In The Pits: Vegas Pro Am

I’m still recovering from the cold weather. I landed here back in Hawaii but it still as cold as it was in Vegas. It’s been rainy and it gives the vibe of staying at home and cuddling with your blanket. Too bad that doesn’t happen. The moment I stepped foot off the plane, I went straight back to work. The shop has been busy lately and I haven’t had time to get stuff up on here onto my blog. I actually got the chance to get home early to my warm room so here I am updating for you guys.

As a lot of you may already know, I got to experience drifting at a whole new level. For me, it’s on a new level because i’ve never been to a real drift event. I’m just used to gooning around with my homies in a parking lot or on some back road but not drifting like this before. What I got to experience is something dudes down here on the island will never get to witness unless they fly up and see for them selves. I’m not saying anyone on the Island is shitty at drifting, i’m just saying the whole level of drifting up in the mainland is extreme.

Even the builds are very different compared to what me or you see on this island. Again, automotive tuning in the mainland is completely different. As we dive deeper into this post, you’ll get to see what differentiates us from them. This post will be a little different. You probably have already seen the action shots of drifting but I wanted you guys to see a different side of an event. A view from the pits.

We got to Vegas about 2-3 days before the event. I never really captured what went down because nothing interesting happened. We just ran around town picking up a lot of stuff to get the car ready for drifting. So my coverage starts here at Ross’s shop, Garage Boso.

David and Gary getting the ramps ready so we could roll the car up on the trailer. I don’t even know if it counts as a trailer. Ross just let us use this old motor home that got chopped off. All thats left was the base of the motor home and bam! We have our own trailer.

The car got loaded and next to go in was an army of wheels and tires.

Along with us loading up were these guys from Canada. Crazy to hear that they drove 20+ hours down to Vegas just to participate in this event. That goes to show that people in the drifting community have strong drive and determination. These guys strongly believe in their passion because it shows in their strive to make it to this event. We can relate because it we are stuck on an island and it’s a lot more difficult for us to participate. We have no choice but to fly out and that can be very expensive.

As soon as we got all the wheels loaded, car strapped down and all the knicks and crannys straightened out, we decided to hit the road back to our good friend David’s house. That’s where we were staying over for our week stay. He was kind enough to let us store the car there over night because the Speedway where the event was going down is near his crib. Stopped over this gas station to fill the car and gas jugs up.

David runs a auto cleaning service called Ohana Auto Detailing. David was from Hawaii but moved to Vegas and is now doing automotive detailing for a ton of baller dudes. He had to meet up with a customer of his to do some quick business so we met up with him at a different gas station. His customer pulls up in this sick Porsche.

From what I was told, the owner bought the car, and then instantly tore it down to the ground and re-did the whole car. That goes to show that Davids customers don’t play around. We had to head back to the house and get some sleep. We had to be awake at the crack of dawn the next day to get to the track early.

Here 7am getting ready to head to the track. It was a long cold night and I lied if I told you that I got a good nights sleep. Once Lani got done with making us a local breakfast, we instantly ate. Washed up and headed out to the track!

We thought getting there at 7:30am was early but looks like we were late. A lot of other dudes showed up even later but once we drove up, there was almost no space to pit. A lot of dudes were already here and in line for tech inspection.

A quick shot of “Trailer Joe”s coupe.

What people don’t realize is that these drivers took an insane amount of time getting the car to pass the tech inspection. FD Pro Am wants everyone to have fun and have fun safely.

We didn’t get to pass inspection the first try. I think it was something dealing with the kill switch not shutting the car off when prompted to. I guess they want to be able to get the car to shut down in case you go off the track and flip. It makes a lot of sense.

Back on at our base, I decided to catch a photo of Waylon’s V8 coupe. If i’m correct, this was the car that was once down here on the islands. Scott Wracka has the same colored coupe here. It was great to see other Hawaii peeps doing their thang.

A shot of Get Nuts driver Mikey Starks rolling into the pits.

Blake Olsen leaving the pits and headed to tech… Idk how many of you know of Blake and his OCD car building ethics, but i’ve read a few of his build threads. First his RX-7 and now his V8 S13 coupe. Here’s a link*Not-as-cool-as-my-FC-but-also-with-a-v8*-!

Right off the bat the BehrensBrothers arrived but only Gabe participated as Josh’s car was still down due to some issues with the motor. We actually have been kicking it with them since they arrived. Gabe didn’t hesitate to hit the track.

Being that we aren’t from the area and pretty much pitted with no tools, we stopped over by our homie Traverse’s area to pump air in the car. Him and his whole squad at Twisted Motion bought over a tire machine and a compressor.

Traverse and his 1JZ 240sx. He had some complications at the track that day and didn’t see him out on the track much.

Mikey Starks leaving the pit
A car built at Jesse Han’s shop.

The celebrities Black Nick and Paulo J

A shot of Jesse Brattain throwing up the Shaka!

Another shot of Olsen’s coupe.

Paulo J throwing up the Shakas

Zach Haro’s immaculate EE Wagon. I’m a big Honda guy and i’m pretty educated on rare JDM parts. This wagon has the mother load of OEM goodies. The car is also up for sale if anyone is interested!

The news of us not qualifying Top 16 didn’t hurt us. We were drained but it there’s no time to be bummed out on that. The key is to have fun and we had tons of it. It was time to play around and kick some smoke.

A shot of Trailer Joe’s S13 after his transmission took a shit on him.

The sun was setting and it was time to pack up. A quick snap of Paulo’s static GS

Closing out this post with a photo of the Style King Rainier Ramolete heading back home after blowing out his real BN Sports aero kit when he spun out on his qualifying run. See ya’ll in March for Round 3 in Arizona!


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