If you've played NFS then you know a bit what drifting is about. It's a very cool looking race where you go around a designated course by basically sliding your way in as many styles as possible. And yes, you need tracks so anyone wanting to do it on Dhaka streets may want to give up the idea. Also with the automatic transmission equipped cars here you might as well give up any fool hardy ideas anyway.
What the heck is drifting?
To the uninitiated, drifting may appear to be just another import-car fad set to disappear before it makes a mark. This relatively new form of motorsport requires extreme driving talent and car control. There are pro ranks as well as several ways to participate on a grassroots level.
As its name implies, the idea of drifting is to get a car sideways--and keep it there as long as possible--simply because it puts a grin on one's face. It's partly about speed and mostly about style. And, yes, it's hard on tires. Which means its hard on the wallet. But what's wrong with burning rubber?
Because drifting involves keeping a car sideways (often in a four-wheel drift versus a simple tail-out spin) through one or multiple corners, front engine/rear drive is the preferred racer layout. Most any car of this type can be set up to drift, although performance modifications such as a limited-slip differential and high-grip front tires make it easier.
Who was crazy enough to come up with it?
Japanese people have the craziest game sows. I mean, where else would you expect a game show tat tests your pain threshold by torturing you? Plus Japs make all the high tech sports cars which for them is pretty cheap to buy. So it's not much of a wonder that drifting was developed in Japan over the past several decades. Such drivers as Keiichi Tsuchiya, that country's famed Drift King, were being recognized for their extreme ability to go sideways. Enthusiasm for their talents led to the growth of the sport and its expansion beyond Japan's shores.
Who do you do it?
What you learn as a neophyte drifter is that exhibition-style drifting requires a keen sense of precision--the driver must have an acute understanding of weight transfer and the physics acting upon the car. Keeping the car sideways involves far more than simply nailing the gas and counter-steering; you actually use many advanced driving techniques such as trail-braking, the "Scandinavian flick," and working the clutch to induce oversteer and keep the car balanced beyond the threshold of grip.
While beginning drifters may find these techniques difficult to master, with practice drifting becomes a sport that's fun and rewarding for the amateur racer. Getting enough practice to get good, of course, requires money. Know this going in--and don't let a trip to the tire shop every week or two put you off.
What constitutes a drift machine?
Definitely not your average front wheel drive Corollas with three speed automatic transmission. For this car to drift you first need to spill bucket loads of oil. Even then it may be difficult.
Basic and preferable layout is the rear wheel drive cars with adequate power. Too much power will simply make you spin out. Popular and accessible drifting favorites (among models sold in the U.S.) are the rear-drive 1985-1987 Toyota Corolla GT-S and the Nissan 240SX. In Australia it's old Toyotas and Holden. The Brits mainly use old Fords and more Toyotas.
Did I just say Corolla, the all time favorite of the Dhaka racers (or ricers)? Nah, the Corolla GTS is a rear wheel drive, four wheel disc brake equipped, 5-speed, two-door version of the ones we used to see all over the place here. With 1.8 litres these cars rock according to Mood Dude who happens to own its 4 door cousine. I personally think it is rather "blah" to look at. But the performance matters a lot and seems the setup is so good for drifting that it's a bit of a classic.
While neither these cars is particularly powerful, either makes a capable drift machine in stock form. These cars can be picked up for $2000 to $3000, and there are plenty of aftermarket and drift-specific modifications available to transform a beater into a racer. Many owners install high-performance Japanese-spec motors along with heavily tuned suspensions. Budgets required go upto $6000 to $15,000, depending on your choice of modifications. Other popular choices (how deep are your pockets?) include the Mazda RX-7, Nissan 350Z, and Nissan Skyline GT-R.
Is it only in Japan?
Heck no, it's moved off to almost all parts of the world where cars are cheap and circuits are there for hire. At a recent round of Japan's professional drift series, the D1 Grand Prix, tens of thousands of American drift enthusiasts flocked to watch U.S. and Japanese drifters battle it out at Irwindale Speedway in Los Angeles. Drifting, which might have been considered an underground or cult activity in the U.S. as little as four years ago, is now going mainstream.
The result is more sanctioned drift events open to amateur drifters, when just a few years ago there were none. In fact the SCCA and National Auto Sport Association have now recognized it as a viable form of motorsport. It looks like drifting is here to stay--moving forward, by going sideways.
For further info on the racing as well as the machines check out the following sites.
It's a mad bad sequel world. If something works expect to get more of the same. Sometimes you get a bit too much of the same which could get boring. Yes, I'm talking about sequels and a lot of copy cat ventures in the movie world. Here's a taste of what's coming soon to a pirated DVD shop near you.
Sin City was so damn good even though many viewers especially a lot of the female kind complained about the nudity. But heck, it was a brilliant depiction of what a comic book brought to life should look like. It was obvious from the ending of the movie that a sequel is on its way. After all comic books never end in the first episode do they? So we've got Sin City 2, again directed by Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller, with returning cast members Brittany Murphy and Mickey Rourke. Too bad that they won't be resurrecting Bruce Willis again.
Johnny Depp comes back as the seemingly drunk swashbuckling bungler of a pirate Captain Jack Sparrow. Yep, Pirates of the Carribean: Dead Man's Chest is the sequel and the makers won't be stopping there. Of course now that Captain Sparrow has removed the curse of being undead what magical tale can we expect this time around? Possibly a lot of blood being spilled. It's due out some time in 2007 however. But magic is available in the form of the obvious Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.
After a very long, long break Agent Ethan Hunt returns in Mission: Impossible 3. Keri Russell will play the new recruit. It's funny how in all the super spy movies the female characters have to be a new face in each new sequel.
Continuing with action flicks the super smooth super cool man in black suit is back again. No, I am not talking about MIB but Jason Stathams character in The Transporter. The movie was slick though very unbelieveable. The car chases were super cool even for guys who are into much into cars. Although you watch it more than three times the plot holes become a bit jarring. Statham played the unruffled action dude who was a bit of an anti hero. He's back in the not too ingeniously titled 'The Transporter 2'. Watch out for the release in November.
Comic book adaptations include X3 which we knew was coming even before X2 was out. Also expect Superman Returns kinda a lot like the old Batman Returns.
Action flicks are big money earners. Video games translated into movies is a bit of a risk though. But that doesn't stop people from trying. The bald macho star in the videogame 'Hitman' is an amazing hit in the gaming world. Who else can better portray the dark humor and of course the macho baldness other than Vin Diesel who will play Agent 47 in the movie version of Eidos' violent videogame series.
If violence is your cup of blood then watch out for the sequel to last year's surprise horror hit The saw (a.k.a. the Jigsaw) which will hit theaters in time for Halloween.
If you love satires about the American lifestyle then The Simpsons are finally coming to the big screen. So now you can have about 90 minutes uninterrupted stars and stripes bashing. Nancy Cartwright, the voice of Bart Simpson, announced that they've started work on The Simpsons Movie.
But why on earth would anyone be coming out with a CGI animated version of Smurfs? If you don't remember the cartoon we kids in the 80's watched then you are forgiven. Little blue men (and one blue girl) who live in mushrooms seem a bit evil although I am sure there will be loving followers.
Lastly biographies are also following the copycat way. Eminem starred in 8 Mile which basically depicted his life. Guess who is coming up with something similar? It's none other than Eminems prodigy rapper 50 Cent. And that's it. You can expect a sequel to this article sometime in the near future.
“So no one told you life was gonna be this way....."- I have no words to explain just how much I miss that familiar start up song now that the show's over. Yeah, I know, they're still showing the old seasons in Star World...but now I have no reason to sit in front of my TV minutes before the show and wait with eager impatience to find out what ridiculous joke Chandler's going to make next! It's just not the same. I'm sure all the zillions of FRIENDS fanatics like me would probably agree when I say we want more! Ten years is just not enough! Unfortunately people, turns out Marta Kauffman, Kevin Bright and David Crane have quite different plans. And so do our beloved FRIENDS stars. They're all busy with their own lives and careers. They've definitely moved on in different directions. But a little birdie tells me there might be good news for us...a FRIENDS movie? Anyway, the latest uptake on your favourite FRIENDS stars follows, so read on.
Courteney Cox (Monica)
This has probably been the year for this gorgeous gal. Yep people, Monica's a mom! This time for real! Courteney and husband David Arquette have had a very busy June this year. On June 12, the couple celebrated their fifth wedding anniversary. On June 13, Courteney gave birth to a beautiful baby girl Coco Riley, and on June 15, she turned 40. Now, the sexy couple has launched their own production company, Coquette. On top of that, Courteney has a lot of films lined up for release in the coming years. The Longest Yard (2005), Alpha Dog (2005), Barnyard (2006) and Zoom (2006) are just a few of them. So rest assured, you'll be getting enough of C.C.
Matthew Perry (Chandler)
Ah Chandler! Undoubtedly the funniest guy on the set of FRIENDS. A friend of his says that when he was younger, he wasn't comfortable with any silence in the room. He would fall down or slam himself into a wall to make girls laugh! But lately life's been a bit messed up for this funny guy. He recently broke up with his girlfriend of two years, Rachel Dunn. But his career seems to be going steady as he has signed on to the title role in the TNT movie The Ron Clark Story. He is also starring in and producing a film that he is doing with his father called The Beginning of Wisdom. But that's about it.
Jennifer Aniston (Rachel)
While her love life's been rocketing down lately, her career seems to be zooming up. With films like Along came Polly and Bruce Almighty in recent years, Jen's definitely shown that the end of FRIENDS is the beginning of a new phase in her film career. She's got loads of films up for release. Rumour has it, Derailed, and Diary are to be released this year while The Senator's Wife, The Break Up, Friends with Money, and Wanted will be released in the next couple of years. And that's just a few of the names...there are lots more. Hmm...Brad Pitt sure hasn't left her too upset to move on! Way to go girl! Recently she threw a baby shower for pal Courteney in her Beverly Hills home. Lisa Kudrow was also there. Well, seems like the girls are definitely keeping in touch.
David Schwimmer (Ross) T
This not-so-geeky in real life stud is a total workaholic! He ensures that he always has a full calendar of work lined up because he spirals into depression when he's relaxing at home. David was great as the giraffe in Madagascar (although that's old news now!). And he is to make his debut on the London stage with the lead role in Some Girls, a new play set to run in the West End. He also has a multi-million-dollar deal with top Hollywood studio Miramax to star in and direct several films. But I haven't heard of any names yet. As for his personal life, it's going a bit bumpy...got a little bit of Ross in there, doesn't he?!
Lisa Kudrow (Phoebe)
She's definitely every single thing that Phoebe's not in real life! She's got a B.S in Biology...can you believe it? Phoebe's been to university! With the success of her character in FRIENDS, Lisa's also suffered a drawback. She says that television's tendency to typecast has probably ruined her chances of getting a role as anything else on a series or even a mainstream movie. But anyway, Lisa's been acting and producing a lot lately. She has TV shows that she is producing and some independent films alongside. Her production company is called Is or Isn't Entertainment. Sounds very Phoebe-ish to me! Watch out for Lisa in HBO's new sitcom Comeback.
Matt Le Blanc (Joey)
Did you know that this hot dude was down to his last $11 when he got the part in Friends? Well, he definitely has a different amount now! After FRIENDS, he snubbed offers to further his movie career because he wasn't prepared to risk failure in the notoriously tough industry, which is what led to his own show JOEY. Although the first season got off to a lukewarm start, failing to overwhelm critics and viewers, Matt promises that the second season will be much better. Well, I highly doubt that since no matter how better it gets, it can never top FRIENDS. A FRIENDS movie? Rumours are flying in all directions, but it's not for sure yet. The show had been ended on a high note and all the cast members want to leave it that way. They have all moved on with their own careers and so some are saying that there's no chance of a FRIENDS movie. However, none of the six cast members has repeated the success that they had with FRIENDS. Rumour is that David Schwimmer and Jennifer Aniston have both expressed in the project which would make each of the six lead cast members $10 million richer. And once they're on board, the others are expected to follow suit. So for all the FRIENDS fans out there, don't lose hope because there might be a movie soon. Until then, adios!