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Drifting Frequently Asked Questions


Welcome to the Drift Session's Frequently Asked Questions about drifting. These are some of the questions that we receive via e-mail on a regular basis, so here's some basic answers to get you started in the world of drifting. Also be sure to read the Frequently Alluded Questions here

If the Frequently Asked Drifting Questions don't answer the particular question you may have, please feel free to ask us at info@driftsession.com. Make sure to add an appropriate subject heading to your email so we don't delete it by accident. We'll do our best to answer your question. We promise.


What is drifting?
The official definition of a 'drift' according to the Drift Session is, "Exceeding your tires' limits of adhesion, exhibiting a lateral slip, resulting in an oversteered condition. We'll break it down like this: 1. 'Exceeding your tires' limits of adhesion' means that there is no longer enough traction available for your tires to maintain grip with the roadway. This can be caused by numerous things including: using too much horsepower at a given point in time, too great a degree to cornering angle, too much speed carried into a corner, slippery roadway conditions, etc. 2. 'Exhibiting a lateral slip' means that your car is traveling towards a vector that is not consistent with the direction your vehicle is facing; aka your car is facing sideways, but still moving towards the direction you were previously pointed. 3. 'Resulting in an oversteered condition' is basically defined as your vehicle angle being greater than the angle of the corner negotiated. The combination of these three elements is what we will use as the basic components of a 'drift.'


What is the Drift Session?

The Drift Session is a promotional company that produces drifting and racing events as well as an internet resource dedicated to educating people about the sport of drifting. The Drift Session was the first organization to create drifting events and competitions on a regular basis in America. DriftSession.com was also one of the first mainstream websites created specifically for drifting. 


Can only Rear Wheel Drive (RWD) vehicles drift?

No. Anything with wheels can drift, and probably some things without wheels too. Based off of the official Drift Session definition for drifting, drifting can be performed in any vehicle regardless of drivetrain type. While being much more difficult to perform drifts in a front wheel drive vehicle, it is possible, with the proper technique, to drift them reasonably. The most common reason why people don't drift FWD vehicles is because it is nearly impossible to sustain a drift or accelerate while drifting in a FWD vehicle. FWD vehicles are limited in drifting by the amount of momentum they carry into a corner, while RWD vehicles are not. 




What is the best vehicle for drifting?

There is no best vehicle for drifting. Everything is based off of personal preferences and driving style. A 'best' vehicle would most likely be one that is reliable and able to perform consistently. While all vehicles have their advantages and drawbacks, the most common drift vehicles tend to be reasonably priced, attainable, cheap to repair, have good aftermarket product support, and are rear wheel drive. 


Do you need lots of horsepower to drift?

No. However, what you lack in horsepower and torque, you need to make up for with momentum when drifting. While having lots of horsepower to spare can make drifting easier, it is not a requirement. Having lots of horsepower often lets a drifter correct mistakes and compensate for bobbles on the track that a low horsepower vehicle cannot. Once a low horsepower vehicle loses speed and momentum while drifting it is difficult to regain that momentum due to the lack of sufficient horsepower. 


What does a good drift look like?

What a good drift looks like is up to you. In the D1 Grand Prix, good drifting follows a designated racing line, stays low in the corners, and maintains race speeds. In the US, a good drift is wide, holds lots of angle, and makes lots of smoke. At the Drift Session, we look at speed, line, smoke, and how close you can get to the guardrails. Drifting is a subjective sport. What looks good to you, may not look good to another.


Do I need lots of vehicle modifications to drift?

No. Too many drivers out there are using pending modifications as an excuse to put off drifting for another day. You only need a car to drift. Learn your vehicle and how it handles in its stock form. Then as you progress, add modifications as you reach mechanical limits of your vehicle. No part or combination of parts will make you a better drifter. In the beginning, spend your money on track events and tires. As your skill increases, things like suspension bushings, stiffer suspension components, and higher horsepower may help you to overcome problems you had with a stock vehicle.




Is drifting the fastest way around a corner?

No. This is another subjective answer in the world of drifting because 'faster' can mean so many different things. In essence though, a drift is exceeding the amount of traction available. When you don't have traction you're not accelerating as fast as you possibly could. If screeching the tires and making lots of smoke were better for acceleration, you'd see drag racers trying to do that all the way down the quarter mile. Now 'faster' in another sense of the word, as in crossing a finish line faster than another vehicle, can be accomplished with drifting in certain situations. Drifting can be used in a road race situation to change the cornering angle of your vehicle to allow for difficult passing and optimizing a less than perfect racing line. In this way, can drifting be an unorthodox method of being 'faster' in a corner. 


Can I get Ross Petty's phone number?

Sorry. This is not a dating service for Ross Petty. You wouldn't believe how often we get asked this question. FYI, Ross Petty is one of the founders of Garage Boso and is a professional drifter. 


Is it possible for an AE86 to defeat higher horsepower vehicles on the downhill?
Anything is possible in racing. Put down the Initial D and step away slowly.





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Home Drifting Gallery Drifting Videos Drifting Technique Drifting Glossary Drifting Message Board
Drifting Car Parts Drifting Wheels Drifting Tires Drifting Rules Drifting FAQ's
Drifting Tracks Drifting Merchandise Drifting Sponsorship Drifting Scores Drifters
Link Exchange Cool Products Drifting Cars Drifting Events Drifting Girls