Due to the success with Drift Games in Ireland, Lwi was given a bonus opportunity to be able to enter the first round of the British Drift Championship to try and qualify for a place to compete in the 2019 BDC season. A golden opportunity to pitch his driving abilities against some of the best drivers in the UK.
Friday was spent practising the very technical circuit layout, organisers had decided to run the traditional Teeside layout in reverse to spice things up a little and level the playing field. This suited Lwi and the less experienced drivers as it was new to everyone. The car was set up and tyre choices selected by main sponsor Allitalia Ltd with just 1 broken driveshaft changed in record time to keep the M3 Powered BMW out on the track for a long as possible
Saturday was the main event for the Pro-Am and after a morning practice it was straight into qualifying mode. For Lwi, the pressure was on to qualify in the top 32 to gain his BDC Pro-Am status but he didnt let his nerves get the better of him and nailed his first run to put him in top ten, then drove a nice tidy line on second run to a final qualifying score of 73 which placed him in 8th place overall at the end of the session. A pretty incredible result for the young 17yr old in his first competitive season. This result secured his BDC Pro-Am license to compete in the UK but the real competition was just about to begin…
Let The Battles Commence
Top 32 battle started with Matt Fountain in a Soarer, Lwi putting in the usual clinical lead run which seemed to unphase the experienced chase car, and he made a few mistake, running off line and also finishing with a small ‘love tap’ around final bend. The chase run for Lwi saw him being left behind slightly due to the power difference but Lwi managed to make up some proximity and also followed a qualifying line to take the win.
Top 16 battle was against William Hanna in another high powered Nissan Skyline, but this didnt phase Lwi with his technical approach to driving, again the lack of horsepower was compensated by car control , putting the BMW where it needed to be to take the win and move into Great 8!
Great 8, where things really start to get tough,and only one step away from the final battle and chance to go through to next day with Pro class! Unreal that Lwi should be at this level on his first ever attempt of BDC
So, the Great 8 battle saw Lwi and Josh King. Both in BMW E36 but one was turbocharged and had twice the horsepower as the other… unfortunately, Lwi was in the M3 engined one, so was about 300 hp short. However, this again didnt phase Lwi, once again he drove a near perfect lead run, following qualifying line, and let the chase car make the mistakes, but he just couldnt make up any proximity on his chase run against the superior power of the lead car, so the battle was lost. Josh King went on to win the ProAm on the day
Expectations officially exceeded
Lwi went into this competition just to qualify in top 32 to gain his BDC ProAm license but once again, as in Drift Games license day, he has shown his incredible talent to both qualify in top ten and take a relatively under powered car up to top 8. He was officially the youngest driver in the lowest power car to get into top 8 on the day, a pretty decent result.
Next event will see us back in Ireland for round 2 of Drift Games Natonals 4/5 May