IRWINDALE, CA 08/31/2003



Rubber flying, tires screaming. Downshifting, upshifting. Sideway braking, sideway skidding. Someone lost control? Hardly. Its all about control, its all about Drifting. The D1 Grand Prix, presented by Yokohama, exhibited Japan’s, and in essence, the world’s best drifters at the Irwindale Speedway on Sunday, August 31, 2003. The speedway not only hosted the drifting competition, but also a car show. According to the Irwindale Speedway, this event brought it a sold out record-breaking attendance.

No hearts were broken for the thousands of fans that came out to witness history in the making. The hottest blip on the automotive radar for 2003 is without a doubt the D1 Grand Prix. Forget that the summer day chosen was hot. What was hot that day were the drifters that ripped through the drifting course and turned the asphalt into a canvass of tire marked art.

Where car shows stop at exhibition, drifting picks up as an art. The very act of drifting is a nexus of control and style. Whether a vehicle is gliding on the layer of heat created between tire and asphalt perpendicular to the path travelled, maneuvering a series of twists and turns within a cloud of smoke, or doing the brazen and beautiful such as drifting with one hand, a door open, waving a flag or what not all at fast speeds, the beauty of it is best admired on hand.

It has to be handed to Global Slipstream for bringing the tired import scene something new and exciting as the D1 Grand Prix. The saturated season of shows, while still bringing out competitors has seen a decline in spectators. That is until D1. D1 brought plenty of spectators in to witness the drifting by the masters themselves and also the car show portion of the day’s event.

The car show was host to various types of vehicles. Observed in competition were modestly modified imports, wild style imports, slammed trucks, luxuriously outfitted Sport Utility Vehicles, and a few luxury sedans. Vehicles of interest were Cisco’s Monte Carlo with custom gray Gucci interior, a pair of Full show imports from Ilmatic, the DTM vehicles, the SUVs from Nokturnal, a 2004 Scion XB, and an out of the showroom Lincoln LS 8. Just as there were many types of vehicles at the show, there were just as many organizations representing.

Representation along car club lines came from the likes of Nokturnal, Scion World, Ilmatic, Autobots, Flux, Showcase, 13 Devils, Flux, Unit 7, Rotora, and Kallusive. Representation from manufacturers and vendors came along the lines of Falken, Crutchfield, the D1 Umbrella girls, Bride, Mazda, JCW Sport Compact, Advan, and a host of many others.

The hosting venue for the event was able to accommodate the numerous spectators. Plenty of concession stands allowed for quick access to sweet treats, hunger quenching meals, or summer heat beating brewskies. Clean restrooms were available all day long and Speedway staff kept up the cleanliness despite the numerous visitors that made the rounds. Security and local police department provided ample security as did safeguards along the drifting course that protected the drifters and observers. The safeguarding of observers was seriously undertaken and thankfully so as a few drifters collided with the barriers only feet away from the observers. No one was hurt, no one went home disappointed and if you have not yet seen or heard of drifting make a point to catch the real deal: D1 Grand Prix.

Don’t forget to visit WWW.D1GP.COM