OH! SORRY!: Rii-chan’s Super Drift Technique

July 24, 2009 12:39 am Published by

By request, here’s a higher-quality re-upload of this old video, shot by myself and Laurence Janus (who made this famous video).

The driver is my good mate Yoshio Takahashi. His nickname is “Rii-chan”, which comes from the fact he is the leader of his drift team (say “leader” in a Japanese accent to understand), called “Side Attack”. If you put “-chan” on the end of someone’s name, it’s kind of like making their name sound cute, sort of like saying “Stevie” instead of “Steven”.

A few years ago when I was still just visiting Japan instead of living here, I visited a Drift Matsuri at Ebisu Circuit. Rii-chan was quite insistant that Laurence and I ride in his car on the high-speed Higashi course before the end of the event, because linking the front straight over the blind crest with his TD-06 SR20DET was his specialty at the time.

Just before the spin, you can hear the tyres making flapping noises as they delaminated, but Rii-chan wasn’t going to stop, even on the steep downhill section of Higashi. He was more concerned about my having a good time than he was about crashing! Before you ask about his helmet, it was a souvenir from an old job of his, and no, it’s not exactly regulation.

While we’re on the subject, does anyone else think there’s something majorly wrong with a lot of the drifting videos coming out these days? Am I the only person who doesn’t really want to see an entire video of high contrast slow-motion with tightly-cropped focus pulling, shots of weeds blowing in the wind and other things that have nothing to do with anything? Without some sort of narrative, human interest or personality to the video, it’s like eating a cake made entirely of icing.

Come on guys, you obviously have the skills behind the lens and with the mouse. I know you can do it. If you don’t want to change your style, but still want to make a nice cake, I’ll have a chocolate-orange marble sponge please.

I suppose I should put up or shut up and make my own videos eh? Uh-oh, did I just volunteer to do even more work? Who wants to sponsor Noriyaro with a nice little HD camera then?



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This post was written by Alexi


  • Minto says:

    In terms of the comments made toward todays drift videos.. I couldnt agree more. Im kinda hoping this Drift Doc thats coming out is going to change all this though.

    Footage is great.. i thought i heard Rii-Chan saying sorry to begin with. haha nice one.

  • Ray says:

    Yay no more slow motion .> Great vid + damn good skill O.o Oh sorry pwn xD

  • Andre says:

    Just awsome!! Keep those videos coming man.

  • Isidro says:

    awesome skills!
    Alexi-made videos would be sik
    As Minto said, Luke is cooking up a nice DVD (which I’ll buy) and hopefully he starts a new wave of drift filming. Alexi you should help him start that wave by making uber videos of your own, and steer the world of drift videos into the right direction.
    Unfortunately I’m too poor and can’t donate any money… right now.. but when I get the chance I’ll send something to you and Luke.
    How’s Laurence’s and Jesse’s DVD coming along?

  • Warren says:

    Say thanks to speedhunters for that (they’re not alone on that category althought)

  • Ben Comana says:

    Very well said, it seems like this drift culture (out of japan) is turning into a media ridden scene, where the “coolness” factor is the most important thing. No matter how many effects, no drift video will be better than the raw clips taken by the Video Option and Best Motoring crews and similar groups.

  • Laurence says:

    Errrr sorry about the “focus pulling” in this video. I should have cleaned the lens (excuses, excuses).

    Rii-chan has THE BEST attitude to drifting in the entire universe. He is the anti-Rhys in so many ways.
    If I ever needed a reminded what drifting should be about I watch this video.

    Thankyou for posting a high quality version of it.

  • leongsoon says:

    Must be the funniest drift video I’ve watched in a long while! Rii-chan’s maniacal laughter whenever he crashes out had me in stitches!!

    Yea, I don’t like those super hi contrast n slow mo videos either. It’s kinda like watching the fights in The Matrix when you can have Jet Li!

  • Rob_180sx says:

    Haha, he seems like a bit of a nutter! Good on him 😀

    Jaffa cake FTW!

  • Fury-S12 says:

    what you said is dead on bout vids i dnt mind seeing the odd shot of weeds that fades into a car drifting by but only as a intro or something with credits or a title over the top of the weeds something meaningful at least….. full speed full noise drift shots is where its at save the slomo for some sweet bits like cars getting millimeters from a wall, luke latests drift doc update is a good use of slowmo etc

    nice entries and commitment by rii-chan there too

    whats with the “number” power stickers popping up on cars all over the place lately like the 440power on riichans window ive seen quite a few other numbers aswell, is there a bunch of tune shops called “random number” power or is it like a sticker version of a dyno sheet

  • friday says:

    I dig the stylized drift videos with slow motion and creative shots, but I really dig this too. A video like this does capture the intensity much better I think, but slow motion has its place in the world. You just have to find a meeting point for the two.

  • shane says:

    It’s true i have seen many video’s of grass and parked cars. it’s true there is abit to much, some is good but not to much. alexi as long as you mount a dodgy vid camera on a corner and leave it i’l watch it and comment!

  • Morgan Beresford says:

    OMG, crazy angle plus very fun…this is drifting !

  • Benny says:

    haha sweet vid, that dudes funny and drives well! lucky alexi getting a ride!

  • Jays14 says:

    Yeap i hat all those speedhunters type of videos

    Hate arty crap….

  • Greg V says:

    I agree; lately everyone seems too enamored by the picture quality of videos to care about the content in it.

  • hilton lohan says:

    production values of drift videos have never been a big priority

    just get some kid with a video camera on the side of the road and 6 guys in rad cars doing rad shit, not exactly rocket science

  • Slappy says:

    Yea, i agree with you about those over the top videos these days.

  • Paul 8v says:

    Nice one 🙂 I approve of crazy hats, like you said, nice to see some personal touches, “Oh Sorry!” I wish we had places you could do that in the UK…

  • Henry says:

    I’ve also found a number of “drift” videos on YouTube of people doing doughnuts or trying to drift (and looking like it is their first attempt ever)… I wish there weren’t so many videos like that. Double non-plus.

  • Mikey* says:

    Awesome post Alexi, His driving looks intense! lol you get to do all the cool stuff. 😀

  • nick says:

    most video’s now are over edited imo, still think dvd’s like the HPI series are way better then some of the stuff that has come out in the last few years, most videos and dvd’s have music blasting over them, show a car drifting for a sec then cut to another car then back to the 1st car, its crap

  • Warren says:


    Those numbers in fact are not random.
    For example 326 Power (the brand of Haruguchi), means Mitsuru (I can get into details of why if you want to).
    I saw a 416 Power once, which might means Yoichiro.
    As for the 440 Power, maybe it means Yoshio (I just see that for the moment).

    3316 “means” missile (it was on that flat black S13 trunk door @ this year latest Ebisu drift matsuri).

  • doobster says:

    sweet vid, oh sorry! that sounds so funny, ya drift videos coming out lately focus on a car for a few seconds and just flash by all the good stuff

  • s0apgun says:

    some of the best clips of drifting i have seen are from spectators cell phones on the sides of the road

  • Laurence says:

    Isidro says: How’s Laurence’s and Jesse’s DVD coming along?

    It is in the process of being duplicated!

  • Nick says:

    hahah this vid gets me every time.. the typical little graphics and jingle at the start makes me piss myself

  • Vickers says:

    Hilarious. Thanks for putting this up, Alexi!

    After seeing this video, I felt so dumb asking him at Honjyo if he drifts.
    Rii-chan is obviously a true baller.

    OH SOLLY!!!


  • Om1kron says:

    I don’t really watch most of those drift vids all the way through. I would like something with a more personal interaction to draw me in rather than make me feel like I was there walking around the track.

  • Isidro says:

    Warren, do the numbers pronounce the same way as names/words?

    Laurence, don’t slack on it!! I’m waiting for a completion announcement so that I can buy one 🙂

  • Warren says:

    Isidro, no its a bit more complicated than that.
    For example, Yashio (of Yashio factory) number is 840.
    Eight basically is said Hachi, but can be said as Yattsu, Shi is four, and the O stands for zero.

    On 326 power Mi stands for Mittsu, Tsu for two (pronounced in “engrish”), and Ru stands for ROKU (which is six).

    416 Power = Yo(n)/4 Ichi/1 Ro(ku)/6

    Theres a lot of stuff like that but my comment would be really long and boring.

  • Alexi says:


    Stop being coy and type out a damn explanation. I don’t want to have to do it!

    EDIT: OK, I’ll do it…

    440Power means “Yoshio”. Four can be pronounced “yottsu” or “shi”. Zero can be pronounced “o”. So, “yottsu shi o” shortens as “Yoshio”.

    Same as Mitsuru Haruguchi’s 326Power. Three can be “mittsu”, two is the English pronunciation “tsu”, and six is sort of a bastardisation of “roku”.

    My name “Smith” is “333”. Three is the first part of the pronunciation of the English three “suree”, then “mittsu”, then “suree” again.

    Companies use this in their phone numbers, sort of like how western companies have like 1800 EAT HAM or something. Instead of associating it with the letters written on a phone, it’s the association with the pronunciation.

    There’s a chain of motorbike shops here called “Baiku ou” which means “Bike King”. I forget it exactly, but they sing the phone number of the shop in the television commercial, and it ends with “508190” which is sung as “go baiku ou” or “Go Bike King!

    Get it?

  • Isidro says:

    wow thats really interesting
    thanks for the explanations Warren & Alexi

  • s0apgun says:

    uhm i thought its because the numbers look like a corresponding hiragana

    み = 3 = mi
    つ = 2 = tsu
    る = 6 = ru

    not just some bastardization of numbers and engrish?

  • Fury-S12 says:

    thanx for that warren and alexi i always wondered wat it ment and now i no pretty kool

  • Warren says:

    There was also words out of that, like Yoroshiku is 4649 (Yottsu/Yon, Roku, Shi, Kyu). A friend of mine told me they were used when mobile phones doesn’t exists on pagers.

    @ ALexi, I wasn’t being coy I thought getting too “technical” would be boring for peoples. Next time I promise do the job lol!

  • Isidro says:

    Alexi, you need a forum 🙂
    just so that we can see when a new comment has been posted instead of checking it ourselves
    ..and a forum would help bring your readers together and get to know each other.. since its mainly the same people who comment (from what I’ve seen)

  • Alexi says:

    Forums lead to drama, and there’s already enough internet drama…and enough forums.

    There’s a comments RSS feed on the bottom of the page, if you want to keep up with comments.

  • Warren says:

    Even comments lead to drama (just check SH comments).
    Its fine like that!

  • Isidro says:

    haha true

    i honestly didn’t know what RSS feeds were…
    I’ll use that from now on

  • Daniel says:

    this movie captures what a lot of you are saying (to some extent), i think there are other ‘worse’ drift movies out there with even MORE grass lol..


    if i was making this sort of thing instead of all the slow motion grass shots i’d be getting shots of people and facial expressions etc (i would think it brings the video to life a lot more, as people are more interesting), but then again im not really a film maker yet..