SHINE BRIGHT LIKE A DIAMOND
2018 MITSUBISHI OWNERS DAY
Everyone knows my husband Alan and I love Mitsis, especially Evos,” says Downtime Entertainment’s Pare Togia. “Hampton Downs was available, and, with support from Ingham Mitsubishi Hamilton, Red Bull, and fellow Mitsi nut Warren Currie, we put plans in place to run an event for cars that we are truly passionate about.” Thus, on 3 June 2018, Mitsubishi Owners Day, (MOD NZ), was born. The idea behind the event was simple — get as many Mitsubishis as you can in one place at one time, and have a celebration of all that is great about them.
Few vehicles have been embraced by the New Zealand modified car scene quite like the Mitsubishi Evolution. The two-litre turbocharged four-wheel drive rockets are right at home on our twisty roads, and respond well to modification for street, strip, and circuit duties, with no real limitations to how far you can go other than your willingness to spend. In fact, we’d say that you’d be hardpressed to find a car person who hasn’t at some point thought or dreamed about owning something with diamonds on its grille. A quick look back through NZ Performance Car issues shows just how much impact these cars have had over the years.
The weather gods clearly decided that it would be appropriate to throw in some weather that would make full use of the rallybred four-wheel drive system housed in each Evo, and, as Sunday morning dawned, it was clear that ‘ wet’ was going to be an understatement. Track conditions would be, at best, tricky, and at times just plain scary. Many drivers elected to take to the skidpad instead, with the lure of reduced grip and a wide space in which to ‘heli’ enticing a good portion of the entrants to test their skills.
It was by no means an all-Evo affair, though, with Colt, GTO, FTO, Lancer, Galant, Mirage, Triton, and Sigma all found in attendance, the relentless rain beading off them thanks to a heavy wax. From the intentionally stock standard through to a number of cars that have graced the cover of this magazine, it didn’t matter if your preferred style was street, circuit, drag, show, or stock, there was something to appeal to the tastes of all. Somehow, the show ’n’ shine judges managed to separate the high-quality field and find award winners among the entrants — a job which would have been nigh-on impossible with the likes of ‘N80EVO’, ‘EGOETA’, and ‘ADKTVE’ all present, along with the large fleets of Mitsis from Auckland and Tauranga Evolution, NZ Fijian Cars, Untamed Motorsport, and many privately owned rare motorsport editions that were untouched by choice. Brett Smith and Sarah Herman ended the day being crowned King and Queen of Diamonds, respectively, for participating in everything — an amazing effort from Brett, in particular, who had driven up from Wellington, done the previous day’s ClubFest, and attacked the skidpad with vigour to the delight of the crowd.
The best thing about single-marque events, in our opinion, is the vibe that you get from a gathering of people with a single shared
passion, removed from all friendly rivalry and banter and simply being among peers and like-minded enthusiasts enjoying seeing, hearing, and sharing all-things Evolution. It might have been wet, but spirits remained high, and one of the real standout aspects of the event was simply seeing smiling owners swapping stories.
So, of course, you’ll want to know — did the event set a record as organizers had hoped? Yes, is the answer, with an Australasian record of 160 Evos taking to the track for the parade laps, and the potential for 200-plus clearly, had the weather played ball. Organizers are already working on next year’s event with big goals in mind.
If there is one thing that already has people talking about next year’s event, it’s just which of the 500-plus-kilowatt not-sorough diamonds present would have ended up as the roll-racing king, had the weather not put the picks on it. We’ll just have to wait and see, but there is one thing for certain: MOD NZ is here to stay.
‘ADKTVE’ is truly the white elephant in the room ... you just can’t help but stare Rain couldn’t dampen the spirits of the hardy souls out to enjoy their love of all-things Mitsi
Tony Hills’ meth baby took to the track for the first time for a shake down
‘WKDNIS’ just demanded attention, no matter if it was parked or rolling
Aiden and Kylie Reidy’s nine-second ‘E4TDST’ Evo is always a standout Not just Evos but a strong showing of GTOS
Like diamond candy, the parade cars sparkled in the rain