I got the pleasure of heading down to Rockingham for one of their brilliant drift days. Waking up on Sunday morning, I embarked on the 2-hour journey down to Rockingham Speedway on my own, as you can imagine it was the typical karaoke session keeping me company down there. Stepping out of my comfort zone going to an event on my own, it definitely wasn't something I regretted.
The sun was shining, moods were high, it was set to be a great day from the get-go. On my arrival I met Sweeps, who organises the Rockingham events, who gave me a warm welcome, introduced me to the team, and made me feel comfortable. I met with Belinda Collins, the owner of Drifther Clothing who gave me one of their hoodies to keep me warm.
Spending some time watching the cars on track, it was soon lunch and after a coffee and some chatting to the team, Sweeps introduced me formally to Jo & Lozza, both who I've spoken to over Facebook about their involvement in drifting, and they were both more than happy to take me out on track. At this point the sun had gone into hiding and the snow started coming down, making the track a bit wet meaning less traction around the track.
I first spent some time in Jo's car, and it's nice to see a female in the scene with a stunning R32. The girl has some serious skills! After running a few walls, the inevitable happened and the love tap got a little bit harder than anticipated, leaving Jo with a smashed rear light, and a damaged rear, but that didn't stop her getting back on track after some checks.
Giving her car some time to cool down, I managed to find Ollie in his S13, who was kind enough to let me stick my Go Pro on the side of his car to catch some on track action from a different angle. Jumping in with Lozza, it was nice to see the different driving styles of different people, from Jo initiating without a hydro, to Lozza's more aggressive entries, it was definitely an interesting learning curve, I absolutely adore Lozza's car and you can tell the time and effort put in to the car to get it to where it is. Who said a drift car can't be pretty?
What intrigued me the most was #TeamLegless, which means exactly what it says, these two guys are absolutely amazing! They are amputees, and drift their cars using only hand controls, and they put so many people to shame. They're a real inspiration. Unfortunately, I didn't get a chance to speak to them, but I'm sure the next event I'll get the opportunity.
There were so many different cars at the event, your usual S bodies, Skylines down to BMW's, an MX-5 and even an IS400. The mixture of cars, people and personalities is what makes me love this side of the car scene. Everyone was just so friendly, no one judges others, they help, and it's an overall great day out. Great driving and great people, what more could you want?
The other thing that amazes me is the reaction to crashes and nudges. They understand the risks that come with going on track with other people and trusting others driving skills, and the near misses and the taps are all inevitable. Seeing the calm, happy discussions checking on each other's cars just shows the relationship within the scene.
After a long day, it was time to pack up, and this is when you see how close everyone really is, from different towns across the country, they're all good friend reunited on a drift day, where everyone helps and chats. Fixing the damages, putting away tyres, changing wheels and prepping for the drive home.
Thank you to the guys up at Rockingham for an awesome day!
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