After a short and difficult 2020 season due to Covid, we are now looking forward to 2021 being closer to some normality if it is possible.
The good news is the dawning of a brand new championship to the UK, The UK Drift Championship to keep everyone entertained. Every round will be streamed live on social media and the circuits are challenging and fast.
Young Lwi has taken up the invitation to compete in the Pro class against some big names from the past and future .
This season is going to be busy making up for lost time last year, competing in both Pro Class of the British Drift Championship and the New UK Drift Championship.
The British Drift Championship season starts in May and Lwi will be looking to improve on his 6th place overall finish in the Pro Class in 2021.
The weapon of choice will be the BMW E36 LSV8 for most of this season while the new build is going through the motions, hopefully this should be out in an event before the end of the season ready for a full 2022 season.
The season kicks off at Three Sisters Circuit this coming weekend 17/18th April with the UK Drift Championship first round, look out for the livestream and check back here for a full report very soon.
Round 3 of the British Drift Championship took place at Teeside Autodrome, an awesome venue for drifting which Lwi had experience of in 2019, but this year saw a completely new layout never tried before which turned out to be challenging for all the drivers but rewarding when the line was mastered.
With Covid restrictions in mind the event was being carefully organised with social distancing rules in place and limited spectators so extra precautions had to be taken into account in preparation such as face masks and anti bacterial sprays as well as the normal event equipment and spares supplied by main sponsor Allitalia Ltd
Friday was practice day for all classes, weather was dry and mild so Lwi spent some time familiarising himself with the new layout, getting to grips with the track conditions and playing with a few setting on the BMW. It was apparent that the layout was going to be fast and technical but initial practice is all about finding the line, speed comes later.
Saturday was the Pro 2 day and the heavens opened, torrential rain for majority of the day made it interesting for the drivers to say the least. It also gave Lwi to get a short practice in the wet conditions inbetween the Pro 2 competition.
Sunday and Pro day. The weather sorted itself out with the track drying quickly so a few hours of practice before Lwi had to get his game face on. He started to dial in the line with some speed needed to push put to the clips. Running the softer Tirestreets UK supplied Accelera 651 sport Extra on the 18 inch 1 form wheels to gain extra grip was a must plus dialling a bit more mechanical grip into the suspension in anticipation that the pro class was going to be on fire this weekend. So on to qualifying!
Qualifying: Run 1 : And things didn’t go to plan, Lwi started with a nice line but pushed a little to hard, always trying to get that perfect score but the grip level was a bit sketchy in places and he span… we could count on one hand the amount of times Lwi had span in his career but he span all the same giving him a big zero for his first run.
Qualifying : Run 2 : And for the first time ever this was to be a safe one, usually Lwi will push harder on the second run to improve score, but no chances could be taken so he decided to push 80% for safety. A nice clean run with a decent score of 85 just put him out of the top 8 qualifiers which go through to top 16, so he would have to battle from top 24
Top 24 Battle : The first battle was to be against Nathan Chivers in his 700 hp Nissan, Lwi put down the almost perfect lead to follow and managed to put a good chase to win the battle. So Lwi advanced to the top 16
Top 16 Battle: And this was going to get hard, Lwi now had Oliver Silcock in another very quick Nissan, equal 5th in the champonship and he had battled him earlier in the year so knew what a worthy opponent he was. Lwi put down a very clean lead line as usual and pushed hard on his chase. It as a close decision which we though should be one more time to decide but Ollie took the win. So Lwi was out of competition.
All in all a good weekend, the car ran faultless, and Lwi has only dropped a few points on the leaderboard to 6th place overall, still an amazing achievement for his first year in the top Pro class surrounded by some big names in drifting.
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Round 2 of the British Drift Championship at Three Sisters circuit in Wigan, 12 months to the day when Lwi made the podium for the first time in the ProAms and almost qualified top in the Pro class, so he was looking forward to a good result now competing in the Pro class for 2020.
Practice day was booked for the Thursday prior to the event but a minor scare saw main sponsor Allitalia stripping the gearbox out of the car on Wednesday evening after a noise developed in the transmission while moving the car ready to load on the trailer. After checking the clutch and flywheel, the gearbox was replaced for the spare to avoid any failures on race day. The BMW LSV8 was given a clean bill of health and loaded ready for a later start on practice day.
Practice day ran smoothly and gave Lwi a chance to get used to the new Accelera 651 sport Xtra 100 TW softer compound semi slicks supplied by partner for 2020 Tirestreets UK now mounted to some new 1 Form 18 inch rear wheels. We dialled in some different settings to gain some more grip and tried some different tyre pressures. Some new cooling fans fitted after the problem in previous round turned out to be much more efficient and kept the temperatures down by about 20 degrees to around 90c, even when driven hard which was a relief. The car ran faultlessly until it suddenly cut out while waiting in line at the start. After being towed back to the paddock it turned out to be the main kill switch, brand new this year, which had failed! After searching the paddock, Luke Barker’s team came to the rescue with a new one, all fitted and ready to go in under 30 mins. The rest of the day was uneventful, Lwi just cleaning up the qualifying line ready for race day
After chilling out watching the Pro2 class it was time to get the race face on for the Pro day on Saturday. Fuel up with Sunoco race fuel, new Accelera 651 rear tyres and morning practice, the weather was good with a damp start but forecast was dry so it was going to be fast and furious all day for sure.
First qualifying run and Lwi was on it from the start, a nice clean line hitting all the clips and gaining a score of 94,holding top spot for a while but finished finished 2nd
Qualifying Run 2:
Never happy with his run and always chasing that perfect score, Lwi was advised by judges he needed to put more flare in his style, so this run was more smoke, speed and pushed out to the clipping points. Something was amiss this time though and a lesser score of 92. Back to the drawing board to chase the perfect score. However, Lwi did finish the qualifying in 3rd position which is pretty amazing for his first year in Pro’s
Top 16 Battles:
Due to Lwi high qualifying score he advanced through to the top 16 and his fist battle was to be with one of the most experienced drivers on the grid Martin Wonnacott in his awesome high spec Toyota Chaser, this was going to be a good one. Lwi pushed hard and put his usual flawless lead run which may have caught Martin on the hop but he caught up quickly on the chase run. Turning around and Lwi made a few mistakes on the first few clips so the judges voted for a OMT (One More Time) to give a chance for a cleaner run from both drivers.
Top 16 Battle OMT:
Lwi pushed hard on this battle, it was close and entertaining until Martin was forced into a mistake on the last few clips, running off the track and allowing Lwi to take the win and advance into great 8
Great 8 Battle:
After battling Martin, the great 8 battle should be more even with young irish driver Dylan Kehoe who had advanced through from Pro2 with a very nice spec Nissan with similar power to Lwi. It was very close and tidy battle which Lwi took the win to advance through to Final 4
Final 4 Battle:
Well, this was going to be a mission, Lwi was now up against the experienced and fellow welshman Ollie Evans in a much higher spec Nissan who was determined to win the championship. Lwi pushed as hard as he could, it was close and fast with Ollie losing his bumper on transitions but Lwi just couldnt beat Evans and the lost the battle.
Third Place Playoff:
Lwi had one final chance to make the 3rd place podium and his opponent was the young driver Max Cotton, who had stormed the field of Pro2 to this position in the Pro class. The battle again was close with both Lwi and Max rubbing doors but the win went to Max, so Lwi just missed out on a podium place. Well done Max!
Lwi finished the weekend with a 4th place o/all finish and although disappointed in not getting another podium at Three Sisters it was a great result after some hard battles. Currently sitting in 5th place in the Pro championship, once again it it a great result for the first year in the Pro Class
Always looking for consistency like last year in Pro2, if Lwi can stay in top 5 for this season it will be a great achievement, but who knows what happens, with so few rounds of the championship, things can change quickly.
Huge thanks to everyone involved with the team from sponsors Accelera tyres, tirestreets UK, haltech, Sunoco fuels, Driven Oils, Learn2Drift, 1Form Wheels and bank of Nana and John, as well as all the Team Driftfam who all make this possible.
Always looking for support on this journey, please get in touch if you can help out in any way at email@example.com
After a long break due to the Covid 19, the British Drift Championship managed to pull everything together and run a shortened championship for 2020. This started with the first round at the legendary purpose built drift track at Driftland in Scotland
After winning the 2019 Pro Am Championship (Now called Pro 2) in the UK and also finishing 6th in the 2019 Drift Games Nationals, Lwi was promoted to Pro level for both UK and Ireland for 2020
The trusty BMW E36 M3 has had a major upgrade while the new Pro drift car is being built from scratch. Out with the M3 Evo engine and transplanted by Allitalia Ltd with a modified LS2 engine with full Haltech custom ecu pushing approx 500 bhp to keep competitive.
The long trek to sunny Scotland started on a Thursday ready to spend a Friday practice day in the new upgraded BMW, and things didnt go to plan at the start, the weather was very warm and still, which caused the temps to rise in the engine bay, then a brand new cooling fan decided to fail, luckily Lwi always keeps a close eye on data, so the practice was aborted until the problem could be fixed. A search around the paddock found a new fan, although slightly smaller than original it kept the temps down.
Practice day was spent dialing in the grip level, running a mix of tyre brands to test before committing to one brand. Extreme tyres that Lwi was awarded as part of championship win and a newcomer on the block, Accelera. At the start of the day Lwi felt he had too much grip but by the end he was using more of the huge V8 grunt to push the grip level to the max on 17 inch rims, this was something that was going to become apparent on race day.
Sunday and Pro race day, Lwi had 2 hours practice honing his qualifying line, which was faultless as always, but it became apparent that he was struggling to hold proximity with the top driver due to loss of grip. With the help of the drift fam as quick change up to 18 inch rear wheels and some new Accelera tyres transformed the BMW allowing Lwi to push harder on chase runs.
Qualifying: Lwi has gained the reputation of being a line driver in both UK and Ireland and he hadn’t lost his skill in the down time since last season. First run and score of 91.5 was not enough for Lwi so he pushed the envelope for the second run and improved the score to 95 points holding top qualifying until Luke Barker and Mckeever knocked him off the top spot, can’t grumble too much. The grip level was improved with the 18 inch rims and new Accelera.
Top 16 Battle :
This was Lwi’s first battle in the Pro class this year and Oliver Silcock was a worthy opponent. Lwi laying down the perfect lead line once again allowing a good chase that the judges ask for but the chase run for Lwi was a little harder, still learning the grip he was judged as shallowing the track to gain proximity. Maybe should have been OMT to fight it out but it wasn’t to be. So Lwi lost the battle.
A successful weekend with a lot of positives, the LS conversion is reliable and the handling of the chassis remains unchanged with the extra power. We will now be running 18 inch rims with the bigger 265 Accelera tyres. Some extra cooling needs to be addressed although autumn will soon be here for remainder of rounds and sure the weather will be cooler.
Thank you to everyone who supports the Team from family and friends to sponsors and companies. If you would like to be part of this amazing journey please get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org