Most forms of motorsport involve cars racing to see who can be the fastest round the track or across the muddy countryside. Whoever crosses the line in the shortest amount of time wins. Except for the sideways world of drifting, where instead it’s all about the driver getting the car around the track in the most impressive, sideways manner possible. Using short twisty courses, the drift cars aim to spend as little time as possible travelling in a straight line, instead flying into corners at incredible angles, thick white tire smoke pouring from their rear wheels. And rather than competing against the clock, they are aiming to impress a panel of three judges who award marks based on technique, speed and style. Whoever gets the highest score from three judges combined wins the event. Cars either complete the course on their own or in a tandem run with another car, where the leads cars aim is to complete the course in as stylish manner as possible and the chase car has to copy everything the other car does whilst getting their car as close to the leaders as possible. Whilst going sideways. Once the tandem run has been completed, drivers return to the start and the leader becomes the chaser.
Originating from Japan, drifting has grown in popularity massively in the last few years and now events take place across the world. Cars are heavily modified road cars with massive turbos fitted to the engines to allow for the fast acceleration required for the quick changes in direction these cars must make to slide between the turns. As drifting is also about style, the cars have bright paintwork, stickers and artwork down the sides and chunky body kits to catch the eye. A drifting event is more like a party than a race, with drivers and fans turning up to show off their modified pride and joys.
The very top level of drifting is the Formula D championship, where Tanner Foust competes in his Toyota Scion. Whilst this looks like the road car, it has been converted to rear wheel drive which makes it much better for sliding, and the standard family car engine has been replaced with a huge NASCAR V8 producing over 650 bhp through a four speed gearbox. This enables Tanner to accelerate extremely quickly and throw the car into some incredible sideways action. Make sure you use plenty of bright colours when finishing off this car as you want to get maximum points for style!