Article and Photography by Corey Davis
With summer on its way out, most of Colorado’s big automotive events have come and gone, but we often hear the saying that the best is saved for last, and Triple Crown Drift Week August 15–17 was no exception. TC Drift Week was a three-day drift and lifestyle event right in our own backyard. Drifters, crew, family, and friends all gathered at one of the most capable local venues—PPIR. With four different tracks, a gymkhana course, drift kart, autocross, and the main drift track, the event wasn’t lacking in tire smoke.
Thursday kicked off Drift Week, as crews began trickling in and setting up camp in time for the 7 a.m. gate opening. Tech inspection ran throughout most of the day, offering a brief break from the sun under the paddocks. Before the first open track took place, all drivers had to get the lowdown at the mandatory drivers meeting, which gave drifters insight into the tracks they would be running and also differentiated between the four different classes: Grassroots B—beginners, single drivers; Grassroots A—Amateur, the cageless tandem competition; Pro-Am—current or past Pro-Am drivers; and Pros—current or past licensed drivers.
Among the Pro drivers were the likes of Matt Field, Kasey King, Tony Angelo, Eric Hill, Brandon Wicknick, Dan Brockett, Travis Avery, Steve Mass, Kasey Kohl, Jim Guthrie, Danny Alsop, Frank Cundari, Levi Wait, and Eric Costen. Having pros like these who normally compete in Formula D events appear at a first-time event is significant and paves the way for more competition and excitement in the years to come.
Also present at the drivers meeting were the three judges of the event, Nick Dizon, Corey Hosford, and current Formula D points leader Chris Forsberg. Each judge scored drivers in three different areas: speed, line, and angle. The best score possible is 100, with 10 of those points coming from the "style” of each category. With so much going into the scoring of a drift event, we recommend you take a look at this article on Formula Drift’s website @ https://formulad.com/info/judging-info.php.
Chris Forsberg laying down the law at the drivers meeting.
After the drivers meeting, the tracks opened for a full day of open track time. The judges warned about going all out, as this was just practice and a time to dial in their chassis. Take it easy they said. This event was three full days of drifting bliss. But let’s be real here; do drifters ever NOT go all out? Thursday was particularly entertaining for the few spectators who were lucky enough to get off work. Ride-alongs were plentiful, and the Revv crew definitely couldn’t pass up some sideways action.
Yes, that front right wheel is not touching the track.
Catching some rays in the Rocky Mountain Sun.
Loved the finish on these wheels.
We arrived early Friday morning to see more people camped out all over the pits and in most cases still fast asleep. It was the calm before the storm. After everyone was awake, tech inspection continued for people who stopped by. It was awesome seeing crews from surrounding states who had made the journey just to be part of Drift Week. It seemed as though a lot of people were "sick” on Friday having taken off from work, as spectators showed up in force throughout the day. Qualifying for each class took place all day and well into the evening.
Camping done right.
The TC Drift Crew representing.
A little Drift carnage.
Gotta keep cool!
After an endless day in the sun, it was time to party long into the night. The Sickest Entry Contest started off the night with drivers from all classes competing to see who could take the most ridiculous line into the course. The track setup lent itself well because of the large right-hand banking turn into the road course. Brandon Wicknick ended up taking home the cash.
While taking a video I accidentally dropped my phone. I was positive Matt Field was going to hit it because of how wide he was going. Thankfully it survived!
Brandon gettin that money!
Things got wild when the Nationwide Productions crew showed up. A small car show took place in the PPIR paddocks and featured some of the most well-known rides in the Colorado car scene. To top it off, NWP orchestrated a 1/8 Mile Drag Grudge Match that opened up along the straight in front of the grandstand. Meanwhile, the track was open for drifters, and the sound of revving engines filled the air all night long.
Right after lunch on Saturday, the main event began. Once everyone was warmed up from the Competition Practice, tandems began to run. First up was the Grass Roots A, followed by Pro Am and finally Pro.
Adding to the excitement was the live streaming coverage from CBS Sports. Drift Week was announced by the voice of Formula Drift, Jarod DeAnda, who narrated the entire event turn by turn. Not bad!
The two point leaders from qualifying were Matt Field in his sick S14 and Anthony Angelo in his turbo FR-S. Given their stature (Formula Drift licensees), both automatically received byes into the second round. The rest of the first round pitted Dan Brocket in his Orange Mustang SVT against Frank Cundari’s TC Drift SC300. Dan edged the win over Frank and moved on to face Matt Field. Kasey Kohl’s 2JZ swapped 240 wasn’t enough to hang with Steve Mass’s badass Fox Body Mustang GT. Eric Hill and his 240 took down Levi Wait and his LS-swapped 3 Series. On the other side of the bracket, Brandon Wicknick and his smooth-drifting Godspeed 2JZ S13 eliminated Eric Costen and his Drift Factory S13. Kasey King and his TC Drift 2JZ SC300 took down Jim Guthrie and his crazy Mustang. Travis Avery and his Road Boss FC LS1 RX7 surpassed Danny Alsop and his clean LS 240SX.
In round 2, Matt Field took on Dan Brockett and advanced to round 3. Eric Hill bested Steve Mass and continued to drive against Matt Field. It was a good battle between Hill and Field, but Matt advanced to the finals. With Matt Field sitting comfortably, he looked to battle the winner of Brandon Wicknick and Kasey King. It was fitting that Kasey ended up advancing to the semis to face Tony Angelo after his showdown with Travis Avery. The battle for the finals between Kasey King and Tony Angelo was a smoky shootout. King advanced to face Field in what would be one of the closest battles of the event. Neither driver held back, but in the end Matt Field came out on top. King couldn’t have described the moment better when he executed an illegal pass owing the victory to Field, "I ended up getting 2nd place in the finals after an epic battle against Field. On his lead run, I thought he was going into the wall. So when we transitioned, I hit his bumper and passed him on the inside of the track at full kill. He never hit the wall, so it was an illegal pass for probably one of my funniest memories I will have in my drifting life.”
Judges tallying up the scores. What a tough job!
Meanwhile, in spectator land...
The top three finishers from left to right, Tony Angelo, Matt Field and Kasey King
PRO Final Results TC Drift Week 2013:
1. Matt Field #777
2. Kasey King #8
3. Anthony Angelo #96
4. Eric Hill #33
5. Brandon Wicknick
6. Dan Brockett #22
7. Travis Avery #000
8. Steve Mass #111
9. Kasey Kohl #38
10. Jim Guthrie #27
11. Danny Alsop #35
12. Frank Cundari #55
13. Levi Wait #003
14. Eric Costen #84
PRO-AM Final Results TC Drift Week 2013:
1. Mike Fulkerson #401
2. Ethan Hunter #37
3. Riley Fremont #4
4. Nick Tomberlin #180
5. Logan Dimick #69
6. Zach Kindall #12
7. Darren Madrid #426
8. Chuck Thomas #343
9. Aaron Kindall #403
10. Karson Klein #402
11. Ilya Klutchnikov #500
12. Ryan Zielinski #47
13. Wesley Moya #13
14. Zach Ferris #901
15. Tanner Puckett #432
16. Joe McGuigan #80
Grassroots Final Results for TC Drift Week 2013:
1. Zeeke Van Orden #44
2. Peter McDonald #86
3. Trevor Jamison #570
4. Jimmy Krutter #888
5. Evan Sterk #141
6. Cameron Sizemore #413
7. Andrew Rosario #421
8. Ben Ziack #808
9. Brian Olmos #187
10. Phillip Hunter #88
11. Mike Arnold #111
12. Matt Robles #719
13. Jerry Hur #58
14. Alex Burnett #24
15. Stephen Wheeler #666
16. Dustin Elledge #321
17. Derrick Durran #77
18. Collin Adair #424
19. William Reuter #411
TC Drift highlights the drift lifestyle as a whole—a laid-back, carefree lifestyle—that is definitely reflected in some of the builds we came across. Drifters don’t care at all about what you think about their taste. Drifters are the black sheep MacGyvers of the automotive world. Most of their beat-up cars could use a fresh coat of paint and have drift stitches. These drivers really don’t care, so why bother when they will be further damaged anyway? Each dent, scrape, crack, or repair serves as a proudly worn scar. In the world of drift, Function > Form. During Drift Week, you get both sides of the spectrum. Pros come out in their pimped-out trailers, crews at hand, and a surplus of tires. Then you have amateurs and pro-amateurs alike coming out to the track with no change in their pockets. They do everything they can to fuel their passion, and everything is invested in tires. They are all the same in that both sides push their cars to the limits, and afterward everyone can sit down, relax and eat, drink, party, sleep some more, and do it all over again.
TC Drift Week felt a lot bigger than any other event we’ve been to in Colorado. It had a certain Texas Mile feel to it, with the addition of people camping over a few days, partying, and enjoying each other’s company—all united by their passion for cars. It was more than drifting. It was the experience of being part of the future of Colorado’s automotive lifestyle.