At the 2020 Drift Masters King of Riga event held in Latvia a few weeks ago, no less than four HGK E92 Eurofighters lined up to compete. I thought about the different photo opportunities this could present, the ultimate being a four-car drift train on the final turn of the Bikernieki track layout.
On my morning walk through the paddock, I saw HGK’s Kristaps Blušs casually sitting near his car, so decided to bounce my idea off him. He smiled, said it would be good, but perhaps too hard to organize with just a half hour before the competition started. That was true, so I continued my pit walk. But moments later, Kristaps caught up to me on his scooter and said that we could do a static shoot in 15 minutes. He seemed excited; I definitely was.
We met at an area of Bikernieki named Witch Kettle, which is utilized by some drift events but not Drift Masters. This section is deep in the woods with plenty of bends and blind crest-forming elevation changes.
Kristaps, James Deane, and brothers Linus and Victor Joensuu made their way to the location. Kristaps himself orchestrated the position of every car, and I was surprised at how spot on he was with his vision.
The scene looked absolutely perfect through my viewfinder.
These beefed-up BMW 3 Series drift weapons look similar, but they’re actually very different.
We’re all familiar with Kristaps’ OG Eurofighter and its powerful Mast Motorsports LS engine – the only V8-powered E92 of the group. Both Swedish drift brothers and the Irish three-times FD champion use straight-six engines with BorgWarner EFR 9180 turbochargers in their cars; Linus and Victor opting for BMW’s S54B32 (E46 M3) offering, and James going with Toyota’s venerable 2JZ.
As I was picking out the differences between these builds, the shoot came to an end; the drivers needed to prepare for competition. The HGK train slowly made its way back to the paddock; united but ready to battle.
The want is real