seems to sear anyone or anything it sees. As I write this, the event is far from over! In fact, we're about to leave the hotel in a few minutes to get back to the track, where the course just went hot - literally and figuratively.

This weekend's All Star Bash was exciting because there were drivers and cars that came from all over the United States just to drift with California's best. Cars came from as far as the San Francisco Bay Area, the Pacific Northwest, Arizona, Las Vegas, Chicago, and even South Dakota!   Read more...