Of the Low Origin cars, Dan’s Nissan S15 is what I guess you would call the less extreme of the two. Featuring a less intrusive roll cage, the entirety of its interior and a ride height just a smidgen higher than that of Alex’s S14, you could be forgiven for describing it as a practical daily driver. For the most part though, Dan does actually drive his beloved Nissan every day.
I didn’t know too much about this S15 or its owner when I stumbled across it in the pits at Meihan Sportsland last September but I knew I needed to take a closer look. The type of cars present on this particular mid-week practice day generally fell into one of two categories; either they were competition spec cars that were being tested prior to upcoming major events, or they were slightly more battered and bruised practice cars. There were a handful of super clean street cars in attendance though that were also being thrashed on track, with this Silvia being one of them.
With Alex’s S14a being as low as it is, fibreglass parts tend not to last too long. The side skirts in particular have an especially hard time, with the bottom section consistently rubbing the floor on acceleration and eventually just eroding away. Now that he has a new Origin Labo Racing Line kit to fit, it was time for Alex to make some preventative measures to ensure the parts last that little bit longer than usual.
When I visited Meihan Sportsland back in September there was no end of D1 and Formula Drift Japan drivers laying it down in the expert class. However, there was one driver in particular who was consistently throwing down the biggest entries and closest wall runs, lap after lap. Kunihiko Teramachi was unstoppable in his PS13 practice car (the same car that he has previously won D1SL events in) and stole the show; it was mad to think that this was just a bit of simple mid-week practice for these guys. You’d struggle to find such a talented grid of drivers at a practice day anywhere else in the world, that’s for sure.
There aren’t too many of drifting’s original forefathers still taking part in the sport, with many either losing interest, growing older with families and other commitments or, in many cases, both. Chunky Bai is one of Japan’s drif OGs, having been a part of Osaka’s legendary street drifting scene since the beginning. He still competes to this day in D1GP using his faithful 180SX, a car that I was lucky to come across once again, this time at the United Royals event in Kobe back in September.