ClubFR came up with a truly great event, which promises to be the continent’s most beloved annual drift spectacle. Teams from coast to coast, north to south, gathered in a small town in rural Wisconsin. Unlike most drift events, this was a battle of teams, as opposed to individual drivers. The stage was set at My favorite track, USA International Raceway, known to most as UsaIR. A hilly, winding cart track located just outside of the town of Shawano. To those of us from the midwest drifting comunity, this place is also called the rollercoaster of love. Now, the love has been shared with a selection of crews from far beyond our region. I hope they all enjoyed it and come back for more next year!
Never have I seen enough people to be called a crowd of spectators at this track, until now. They certainly got to see what they came for. Two days of tire shredding, wall riding and relentless attempts to get right up on the door of each other, the drivers in attendance left nothing on the table. The judges for the event were three heavy hitters, though one is more a regional legend, they were a good choice of respectable drifters. They narrowed down the field to four teams and after another run from each, made the verdict. Fourth place was taken by ShaDynasty, a crew from Washington State. In My opinion, the cars driven by these guys were the most interesting collection there. Third place was handed to regional heavy weights, Risky Devil, from Chicago. Second place went to the Hot Boyz, hailing from Alberta, Canada. They were outshining just about everyone on the first day, but a concrete barrier decided to intervene and change things up. The winners of the first annual Final Bout, team drift battle? High Fade, also from the Chicago area. They were very consistent all weekend. It looked to Me like they had been practicing team driving more than anyone else. Before launching for each run, the lead car would rev it’s engine twice and wait. The last car in line would then rev it’s engine once, signalling everyone was ready and off they went. Most of the crews ended up spreading out during their runs, but High Fade stayed together every time. Some may argue otherwise, but these guys earned the win for sure!
I was not on the media roster for this event, so this is not a complete coverage kind of post. In fact I spent half of the weekend working the entry gate, so I did miss an awful lot of the action. However, for Me, there is no such thing as going on a road trip and not taking a ton of pictures. Happily, the ClubFR family are friends of mine, so they thanked Me for helping out and let Me go do My photo geek thing for a while. Phill, Maggie, Simba, Ilia and the rest of the crew, thanks a bunch for coming up with the idea for this event and making it into reality! I had a great time and I’ll see You when I see You, hopefully that will be soon.
September 3, 2014 | Categories: Automotive Photography, Random Thoughts | Tags: 13b, 1jz, 2014, 240, 240sx, 2jz, 300z, 300zx, 325, 325i, 328, 328i, 350z, alberta, america, angle, animal style, animalstyle, annual, assemble your crew, awesome, bed, best, blood runner, blood runners, bloodrunner, bmw, boss town, bosstown, boston, bout, breaking, burning, calgary, california, canada, carolla, celica, challenge, chaser, chevrolet, chevy, chicago, cloud, clouds, club sandwich, clubfr, clubsandwich, continent, continental, control freaks, controlfreaks, convertible, coupe, cressida, cresta, crew, crowd, d*squad, datsun, dirty love, dirtylove, doom squad, doomsquad, drift, drifter, drifters, drifting, drive, driver, drivers, driving, e20, e30, event, fc, fc3s, final, final 4, final bout, finalbout, first ever, florida, ford, fort wayne, friends, fun, gld str, gldstr, gold star, goldstar, good time, good times, greatest, group, gs, hatch, high fade, highfade, hot boys, hot boyz, hotboys, hotboyz, illinois, impreza, indiana, is300, judged, judges, judging, jzx, lexus, ls1, mark ii, massachusetts, mazda, meeting, miata, middle america, midwest, minnesota, moonlighter, mustang, mx-5, mx5, nerp, nerp tech, nerptech, new england, nissan, north america, ontario, oops, opposite line, oppositeline, oregon, pick-up, pickup, podium, proceed, race track, risky devil, riskydevil, rollercoaster of love, rollercoasteroflove, rotary, rubber, rx-7, rx7, s10, s13, s14, sc300, sc400, scene, sha dynasty, shady nasty, shadynasty, shawano, sideways, silvia, smoke, smoking, soarer, spactacle, spectacle, sr20, sr20det, street dancer, streetdancer, subaru, tandem, team, team breaking, team oops, team proceed, team tracker, teambreaking, teamoops, teamproceed, teams, texas, tire, tire smoke, tires, toronto, toyota, track, tracker, trophy, truck, turbo, turbo charged, turbocharged, twin cities, usa international raceway, usair, v8, washington, wheel, wheels, winner, winners, wisconsin, wrx, z | Leave a comment
This is a teaser… Though I spent half of My time at Final Bout working the gate, I did manage to get out on the track, as well as walk pit lane for a while. It will likely take a couple of days to sift through all of the pictures I took, so here is a little sample to gaze at until the rest finds it’s way here…
September 2, 2014 | Categories: Automotive Photography | Tags: 2014, 240, 240sx, 300z, 300zx, 350z, andor, andorius, animal style, animalestyle, blood runner, bloodrunner, boss town, bosstown, bout, breaking, brian peter, carolla, cart track, celica, chaser, chevy, club sandwich, clubfr, clubsandwich, coupe, cressida, crew, d*squad, datsun, dirty love, dirtylove, doom squad, door to door, drift, driftfaction drift faction, drifting, event, fc, fd, final, final bout, finalbout, first annual, first ever, footage, gathering, gold star, goldstar, good timmes, hatch, hatchback, high fade, hot boys, hot boyz, hotboys, hotboyz, is300, lexus, mazda, miata, moonlighter, mx-5, nerp, new, nissan, opposite line, opps, photo, photographer, photography, photos, pickup, pics, pictures, pit lane, pits, proceed, que, rain, rainy, risky devil, riskydevil, rollercoaster of love, rollercoasteroflove, rx-7, rx7, s10, s13, s14, sc300, sha dynasty, shady nasty, shadynasty, shawano, silvia, smoke, soarer, spectacle, street dancer, supra, tandem, team, team breaking, team oops, team proceed, team tracker, tire, toyota, tracker, truck, usa international raceway, usair, wet, wheel, wheels, wi, wisconsin, z | Leave a comment
This weekend is the Car Craft Nationals here in Saint Paul, Minnesota. I have been taking a LOT of car pictures lately, so I opted not to attend the gathering it’s self. Instead heading out with My buddy Ryan Clemens of Opposition Motors, to post up on the side of Snelling, just out side of the show. There was a very wide variety of vehicles out and about, mostly American made, spanning many decades, but there were some other cars out cruising too. It is nice to see classic and modern muscle cars, massive land boats from the 70’s and 80’s, low riders, high riding trucks, kit cars, sports cars and a whole lot more, out on the streets at once.
This was like a throw back for Me. When I was Younger, University Avenue was the home of all things cruising. Every weekend there were thousands, upon thousands of cars and huge quantities of people out on the strip. We had one of the most robust car cultures in the world, on display, three days a week. Over the last ten to fifteen years, this scene has been broken up and dispersed, to the bain of an awful lot of local businesses. So many local and family owned restaurants and shops have gone out of business since the city started it’s campaign to end the cruising scene’s dominance of our weekend culture. Much of the blame lands on the shoulders of a large home for the elderly, building and expanding to become a sprawling complex, right on University, next door to the beating heart of this, now miniscule scene, Porky’s drive in. Naturally, the people at the Episcopal Homes complained heavily about the noise and abundance of people walking next to their building. Sadly, three or four years ago, Porky’s, the lone 50’s style eatery left in Saint Paul and home to some of the best all American eat’s around, went out of business. I really, REALLY miss having My double supreme burger, with that great “special sauce,” the city’s best pork cutlet sandwich, the best onion rings I’ve ever had and a thick, chunky strawberry malt, whenever I want. Now I, as well as every one else, will never get to eat their great food again. Below is a picture from their last year in business. That crowd, is nothing compared to what was around for decades in the past. The massive bland buildings in the rear, are two of the four newest buildings of said retirement home. I am all for giving our elders reasonable homes, with care takers to look after them as best they can, but why choose the busiest street in a bustling part of town? Can You guess who expanded in to the space left when Porky’s died?
I wish I had a better picture of this iconic eatery, but I don’t. In the end, all hope of the cruising scene on University being revived, was crushed by the construction of the recently completed light rail line, which runs right down the center of the street. The car culture is still visible, but since there is no place that everyone knows to go to, the numbers of cars out on the weekends are laughable. There is no where that You’ll find ten, or fifteen thousand people gathering, like in the past. So those of us who wish to re-live the sight seeing, less the food that’s not available anymore, must wait for two or three events per year. Back to the Fifties and Car Craft being the main draw. The local economy has been delt a pretty big negative impact overall. These hand full of gatherings do help a lot, but that doesn’t change the fact that the miles of road occupied by smaller businesses are now lined by endless corporate chain stores. Funneling money out of the Twin Cities. The general lack of low riders and imports out at these events is a huge loss of variety too, but at least we still have something! I guess.
July 20, 2014 | Categories: Automotive Photography, Random Thoughts | Tags: 190e, 2014, 350, 427, 442, ac, american, auto, automotive, autos, ave, avenue, back, baracuda, bee, bel air, benz, best burger, biscaine, blower, boat, boulavard, boulevard, buick, business, c5, c6, c7, caddy, cadillac, camaro, can-am, car, carcraft, cars, carshow, charged, charger, chevelle, chevette, chevrolet, chevy, chip foose, chrome, chrysler, city, classic, clean, cobra, convertible, cool, corvette, coup, coupe, craft, cruise, cruising, cuda, culture, custom, cutlass, dart, datsun, days of old, deville, dodge, door, drag, dragster, drive thru, drive-in, driving, drop top, eatery, el dorado, eldorado, engine, enthusiast, fair, falcon heights, fast, fast back, fastback, fat, fin, fins, flames, foose, ford, four door, frogtown, fun, galaxy, gathering, general motors, gm, gmc, grand, grounds, gt, gt 350, gt 500, gt350, gt500, high, hood, hoodless, hot, hot rods, hotrod, huge, icon, iconic, image, images, impala, impalas, iroc, iroc-z, jaguar, july, kit, kit car, lights, lincoln, low, low rider, lowrider, mach 1, mach1, massive, merc, mercedez, mercedez-benz, mercury, merica, middle america, midway, minn, minnesota, mn, mod, monte carlo, motor, msra, muscle, mustang, mustangs, nationals, nhra, nice, ninety-eight, nostalgia, nostalgic, nova, old, olds, oldsmobile, original, paint, paint job, photo, photographer, photography, photos, pic, pick-up, pickup, picture, pictures, pix, pontiac, porkys, rag top, ragtop, ramsey county, rat rod, resto, resto-mod, restored, rider, riding, rims, riviera, rod, rolling, roseville, roush, saint paul, scene, scoop, sedan, shelby, shots, SHOW, sled, slick, snelling, speed, spider, sport, srt, ss, st paul, state, sting ray, stingray, street, streets, strip, style, super, super sport, superbee, supercharger, supreme, tires, town, trans am, trans amt, transam, truck, trucks, tubbed, twin cities, twincities, two door, two-tone, university, v10, v8, vette, viper, wagon, wheel, wheels, wing, wings, z28 | Leave a comment
I headed south of town to see some friends and have a peak at the drift truck one of them is building. Destination: Modern Automotive Performance, which has a nice shop for doing fabrication and modifications of many varieties. Several drift drivers work here, among other mechanics with different taste in cars and style. Personally, I like walking into shops like this. Older cars, made to be clean, show quality machines. New sports cars being upgraded, custom builds of all kinds, even on motorcycles. About two dozen cars packed into a not so small work space.
There were several incarnations of Evo’s, in various states. While most were street cars, with light modifications. Some were clearly drag cars, parachute brakes and all. The black, carbon fiber laden Mustang was pretty nice looking. As was the old Celica, pictured from the front, with it’s hood up.
Below, is Andrew’s Chevy S10 pickup truck, which is being rebuilt from the frame up. Quite literally, the frame, shock mounts, structure, and wider fenders have all been cut out and made from scratch. Having already gone with a Nissan 240sx with the engine from it’s japanese variant, as well as a v8 fox body Mustang and a 1jz in a Nissan pickup, He has opted to use a turbo-charged Toyota 2j-series engine. I am quite curious to see how this truck does on the track once it is assembled. It will certainly look and sound interesting.
March 16, 2014 | Categories: Automotive Photography, Random Thoughts | Tags: 1j, 1jz, 240, 240sx, 350z, 7, 8, 9, american, auto, automotive, back, bike, bmw, boxer, buggie, buggy, build, building, built, camaro, car, carbon, carolla, cars, chevrolet, chevy, classic, clean, constructing, cooper, coupe, craft, custom, customized, dirty love, dirtylove, drift, engine, evo, evolution, exhaust, fab, fabricated, fabrication, fender, fenders, fiber, ford, front, garage, german, good, gt, hachi, hand, hatch, hatchback, import, is, is250, is300, japanese, jdm, lancer, lexus, lift, m.a.p., m.a.performance, map, maperformance, metro, midwest, mini, minnesota, mistubishi, mn, mod, modern, modernautomotiveperformance, modification, modifications, modified, modify, motorcycle, mount, mr, muscle, mustang, nice, nissan, performance, pick, pickup, pipes, pontiac, pro, ps13, radiator, rear engine, s10, s13, sedan, shock towers, shop, side, sports, ss, station wagon, subaru, toyota, transplant, truck, tuned, tuner, turbo, twin cities, under, under-carriage, undercarriage, underneath, up, usdm, vehicle, wagon, work, workshop | 3 Comments
USA International Raceway, a cart track just outside of Shawano, Wisconsin. No carts are buzzing around the track today though, Drift Day Fourty-Six has arrived. The squealing and smoking of tires, rapidly burning through layers of rubber has come again. Lots of familiar faces and the rolling hills that this particular track is draped over, always make for a good time. The day started at 30 degrees and a thick fog lingered all around.
After an hour or two, the fog had lifted, but there was still an overcasting of grey clouds keeping the sun at bay. Heading indoors to warm up a bit, I ran into more Minnesotans and We did that which We do..
In the early afternoon, the temps were into the 40’s and the sun popped out for fifteen minutes or so, allowing time for a race of those with skateboards. Around half the oval at the top of the hill and down past the pits, through a couple of turns, to the lowest point of the track. There are also a few shots of some of the guys playing about on pit lane.
There were a few hours of clear running. As anticipated however, the rain began again. Half of the drivers kept drifting for a little bit, before people packed up and headed towards their hometowns. I ate a lot of ribs this weekend, from two different places. Not to mention hash browns, fries, fried chicken, bratwurst and a bags worth of dried meats and candy. I also bowled one of My best games, took a personal low number of five hundred pictures, while standing in the clouds of many, now destroyed tires and got to see a bunch of My friends that live hundreds of miles away from Me. Thanks to the homies at ClubFR for bringing these events together, year after year…
October 25, 2013 | Categories: Automotive Photography, Random Thoughts | Tags: 2013, 240, 240sx, 300zx, 350z, 46, 86, best, bleak, bmw, burning rubber, car, carolla, cars, cart, chilly, club fr, clubfr, cold, convertible, coupe, dd, dd46, dirty love, down hill, downhill, drift, drift day, drifting, event, fall, fog, foggy, friends, fun, good times, grip gambler, hachi, hatch, hills, hooligans, image, images, junkhouse, lexus, ls1, mazda, memories, miata, midwest, minnesotans, nissan, october, people, photos, picture, pictures, pit lane, pits, pix, race, raceway, rainy, risky devil, rocket bunny, rollercoaster of love, rx7, s13, s14, sc300, shawano, short, shot, sideways, skate, skateboard, skaters, sliding, smoke, tandem, tire, tmfopposition, track, train, usair, v8, wet, wisconsin | Leave a comment