This isn’t the most recent of content, but before it disappears into the vaults of backed-up files, I thought it should finally make an appearance on the site.
Early last year, the Norwegian drift team Driftmonkey’s boss Ove Harlem asked me to find him a Japanese guest driver for the Gatebil event in Mantorp, Sweden. I suggested D1GP driver and Kids Heart manager Tsuyoshi Tezuka, since I knew he was keen to do some more drifting overseas. Driftmonkey usually has three cars, two driven by regular drivers Reidar Andresen and Anders Klerud, and a third for guest drivers.
After not too much messing around, Ove had both of us on a plane from Tokyo to Oslo, where picked us up and took us for a nice dinner at the port area of Aker Brygge, before heading to the Driftmonkey garages the next day in Rakkestad.
I love the epic slide starting at 1:13 with all three Driftmonkey cars. That’s me on the interior GoPro with Tezuka.
I didn’t actually drive at the Mantorp event and only rode passenger with Tezuka to get used to the car so I could drive at the next Gatebil in Rudskogen. Since I couldn’t drift myself at Mantorp though, I ended up getting pretty good at the Crazy Cart we had at the booth, which you can see at the 3:24 mark.
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Many of you would have seen this video of Tsuyoshi Tezuka’s old pink JZX81, but did you know he is still sliding a pink JZX? This Mark II is his current personal practice car.
I was out at YZ Circuit yesterday for a Kids Heart event, and went along for an extremely wet and foggy ride. While this car is nowhere near as wild as his 81 was, it’s still pretty decent, with a GReddy TD06-25G on the stock VVTi 1JZ.
OK, this is going to take a little bit of explaining.
Today, I went to Fuji Speedway for an Ikaten. ”Ikaten” is short for “ikasu hashiriya chiimu tengoku” or “Cool Streetracer Team Heaven”. They’re a regular part of Drift Tengoku videos, and the usual format is that they go to a certain part of Japan and invite a few of the local amateur teams to compete and see who is the best team and individual driver in the region.
This time though, it was an all-girl event. My friend Shino was invited along with Gon-chan and Tomo-chan, two other girl drifters from Tokyo. Their team was called “Forty Overs” because all three of the members are over forty years old.
If you look at the team board, there’s a joke in the name that comes from the character “婆”, which means “old lady”, but can also be pronounced “baa”. “４０お婆ーズ” in Japanese can be pronounced “forty overs” in English.
The theme of the group was “Showa yankee joshikousei“, or basically delinquent highschool girls from the 80s. These days, bad schoolgirls wear extremely short skirts, but the thing to do back then was to wear your skirt as long as possible.
The guys in the team did “cosplay” too, in “gakuran” male school uniforms and wigs. I had a particularly awesome red “Regent” pompadour to go with it. It would probably work pretty well for a cosplay of Sakuragi from the Slam Dunk manga too.
I’m guessing the expression on a lot of your faces right now looks a lot like the guy in the background.
Here’s a pic of Tezuka’s Bee-R Skyline from back in 2006. I think this was right at the end of the first practice day.
It still looked so fresh! These days, it’s amazingly haggard up close, but it gets the job done.
The Bee-R mechanics had the rev-limiter set on full shotgun mode that day, and thanks to the bowl shape of the valley that Sugo Speedway’s first corner is in, you could always tell when Tezuka was out on the track. Kablam!