Brothers drift back on to track
At the fourth round of the D1NZ National Drifting Championship, Matamata locals and drift-brother-duo Aaron and Jonathan ‘Jock’ Bennett found themselves back in drift competition eight months before planned.
Driving Jonathan’s AE85 Toyota Levin, which the team rebuilt in a mere fourand- a- half days, the pair were invited back to com- pete in the weekend’s aptly named Legends Battle in their Nissan- powered Toyota and, in the name of good sportsmanship, the brothers snapped up the opportunity to compete against some well- known and respected racing names such as Shane Wigston and Dean Perkins.
Aaron, the elected driver for the weekend, emerged on top after battling V8 SuperTourer driver Angus Fogg, but succumbed to former D1NZ National Drifting Champion Adam Richards in the semifinal.
‘‘ It has been over two years since I last competed properly but I thoroughly enjoyed it, especially because I was able to compete against some of the top V8 guys like Angus [Fogg],’’ said Aaron.
‘‘It wasn’t as hard to get back into the car as I thought, but the skill level of the drivers has really increased so we’re going to have to work really hard over the coming months to make sure we are ready.’’
As well as their brief sojourn back on the drift track over the weekend, the brothers have been generating excitement and commit- ment to an LS1 powered exNZV8 Holden Commodore Drift Ute.
As well as creating something new for typical drift fans to enjoy, the brothers have other reasons for the decision to move to this new chassis.
‘‘We want to be a part of the continued, exciting evolution of our sport in New Zealand, and feel that the Ute also offers a unique inroad for traditional V8 racing fans to experience and enjoy the skill and exhilaration of professional drifting,’’ said Aaron.
The Matamata duo’s drift campaign for their ex-NZV8 Ute will start at the beginning of the new summer D1NZ season, in October. The season runs until April 2014.
Drifting duo: Matamata brothers Aaron and Jonathan Bennett compete at the fourth round of the D1NZ National Drifting Championship.