Moving onto Part 3 from my Japanese adventure, this post is dedicated to my time at Ebisu Circuit, which swallowed up the final week of my trip. Seeing such a hallowed drifting ground in person was a phenomenal experience.
The first track at Ebisu we came across was the School course. Early Thursday morning hundreds of cars rolled in the gates in preparation for G1GP and the Autum Matsuri. This FC RX-7 was particularly photogenic.
Continuing on my journey around Ebisu, I ended up at the base of the Touge course. This has to be the scariest, craziest, funnest track I’ve ever been a passenger on. I ended up stalking this JZZ30 Soarer from the School course to here. I waited patiently for him to pass the last hairpin before I sprinted up the hill and positioned myself up on the bank. From this view I could see up towards the second last corner…
…Which is a very steep decent into a tight right-handed hairpin…
…Down to the final corner being the sharp left hairpin. Those Blitz 03s look amazing locked up on the ass of that Soarer!
Heading back up the hill into a long consistent left hand bend. I love the fact they have encorporated a real street feel into this course. Note: the street sign on the left and the road markings.
After watching a number of cars drive on the Touge course I got the bottom just as the boys from Osaka rolled in, including a few Aussies! Here is Shane Bingham’s X creation that now belongs to an Australian driver.
I wasn’t at all shocked to see John Dollison climb out of the window of this S13.
Here is Shane Bingham’s new 180SX alongside his quad bike for trekking around Ebisu. Oh, and yes, he drove the car like this from Osaka to Nihonmatsu without any trouble with the police!
It was quite a strange feeling being at Ebisu and seeing so many Australians there. Leigh Pidwell came down from the garage and greeted everyone. Shortly after this I found myself in his passenger seat heading up the Touge course for some shots right out the back.
Laying down 450ps worth of power to the ground. Here is some raw footage of Leigh.
As Dino was hired to cover the WDSC event I gladly lent him my 400mm. Here he is with his right hand man, JC.
The following day brought the Gaijin Drifting competition which looked to have a strong playing field with around 50 entrants from across the globe. Andy from Powervehicles recently changed the face on his 180SX to a S15 front.
There was plenty of other media on the day too.
Andy’s wife Emily did extremely well as the only female in the competition.
Immediately after the competition had ended, hundreds of cars flooded to each track to set up camp for Matsuri.
It’s almost like this cute Hachi Roku was winking at me.
The next day the pits were packed and it was just complete chaos everywhere you went. This B310 Sunny was a personal favourite, sitting on a pair of SSR Mark IIs and Advan Tri-Spokes. Such an 80’s combination.
This was one of my favourite cars from the whole time at Ebisu.
You simply cannot go wrong with a Type X 180SX slammed on a set of TE37s. Here it is exiting the final turn on Driftland, taking the wide line…
…And extending into the first corner.
As the day turned to night the action started to get interesting. I made my way down to the East course where there was both drifting and grip racing on.
Here’s an S13 bottom right of the frame, taking the wide line and dropping a wheel. Looks like such a fun track!
For an hour or so I decided that I would give the little camera some time to recover whilst I went for some passenger rides with Shane Bingham around the School course. After several laps we clipped one of the very many large drop offs on the third apex, slashing the tire and unexpectedly breaking a fuel pump. After a few phone calls the boys had the parts organised through K-Style back in Nihonmatsu. This is a shot whilst I was sitting in the car right after the minor incident.
This Toyota Celsior was absolutely gorgeous, mixing style and comfort. What more could you possibly want.
Late Saturday night this S14 entered Minami on the back of a truck. I was extremely excited to see it run.
After a few hours sleep back in Nihonmatsu we woke up quite early finding ourselves back at the track at the crack of dawn. Giving us plenty of motivation to wake up was this JZX kitted S14 tearing Minami…
Being the most intense track, it was without a doubt the best to watch.
If there was a favourite Missile car, I would nominate this beaten up Laurel. I was honestly blown away by the level of his driving.
A couple of Shane Bingham’s creations.
This was the perfect example of a JZX.
This S14 stood out from the rest. It looked a little too clean to be driving at a Matsuri.
Powered by a SR20DE, the driver wasn’t holding back one bit on Minami. Here he is only millimetres from the wall.
I made my way up the steep incline to the North course where the Big Entry competition was taking place. Unfortunately I missed out on the action but made it for the games and prizes.
After announcing the winner, the action continued.
The pit bays at School course were completely full. Some interesting cars where out, including Drift Samurai’s beige FC RX-7.
Cars entering the track one after another, it eventually turned into a large drift train. All the drivers put on a spectacular scene for the spectators.
Before we knew it, the sun had made its way behind the mountains and that chilly cool air was back in a flash. At this time I was wandering through the old cars that have been sitting at Ebisu for years. One of the most interesting ones I came across was this very sad looking R31 Skyline. I’d really appreciate it if you took a few minutes to watch this video of it ripping up Minami quite a few years ago. It really is quite sad…
And a rear shot of it, surrounded by many, many more unused cars.
I hope you enjoyed a behind the scenes look at my trip to Japan. I still can’t believe some of the sights we saw whilst visiting, everying was truly breathtaking. I’d also like to thank all the people who helped out with trip, much appreciated!
I’ll leave you with this clip from Minami of some 4 wheel jumping, Enjoy!
Behind The Scenes – Part One
Behind The Scenes – Part Two