For the full Drift Matsuri experience one truly has to witness what goes on at night at Ebisu, if not from the behind the wheel, at least as a spectator. After grabbing some food at the BBQ that Andy and Emily of Powervehicles organized, Casey and I went out around the dark extremities of tracks like Minami and Kita to bring you this post, dedicated exclusively to the night action.
This shot gives you a good idea of the track layout at Minami, the famous D1 track that every drifter in the world dreams of sliding on.
The School course is probably the best illuminated track, and because of this there is non-stop action throughout Saturday night.
Every entrant to the Matsuri is entitled to chow down on the complimentary BBQ that is set up right in front of the restaurants. I grabbed this shot as Ebisu Staff were getting the massive bonfire started.
While most of the action always seems to happen down in Minami I always try to trek up to Kita, the North course…
…because, where there is a concrete wall, there will always be those that will be trying to clip it! Here is Stewy Bryant with his R32 Skyline giving it a good try.
Some of the Dutch guys that were over with Paul were out in this PRS13 with massive overfenders.
Alexi from Noriyaro hard on the handbrake as he gets the car sideways for the first corner.
Andy ended up blowing one of his rear tires so it was off to the garage for a new set!
The action kind of died down so it was time to move around once again.
Casey snapped this shot as dusk gave way to the night skies over Minami.
As soon as Casey and I are done with the Matsuri coverage you can expect to see some cool spotlights, one of them being this very mean S13…
…that we already saw during the G1 coverage. Casey disappeared with the car during the final of the gaijin drift competition, so I'm also curious to see the shots!
No matter how cool the drifting is around the track it is always Minami that attracts the biggest turnout…
…as things get pretty wild in the wee hours of the morning.
This is Leigh Pidwell with what remains of his Tourer V blasting towards the main corner at insane speed and angle.
You really can't go wrong with a Rocket Bunny ducktail spoiler on an S14!
Drifting at night really does assume an almost surreal flavor that is very hard to put into words, but I think these shots help portray the pure awesomeness of it all.
The pits double up as a zone for spectators where onlookers edge the drivers shooting down the famous Minami drop, to get as close as they dare to the wall.
After lap upon lap out on track the tires will eventually delaminate and let go, but for a short time before the "big bang" the wheels look like they are on fire!
A big Crown out in the Minami infield.
Push your car hard and the night will reveal some things that just can't be seen as well during the day. This is the glowing exhaust manifold and turbine of Erin's Laurel from JDM Garage.
The Matsuri's favorite missile, still sporting the roof-mounted headlights and grille!
Wagon drifting is just too cool isn't it?
This is what the paddock at Minami looked like at around 3 am.
Not there to drift but to look impossibly mean…
…Casey found it hard to resist snapping a few shots of this Celsior. Another fitting addition to our Haulers & Sedan month!
I think we probably haven't featured many AE86 this time round, as there weren't quite as many as in Summer and Spring events.
I really hope you enjoyed the extensive night action we have put for together on this post. To conclude our coverage of the 2010 Autumn Drift Matsuri we have one final post to go, so make sure you don't miss it!
-Dino Dalle Carbonare