The forecast called for a high of 20* coupled with insanely bone-chilling wind gusts. That is how the NorthEast started off their drift season.
Despite the brutal conditions, it didn’t keep anyone from wanting to come out and shred, or spectate for that matter. The lot, at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park in Thompson, CT, was packed. Rolling over the bridge, that over-looks Turn 5 of the road course, you could see the pits were full. Trucks, trailers, drift cars, and people everywhere. After a long, and cold, winter, this was quite relieving to see again. All this meant that Spring will be here soon and the season will be in full force.
Lock City Drift is the organization not afraid to bear the elements, and keep fellow drifters happy, with some early-season events. With a newly purchased tire machine, they’re prepped for a full season. They’re also hosting some awesome road-course events at Thompson Speedway and Canaan Motor Club. These guys are OG, and their style is second to none. (Seen below; Shane Lach & Kevin Phan of BOSSTOWN).
Not only do these guys shred, but they also street drive their cars – hence the salty finish.
Drivers didn’t seem to mind the bitter temperatures, doing all they could to keep their cars ready for the thrashing. Bundled, but happy; the season was finally back.
Brett Reyes, seen above, working on his LS-powered S13 Coupe.
For some, the day was cut short. Rob Schmitt’s Rx7, seen below, ended up with a spun bearing. It still looked good, even on the trailer, sporting that minty-fresh paint.
It was great to see spectators layered up, filling the paddock, checking out their favorite cars, and watching some great driving. Whether you were standing along the barriers of the skid pad, standing on the bridge as cars skidded beneath you, or warm & toasty in your vehicle while chillin’ at your favorite vantage point, there were plenty of great sights to see.
There’s something about this color, above, that just works on a Type-X styled hatch. Huge props for pulling it off. This was a sure favorite.
PJ Prendergast was slaying the road-course in his SR20 S13. This car has such a great style, and we’ll be doing a full feature on it soon. Hopefully next time we can catch it on his new white Rega’s.
Josh Larosa, above, was killing it in his NA Miata. Hot-lapping was his cup of tea, and he came through Turn 5 with consistency each time. It was great to see the short wheel-based car being tossed around so effortlessly. Great job, sir.
Always nice to see another Miata out there as well. These guys were getting after it lap after lap.
This Cressida, owned by Cody Collins, has some power hidden under the bonnet. It was screaming, beneath the bridge, each time it passed.
A few more of PJ’s car because why not? Just look at it. Huge fan of the OEM front guards with the rubber “mist”. Functional and stylish; pure awesome.
The RoadParty S13 was out in full force. These guys were having a blast, laying down consistent lap after lap. Diggin’ the gold paint!
Utilizing the NASCAR Oval, Thompson Speedways Road-Course consists of 12, very different, turns. Today, Lock City was using Turns 1 through 5, shutting down after coming out from under the bridge (T5). Pictured above is the entry into the right-hand Turn 6, AKA the NASCAR Bowl, which leads you around and into the back section of the track – which wasn’t being used at this particular event.
This course isn’t very forgiving, and precision is key. Many road racers end up in the barriers, after exiting from under the bridge, from not being able to judge the lack of camber the track has there. The car ends up getting out from under them and they end up oversteering into the left hand wall. But, it’s also the entry that can be tricky. Enter too early, with too much speed, and the track quickly falls away, which leaves you looping into the gravel.
Luckily these drivers were on the brakes quick, and came to a nice controlled stop away from the barriers.
Staten Island based FrontStreet Drift-Club made the long haul up to CT today, and it’s always great to see their cars. Their style is on-point, especially this S13, owned by Josh Deliz, sporting an authentic Hot Road kit and Advan Model 5’s.
A torn off bumper wasn’t going to stop these guys from having a blast.
Even destroyed aero couldn’t keep a smile off anyones face today. This one even got the ‘ol curb stomp. RIP.
How can it be a real drift event without at least one R32 in attendance? Sporting a nice shade of blue..green..teal..turquoise…this driver was having a ton of fun on the skid pad.
As you can see, the attendance list was not short. There was a huge variety of cars; ranging from bone stock S13 Coupes to LS BMW’s and everything in-between. It was nice to see such a great turnout, for the Lock City Season Opener, and it just shows how dedicated the North East drift community has become. Things are growing, and fast, and it’s great to see.
Walking past Josh’s Sexy-Style, Hot Road, S13, it was impossible not to snap pictures of it from different angles. Simplicity is key, ladies and gents.
(Don’t mind the poorly merged photo – think of it as a two page spread in DriftLifeMagazine scanned together)
Lock City’s event brought in a great deal of imported cars, like Paolo Lim’s four-door R32, that made for some great pictures. Keep an eye out for a feature, on this car, soon.
Even a Porsche showed up to have some fun. This was the owners first time out, and he couldn’t wipe the smile off his face. It would be expected to see this car at a Thompson Speedway Members-Day Road-Course event, but hey, no one was complaining while watching it slide around the pad.
The ladies of Sad Girls Motorsports Club were representing today. Alicia Ascani (seen below) was tearing up the pad in “‘ol faithful Coupie” before making her way out to the road course. For a bone stock KA, it was unbelievable the momentum she was carrying out there. Killer job! Looking forward to seeing you shredding your 1JZ Silvia next time.
Alexis Dabilis, of SGC, brought out her freshly caged FRS for some skidding – don’t be late on those Tofu deliveries or Bunta will not be happy! Oh, nevermind, No Tofu.
Drivers, of B & C Groups, start out honing in their skills on the pad. It’s a fairly large pad, with a nice Lima Bean shaped course. You can pick a variety of lines, due to its openness, and really dial in your driving. Depending on event days, you can also see A-Group out here tearing it up with some big tandem trains.
Seat time is crucial, and that can’t be expressed more. Don’t waste your time losing seat time because you’re too focused on a “big build”. If driving is your passion, and the obsession hits you hard, get out there, drive, and make small changes along the way. Learn your car, and learn when you’ve surpassed the limits of that particular setup, then make adjustments from there. Don’t fall into the “FD Spec build” black-hole. Seat time is the best mod you can do!
At a grassroots drift event, this is the best thing you can see. Drivers bringing out their, “stockish”, cars and getting after it. All this means is that the events will continue to grow. A big positive for everyone involved.
Drivers, and friends, were enjoying themselves despite the cold. And, of course, it’s always nice to see a wide variety, of car makes, in the staging lines.
Back over on the road course, Grant Anderson was tearing it up in his LS M3. Always a pleasure seeing this car. Absolutely love the style he has going on with it, especially the rear-diffuser.
Just look at the color of this S13; gorgeous! Not to mention, another case of OEM front-guard-tire-rubbing “mist”.
All in all, despite frozen fingers, it was a great event and it seems everyone had an absolute blast. Huge thanks to the Lock City Drift Organization for putting on such a fantastic event, especially so early in the season. The dedication from the North East drift community was obvious today, and it just goes to show how great this upcoming season is going to be. This year will be exciting, and progression will be at an all time high, so stay tuned for more updates from Drift Life Magazine.
Take care, everyone!
PS – Here are some more shots from the event