We could get used to this! We were treated to star treatment at the Brands Hatch Modified Live event with our D1RC drift track given prime position in the very centre of the off track action, next to the Kentagon at the top of Paddock Hill and adjacent to the temporary pits laid out for the 1:1 track cars and, most important of all - the viewing public. And the viewing public appeared to be there in their thousands, often several layers deep around our crowd fencing and staying to watch the almost back to back five drift events that we ran throughout the day.
As usual, the most frequent question we were asked was 'how do I get into this' and, on this occasion, not only were we able to tell them about D1RC in Europe and hand out HPI catalogues but also refer them to Apex Models who had a sales stand right next to us and were able to sell both RTR and Drift kits to those interested - and they did!
Expecting to have to do a bit of preparation we arrived at 6.30 only to find that the show promoters had already erected for us the crowd fencing, always a first task nightmare, so we were able to lay our track, set up our new PA system and organise our 'pits' well before the public had entered the circuit. Nevertheless (and we're getting used to this now) the crowds appeared the moment our drift cars started to practice - the crowds being made up from the other exhibitors who probably should have been hard at work - long before the public gates had opened. RC Drifting seems to be a very popular spectator sport, and all we need to do now is convert those spectators into participators - which is of course why we were there. Well okay, I'll come clean, that and to experience the unique atmosphere of a top quality car show that is focused on track action rather than show and shine. The Modified Live show covered motor sport of all shapes and sizes that was either competing on the day in a round of a series, such as the European Drift Championship (EDC) or was just letting their hair down with track demos, such as the rather loud dragsters! There was even a gold plated Lamborghini on track and a disgracefully raucous chap in an WRC Evo who parked against our fencing snap, crackling and popping with what I'm sure was not a road legal exhaust system - te he! Hmmmmmm - nice! Whilst all this super loud action was going on, we quietly and calmly (!) got on with our five 18 car Drift Finals, ably promoted by the show's DJ on a stand not 20 feet away! Our drivers, having got used to being under the spot light in front of large, knowledgeable crowds, put on a very impressive show with spectacularly fast and close drifting, well organised runs, top judging and a commentary that demonstrated just what RC Drifting is all about - very competitive, serious fun! The top two finalists of each of the five 'events' received some top drift related prizes: body shells, wheels and tyres, sweat shirts and caps, all compliments of HPI Europe and, as no one person was allowed to win more than one prize on the day, those prizes went a long way! I called upon all my skill, experience and talent (aka luck!) to win the first event, my Team HPI Europe HB Cyclone TC fitted with HPI drift wheels and T-Drift tyres with a HPI Prova Scooby body shell battling off the best in the UK to take the win. Now that's what I call good organisation, being able to relax for the rest of the day! Well, not quite maybe, but it did allow me to focus on the public relations aspects of the day, very ably helped by all the members of the D1RC Drift Display Team who not only represent the cream of UK R/C Drifters but have now seemed to have acquired a big time talent on the microphone when it comes to keeping the public entertained - they were such quiet, withdrawn individuals until our new zillion watt pa system arrived!!! HPI Europe team mate Pete Gray and I claimed a further three semi finals slots during the day, Pete too driving a Cyclone TC chassis in drift setup, which incidentally is fairly easy to get to from kit spec. Just place the ball diff in the front and spool in the rear, lay the shocks down and use 20wt oil and the very softest of drift spec springs. The D1RC HPI T-Drift control tyres fit very snugly on any of the HPI drift spec wheels so you just have to select the rims that look right for your shell and select the offset that fills your wheel arch - easy! For power we were both using Nosram's budget brushless systems, Evil reverse esc and 13.5t Dragon motor which provides ample, usable power for competition drifting. So, all in all, it was another great petrol head / RC Drifting day. Weâ€™re now back to the serious competition of the D1RC Drift Series events beginning with round 3 at Colchester on 11 July, Rnd 4 Snetterton 9 August, Euro Cup Snetterton 4/5/6 September, Rnd 5 Eastbourne 26/27 September and then round 6 Snetterton 10 October combined with Modified Live Part 2 on the main circuit on 11 October, again supported by HPI Europe and EDC Need for Speed. It's busy but weâ€™ll fit a holiday in somewhere! The D1RC Drift Display Squad would like to thank the Modified Live show organisers, EDC Need for Speed and HPI Europe for their much appreciated support. article written by John Turner for D1RC and HPI Europe