Guest Blog:>> Sideways In Romania’s Capital

Many of Europe's best drifters converged on Bucharest, the capital of Romania, for the Drift Grand Prix.

With the Palace of Parliament as the stunning backdrop, this street drift event was certainly breathtaking.

Drivers came from many different countries, including Poland, Germany, Finland, Switzerland, Slovakia, Hungary, Bulgaria, Serbia, Ireland, the UK and of course Romania.

The paddock area was crowded with almost 50 cars, ranging from BMWs to Nissans.

Nikkolet Szanto was the only female driver in the competition. She brought her M5 V8 powered BMW Z4 from Hungary, which is actually for sale at the moment. 

So let's do a "briefing" of our own, so you get a better idea of the track layout. The cars start on the left side of this picture. They would go downhill, full throttle, in some cases reaching speeds of 160 kph. They would then initiate the drift, going through the outer clip zone, and heading towards the next one, while drifting across 6 lanes.  Afterwards they go in for the right hand transition, keeping their speed up, and with somewhat limited visibility through the corner. From this high speed tarmac zone they would go onto a more technical section on a paved surface.

That said, you really had to see the track for yourself to comprehend the magnitude of this event. Quite a few people are still shocked that drifting was allowed to take place right outside the People's Palace.

The Dragon Performance RX-7 was one of the most popular drift machines at the event.

This Polish-built S14 is part of the RB Drift Team. There's an LS2 under the hood and it was driven by Bartosz Stolarski. Its V8 roar could be heard bouncing through the streets of Constitution Square.

One of the more interesting drift cars was this two-door Subaru Impreza which is powered by a RB27 motor. It came over from the UK and was driven by Walton Smith.

A total of eight cars made the trip from Poland for this event. Mateusz Wlodarczyk was driving this 4 door M3 E46, and, as you would expect, this car couldn't have been competitive enough with the stock engine. It's now sporting a much needed supercharger!

The field had drivers from many different competitions, with champions mixing it against up and comers.

The large crowds were able to watch the action from the lawn of the People's Palace.

However only these Top 16 would be in the main show, battling against one another. 

Walton Smith went up against Pawel Trela and the two drivers put down an impressive fight for the Top 8 spot.

We snapped this photo of Brad Hacker who was rushing to to the starting line. 

Brad was going up against Romanian driver Marius Mitrache, who was in a near stock R33 Skyline. With only 300hp at his disposal, many thought it was a miracle that he was able to make it into the Top 16. 

The drifting continued into the night under lights. 

It was an all-Irish battle when Nigel Colfer went up against Brendan Stone, who was driving Wesley Keatings' car, after his own S15 had broken down.

Colfer was the favourite, however Stone was seemingly unbothered by the fact he hadn't driven the borrowed car before. Stone knocked out Colfer.

In a battle between two quite different BMWs, the older E30 was the one to take the win, with Grzegorz Hypki moving on to the semi-final.

One of the other Top 8 Battles was the one between Polish driver Bartosz Stolarski (V8 S14) and Australian Brad Hacker (above). Stolarski literally left Hacker sitting in a cloud of smoke. 

The most intense battle of the day was between Grzegorz Hypki and Pawel Trela. A second One More Time had to be called, as the judges were not able to decide who should take the win.

Unfortunately, that's when Hypki hit the outside, with both cars colliding at over 100km/h. Both cars sustained heavy damage and everyone held their breath for a few moments.

Thankfully both drivers emerged unscathed.

After some very hard battling, Brendan Stone was the one to take the win. Making his victory even more impressive, is the fact he was driving a borrowed car!

- Dragos

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nice wrap up

Would be nice to mention the top qualified Bojan Kurbalija from serbia.


brendan stone,nigel colfer, walton smith are all irish.


There was alot of Irish over there THANKS FOR THE MENTION > : (


Incredible event !


Awesome pictures and an awesome write-up! It's great to see such a large street event, something that won't happen in the UK on a scale like that.

One thing I have to correct you on though, Brad Hacker is a Bristolian through and through, no Australian in him!


Wow....what an amazing backdrop, the course looked amazing aswell.

Nice job all, looked like the event was well attended.


Hailin` all the way from Romania!! Nice to see here a wrap up from my country. I didn't have the chance to go to the event...but I believe was extraodinary. Keep them comin'!!


This article gets me really excited for the future of motorsports. Seeing drift competitions in nearly every corner of the globe is really impressive considering it came from a small group of drivers in Japan. I think it's the diversity in culture and style that's gonna carry the sport forward.


Stone and Colfer are most definately NOT from d uk....its IRELAND!!!


Brendan Stone aka "OMT guy" :P


amazing shots, amazing venue with amazing drivers. we need some street drift events here in the states, this must have been more then greatness live.


in my opinion the difficulty of the track was for novice....not really hard


Yeah! Yeah! I'm from Romania and attended the event, it was pretty darn cold, I wasn't ready for that aaaand my camera batery was running low, so I took a few shots of practice and the paddock area and unfortunately that was it for me... However I gotta tell you, the cold didn't seem to bother any driver one bit, in fact they were having a blast with Brendan Stone being smiles all day and acting as if it was his birthday or maybe that's just the way he is.

Also had the pleasure to meet Walton Smith, great guy always open for a good chat.

Romania might not currently be in its greatest state, but enthusiasts keep pushing forward and made this event possible. The fact that it was authorized in front of the People's House is proof that drifting is still growing and on its way to being recognized as a world class motorsport discipline.


Great write up, kind of sends thrills down my spine when I see the pictures. It really was an awesome event...


Wasn't this on a episode of Top Gear? they drove through the tunnels underneath it or something


Australian Brad.... ftw lol ;)


people who ve seen top16 in livestream know that judges were favoring Stone that's why he won.


I watched it on livestream


Ireland isn't part of the Uk


That pic of Brad Hacker's RX7 with smoke in the background is brilliant


Talking about Romania, it would be a true pleasure for our senses to see a drifting contest through the Transfagarasan road:


Thanks to the considerable judges decisions during the whole event brendan stone got a new nick name Mr.OneMoreTime. Bitter win!


Her name is Nikolett Szanto.


@ BeefPantsMcGeeeee: You're right, that building was feature on Top Gear were they drove through the "secret" tunnels.

Regarding the article, Walton Smith's Subaru wasn't running an RB25, but a RB26 engine conversion.


Anyone kn0w what that little black car at the right in the first pic is? i like little cars.




POLAND rulez!!!!

We've got 7 drivers in top 16.

3 drivers in TOP 4.


Nice pictures, stupid write up with lots of noob mistakes


very disappointing write up, winner not given credit where it was due and pictures are amateur quality


This was EPIC

20,000 fans at night screaming louder then most football games

Full 100% street course

Livestream worlwide with 5000 fans tuning in

National LIVE tv coverage going out to 3 millions viewers!!


europe needs help with its car style


I'm interested in purchasing Hungary.

How much are they asking?


Poland ;) !!!


I was there and it was amaizing! Too bad for the accident, but at that hour the grip had change and the outside temperature has dropped by 23 PM at just 2 C....