Our friends at Ebisu Circuit just can’t seem to catch a break.
Almost 10 years on from the March 11, 2011 Tohoku earthquake that devastated northern parts of Japan, another strong quake hit.
While most areas escaped damage, the same can’t be said for Ebisu Circuit and Tohoku Safari Park, both located up in the mountains above Nihonmatsu City.
While the epicenter of the 7.3-magnitude quake was out on the Pacific Ocean bed, Fukushima Prefecture felt a 6.0 tremor which went on for a very long two minutes. What you see here is the resulting damage at Ebisu.
A large landslide saw the side of the hill on which Drift Land is perched, slip down and cover part of the main straight, pit lane, and pit building on Ebisu’s Nishi Course.
Social media was instantly bombarded with images of the landslide, but Nobushige Kumakubo – pro drifter, D1 champion, and the owner of the facility – asked that people gave him time to properly assess the damage and figure out what to do before even thinking about accepting all the offers of help that came rushing in.
Which explains why we’re talking about this now, some three weeks after the earthquake occurred.
In that time, Kumakubo and his team have already begun the clean up work, and have collectively figured out how the remediation should be approached. This week they have launched an official donations page, which you can access here.
On top of the hit Ebisu has been taking from COVID-19, it’s tragic to see these images; it feels like bad déjà vu from a decade ago. Above you can see how the top section of the pit buildings have been damaged, and the total loss of some support vehicles.
On top of what has been shared online, the damage actually extends to other buildings around the greater facility, too. Some of the cars that were parked inside garages at the time of the quake didn’t fare well either.
After what Ebisu Circuit and its extended family that spans from this amazing venue has done for drift culture over the years, it’s time for the community to give back.
I guess the first and easiest way right now is to offer your support by donating what you can, with the hope that Ebisu will be back on its feet soon.
Dino Dalle Carbonare
Photos by Powervehicles