Let's meet some friends & head to the mountains!

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Finally! It was time to prep the cars and head up to the mountains. I’ve been most excited about this after my last trip and not getting a chance to drive here. After a half day at Mobara, the plan was to get our tires changed to freshies, do a once over on the car, toss Andy’s completed aero back on, and go meet some friends! ENJOY the read!

Well good morning, or good afternoon, or whatever time it is. Quick shower, after Mobara, and back to Lawsons (similar to 7/11 and Family Mart), for some snacks before prepping the car!

Well good morning, or good afternoon, or whatever time it is. Quick shower, after Mobara, and back to Lawsons (similar to 7/11 and Family Mart), for some snacks before prepping the car!

Spicy chicken nuggets; yum!  Back at the shop, the resin hardened nicely and the quick fix was stronger than ever. We could’ve went ahead and laid some filler or a light skim coat and added paint, but we just want to drive and to pieces are now one, so that’s good enough!

Spicy chicken nuggets; yum!

Back at the shop, the resin hardened nicely and the quick fix was stronger than ever. We could’ve went ahead and laid some filler or a light skim coat and added paint, but we just want to drive and to pieces are now one, so that’s good enough!

Here you can see some of the fleet we’ll using for rentals. The goal is to have a nice variety of cars available for you to drive and find your favorites! More details coming soon!  For you fitness/health nuts reading, notice the Vita Energy drink. It’s loaded with BCAA Jellies that are super weird and off-putting at first, but it quickly became my favorite drink. Low sugar too!

Here you can see some of the fleet we’ll using for rentals. The goal is to have a nice variety of cars available for you to drive and find your favorites! More details coming soon!

For you fitness/health nuts reading, notice the Vita Energy drink. It’s loaded with BCAA Jellies that are super weird and off-putting at first, but it quickly became my favorite drink. Low sugar too!

We always had the option of taking the truck and loading the cars up, but driving them was so much more fun. It’s funny how loading the car became easier and easier with a proper system. Could fit 4 wheels/tires, two boxes of tools, box of spares, all my camera gear and backpack, as well as track gear in a caged car. So much fun to drive it to the track!

We always had the option of taking the truck and loading the cars up, but driving them was so much more fun. It’s funny how loading the car became easier and easier with a proper system. Could fit 4 wheels/tires, two boxes of tools, box of spares, all my camera gear and backpack, as well as track gear in a caged car. So much fun to drive it to the track!

Quick clean.

Quick clean.

I think this is the first time I’ve washed my car since it was painted. Lots of street/track miles since then!

I think this is the first time I’ve washed my car since it was painted. Lots of street/track miles since then!

Andy knew of a rad little shrine that he always wanted to get pictures at, so we headed that way on our way to the other shop to change tires.

Andy knew of a rad little shrine that he always wanted to get pictures at, so we headed that way on our way to the other shop to change tires.

Surrounding objects didn’t help make for the best pictures, but it was fun nonetheless.  There are shrines ALL OVER the towns. You can drive 10 mins down the road to a convenience store and pass by a few on that trip alone. They’re very very nice to see up close!

Surrounding objects didn’t help make for the best pictures, but it was fun nonetheless.

There are shrines ALL OVER the towns. You can drive 10 mins down the road to a convenience store and pass by a few on that trip alone. They’re very very nice to see up close!

And back on the road.

And back on the road.

Flip the fronts, and we were good to go!

Flip the fronts, and we were good to go!

Quick stop for fuel! It usually ends up costing about 5600yen to fill the Silvia with High Octane.

Quick stop for fuel! It usually ends up costing about 5600yen to fill the Silvia with High Octane.

From here, we headed back home for a bit before leaving around 21:30 to meet up with some friends and then cruise up!

From here, we headed back home for a bit before leaving around 21:30 to meet up with some friends and then cruise up!

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His motor was raised as high as it could go for clearance underneath. As you can see his car is SUPER low!

His motor was raised as high as it could go for clearance underneath. As you can see his car is SUPER low!

He was running some wild Nexen’s R compounds all the way around. Keep this front tire selection in mind when you see the pics from later tonight. These guys don’t mess around when fighting for “who’s the quickest up and down”.

He was running some wild Nexen’s R compounds all the way around. Keep this front tire selection in mind when you see the pics from later tonight. These guys don’t mess around when fighting for “who’s the quickest up and down”.

So tidy!

So tidy!

First stop complete, off to the next meet up to gather up some more friends!

First stop complete, off to the next meet up to gather up some more friends!

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Let’s goooo.

Let’s goooo.

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Found some friends! This is James’ Mark II. Normally he has his S14 out, but he got hosed on a transmission and wasn’t able to get it until the following day. He “said” he wasn’t going to slide the Mark II, but I’m sure you can assume what ending up happening.. :)

Found some friends! This is James’ Mark II. Normally he has his S14 out, but he got hosed on a transmission and wasn’t able to get it until the following day. He “said” he wasn’t going to slide the Mark II, but I’m sure you can assume what ending up happening.. :)

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Original Leopard THRASH Racing.

Original Leopard THRASH Racing.

As everyone finishes getting their snacks for the night, and cars fired up, lights flicker on from fade to full bright, it really starts to set in. This is the most exciting driving. It’s a Saturday night, so there are likely to be 10-15 other cars up there. I’m as anxious as ever!

As everyone finishes getting their snacks for the night, and cars fired up, lights flicker on from fade to full bright, it really starts to set in. This is the most exciting driving. It’s a Saturday night, so there are likely to be 10-15 other cars up there. I’m as anxious as ever!

This short 20 min drive up to the spot is wild in itself, now try following 6-7 locals up the windy, 1st gear hairpins, and it turns into a mad dash to the top. Sketchy, fun, exciting, all in one.  Stay posted to our Youtube channel, that I’ll be getting going soon, for videos of the drive up/down, at the mountains, and at all the tracks we visited. Once I catch up with the blogs, I’ll start to edit the videos for you all!

This short 20 min drive up to the spot is wild in itself, now try following 6-7 locals up the windy, 1st gear hairpins, and it turns into a mad dash to the top. Sketchy, fun, exciting, all in one.

Stay posted to our Youtube channel, that I’ll be getting going soon, for videos of the drive up/down, at the mountains, and at all the tracks we visited. Once I catch up with the blogs, I’ll start to edit the videos for you all!

Made it!

Made it!

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As expected, the cars started to roll up! Nice and tidy Mark II!

As expected, the cars started to roll up! Nice and tidy Mark II!

Too cool. I loved this car and the feel it gave.

Too cool. I loved this car and the feel it gave.

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Everyone unloading their cars and wondering if it’s safe to run…the conditions were…”the sketchiest they’ve ever seen”.  Here’s why..

Everyone unloading their cars and wondering if it’s safe to run…the conditions were…”the sketchiest they’ve ever seen”.

Here’s why..

Earlier in the week was one of the coldest days they’ve had in a while and it proud along 40 degree F temps, and snow in the mountains. Ebisu was covered as well!  With the warmer days melting the snow, and the fact it was still above freezing temps this night, meant the snow was causing inconsistency on the road. Wet and dry spots and snow piles on the fast line meant that most drivers were debating running at all.

Earlier in the week was one of the coldest days they’ve had in a while and it proud along 40 degree F temps, and snow in the mountains. Ebisu was covered as well!

With the warmer days melting the snow, and the fact it was still above freezing temps this night, meant the snow was causing inconsistency on the road. Wet and dry spots and snow piles on the fast line meant that most drivers were debating running at all.

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Styled so well for how hard they’re driven. Inspiring.

Styled so well for how hard they’re driven. Inspiring.

Multiple sight laps were taken before pulling back into the pits. “This is so sketchy” were the only words Andy said. A sight lap consists of hazards on, slow rolling through the course errr road to see if there is any debris, or in this case snow, on the fast line. Ofcourse, with snow banks lining each side, and puddling into the center of the road, the actual drivable surface was narrowed even more.

Multiple sight laps were taken before pulling back into the pits. “This is so sketchy” were the only words Andy said. A sight lap consists of hazards on, slow rolling through the course errr road to see if there is any debris, or in this case snow, on the fast line. Ofcourse, with snow banks lining each side, and puddling into the center of the road, the actual drivable surface was narrowed even more.

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But then, one by one hazards turned off and cars starting feinting in to the first corner. Blast pipe SR noises echoing through the entire tunnel. A race to the top, followed with a brief pause in action as the other cars followed suit. The last car honks once to indicate they’re the last car in the train. Directional from the lead car meant let’s go and one after another back down the road we sped.  The uphill is one thing. Braking and grip being forced back by friction and an uphill climb against gravity. You can make a mistake and somewhat save it due to this. But the downhill, on the other hand, is the frightening part. Momentum and gravity sending you, what seems to be, twice as fast down through the twisting and winding road. Some downhill sections require full throttle, full commitment, and ridiculous speeds just to extend to the next corner for one fluid, but blazingly fast, pass.  The goal: To be the fastest Driver up AND down the pass.  This may sound like something straight out of Initial D, but I promise you, it’s very real and taken very seriously.

But then, one by one hazards turned off and cars starting feinting in to the first corner. Blast pipe SR noises echoing through the entire tunnel. A race to the top, followed with a brief pause in action as the other cars followed suit. The last car honks once to indicate they’re the last car in the train. Directional from the lead car meant let’s go and one after another back down the road we sped.

The uphill is one thing. Braking and grip being forced back by friction and an uphill climb against gravity. You can make a mistake and somewhat save it due to this. But the downhill, on the other hand, is the frightening part. Momentum and gravity sending you, what seems to be, twice as fast down through the twisting and winding road. Some downhill sections require full throttle, full commitment, and ridiculous speeds just to extend to the next corner for one fluid, but blazingly fast, pass.

The goal: To be the fastest Driver up AND down the pass.

This may sound like something straight out of Initial D, but I promise you, it’s very real and taken very seriously.

Snow versus lip.

Snow versus lip.

My night was ended early. 2-way let go and turned into an open. :( Scary to find this suddenly on entry. Maybe worn out? Maybe rebuild? Maybe shit? Whatever the case, I was a passenger for the rest of the night!    All night you hear blazing SR’s, JZ’s, RB’s echoing through the hills. But it’s when you hear nothing that everyone starts to worry. Multiple cars missing from the tunnel, and everything extremely quiet. We jump in the 180 and head up slowly, hazards on, to see what happened.

My night was ended early. 2-way let go and turned into an open. :( Scary to find this suddenly on entry. Maybe worn out? Maybe rebuild? Maybe shit? Whatever the case, I was a passenger for the rest of the night!

All night you hear blazing SR’s, JZ’s, RB’s echoing through the hills. But it’s when you hear nothing that everyone starts to worry. Multiple cars missing from the tunnel, and everything extremely quiet. We jump in the 180 and head up slowly, hazards on, to see what happened.

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Luckily, someone lost a wheel. Who knows why or what actually happened, but it was relieving to see that as the only issue. Heart sank wondering what could’ve happened.

Luckily, someone lost a wheel. Who knows why or what actually happened, but it was relieving to see that as the only issue. Heart sank wondering what could’ve happened.

After a few more runs with Andy, we decided it was time to head out and get back to the house if we were going to make it to the BM Cup later…without dying of lack of sleep.  Videos will be uploaded later to our YOUTUBE. They’re wild, lol.

After a few more runs with Andy, we decided it was time to head out and get back to the house if we were going to make it to the BM Cup later…without dying of lack of sleep.

Videos will be uploaded later to our YOUTUBE. They’re wild, lol.

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Hands down one of the most difficult drives ever. I think we pulled over at a rest area to sleep for an hour, but I honestly don’t remember large stretches of the drive. You know when you’re just THAT tired. Oops. Made it though, LOL.

Hands down one of the most difficult drives ever. I think we pulled over at a rest area to sleep for an hour, but I honestly don’t remember large stretches of the drive. You know when you’re just THAT tired. Oops. Made it though, LOL.

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Back home by sunrise-ish.

Back home by sunrise-ish.

Quick nap, then off to the BM Cup at Nikko Circuit!

ENJOY!