At the end of January all of the road of Auckland were full of Muscle cars, classic car and hot delivery.
While Russia is preparing for the New Year holidays and conserves sports cars for the winter, New Zealand wakes up from hibernation and prepares for the new racing season.
First round of the Demon Energy D1NZ, the national drifting series in New Zealand. Taken through the paces
Last weekend, the new season of the drifting championship, the Demon Energy D1NZ, kicked off in New Zealand. The venue to host the first series round was Manfeild, a track rich in racing history, located in the south of the island. The beginning of spring, the southern part of the country, a six-hour car journey from Auckland, an unfavourable weather forecast for the weekend. All these factors were suggesting two exciting days that would leave lasting memories. We just had to go.
Night round of the D1NZ can truly be considered to be the Championship’s most spectacular one. It was awaited with great anticipation. I can just add that my stay in the land of kiwi lasted longer than I had planned just because of this round. And it was really worth it.
Everything is utterly serious when it comes to touring car races in the Southern hemisphere. Sometimes it’s even too serious. While acquiring media accreditation for the V8SuperTourers, a local series in New Zealand, could be compared to getting a driving licence, my struggle for media credentials for the V8Superсars was equal to getting a FIA Formula 1 license. Meaning, it was almost impossible.
Nostalgia Drags is an epic event. Once a year the most dignified old-timers shake off the dust from their wheels and have their bodies polished bright. Squinting with their dim-sighted eyes, they roll out of the dark and dusky garages, where they spend most of their lives, and head towards the ‘club’ to party hard at the most prominent event of the year for the old schoolers.
Organisers of the annual D1NZ drifting championship, held in several rounds in New Zealand, scheduled the 4th round to run on a track in Taupo. Taupo is both the name of a volcano lake and a town situated on its shore. There used to be a huge mountain there but a supervolcanic eruption turned it into the lake many years ago. It is now the largest freshwater lake in New Zealand. Its nearby territory is still considered to be the area with the highest concentration of thermal activity in the country. Even the nature in this district encourages you to start a fire.
What is the most spectacular motor sport in the Southern Hemisphere? You’d be surprised to know. No, it’s not drifting. And it’s not even the Formula 1, although people from the entire Southern Hemisphere, including the Republic of Tonga and Papua New Guinea, seem to gather during the annual Grand Prix held in Melbourne. The most spectacular motor sport is the Speedway. For the Russian audience the word ‘speedway’ is associated with motor races held on the icy surface of a circular track. But we are talking about New Zealand now. And it’s all a bit different here.
In the heat of the race, under the influence of adrenaline, speed and the smell of overheating brakes, we sometimes forget that motor racing is a dangerous sport. We take more risks than we should, underestimate the power we are trying to control and overrate our abilities. It’s normal. But the experienced racing drivers never disregard the most important rule in motor sports — safety first. Safety should always come above everything else. And no victory is worth the life of any person.
It’s high summer in New Zealand now and peak of the motor sports season. It’s getting hot in all disciplines with drifting being the most unpredictable among them. The D1NZ Championship has new leaders each new round and it’s difficult to forecast what’s going to happen next.