REAL: Himawari Racing at Fuji Speedway Drift Course, Part 2

June 5, 2009 9:16 pm Published by

Here’s the second part of last weekend’s Himawari Racing day at Fuji Speedway.

Just in case anyone was wondering, there actually are some good-looking AE86 drift cars that are used properly.

I heart 180SX too.

From a distance, I thought this S1580 had some sort of weird graphics on the front bumper. As you can see, it doesn’t.

Crestas can either look really bad or really good. This one falls into the latter, I’d say.

Here’s a sleeper for you. A Mazda Luce 13B drift car.

Just in case anyone doesn’t know, it’s pronounced as in “loo-chay”, not “loose”.

Complete with manual conversion and ’80s burgundy trim.

Speaking of interiors, this Chaser’s red interior works pretty well with the low and dark body.

As is usual, each driver had a few friends who came along to watch.

Drive or die, dude!

I mentioned this in a previous post, but I might as well say it again. It’s common to see random cars like this parked around Fuji Speedway, as it’s right in the middle of a lot of nice cruising roads, and makes for a good stop at some point during the day, since there’s always something to see on the main track.

This S14 Silvia itasha might not be the most common thing to see though.

Here’s something a bit more conventional. The driver was standing nearby watching some races on the front straight.

It started raining a bit in the afternoon, but the weather and track surface was hot enough that it evaporated again in a few minutes.

For some reason, there were a lot of interesting “incidents” that happened that day, quite often right in front of me! I was tailing close behind Kazuya’s AE86 at one point, when I saw something bouncing straight towards the car. I looked in the rearview mirror and saw a runaway wheel smack into the dirt wall! This JZX90 lost a rear wheel mid-drift. I think he might have been using a slip-on spacer that was a little bit too big.

Someone brought down a heavy-duty jack, and everyone helped push the car off the tracck.

Riichan didn’t have much luck either. The long-serving carbed 4AGE in his AE86 decided to blow! Notice the oil trail.

Yeah, you’re not supposed to be able to see the crank and conrods, usually.

This chunk of block was sitting on the crossmember. One piece of shrapnel blew hard enough to take a big chunk out of one of the carb bellmouths.

This crash happened right in front of me too. Sorry the pic is not very well framed, but I didn’t want to look like a jerk by taking pictures while the owner was still in shock from the crash.

This JZX100 had kicked to the right, but overthrew it a bit. As the car swung back, he rolled backwards towards the wall, giving the 86 nowhere to dodge.

Everyone helps clean up, since the faster it’s done, the faster everyone can go drifting again.

The 86 driver was showered in glass when the Mark II hit him. The roof was still straight, so it shouldn’t be too hard to repair.

It’s a bit hard to tell in this photo, but that wheel has pretty much the exact opposite alignment that it should.

During the last session of the day, I was following Goto-san’s AE86 around while Riichan rode in his passenger’s seat. I had been trying to get close to the tyre barrier for most of the day just for fun, so I thought I’d follow his lines, since he was doing the same thing. I managed to match his line for four or five laps, but as you can see, “I’ll just try it one more time” is always the phrase that gets people in trouble.

I had a light collision with the barrier, but since the wheel was at counter, it caught on the barrier and bent the lower control arm and the caster rod.

You can see the kink just below the caster rod mount. Luckily, the only other R32 driver who was there that day had a spare pair of arms, and was happy to sell me one for cheap!

Here’s what’s left of the stupid white bumper that I hated. My numberplate needed a bit of stomping on before it was straight enough to stick back on too.

While we were repairing the Skyline, the post meeting prizes and rock paper scissors competition was going on. I went over when the prize was a pair of tyres, just to see if I still had some good luck, but I think I used it all up on the fact I could find a spare part to drive home on.

Yeah, a fun day, but still a bit annoying for both of us!

Thanks Kazuya (crouching in the front left) and crew!

I dead towed Riichan’s car out of the Drift Course carpark, but it’s mostly downhill to the Fuji Speedway exit, so he was able to roll all the way down and wait for the tow truck.

I took the expressway home, since the alignment we managed to get with the bent caster rod was still a little bit off, but it drove straight enough to keep up with the traffic.

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This post was written by Alexi