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Let’s get this ball rolling! With Mount Smart being a very different round (and one that I had never been too..) there was a lot of hype surrounding the event. With the price dropped to a mere $15, there was no reason for city folk to come check out some crazy drift/carnage action.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nWhat a track huh? Quite American in my opinion. With a somewhat peanut shape, the drivers enter the course from the entrance on the right, speed up for the long entry corner, then into the shorter corner (top left) into a longer clipping point corner to the start of the final corner (top right) where the judged section ends.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nThe ground has been resealed fresh to allow the drifters to get more grip and not ruin their suspension/wheel setup’s with below standard surface.  The asphalt  drops away around half way through the corner meaning drivers need to ensure their drift is fluent.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nVincent Hopkins is a regular contender in D1NZ with constant results and amazing progress since I first saw him drift. Rocking the R32 Silver/Yellow and an RB26, he always puts on a great show and no doubt will be hanging with the Pro guys very soon.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nI think this T4T thing has gotten a tad out of hand..\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nDarren Kelly’s been working up a storm in his R32 Sedan. Each round he’s pulling more smoke, more angle and is becoming more aggressive. He’s one to watch.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nPulling some impressive runs as usual was Cam Vernon. With Cam’s aggressive driving style he seemed to cope with the situation easily and understand the track in no time. Cam qualified first.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nJacob Hakaraia was putting on a great show in his Onevia..\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nAlthough a little issue with his front bumper meant he ended up with some front end lock.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nTodd Curtis’ Keto Steering KE70 Corolla Wagon was pulling some impressive lock coming into the final corner. With the car being so light in its rear, he can swing and throw the rear out with ease.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nThe pro’s were then brought out for their own little practice session to allow the drivers to understand the course and fix any problems for the next day.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nDaynom Templeman’s RX7 was looking good as usual with its flags flying under the hot sun.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nDriftCorp – Tectaloy driver Gaz Whiter was showing how the big boys drive around the circuit with crazy angle and huge lock.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nStraight into the top 8 battles we saw Nate Steel vs Cam Vernon. A close battle between both cars with Nate showing great form, but Cam took out the win.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nRyan Johnson vs  Darren Kelly was the next battle which saw Darren Kelly take the win.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nThe next battle between Sam Legae and Stuart Baker saw Stuart and his S13 take out the battle.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nOnto the final top 8 battle we saw Vincent Hopkins vs Shane Allen – battle of R32′s. In this case Vincent’s yellow and silver R32 pulled through for the win.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nOnto top 4 we see Cam Vernon take out Darren Kelly.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nAwwww these two seemed to be having fun together. Cute.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nKat Benson had her Evo on display in the awesome Burgerfuel tent!\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nOnto Stuart Baker vs Vincent Hopkins saw Stuart take the win.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nInto the runner up round we saw Vincent Hopkins take the lead over Darren Kelly.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nInto the final battle Stuart Baker vs Cam Vernon had Cam pull through in his R32 from what appeared to be a very close battle between the two Nissan’s.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nAlthough the judges seemed rather happy in their little tent. Or that may have been from Warren telling me off over the loudspeaker for crossing a live track… Errr yeah.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nAnd finally Justin Rood’s awesome Type R EK Civic sitting on R33 GTR wheels.\r\n\r\nPart 2 coming soon!\r\n\r\n-Chris

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