Ever since we got our first taste of Red Bull Drift Shifters in 2012 on the streets of Auckland city, we’ve been waiting for it to go international, which it finally did in 2018, hitting the streets of Liverpool in the UK. ‘Mad Mike’ Whiddett is a man who knows how to party, and, each time he throws the event, the track layout has been built on from the previous one, taking things to the next level in terms of speed and the commitment required. Holding it on the roads surrounding the docks of Liverpool allowed a much larger layout than at previous events, with some large obstacles, such as the 80m Pier Head Wall Ride and the Mersey Tunnel entry gate. Drift Shifter classics like the Undertaker and the Finish Box made a return and, as a nod to the Beatles — one of Liverpool’s most famous exports — a yellow submarine appeared as a clipping point on the street for the event.
To get a sense of just how big the course was compared with those of the two Auckland-based events, Kiwi driver Gaz Whiter in the Smart cookie8 S14, would take honours over American driver Forrest Wang, posting the highest score of the event at 6.29 million. The 2014 Auckland-waterfront event was won with a score of four million by Mike himself. While loading the cars for Liverpool a few months earlier, Gaz made the comment that he was just going to send it, and he expected to be loading a wreck back into the container. While it wasn’t that bad, there certainly will be a few repairs needed. But when you travel this far for an event, you should do your best to make it count, right?
“I’m stoked to take it [the win] back to New Zealand. We’re so far away from home; we couldn’t go further in the whole world, and we brought our little car from New Zealand with the help of Red Bull and Mike, and it’s a bit mind-blowing really. I’ll just have to have a few beers and take it in, I think,” Gaz Whiter told Red Bull after the event.
Now the next question on everyone’s lips is where in the world will Drift Shifters go next? Let’s hope that we don’t have to wait two years to find out! If you haven’t watched the replay yet, we have it in full on themotorhood.com, so if you have a spare couple of hours, go and watch it.