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Japan’s “Drift King” Keiichi Tsuchiya to visit PH this December

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Japan’s legendary “Drift King” Keiichi Tsuchiya is slated to visit Manila on December 7 and 8 in an event entitled “Drift Muscle Series Manila Challenge Round” at the Quirino Grandstand according to Jonathan Chio of Ladder Events Production. Aside from Tsuchiya, Drift Muscle Championship Drifter from Japan and Okinawa Drift Team will also be present in the event to perform spectacular drift driving maneuvers. The event will coincide with the company’s longest running outdoor car show “Bumper to Bumper IX”. Aside from Manila, the Drift Muscle Championship will be shown in the US as well as numerous other Asian countries.

“I drift not because it is a quicker way around a corner but the most exciting way. Speed isn’t everything; you gotta look cool on the touge too.” – Keiichi Tsuchiya

Known as Japan’s “Drift King” or “Dorikin” in Japanese, Keiichi Tsuchiya is a professional racecar driver who is known for his unorthodox drifting technique and his pioneering role that made this technique become a popular motorsport. He learned this technique while driving in his hometown Usui Touge’s twisty mountain passes. Tsuchiya made his debut through the Fuji Freshman series in 1977. Not coming from a wealthy family who can bankroll him into motorsport, he had to hone his skills from street racing and quickly become an underground legend.

It is because of his pop culture appeal that gave birth to a Japanese video Pluspy in the late 1980s that showcased his touge (meaning mountain pass in Japanese) driving. The video quickly became a hit and inspired today’s professional drifting drivers. This first-ever touge driving video also inspired one of Japan’s most popular comic book manga “Initial D”, that was loosely describing Tsuchiya’s life and character.  He was first known to use a Toyota AE86 Sprinter Trueno that gave rise to a cult following of this now much sought-after collectible classic. Known as “Hachi-Roku” in Japan (hachi-roku meaning “eight six”), his car earned the moniker “The Little Hachi that could.” In the comic book, the main character Takumi also drives a black and white classic AE86.

In 2006, he made a cameo as a fisherman in the movie The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift in which he was also the stunt coordinator and one of the main stunt drivers.  About the AE86, Tsuchiya once said – “This is fun! I wish that Toyota could make cars like this again!” He got his wish last year, when Tsuchiya made a video of his drift driving skills using the new Toyota 86 called “Drift Sprint” with help from Autocar’s Steve Sutcliffe and Top Gear Magazine’s Ollie Marriage who both are also highly capable drivers.

The event is presented by b2bcarshow.com, Ladder Events Production, Autocraft Drift Team, R102 Productions Okinawa and National Parks Development Authority. For more information regarding Drift Muscle Philippines and Bumper to Bumper IX Carshow please email at ladderevents@yahoo.com or catch them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/DriftMusclePhilippines

Here are some of Tsuchiya’s videos on Youtube

“Drift Sprint” using the Toyota 86

“Touge Showdown” Toyota AE86 vs. the Skyline GT-R

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