Posted by : Muzaffar Saturday, September 7, 2013

Yeah, kinda sad isn't it? Even though I've been following drifting for pretty much a long time, but after all these years this is probably the first time I actually made an effort to attend an actual drift event! Although the event just happened last week on Sunday, but the memories are here to stay with me for the weeks and months to come... and maybe even until the next Formula Drift event in Malaysia! Anyhow, I don't know if I wanna give the full detail of the event or just a short summary, but I'll try my best to explain the event from my personal point of view.

So the day started off with me knowing about the event a week before the actual event started and since I had no other events clashing with FD I gave some thoughts if I wanted to go or not. Back then I was still 50-50 whether or not if I will be going. But then on that Saturday before the event I just got the nod from my parents saying there wasn't anything to do so I went and bought the ticket just a day before the actual event started lol. So I bought the ticket, got my stuff prepare and earlier that morning on Sunday I went ahead and went to Formula Drift Malaysia at Speed City KL! (and yes, this is also the first time I've been to SCKL after years of having to postpone my visit lol) The drive from my place to Speed City KL took about 15-20 minutes by car while driving through the Shah Alam Highway, but its also quite expensive as you have to pay RM2 for the toll... twice! (and that makes it RM8 for the whole trip to and from) But once I reach there I didn't care much about the toll or even the parking (which was RM5 for the whole day, not bad I guess) but I was really looking forward to seeing the whole event. Even when I was outside the gate I could already hear the cars drifting, the screeching tires and the smell of burnt rubber lol.

So after parking my car and meeting up with my friend there, we queued up to enter the place but sadly they had a policy of no food or drinks allowed in the event. Even a bottle of water wasn't allowed which was kinda sad really... as the expect us to pay for the food and drinks inside, which was a bit ridiculously expensive. (for us locals anyhow) But apart from that, I didn't really have any problems entering, and as soon as we were inside the event area I quickly took out my sister's camera and started shooting nearly every car and booth I see lol. While I just did the normal photo taking like everyone else, my friend did it a bit differently and used his (and mine which I borrowed him) nendoroids to take photos of the cars and drivers. Meh, I didn't care much for it but he did get a lot of weird looks doing it haha. But yeah, it was kinda cool to see some of those cars up close as well as taking photos with the drivers who I admire since way back ago, especially Fredric Aasbo (pic above), Masao Suenaga, Daigo Saito, Daijiro Yoshihara and a few others.

Also met a few friends I've made back when I was doing training and internship back in college as well as a few other friends throughout the day as the event went along. Before I know it, it was already noon and the qualifying was long over. There was also a small concert during the event but I didn't take much notice of it. However I did remember there being an autograph session later that afternoon, and I managed to catch the queue very early on lol. When it was already like 1pm I think the queue was almost all the way to the back of the area and near the exit lol. Glad I got quite a lot of autographs and free goods that day, I mean... its totally worth more than the ticket I actually pay for! Gotta say the drivers in Formula Drift are some of the kindest and down-to-earth people I've gotten to see up close and personal with. You just can't beat the hospitality that Formula Drift provides, and its kinda easy to see why a lot of people love going to these events year after year.

After that me and my friend decided to go out for a bit to catch a break and find somewhere less hot to sit down and talk a bit, and then I decided to head out a bit to find some place to get cheaper food and drinks while also finding a place to do my Zohor prayers. After we did all that we managed to get back before the main top 16 event started, and we headed back in. The weather did look like it was gonna be pouring anytime soon, but thankfully that happen latter on during the event. (more on that later) But after the national anthem was played and the top 16 introduction was over it was time for the actual battle to begin. Now I'm not really gonna go over every detail regarding all the battles, but I was kinda shocked to see both Daigo and Aasbo being knocked out in the top 16. Also kinda sad to see Djan having to settle with 4th place after an almost flawless run throughout the day. But the biggest surprise was seeing this one Thai driver called "S" (yes, that is his name lol. Okay, but not his real name obviously) driving the Westlake S13 to the win against Tom Monkhouse in his newly bought (or borrowed, can't really remember) JZX110 Toyota Verossa, which was previously owned by an ex D1GP driver who was driving for T&E Vertex. (can't remember the name of the driver, but I kept mistaking it for Tohru Inose for some reason when clearly it was not! But yeah... still very knowledgeable in the drifting world even though I don't keep up as much as before) I could clearly tell it was an ex-D1GP car just by the livery and body kit lol. (apparently the team didn't change the livery or color and just added an Archilles sticker for sponsoring sake)

Anyhow, after the main event and podium celebration was over I was hoping I could see the team battle go on, but after 2 teams just went out it started raining heavily and the competition had to be cancelled and before we know it the event was over while the rain kept continuously pouring and the whole area was flooded lol. Then I also got to take a few more pictures with a few more drivers, waited for a bit and even chatted with a driver or two while waiting for the rain to stop. When it finally stopped I clearly noticed a lot of people already went back, but I still had one more thing to do before I could go home happily, and that was meeting up with Larry Chen of Speedhunters fame. I managed to meet up with him earlier that day and he even gave me a few "official" Speedhunters sticker, but I still wanted to meet up with him, take a picture and maybe even have a small chat with him. So when the chance arrived, I managed to do all that and then some! Haha... my small dream of meeting up with a Speedhunter crew was finally fulfilled but now I guess I should aim for something a bit more bigger. I might have been "featured" in an article or two but I think I still haven't made any major contributions to that website just yet. But good to know I'm still following that website after all these years... =)

Well I guess that should be enough talk about the event. I managed to do what I want, I got more than what I bargained for and I definitely went home with a happy face with having to deal with personal issues for that whole week. I will definitely look forward to the next Formula Drift event, and who knows... maybe one day I can be competing in the event myself against my heroes too. ^_^

Anyhow, if anyone else wants to see some of the photos me and my friend took or interested to know about the results or the event in even more detail, you can check the links below:
My gallery (Facebook)
My friend's gallery (Facebook)
Mat Canyon's gallery (Facebook)
Coverage from Larry Chen on Speedhunters
Formula Drift Asia coverage
Zerotohundred coverage

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