This is Tetsuya Hibino’s Formula Drift Japan machine, which I can safely say looked like nothing else in the Fuji Speedway paddock on the day.
Built by Rush Motor Sports in Gifu Prefecture, it’s the first pro-spec drift car I’ve ever seen based on a BCNR33 chassis. The exterior mixes a stock look with factory front and rear bumpers and massively widened front fenders to accommodate a huge amount of steering angle.
The R33 sits on Mikado Hayabusa wheels, which look very different to any design we’ve ever seen come out of Japan in the past.
Round 1 of Formula Drift Japan was held during the Japan Motor Games last July 11-12 at the Fuji International Speedway. Here’s a look on the drivers paddock, demo cars and a special Rotary 0nly meet. Enjoy the photos.
It may surprise you guys, but up until very recently I had never shot a professional drifting event in Japan. Sure, I’ve visited the Land of the Rising Sun dozens of times for the Tokyo Auto Salon and sportscar racing, but never a D1 Grand Prix event. Ironically though, my first taste of pro drift in this country was not at a D1GP round, but Formula Drift Japan held at Fuji Speedway a couple of weekends ago.
A few years ago I would never have imagined that a Formula Drift event would – or could – be held in Japan.