The month of December is an overall festive time of year that brings friends and families together for joyous celebrations. Specifically, for the East Coast grassroots drift community, it’s time for the annual 100 Drifters of December event hosted by Summit Point Motorsports Park and Drift Nirvana. This two-day “Slide Festival” draws in over a 100+ homegrown and semi-pro drifters. They travel from several surrounding states to this awesome track located in small town West Virginia. For drivers, spectators, tailgaters,and photographers alike, a good time to be had by all!
So, some of you may be asking who the hell is Christopher Drinkuth?! I was brought on recently by the Mayday Garage team as an East Coast contributor. They asked me to provide a short introduction to the readers about myself. Like a lot of readers on here, I stumbled upon Mayday Garage many years ago. Since then, I have been a big fan of their work. I had a special opportunity when one of the members made a move to the East Coast last year. Upon meeting David, I quickly became a close friend and liaison to local happenings. We shared many of the same interests; cars, beer, and photography primarily. We shot many automotive events together this past season (Event Preview: ALMS at Virginia International Raceway). I even received the opportunity to shoot site coverage on my own (Event Coverage: Baltimore Grand Prix 2012 as told in pictures).
I eat, sleep, breathe anything automotive related. My father is a retired mechanical engineer. He has had a great passion for cars dating back to his youth. Thus, I acquired my love from him at a very young age. My dad was a big muscle car fan of the 60’s and 70’s. However, as he got older he really enjoyed the simple/reliable offerings that Honda provided. My first car was passed onto me from my Dad, it was a 1995 Honda Accord EX sedan. I quickly gained an appreciation for the ‘modified’ scene. My next vehicle was a 2001 Acura CL-S. Upon entering my last year of college- I received an early graduation present- my first “tuner” car- a 2002 Sebring Silver Honda S2000. After owning that for almost four years- the small size caught up to me and I sought after a fun sedan. I sold the S2000 and picked up a 2004 World Rally Blue Subaru STi. After owning the Subie for roughly 2 years- I wanted to get out of costly turbo maintenance. I sold her and picked up my 1996 Hellrot BMW M3 coupe in April 2011. I bought her from a local BMW shop-owner. She has been well maintained and I plan to keep her for a while. Despite the vehicles actual age, I feel like the E36 chassis still serves as a fresh palette in the tuner world.
I traveled about an hour out with a photographer/college buddy in the area, Russ Evans. We both rented full frame bodies for the weekend to conduct some hands on testing of possible future equipment. Armed with a Canon 5D Mark III, I arrived in the paddock at the Shenandoah Circuit a little later than normal. Thankfully, I had some time to play with the AF settings prior to the event on this new and untamed beast of a camera! Upon arrival, I quickly began my journey around this rather large 2.2-mile (3.5 km) road course that features a “no holds barred technical challenge” according to Summit Point Motorsports Park. This particular event presented two possible tracks for drivers to choose from. Due to my late arrival time, I only ventured around the Shenandoah Circuit. Enough with the chitchat, onto to some pictures!
This event followed suit of all drift events I make it out to in the area. Non-stop tire burning action was first and foremost. However, just take a stroll through the paddock and it’s guaranteed you’ll take a moment to gander at something. This being a December event in the season, the late afternoon sun just kinda hung around for the latter part of the day. I had a good time running around the track in the limited amount of time allotted. I ran into and chatted with a few of the drivers that I’ve met this season. I also had a chance to bump into a few other automotive photographers in the area. I will definitely be at the 100 Drifters of December event next year!
Thanks to Jimmy James for allowing me to use this video from the event. Check out this cool aerial perspective provided by HELISKOPE!
Once again, I want to thank the Mayday Garage team for the opportunity to contribute to the site. I will be attending a lot of events in 2013. Say hello if you see me out there shooting. I will be on the prowl for cars to feature on the site! Till next time, Cheers!