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How To Get Sideways (The Right Way)

No matter where you’re at, there’s no longer an excuse to slide your car around a freeway onramp.

By , Photography by Jordan Donnelly

These days, it’s not hard to find a track day or HPDE in almost any area of the country. And don’t worry — it’s not the “grip guys” who get to have all the fun. If sliding sideways is your style, look no further. We’ve put together a group of some of the many grassroots drift track day organizers from across the U.S. No matter where you’re at, there’s no longer an excuse to slide your car around a freeway onramp. Take it to the track where it belongs! In such a limited space, it’s impossible to share each and every drift day organizer out there, so don’t be afraid to do a little searching online if you don’t see something in your exact area.

Pacific Northwest

In the beautiful and scenic Pacific Northwest region of the U.S., there are a few good options for people looking to get on track and do some drifting in a safe and legal environment. If you’re just starting out, there’s a great little kart track in Canby, Oregon, called Pat’s Acres. This track is designed for small karts, so it’s a good place to learn techniques and begin honing your skills on a track that doesn’t have a lot of spots to wreck your car. Make sure to check the event calendar on the track website before planning a trip.

If you’ve already been drifting for a while and have been thinking about taking the next step, look into Evergreen Drift (held at a familiar venue of Evergreen Speedway in Monroe, WA). Evergreen Drift plays host to the Northwest Grassroots Championship series, and they are the only Formula DRIFT Pro-Am affiliate in the Northwest region. This is a great venue for drivers looking to move forward and earn a license to drift in organized racing series. Evergreen Drift also offers events for drivers of all levels, including beginners and first-timers, so don’t be shy!

California and Southwest

If you’re located in the Southern California area, Adams Motorsports Park in Riverside is one of the better-known places where drift enthusiasts of all levels converge to enjoy a little tire smoke. Every Thursday night, Adams hosts a drift event where you can bring out your ride and drift the course, or if you don’t have a car suitable for drifting just yet, you can ride along to experience the thrill firsthand. With loose tech requirements, nearly any RWD car in proper functioning condition is allowed to partake at Adams Motorsports Park. Don’t forget to bring your helmet!

Drifting is sweet, so take it off the streets and hit a track day!

Willow Springs International Raceway (located about an hour and a half north of Los Angeles) is a diverse racing complex, and the guys who organize JustDrift do a great job of utilizing the many courses available at the facility. JustDrift caters to each level of driving experience, from the super advanced all the way to beginners. The group’s DriftClinic driving school is a great way to get your feet wet if you’re new to drifting, or if you just want some tips from a more experienced driver than yourself. With roughly one event held each month, you’ll never have to wait too long to get out there and burn some rubber.

In the hot and dry desert heat of Las Vegas, there’s plenty of drift action to be had with the Vegas Drift organization. Held at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway (a familiar venue for Formula DRIFT followers), Vegas Drift offers events about once a month throughout the year, catering to all levels of drivers. The Formula DRIFT Pro-Am circuit also has a stop in Vegas, so that’s worth mentioning for the more serious drifting prospects in the crowd.

Texas and Southeast

The Lone Star State is home to a massive drift following, so naturally it’s not too difficult to find a good drift day in any of the major cities. Fabricated Motorsports is one of the larger grassroots drift organizing bodies, and they offer events in each of the major Texas cities at various times throughout the year. This group also caters to new drifters, so don’t be afraid to show up and give it a go. There are instructors on hand to help!

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