The Speedhunters Awards gives our community a chance to voice their opinions, with each of the winners chosen by public vote. This year our Awards expanded to 19 categories, allowing you to vote on many facets of car culture. And now, with 2012 upon us, it's time to announce the remainder of our winners, including the 2011 Speedhunters Car of the Year.
3rd – Event of the Year: 24 Hours of Le Mans
2nd – Event of the Year: World Time Attack Challenge
Winner Event of the Year: Gatebil
Every week we serve up a selection of events from around the world and you, our readers, picked Gatebil as your Event of the Year. The three day festival in Rudskogen, Norway was the clear favourite with last year's winner, the World Time Attack Challenge, slipping to second. In third is 24 Hours of Le Mans, which served up non-stop drama from flag to flag.
3rd TIE – Champion of the Year: Gaz Whiter
3rd TIE – Champion of the Year: Daijiro Yoshihara
2nd – Champion of the Year: Sebastien Loeb
Winner Champion of the Year: Sebastian Vettel
For a second year running, the Speedhunters readers voted Sebastian Vettel as their Champion of the Year. In 2011 the German backed up his Formula 1 championship in dominating style and continued to add to his growing list of 'youngest ever' F1 records. The runner-up was WRC's Sebastien Loeb, who this year claimed an astonishing eight world championships. In a row. Third place was tied between Daijiro Yoshihara and Gaz Whiter, two drifting champions separated by some 6,500 odd miles.
3rd – Personality of the Year: Walker Wilkerson
2nd – Personality of the Year: Nakai-san
Winner Personality of the Year: Mike Burroughs
Mike Burroughs is the Personality of the Year. Mike, a founder of StanceWorks, is also known for his Rusty BMW, which was voted the 2010 Speedhunters Car of the Year. Nakai-san was our runner-up. 2011 proved to be a definitive year for the Japanese car builder, with RWB's popularity spreading globally. In third was FD rookie Walker Wilkerson. Finishing in fourth and fifth respectively were Team Need for Speed team-mates Fredric Aasbo and Matt Powers.
3rd – Magazine of the Year: Top Gear
2nd – Magazine of the Year: NZ Performance Car
Winner Magazine of the Year: Redline Magazine
A new addition to the Speedhunters Awards is Magazine of the Year, and our inaugural winner is Redline Magazine. Sadly Redline ceased publication in 2011, but it will long be remembered by their fans.
3rd – Moment of the Year: Tarzan Yamada lap record at WTAC
2nd – Moment of the Year: Pikes Peak
Winner Moment of the Year: 86 launch
Above is the moment many of us will remember 2011 by. The unveiling of the 86 was the culmination of so many years of hype and speculation, and in the Speedhunters Awards it was the clear winner. In second was this year's Pikes Peak; the last time the course will include unsealed sections. Tarzan Yamada's record breaking lap at World Time Attack Challenge was voted third, scoring just half a percent more than Allan McNish's crash at Le Mans.
3rd – Car of the Year: Touge Factory's Four Six Customs Silvia
2nd – Car of the Year: Fatlace Skyline
Winner Car of the Year: Mad Mike Whiddett's MADBUL Mazda RX-7
And finally we come to the Speedhunters Car of the Year. This award sees the category winners pooled together for a final round of voting, and this year you appointed Mad Mike as the best of the best. His Red Bull / Team Need for Speed MADBUL RX-7 is now in its fifth generation, and arguably it's the best yet.
Of course Mad Mike is no stranger to the Speedhunters Awards, having won three Pro Drift Car of the Year titles in a row. His RX-7 – in an earlier guise – was the 2009 Drift Car of the Year. Last year, it was his RX-8 that took out the same award again.
The RX-7 was comprehensively revised this year, including a new quad rotor peripheral port setup. Although the FD is now cloaked in war paint, it's still immediately recognisable as a Mad Mike creation.
Congratulations to all of the winners in this year's Speedhunters Awards, and thank you to everyone who voted.
On behalf of everyone here at Speedhunters we'd like to wish you a great New Year!
- Charles Kha