Drift Allstars Round 6 – German Drift GP

After an exciting fortnight in Eastern Europe, the sixth round of the 2016 Drift Allstars championship saw the series roll into Reisbrennen, Europe’s largest Japanese-marque tuning show, at the Lausitzring, south of Berlin.


Once again, Falken Motorsport driver James Deane proved that he was the man to beat, taking down everyone in his path as he drove his way to a third consecutive victory in as many weeks. In a tense final against rival and top qualifier Piotr Wieçek, Deane drove an inch-perfect line when leading, and chased with millimetre precision during his chase run, ensuring that the trophy made its way back to Ireland yet again.


The Lausitzring is a world-class racing venue, and would play host to drifting on a professional level for the first time. A fast and flowing course was set out by the three judges, testing the skills of the 35 international drivers. The call was for a fast initiation on the banking followed by pinpoint precision whilst maintaining a high speed throughout the circuit.


During qualification, Poland’s Piotr Wieçek proved why he is one of Europe’s best, locking down P1. James Deane laid down two consistent runs, securing P2 and Juha Pöytälaakso of Finland looked on great form, and a smokey navigation granted him P3. Local German driver Max Heidrich also qualified well, taking P4.


Saturday’s battles took place in front of the Reisbrennen festival crowd, totalling 30,000 over the weekend. A staggering 385,000 people watched the Facebook Livestream over the weekend, with a reach of 3.2 million fans!


After a small number of mechanical failures, unfortunately including home favourite Marcel Uhlig, the remaining drivers went into battle. The Top 32 threw up few surprises, with the Drift Allstars regulars progressing through to the Top 16 for the most part. Latvian Janis Eglite faced off with Australia’s Aleksandar Kantarovski in the Top 16 in an epicly-fought battle which saw the Latvian champion progress into the Great 8. Norwegian Fredrik Øksnevad comfortably saw off South Africa’s Wade Van Zummerman before once again meeting James Deane in the Great 8. Deane’s consistency made him hard to fault, ending Øksnevad’s day early for the second event in a row.


Ireland’s Nigel Colfer found a return to form, beating Kenneth Nornes in the Top 16, and then Max Heidrich in the Great 8, despite strong support from the home crowd. Colfer would meet top qualifier Pitor Wieçek in the Semi Finals, who would prove too much for the Irishman and the Budmat Auto driver powered his way to the finals.


In the other Semi Final, a calm James Deane met Juha Pöytälaakso, who was bellowing an incredible amount of smoke from his E92 BMW. Deane chased through the smokescreen, remaining centimetres from the Fin’s door, and booking his slot in the Final.


As Colfer narrowly overcame Pöytälaakso in the third place playoff, Deane and Wieçek lined up for the top prize. These two drivers are good friends, and have faced each other several times, with mixed outcomes. Wieçek’s lead run was textbook but, on this occasion, Deane would chase harder and closer, securing the top tier of the podium, and his third win in as many events!


The championship culminates at the Trackwood Festival, in Máriapócs, Hungary, on 26th-27th August for the final round of the 2016 series and the Hungarian Drift GP – be there or tune in online!

Final results from the Drift Allstars 2016 Latvian Drift GP –

1st. James Deane – Ireland – Falken Motorsport

2nd. Piotr Wieçek – Poland – Budmat Auto

3rd. Nigel Colfer – Ireland – Tri-Ace Tyres

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