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Halfway Hangs for the Mangs

We ventured down to Raleigh on the weekend to take part in what we can only describe as one of the funnest events we have been to in a while. Situated in between Brisbane and Sydney, Raleigh was the perfect spot for both Queenslanders and New South Welshmen to meet up for a day of hardparking (which we had no interest in) and for a day of drifting at Raleigh Go Kart Track. The Streetkarnage posse (organisers responsible for this non stop good time) exceeded expectations with a very low cressida making its way rolling 4 deep from South Australia, and even a couple of Mexicans from Victoria.
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Story time with Matt Russell!

A long time between drinks for me (not literally of course), but this is my first piece since 2012 I believe. Some call it laziness, I also call it laziness but at least im not… wait what was I saying? Time for another drink.

Anyway, I thought I would do a bit of a cover of what’s been going on for me in the first half of this year briefly before I start covering the events that are coming up and explaining in detail the after party, trip there, the trip back and occasionally the drifting in between.

Muski & I matsuri
As usual, the year started of with a bang at the bi-annual Vic drift Winton matsuri. Much like the opening and closing ceremonies of the Olympics this event happens at the beginning and the end of each year, its has fireworks similar to that of the Olympics, it has drunken caravan park demolition much like the Olympics, basically the only differences are that we swap the steroids for beers and athleticism for automobiles. As usual, I attended with two cars, my AE86 and my old AE86 that I lend to an enemy each matsuri in hope that their ill fate lays within the Bride seat of that death trap car.
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Hit & Run Just For Fun!

Yes that is a Bar-Kays reference but it was the perfect label for this trip down south!

My journey began on Wednesday when i flew into Sydney to meet up with the Hit & Run crew to go film one of their private days at Wakefield. Kansai Giant aka Jono Okada played chauffeur and picked me up from the Airport. After a quick grab of food we stopped by Jonos house so he could pack his bags. I took this chance to grab some photos of his fresh looking 180sx. Continue reading Hit & Run Just For Fun!

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JDM Garage Invitational

Hey everyone,

I recently attended the JDM Garage Invitational which was held on the “Short Track” at Queensland Raceways. Whilst the events classy name the day was a relaxed private day for Erin from JDM Garages friends and customers.

Seen here Ziptying something, Erin was having trouble pulling off entries in his still being built sparkly red R34. The problem was diagnosed as the wheels hitting the castor arms and acting as brakes preventing him from having a clean run.


The day was filled with awesome driving in rad cars!



Tom was tearing it up all day…


Until upon a massive entry his rear tyre popped, sending him straight towards the wall.

The crash..


P.S Photos done by Kristopher Harrison (JustNug)

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Matt “I Passed out at the wrong place” Russell

Whilst Mez is busy finishing off the Official video for this event, Matt Russell is back with another one of his stories!

Well this event really started a week before hand, with a trolley jack under the chassis rail of my car and three people jumping on my driver’s side strut tower and guard. Yep, just the usual pre-event preparation for you all I am sure; however it was so cold and so dark, far from the warmth and fluorescent light of my carport. Whilst my fine Friday night pit crew did there best on my chassis straightening after a minor cliff drop they could hardly be blamed for the death of my diff some hours later. So here lay my dilemma. With less than a week until drift attack was I to finish my new car off in a rush and hope that it doesn’t fall apart on it’s maiden voyage? Or would I cut my losses, pull the good diff from the new car and place it in the old one and do some minor panel beating? A choice that no one could make, except maybe my tuner who said there was no way he would be able to fit my new car in that week.

So here we are in the line for scrutineering, which is always a bit nerve racking for me, I think I get more of a rush when the “passed” sticker gets put on my car than when im actually drifting, but maybe that’s just me but sure enough, the old girl passed through again with flying colours, all I had to remove was the slab of Jack Daniels from the passenger seat, the one wrapped in the red ribbon.

Practice and qualifying was very interesting, having never seen the track before I didn’t really know what to expect, I probably should have looked at a video of it on youporn before hand but I know very little about how to use a computer (I actually type these on a type writer, mail them to Mez, he then scans them in and puts them on the blog). I felt I was struggling greatly as during the diff swap, I managed to loose basically all use of the handbrake as for some unknown reason, it would not bleed up properly. I found on average, 7 pulls of the handbrake before I actually needed it to lock would do the trick, this was fine for the first corner as I could pump it up on the run in, however making the link between corner three and four was made near impossible as even though I am a bit of a wanker, I think when people call me that they forget the real meaning of the word as im not quick enough on the pull to reach the climax of my handbrake and really extend that pleasure all the way deep down into turn four as I would have hoped.

In one of my practice runs a friend of mine asked if I would have the honour of escorting his very own mother for a couple of hot, hot, hot laps around the track, to which I quickly inclined. My friend Cam is right into his drifting, with his own 86 currently in the build, I guess he just wanted his mother to know what it was all about and why he was constantly making all that noise in the shed late at night. The first lap was great, she seemed calm and to be enjoying the ride, however I and my lawyers believe I gave my friend and his mother both adequate and clear warning of the troubles I was having with my handbrake. So when I was informed that I would be put up on sexual assault charges from all of the “missed” handbrake pumps I was bitterly disappointed, still couldn’t get that pleasure to fourth base… ah, fourth corner.

Having qualified further back in the field than I would have hoped for meant I was going to go up against a greater driver (for those who don’t know, a battle tree is initially (usually) formed with 1st VS. 32nd, 2nd VS. 31st ,etc.). This greater driver just happened to be Papa from the insane drifters. I chatted with Papa briefly in the dummy grid, we spoke about life and whatnot, but as I didn’t want a second law suit for the day I thought I should warn him of the car troubles I was having and that if he heard me yelling or on the horn mid corner he should move as I either cant stop, of something has broken off my car and is heading straight for him. Luckily, I did not need to do this as I don’t think my horn works anyway, regardless, he won the battle easily and advanced to the top 16 after a “close-to-spin-but-not-spun-but-basically-stopped-anyway” move from myself in the chase run, I think that’s the technical term for it anyway.

I weighed up my options, considering I was still on my first pair of tyres for the day, I decided to swindle my way into doing some of the passenger rides down the back of the track so I could destroy some more of Inverse tyres tyre’s. The passenger track proved to be very good fun with some help from Nathan Saunders, Matt Goodlet and Nic Wilson allowing us to all tandem with each other until my car overheated, over and over, which doesn’t really phase me, at all. Apologies to Calder park about mowing their lawns.

Expression session came around and my girlfriend Nicole murmured the words “can I come as passenger?”. Something I have never heard from her, what could this mean? Many thoughts ran through my head. Would everything go well and I live to see another day? Would I be sleeping on the floor for weeks to come? Would I be paying that lawyer double time? Thankfully, after trying to escape the car numerous times on the start line all went well and I was urged to tandem with other drivers. This was a great thing for not only Nicole to overcome but it was also a new experience for me having her in the car after nearly four years as I still didn’t make that fourth corner, but in grabbing second gear Im also pretty sure I grabbed second base, a whole base higher than I have ever been before.

It was great to see Jake Jones come out on top of pro class, something that I think has been a long time coming for Jake, and it was defiantly well deserved after many events of bad luck and car issues. Agges and Nigel taking out 2nd and 3rd respectively was no surprise, especially with Agges coming off two very strong ADGP podiums and Nigel forever being consistently smooth, fast and just generally good. It was also good to see people like Andy McNeill up as far as 7th position, for someone who drives a car once a year and spends the rest of his time seeing how many motors he can blow up, he still seems to be able to put it together on game day.

In the street class, my good friend Chris Johnson took the win over Adam Morbarek with Richard Ryan in 3rd place. Honourable mention would have to go out to Craig Thorp in the bluebird from Tassie, qualified first in probably my favourite car of the event, however due to an unusual mistake from Thorpy, he did not advance to the top 8. I think the best thing about it was that he arrived on the boat from Tassie Saturday morning, drove the bluebird straight to the track, drifted, drove back to the boat and went home again that night. That’s dedication and a tight schedule if I ever saw one. Maybe his mistake in the top 16 was all planned, just so he could make it back to the boat in time, whilst qualifying first, just so everyone knew what he was capable of?

As I was leaving, I was informed of the “official” after party in some trendy place in St. Kilda (THANKS FOR THE LATE NOTICE). I didn’t end up attending the official after party, as im all about being different and not being trendy, plus the “unofficial” after party had more naked ladies guaranteed, even if we had to pay. Regardless, the un-official after party went off, it was good to catch up with everyone in a much more relaxed environment… apparently. I can’t really tell you too much more about the after party as I may or may not have been asleep on a couch in this particular strip club for the majority of the time. However considering one of the Tasmanians that walked in at 7am and slept on my floor informed me that he gave a nice girl at the after party that was aimlessly walking around on a table and training to be a fireman $450 to take her clothes off a couple of times, I knew it must have been pretty good.

Big thanks go to Vic Drift, yet again, another great event run and won. Leigh Pidwell at Inverse tyres for hooking me up with rubbers, Karl and Luke at Unique Automotive Australia, Jake at JDI fabrications for welding up my busted bits and anyone who bought me a drink at the after party, both I and the toilets were very thankful, not so much the bouncers.

– Matt Russell

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Hit and Run Private Day

This past weekend the whole Wreck’Em crew headed out to Wakefield Raceway with the rad guys from ‘Hit and Run’ so we could get some absolutely silly footage for our up coming DVD! With 4 camera’s and operators on the ground we got everything covered and lots of it! I was able to sneak in a few snaps during lunch break.

The Hit and Run boys run some of the hottest drift cars in NSW if not Australia!

Mez was walking around staunching everyone all day! Smug

Meanwhile Ginger was playing the role of a cancer patient apparently, it was damn hot out!

A lot of the crew are running S chassis car’s with conversions ranging from rb25, rb26 to ls1’s!

With the heat and the broski’s going hard quite a few cars broke tie end rods and the like, though they pushed through with quick repairs and got back on with it.

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A few snaps from Winton

A few weekends ago Myself and Ginga headed out to Winton with a few mates to get some footage laid down for this years DVD, it was a fairly relaxed day but thankfully the weather held off and we didn’t waste our time taking the crap 3 hour drive out to winton. . .

Alot of new faces are appearing at these practice days and it seems drifting is still growing its roots in Melbourne, Australia. 
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Matt “I get around like 2pac” Russell – This time in Tassie!

I know what you’re thinking! Where the hell is this Japan update? Good news is its on its way, bad news it will be accompanied with a video! Stay tuned. Any way on the weekend Matt went and did some drifting and as usual he has a story for us without pictures!

So sleep deprived its not funny, but it was worth it.

Yes im talking about Round Two of the Win Networks Tasmanian drifting series that was held last weekend at Baskerville Raceway. As usual, I headed down with a few fellow Victorians to experience the scenery and then cloud that scenery with a haze of smoke and deafening straight pipes.

Thursday afternoon I pulled up at the boat and to my amazement I was greeted by Tom Hamilton, acquainted by his girlfriend Ash unloading Tom’s borrowed R32 four door in the middle of the road, why was I so surprised you ask? Well Tom has this knack of managing to push time limits right out to the point where he once held up the whole spirit of Tassie for nearly half an hour, so it was a pleasant surprise to see him there on time. Alongside helping him were Justin Stockley and Nathan Saunders in the Ascend Automotive JZX100 and in the distance I could hear the rumble of another 1JZ piloted by Nick Wilson through the streets of Port Melbourne.

Nathan & Myself
Nathan and Myself

The journey had begun.

The boat trip was the usual “lets see how many people actually can put up sitting near us” evening. Entrée’s of beer were served followed by a main of beer. Matt (not me, apparently im not the only one in the world) decided he was too classy for beer all night and had managed to smuggle a fine bottle of scotch on board, however his up-marketness later turned into up-throwingness in the toilets. So I figured it was my duty to help him clean up. A hose appeared at the bottom of his locked cubicle and proceeded to gush like a good Christian on his wedding night, however not a sound came from Matt so Nick and I soon retired from the bathroom and proceeded to slap sleeping people until Tom snapped and nearly went postal on Nick.

Tom Hamilton
Tom Hamilton

Nathan, Tom and Stockers managed to quickly find the token spirit of Tassie mental case for the night and took a turn for the worse when they were offered some of his candy, ironically, this guy at one point in the night had two of (what we thought were) his daughters with him, however come morning he left the boat on his lonesome. We too thought it was time to jump ship and start the drive down to Hobart, however before we did that a toilet break was needed, unfortunately a sign read the toilets were closed due to flooding, who knows what happened there?

The drive down was started with Stockers loosing most of the bolts from his exhaust after about 50km, so whilst fixing that I thought it was probably a good time to call the boss and let him know I was feeling a little under the weather, to which he was fine with, because it was the truth, I just didn’t say where or why I was feeling under the weather. Exhaust fixed, boss notified, back on the road. Now Tassie cops have always been pretty good with us, however when one started following us in two bumperless, unregistered JZX100’s an unregistered R32 and a dirty old banged up bucket of bent metal sprinter I thought we had gone too far this time, 20km’s they let us sweat for, then just went around us, seriously, when are they going to give me the reaming I so desperately deserve?

Game day dawned, off to the track we headed, at a nice and early time for once. However there still wasn’t enough time spared for my unexpected turbo oil feed line stripping out of the block for a repair… or was there? Deloraine districts finest Disco Dave Dennis and I got on the job quickly, tapped a new thread through the mangled random sized one in the block, cut the thread off a brand new rack end, drilled a hole down the center of it, then a hole across it, put it in the block and bolted the line to it with a wheel nut. Seriously, WHO THINKS OF THAT? (Martin Croall of Tasmanian mobile mechanics did, but shh). With that done it was time to hit the track.

Matt W and Stockers borrowing a bit of sheet metal

As usual, my first couple of laps I did my house chores of mowing the lawns and cleaning the ripple strips but it soon came back to me. Stockers was figuring out the track very quickly and putting down some good laps, Nick too was getting better lines and angle every lap, Matt Whitcroft was seedily taking photos of young girls in the pits, Tom did some laps before having some car trouble, Nath would have probably been sobering up from the night before and Ash would have been doing something. Yes, it was a Victorian family affair.

Myself entering Turn 1

Tom cutting loose

Nick doing biz

Helped by a few big Tasmanian names being missing, the Vic boys all qualified quite well, still no one was able to match the usual big guns Lloyd Smith and Michael Truscott. Unfortunately however Tom was forced out of the battles due to his borrowed car having some mechanical issues. Nick Wilson was knocked out in the top 16 by Andrew Goss, Nick said he let Gossy (who doubles as our accommodation, yep that’s right, we sleep in him) win as otherwise he would have to sleep outside in the surprisingly not-so-cold Tasmanian weather. Stockers went through to the top eight after having a tough battle with Nick Wedd in his shiny new ride and I managed to knock out Martin Croall in his brand new LS powered S13, I think Martin should source sponsorship from hearing aid companies, because that car of his will send some people seriously deaf.

Stockers vs Truscott
Stockers vs Truscott

Top eight saw Stockers put up a massive fight against a Tactical Truscott, but unfortunately in the end Stockers clearly hadn’t threatened him with a big old “COME AT ME BRO” and got shut down. While I went up against Brad Smith who seemed to have really stepped it up as our battle went through to a re-run, after which I just managed to advance, only to have to battle his younger brother Lloyd in the 1UZ mutant KE70. My lead run I surprisingly manage to pull a small gap from Lloyd and felt very confident. I then put my ear plugs in for the chase run, they were not needed as by the end of the front straight a gap had formed and ultimately ended the day for me, I managed to catch him quite a bit but I suppose it was too little too late.

The battle for third came down to Gossy and I. I pondered my decision, was I to win, and bask in the glory, laugh in the face of Goss? Or was I to loose? And retain my bed inside his house and not have to sleep in the wilderness of Hobart? The former was decided and I “let” the big man claim the third place honours. Full credit to him, he has certainly stepped it up lately, I felt in my chase run that I was really pushing hard to stay up on his door.

Overall the standings saw Lloyd Smith back on top, followed by Truscott, Goss in third and myself in fourth.

But wait, there’s more.

The thing with drifting in Tasmania, the community is very tight knit (NO, not what your thinking, get your mind out of the gutter you pig, just because its Tassie and I said “tight knit” doesn’t mean…) so there is always after event celebrations which usually lead on well into the night. This weekend was no exception. Considering Nath pretty much hadn’t stopped drinking since Thursday, or maybe Wednesday, last week, we got straight onto phoning a taxi, not just a regular taxi, a MAXI TAXI. Now this taxi driver was a little wild, we couldn’t hear over A-kon blasting from the blown speakers, we couldn’t sit up straight from the amounts of understeer we were experiencing through the round-a-bouts but my god, I still managed to plank the shit out of three rows of seats. Arriving at sublime we were greeted by a nice Melbourne styled knife fight out the front, nothing out of the usual, pretty sure as Mr. Knife Man was prompted to again “come at me bro” the knife was dropped and he ran. Time for dinner.

Myself planking in A MAXI TAXI

Now we decided to walk to a new venue, not much to do while walking through Hobart, EXCEPT PLANK EVERYTHING. Matt Whitcroft lead the charge with a nice shop roof plank, however Nath quickly backed it up with a plank across two phone boxes. Nick failed miserably with a pathetic excuse for a plank on a taxi, but Tom bought the standard back up with a nice boat bow plank on the waterfront, which must have made Nath a bit upset that he was being outdone, so a boat may have been untied and pushed away, I can’t confirm or deny this. Some lovely young ladies in the park were told to get off a bench because it was for planking purposes only, to which they replied to just plank them, a good idea until we noticed it wasn’t three girls, just one with three heads. However there were some other girls who had come up with a new fad called “oh-yeah” (basically vertical dry humping) who were much more aesthetically pleasing, until one had a stumble and cut her toe to which Gossy used his first aid knowledge to bandage it up with some leaves. Nice one Gossy (he still went home alone).


I have no idea where the night headed after this, I remember Nath introducing a club to a thing called shuffling, it was quite amusing watching the whole dance floor at a club try and imitate one person’s moves, that look somewhat like someone having a fit standing up. However as 5am struck it was time to go home, with who else but the same taxi driver who drove us there in the first place (stalking creep). As tired as we all were, the driver still insisted on finding us some company, and proceeded to ask all the passed out gutter girls if they wanted to come with us, surprisingly none did, so we went home.

Sunday was a very slow day, I fixed up the car a little and in the late afternoon headed to the airport to fly home, only to be delayed by two hours (thanks tiger). The others stayed another night and got the old familiar boat home with their road vessels.

A big thanks again goes out to Karl and the guys at Unique automotive, Nath at Ascend automotive and JDI fabrications. Also, Gossy for the always welcoming accommodation and the Drifting Tasmania committee for again putting on another great event.

Unfortunately as much fun as we had the weekend ended on a sad note with the passing of Nath’s pop on Monday morning, for those of you who know Nathan Saunders and his pop Kevin you would know how close they were as family, friends, even housemates. I only met Kevin a handful of times however the close bond between he and Nathan, always helping at the track, giving Nath lifts here and there and the other things behind the scenes show how much of a nice, genuine person he was My deepest sympathies go out to Nath, his brother and the rest of their family. R.I.P. Kevin Saunders.

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Matt “No Pictures” Russell with the lowdown

Once again our man Matt “No Pictures” Russell supplies a story from his weekend of drift. This time its Drift Supercup at Mallala in Adelaide. We will have to get one of his ‘mates’ to acquire him a camera for his next trip!

For your visual pleasure here are some pictures racked from facebook to aid in the story.

Leigh Pidwell, Matt Russel.

Albert Smart

Davey Clarke

Well its now Tuesday evening and I think I have finally got the last of the S.A. water taste out of my mouth. You guys need to sort that out, its like I do my teeth, then rinse and have to do my teeth all over again.

Massive long weekend for me. Started on Thursday getting up at 5.30 for work, not long later Nick Wilson calls to say that theres drama’s with his tow driver and car, and is on his way to find his own tow car but he does’nt want to do the trip to Adelaide on his own, so I think to myself, who would be a suitable passenger? This person must not only be loud, full of random knowledge that no one really needs to know, speak Spanish, Indonesian, German and Japanese, some Indian (its Adelaide after all, got to be prepared for anything) and be slightly annoying enough to keep someone awake for 9 hours. Albert Smart seemed the perfect option, but a back up was needed. Who has no job or any real commitment’s and therefore would definatly be free to accompany someone to Adelaide, you guessed it, Leigh “registered sex-offender” Pidwell. Now that was sorted, I could get on with my day.

Eventually after numerous delays throughout the afternoon and evening we were ready to leave at 10pm, so myself and Karl Matatassoniniousosopolous hopped into the “Five leedah” wagon and with Nick following in the Prado with the remaining two members of the A-team we were Adelaide bound. As you can expect, such a long drive was’nt too exciting, so I wont go into this really. There were a few stops along the way but basically as the clock struck 7am S.A. time (

The day seems to drag on, with everyone too tired to do anything, yet not willing to destroy sleeping habits by sleeping all day we sat around doing nothing. Leigh explained it was a strange feeling to be awake at 10am, something he has’nt done since he was 13 years old aparantly, so to celebrate, a $24-a slab beer was cracked and by 6.30 we were asleep on the couches.

Finally saturday, as I had never seen the track before I was itching to get there, some say it was crabs, but I say it was excitement. As we rolled into the track we were greeted by clouds, not a friendly sight. The rain carried on throught the morning, making for some interesting runs for myself having never driven the track, nor driven my car in the wet. I couldnt figure out why my car was going to full lock then getting stuck there. Sure enough I had snapped my lock stop off and my knuckle (JDI track spec, for those of you playing at home) was getting stuck ontop of my LCA. After much deliberation and qualifying quickly approaching it only seemed logical to cable tie a C-spanner to my LCA as a lock stop (take that scrutineering). Worked perfectly all weekend.

Qualifying went down well, It dried up and I was loving the track. I kept my eye on the sky and managed to complete my final qualifying run as the rain started to fall on my windscreen. I ended up 5th qualifyer which i was pretty happy with. Nick Wilson put in a good effort to make 9th. Meanwhile over in pro, im not sure where fellow Victorian Matt Goodlet qualifyed but he certainly was putting in some nice lines in his crab walking 32. Unfortunatly speaking of 32’s, Chris Johnson managed to smash some tight box… ah, gearbox which ended his day quickly.

Saturday night was spent under a car on a outdoor hoist dropping Chris’s busted box and watching Karl, the guru of everything go to work rebuilding. Typical of Leigh, as soon as hard work was mentioned at the track, he decided to leave with someone else. However when the person who Leigh was meant to be with called me asking if I had seen him I knew Leigh would be in full form. The local primary schools were notifyed and police were on call.

Sunday comes around, time to get down to business. Leigh turned up looking a little worse for wear and not having any idea where he had really been. Nick and myself both managed to be bi, I mean, get a bye in the top 32 which very nicely meant we went straight into the top 16. Unfortunatly Nick came up against one of the top qualifyers in a 31 and was knocked out, whilst I had a tough battle with Kelly Wong in her Cefiro and eventually got through to the top eight. I struck it pretty lucky with the weather on the sunday, it always seemed to dry up before my battles. The top 8, I mangaed to knock out the “Urban Chicken R33”, such a strange name for a car, yet it did make me quite hungry. Food was in order, so over to the cheap health food vans for some quality grub, however my appetite was somewhat ruined by a young mother-to-be telling me how it would be so much easier if they just ripped babies out by the f*c*ing legs. Good god, where was Albert when you needed him.

The top four saw my having to battle the number one qualifyer. I knew it would be hard, but I seemed to handle my chase run reletively well however I cracked under pressure in my lead run and put the sprinter backwards in the first corner, effectively ending my aspirations to battle Davey Clarke (life long dream) in the final. Instead I went into the battle for third with Phil Branson(?) who luckily for me was having clutch issues which allowed me to go under him in my chase run and take the battle for third place.

All in all a good weekend I thought. The car still runs, no one is locked up and Racin’ Jason (Commentator) finally worked out that my name is in fact Matt and not Mitchell. Big congratulations too all the competitors, especially Davey Clarke (1st, street), Adam (or Aaron? Sorry man) Cece (2nd, street). Also Simon Michelmore, Tom Monkhouse and Christian Pickering (top three in pro).

Theres one thing I must ask though, why are we Victorians know as Mexicans over there, Is’nt Mexico usually regarded as South of the border? Last map I looked at we were East of you guys. Oh well, we can let that slip as you know how to put together a damn good event with some damn good drivers. Kudos to you Drift supercup / Mallala raceway.

I would like to thank Karl at Unique Automotive
– Matt Russell