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MotorsportsGordon
MotorsportsGordon New Reader
12/29/17 2:30 p.m.
Daylan C said:

In reply to kb58 :

Solid points but Ken Block doesn't drift competitively(the drift purists, which do exist somehow, will say he doesn't drift at all). A lot of the big name drifters I was thinking of dabble in more traditional racing as well. Of course there's Rhys Millen who will and has raced all the everything and also did a few seasons of FD. 

I’ll add to don’t  know Tony Angelo from drifting I know him from seeing him on roadkill and hot rod garage 

irish44j
irish44j UltimaDork
12/29/17 2:42 p.m.

In reply to Trackmouse :

I assume you mean like a Rally super-special? Because most of a stage rally the cars aren't even within sight of each other. The super-specials are made specifically FOR spectators and rarely have much of an effect on the rally standings (though sometimes, they do...)

Super specials are fun, though...and definitely fun for spectators. Especially when some dorks in a 140hp bmw manage to beat an STi :)

 

NickD
NickD UltraDork
12/29/17 2:45 p.m.
MotorsportsGordon said:
Daylan C said:

In reply to kb58 :

Solid points but Ken Block doesn't drift competitively(the drift purists, which do exist somehow, will say he doesn't drift at all). A lot of the big name drifters I was thinking of dabble in more traditional racing as well. Of course there's Rhys Millen who will and has raced all the everything and also did a few seasons of FD. 

I’ll add to don’t  know Tony Angelo from drifting I know him from seeing him on roadkill and hot rod garage 

Tony Angelo was not a very good drifter, at least at a pro level. I remember watching him in person at Formula D NJ the last year he ran in Formula D. He spun out on literally every practice run, then spun out on both of his qualifying runs and failed to qualify for the event. And NJ is the halfway point of the season, so it wasn't like he was rusty from the offseason. He did so poorly that year that he lost his FD Pro license. When he showed up on Motor Trend, I groaned, but he's grown into the position.

2GRX7
2GRX7 New Reader
12/30/17 11:15 a.m.
NickD said:
MotorsportsGordon said:
Daylan C said:

In reply to kb58 :

Solid points but Ken Block doesn't drift competitively(the drift purists, which do exist somehow, will say he doesn't drift at all). A lot of the big name drifters I was thinking of dabble in more traditional racing as well. Of course there's Rhys Millen who will and has raced all the everything and also did a few seasons of FD. 

I’ll add to don’t  know Tony Angelo from drifting I know him from seeing him on roadkill and hot rod garage 

Tony Angelo was not a very good drifter, at least at a pro level. I remember watching him in person at Formula D NJ the last year he ran in Formula D. He spun out on literally every practice run, then spun out on both of his qualifying runs and failed to qualify for the event. And NJ is the halfway point of the season, so it wasn't like he was rusty from the offseason. He did so poorly that year that he lost his FD Pro license. When he showed up on Motor Trend, I groaned, but he's grown into the position.

HA! And what's so crazy is his article in WIRED was considered driftings first real foray into mainstream media! LOL, he was crashing in that article as well! SMH!

https://www.wired.com/2003/10/drifting/

NickD
NickD UltraDork
12/30/17 11:35 a.m.
2GRX7 said:
NickD said:
MotorsportsGordon said:
Daylan C said:

In reply to kb58 :

Solid points but Ken Block doesn't drift competitively(the drift purists, which do exist somehow, will say he doesn't drift at all). A lot of the big name drifters I was thinking of dabble in more traditional racing as well. Of course there's Rhys Millen who will and has raced all the everything and also did a few seasons of FD. 

I’ll add to don’t  know Tony Angelo from drifting I know him from seeing him on roadkill and hot rod garage 

Tony Angelo was not a very good drifter, at least at a pro level. I remember watching him in person at Formula D NJ the last year he ran in Formula D. He spun out on literally every practice run, then spun out on both of his qualifying runs and failed to qualify for the event. And NJ is the halfway point of the season, so it wasn't like he was rusty from the offseason. He did so poorly that year that he lost his FD Pro license. When he showed up on Motor Trend, I groaned, but he's grown into the position.

HA! And what's so crazy is his article in WIRED was considered driftings first real foray into mainstream media! LOL, he was crashing in that article as well! SMH!

https://www.wired.com/2003/10/drifting/

Yeah, I like Tony Angelo as a person, and amongst the Roadkill boys he is a hot shot driver, but as a pro drifter, he was not great. Also interesting was that for a while Hot Rod Magazine had Mike Essa as their test driver, who was also competing (quite successfully) in Formula Drift in BMWs. When BMW fired off a cease-and-desist to every BMW driver in pro drifting (literally right after Mike Essa won a championship in his turbocharged, nitrous'd S54 E46 M3) he jumped ship to an SLP-sponsored 5th-gen Camaro for a season. Not sure if thrashing musclecars for HRM had an influence on his vehicle choice or not, but eventually BMW backed down on their stance (although they still won't sponsor or support drifting) and he went back to the E46.

Trackmouse
Trackmouse UltraDork
12/30/17 3:13 p.m.

In reply to irish44j :

Exactly. I couldn’t remember the terminology for that, but it looks like loads of fun. They did this at the race of champions and I was astounded to see Hardly ANYONE in the freaking stadium! 

I was like “Let me get this straight, the best racers in the world convene at one location and square off and nobody attended?”

 

side comment: as a drift purist, I present the following video to demonstrate what a proper drift is. https://youtu.be/a7I3jybeJRI

youll notice the extremely long entry that uses absolutely no e brake or throttle. It’s simple inertia physics to link two corners. Once initiated, the throttle is only applied to maintain  manji until corner is exited. Too many kids, watching formula d, think drifting is just hammering the throttle constantly around the corner. They don’t understand that the drift is actually the entry and before throttle is even applied.  That’s why the Japanese don’t even like our FD. It’s polar opposite to what they judge. 

DirtyBird222
DirtyBird222 UltraDork
12/30/17 10:05 p.m.

Sit in a parking lot for hours on end for less than 10 minutes of wheel time vs. hooning and chillin with the dudes. 

I can't knock autox too much. It was the cheap viable option for me in high school and college to have fun with my car in a competitive manner. Learned a lot, met some great people, and it led to actually getting on track in wheel to wheel action; but, I can totally see the allure to drifting vs. an autox. 

 

DirtyBird222
DirtyBird222 UltraDork
12/30/17 10:12 p.m.

I'm going to start recording modifications that we do to our Chump.....errr...."Champcar." Something always goes wrong or an argument ensues along with my wife yelling at us for driving the car in the neighborhood. 

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
1/2/18 6:26 a.m.
NOHOME said:
z31maniac said:

Because young kinds don't like objective measures of skill? 

Hence the desire for "Canyon Runs" instead of HPDE, etc. They like to think what is 4/10ths for experienced track guys on the road is 10/10ths and they are amazing.

A stopwatch takes away the ability to say "I'm super fast" without being able to prove it.

Trophy generation and all that.

That parent alert alarm just went off the scale.

I don't know what this means. I'm 35 with no children.

klodkrawler05
klodkrawler05 Reader
1/2/18 7:27 a.m.

At least as far as our local club is concerned and as others have mentioned part of the appeal of drifting is just how rambunctious the cars are.

 

At our local events when the crazy 6 figure pro-touring cars, the anti lagging evo's or the other  wild cars get ready to run nearly everyone at the event stops what they're doing to come watch. There will typically be a line of folks waiting to catch a ride on those cars too for the folks who will have them. on the flip side, when the HS yaris' are running it's a ghost town.

 

I think it's much the same with drifting, a few folks on our local BMW page got into drifting last year and as novices their drifts are not that fantastic, their cars are still very mildly modified with stock ish power and body work. Barely any smoke is generated during a run and from the videos they've shown it's kind of boring to watch. I don't even bother clicking on them now. On the other hand. I'll watch a video of the entire Falken drift team run a train through the Rd Atlanta esses at least twice.

 

Maybe the solution is there needs to be less boring auto-x cars and classes? 

NOHOME
NOHOME UltimaDork
1/2/18 8:50 a.m.

I don't think there is much to be done to make autocross more of a spectator sport. It is what it is and works for the competitors.

The broader question is what can Loosecannon do to attract more viewers to his build channel on YouTube? The project itself has been epic and the resulting car is pretty cutting edge.

The videos make it pretty clear that whatever is done is being done in pursuit of slalom times. Perhaps if the build were a bit more agnostic and the testing post-video were more "Exuberant".

Is it a production challenge, a marketing challenge or ???

 

Pete

alfadriver
alfadriver MegaDork
1/2/18 9:15 a.m.
DirtyBird222 said:

Sit in a parking lot for hours on end for less than 10 minutes of wheel time vs. hooning and chillin with the dudes. 

I can't knock autox too much. It was the cheap viable option for me in high school and college to have fun with my car in a competitive manner. Learned a lot, met some great people, and it led to actually getting on track in wheel to wheel action; but, I can totally see the allure to drifting vs. an autox. 

 

The only real difference is the kind of driving.  You chill with your dudes at an autocross, too.  I've never been to a drift contest- but if there are 50 competitors, how much real time do you get going around the course?

I totally get the issue with limited seat time at an autocross.  It's much worse when you are organizing the event, and have to fit your runs into times that you are not really ready for.  But I can't honestly see that a big turn out drift contest will net you that much more seat time in a day.

(I very much don't see the driving allure in drifting, but then again, I also prefer speed skating and hockey over figure skating, too)

NickD
NickD UltraDork
1/2/18 9:55 a.m.
alfadriver said:
DirtyBird222 said:

Sit in a parking lot for hours on end for less than 10 minutes of wheel time vs. hooning and chillin with the dudes. 

I can't knock autox too much. It was the cheap viable option for me in high school and college to have fun with my car in a competitive manner. Learned a lot, met some great people, and it led to actually getting on track in wheel to wheel action; but, I can totally see the allure to drifting vs. an autox. 

 

The only real difference is the kind of driving.  You chill with your dudes at an autocross, too.  I've never been to a drift contest- but if there are 50 competitors, how much real time do you get going around the course?

A ton, actually. I used to go them when I lived in area where they had them. And it was not uncommon to see 6 or 7 cars on track, at once, doing 3 and 4 car drift trains until they broke or ran out of tires. And then they'd thrash on them and go back out there and jam for another session.

Duke
Duke MegaDork
1/2/18 10:20 a.m.
alfadriver said:
DirtyBird222 said:

Sit in a parking lot for hours on end for less than 10 minutes of wheel time vs. hooning and chillin with the dudes. 

The only real difference is the kind of driving.  You chill with your dudes at an autocross, too.  I've never been to a drift contest- but if there are 50 competitors, how much real time do you get going around the course?

Our club runs both autocross and drifting events, sometimes concurrently.  If we have 70 autocrossers on my side of the fence, they may have 30 drifters.

The drift guys get WAYYY more than twice the seat time than the autocrossers do - like 20x as much.  Setup is minimal, check-in is minimal, downtime is minimal.  They set out 10 pylons in a simple course with some linked turns, do a quick tech, make sure everybody has paid, have a brief driver's meeting, and then they're running.  Cars are leaving the starting line at about the same rate as autocross, but there are zero timing issues, very few cones to re-set, no rungroup switchovers, no minimum times between runs, etc.  They go until they're out of tires, broken down, or exhausted, whichever comes first.

It may be fun to drive fast in an autocross.  But from the curb, the spectators can't tell the difference between a fantastic run, a good run, and a bad run, unless it is spectacularly bad.  They have to be invested in the results and following live results to really get the drama and excitement.

But drifting is dramatic and exciting for everybody.

Another difference is the rulebook.  Like it or not, autocross is fussy.  Drifting ain't.  Everything can be done with the goal of making the car more exciting to drive and watch, without worrying about what damn class you'll wind up in and how badly you'll get beaten there.

NOHOME
NOHOME UltimaDork
1/2/18 10:47 a.m.

Is there even such a thing as a "Protest" in the drift rulebook? Are there actually any rules?

 

Pete

Duke
Duke MegaDork
1/2/18 10:55 a.m.
NOHOME said:

Is there even such a thing as a "Protest" in the drift rulebook? Are there actually any rules?

Speaking for our club, the rules are entirely safety-oriented.  Brakes, steering, throttle return, seatbelts all have to work.  All cars must have a securely mounted fire extinguisher in the cabin.  No tandem drifting with passengers unless you have a cage.  That kind of thing.

Protests consist of "That guy is driving like a bigger jackass than most of us - I think we need to have a talk with him."

alfadriver
alfadriver MegaDork
1/2/18 1:39 p.m.
Duke said:
alfadriver said:
DirtyBird222 said:

Sit in a parking lot for hours on end for less than 10 minutes of wheel time vs. hooning and chillin with the dudes. 

The only real difference is the kind of driving.  You chill with your dudes at an autocross, too.  I've never been to a drift contest- but if there are 50 competitors, how much real time do you get going around the course?

Our club runs both autocross and drifting events, sometimes concurrently.  If we have 70 autocrossers on my side of the fence, they may have 30 drifters.

The drift guys get WAYYY more than twice the seat time than the autocrossers do - like 20x as much.  Setup is minimal, check-in is minimal, downtime is minimal.  They set out 10 pylons in a simple course with some linked turns, do a quick tech, make sure everybody has paid, have a brief driver's meeting, and then they're running.  Cars are leaving the starting line at about the same rate as autocross, but there are zero timing issues, very few cones to re-set, no rungroup switchovers, no minimum times between runs, etc.  They go until they're out of tires, broken down, or exhausted, whichever comes first.

It may be fun to drive fast in an autocross.  But from the curb, the spectators can't tell the difference between a fantastic run, a good run, and a bad run, unless it is spectacularly bad.  They have to be invested in the results and following live results to really get the drama and excitement.

But drifting is dramatic and exciting for everybody.

Another difference is the rulebook.  Like it or not, autocross is fussy.  Drifting ain't.  Everything can be done with the goal of making the car more exciting to drive and watch, without worrying about what damn class you'll wind up in and how badly you'll get beaten there.

If we had 30 people show up at an autocross, we'd get tons of seat time, too.  Just that it would not be run until you are exhausted or broken.  Just 15 at a time....

I get that drifting is far more interesting to watch.  That's pretty clear (sort of).

But, to me, the driving isn't that appealing.  (To be honest, it's not appealing to watch, either, to me)

It's not for everyone, but the idea that you can just "hoon with your buds" is exclusive to drifting isn't exactly accurate- you can drive fast with your buds in autocross, too.  And hang out with them all day.  And the only real difference in the events is the style of driving- one is to find out who is fastest, the other- who is more stylish (how ever that is defined).

Duke
Duke MegaDork
1/2/18 2:53 p.m.
alfadriver said:

If we had 30 people show up at an autocross, we'd get tons of seat time, too.  Just that it would not be run until you are exhausted or broken.  Just 15 at a time....

I put, usually, 70-75 drivers through one of our autocross events.  At 60-70, I can offer 7 runs in a typical day.  If I get 75 or more drivers, I have to cut it back to 6 runs.  So, doing simple math implies that 35 autocross drivers should get 14 runs in the same amount of time, but that just doesn't happen, as we all know well.  If I had 35 drivers I could probably give them 8 or 9 runs in a day.  So, rounding off, lets say that's 10 minutes of actual on-course seat time.

Drifting on the same size lot, our drivers probably get 20 or 30 runs per session, with morning and afternoon sessions and a course redesign at the lunch break.  On-course seat time at one of our drift events is measured in hours, with the same theoretical 35 drivers.

I agree that drifting doesn't appeal to me personally, either as a driver or spectator.  I also think burnouts are stupid.  But if I don't have the patience to deal with a rule book, don't have the desire to compete against a stopwatch, don't care about tearing my E36 M3 up, and just want to wail around, it's easy for me to see why drifting is popular.  Plus, it's immediately and directly interesting to your average drive-by spectator.

G_Body_Man
G_Body_Man UltraDork
1/2/18 3:06 p.m.

A big part of the appeal of drifting is "What would happen if we didn't drive normally and instead did all this crazy E36 M3?" Amateur drifting is really just the vehicular equivalent of a mosh pit. It's wild, it's noisy, people break stuff, but most people involved are actually pretty chill, and everyone's doing it "for the culture," for the sole purpose of having a good time.

It's not even hideously expensive. A set of burner tires can be had for as little as $10. Topp Drift in Shannonville does $20 skidpan days. Many events only require DOT helmets. $100 an event isn't that bad, and a club membership isn't normally needed to participate.

I've autocrossed and while I found it fun, after every run I just kept trying to think of where I could shave time instead of thinking of how much fun it was. I've been on a few drift ride-alongs, and my feelings after each run matched the driver's: "Holy E36 M3 this is so berkeleying cool!" I'm not sure if I'll ever get around to autocrossing the G35, but I badly want to make it out to Topp Drift this year. Drifting doesn't make sense, but it's tons of fun and it's pretty cool both as a spectator and as a driver.

Drifting's popular because for as long as kids have existed, they've wanted to watch and do really awesome E36 M3.

goingnowherefast
goingnowherefast New Reader
1/2/18 3:09 p.m.

AutoX is also a terrible cost vs. track time investment. Probably one of the worst out of any motorsports. 

 

In general, a SCCA $50 AutoX day gets you what? ~3-4 60 second runs for a total of ~$12.5 dollars per track minute. A $200 HPDE will normally give you 4 20 minute track sessions for a total of ~$2.5 per track minute. From a value perspective, AutoX does quite poorly, while I've seen grassroots drift clubs have $10 events with WAY more time than AutoX.

 

Also SCCA classing is F&^ked beyond belief. 

G_Body_Man
G_Body_Man UltraDork
1/2/18 3:17 p.m.
goingnowherefast said:

AutoX is also a terrible cost vs. track time investment. Probably one of the worst out of any motorsports. 

 

In general, a SCCA $50 AutoX day gets you what? ~3-4 60 second runs for a total of ~$12.5 dollars per track minute. A $200 HPDE will normally give you 4 20 minute track sessions for a total of ~$2.5 per track minute. From a value perspective, AutoX does quite poorly, while I've seen grassroots drift clubs have $10 events with WAY more time than AutoX.

 

Also SSCA classing is F&^ked beyond belief. 

Great point. Drifters get way more seat time per $, and they can totally build a car the way they want instead of try to build a car to a class.

fidelity101
fidelity101 UltraDork
1/2/18 3:27 p.m.

5 pages late but still gonna say it.

 

Autocross isn't sexy.

TheRX7Project
TheRX7Project Reader
1/2/18 3:43 p.m.
goingnowherefast said:

AutoX is also a terrible cost vs. track time investment. Probably one of the worst out of any motorsports. 

 

In general, a SCCA $50 AutoX day gets you what? ~3-4 60 second runs for a total of ~$12.5 dollars per track minute. A $200 HPDE will normally give you 4 20 minute track sessions for a total of ~$2.5 per track minute. From a value perspective, AutoX does quite poorly, while I've seen grassroots drift clubs have $10 events with WAY more time than AutoX.

 

Also SSCA classing is F&^ked beyond belief. 

I can't disagree with anything you said here. Ultimately I'd like to prep my car for track days but all I can really afford is autox right now. We do get at least 6 runs for our $50, sometimes more depending on turnout, not that it changes the drastic differences in seat time per dollar much.

And SCCA classing is jacked. Good thing I'm not actually shooting for any sort of win or I'd be protesting my car's class.

Joe Gearin
Joe Gearin Associate Publisher
1/2/18 3:52 p.m.

Many good points brought up here, and I see answers to the OP's post.

I tend to agree on the demographics when evaluating why YouTube drift builds are popular, but autocross builds are not.   Younger folks are attracted to the excitement and visual drama of drifting---- they also make up the vast majority of folks scanning YouTube for entertainment.   (older folks tend to watch TV / read magazines / etc.) 

 

Autocross is also non-dramatic, which doesn't work so well on the screen.   If you are looking to build your YouTube audience, inject some humor, some wackiness, some FUN into your broadcasts.   Time and time again the interwebs prove that goofiness wins over staid (but informative) content.

 

Want more viewers?   Have more fun. 

NickD
NickD UltraDork
1/2/18 4:11 p.m.
G_Body_Man said:
goingnowherefast said:

AutoX is also a terrible cost vs. track time investment. Probably one of the worst out of any motorsports. 

 

In general, a SCCA $50 AutoX day gets you what? ~3-4 60 second runs for a total of ~$12.5 dollars per track minute. A $200 HPDE will normally give you 4 20 minute track sessions for a total of ~$2.5 per track minute. From a value perspective, AutoX does quite poorly, while I've seen grassroots drift clubs have $10 events with WAY more time than AutoX.

 

Also SSCA classing is F&^ked beyond belief. 

Great point. Drifters get way more seat time per $, and they can totally build a car the way they want instead of try to build a car to a class.

Ughhh, SCCA classing. I often feel like the SCCA is punishing me because I spent time and money and effort building a nice car instead of just going out and buying a grocery-getter and throwing high end tires on it. My chapter does a lot of booths at import car shows (because young kids with imports are the most likely to come give autocross a try) and I can't count how many people we've had show up for an event and leave faintly disgusted because their modified car whoops half the field's ass and then comes in dead last behind 12 H/Street cars because of PAX

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