Mount Alma Mile Hillclimb 2014

MtAlma2014 1276Kevin Mackrell has thundered his way to another consecutive 4WD outright victory in the Mount Alma Mile hillclimb, held recently at Inman Valley on the scenic Fleurieu Peninsula. Behind the wheel of his all-conquering V8 powered Datsun 260Z, Mackrell held a firm grip on the two-day event, overcoming a five second penalty to take the win.

MtAlma2014 1277The 2WD category was won by Clinton Faustmann in the REVS/Faustune prepared FD RX7, who wrangled the flame spitting rotor up the hill slightly quicker than Jason Unkovich, who claimed third outright 2WD in the same car.

MtAlma2014 1320The big battle all weekend was between Mackrell and the Supaloc Racing Lamborghini Gallardo Superleggera of Kevin Weeks, now sporting a fresh twin turbo setup. Weeks was still a fraction off Mackrell’s times, but the noise of the forced induction Italian V10 outclassed the 260Z in every way. It was spine tingling and worth coming just to listen to it alone. Continue reading

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2013 Ben Simpson Memorial Cruise

A_DSC_0230Easily over six hundred cars. But not just six hundred cars – over six hundred enthusiast cars. By my estimation, that’s how many vehicles attended the Ben Simpson Memorial cruise last Saturday night.

LamboPut on by the Nissansilvia.com/ Hardtuned.net forum guys, the Ben Simpson Memorial Cruise is one of the biggest annual events run by the forum. So what exactly is it?

A_DSC_0158I’m sure you’ve all seen these R.I.P drift_pig13 stickers around. That is the forum alias used by Ben Simpson on the Nissansilvia.com forum, who sadly took his own life a few years ago. After Ben’s death, his parents actively got involved in the Japanese car scene, and used it as a vehicle to promote mental health awareness so that their son’s death need not be in vein. ‘The Olds’, as they are popularly known, have since owned a range of Japanese performance cars and have become well-known fixtures of the Hardtuned.net forum.

A_DSC_0211Each year they hold a fundraising memorial megacruise in his honor, which has quickly become one of the biggest cruises in South Australia. The sheer number, and quality, of cars in attendance was huge. Continue reading

Drifting for non drifters – the September Matsuri

So I’ll be honest – I’ve never much been a fan of drifting. I think some of the cars are cool, and I’d really, really love to give it a go, but despite its rapid gain in popularity all over the world, it’s never really been something that’s grabbed me. I’ve taken a passing interest in it on other blogs, but sports cars, rallying and road racing always piqued my interests that little bit more and I’m willing to bet that most readers of Any Given Reason probably fall into the same boat.

But there are a few readers that love their drifting, and recently they suggested that I really ought to come out to an event and have a look for myself. So with an open mind, a blank camera memory card and the accompaniment of fellow drift-noob James Wiltshire, I headed out to Mallala for the September Matsuri.

You know there’s a drift day happening when you can see the tyre smoke hanging low in the air before you even get to the track. This was taken from the road to Mallala, just outside the township.

So first off, what is Matsuri? It’s a style of event that originated in Japan (as everything drift seems to), and is basically an anything goes, run what ya brung freestyle event. There’s no judging and no rules on what you can drive – it’s just you and an open drift track. From what I’ve read on other blogs, Matsuri events in Japan are wild – they often run straight for 24 hours with no rules or anybody really running the show. Crashes, bodging up damaged cars, drinking, stunts. Everything goes.

Australian Matsuri events are nowhere near as wild. There’s still no judging and no real regulations on what you can drive, but the events are controlled for safety. The field is split into two groups based on experience, and these groups rotate with 30-45min long sessions throughout the event. The September event ran from 10am-10pm, a straight 12 hours of drift action.

There were a couple of really clean cars there, like this 180SX Type X, but on the whole the standard of car preparation was very low. For someone who’s used to the rigours of CAMS scruitineers, I struggled to believe a few of the things I saw. Continue reading