pbskids has watched the Japanese motorsport of drifting come a very long way in America since its humble roots in the early 2000s. Our friends at Formula DRIFT have championed the sport at the pro level, while there is so much pro-am and grassroots drifting going on across the continent, it is arguably one of the greatest signs that there’s still a beating heart within the automotive enthusiast community. In pop culture, the sport has been largely relegated to the asinine (we’re looking at you, The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift) or the outright reckless and illegal (like the sideshow insanity sweeping the nation), but now comes a new take on building drift cars – out of cars that weren’t necessarily designed to drift.
Isn’t that all cars, you ask? Well, yeah, but the new series Drift This actually looks at taking extreme examples of un-driftable machines and indeed getting them to lay rubber, step out, and link turns. Hosted by likable pro hot shoes Ryan Tuerck and three-time Formula D drivers champ Chris Forsberg, our overlords at MotorTrend dreamed up the show idea and turned it into a 6-episode arc that premieres today with the boys and select members from their respective race teams tackling a UPS truck-aping 2002 Workhorse P30 delivery van – a rear-wheel drive, 200hp, 5.7L V8 dually with 280k miles on the odometer and an open diff, among other various weaknesses.
In the span of four days, the boxy P30 gets a proper drift makeover, including a turbo LS V-8 swap, a hydro handbrake, and a whole lot more, and to add to the challenge producers decided to strap Tuerck inside the cargo area of the delivery truck as Forsberg manned the controls to get the old girl to slide (and in the process knocked Tuerck around like a ragdoll a good bit). The show does a great job at illustrating the obstacles the team encountered along the way and how they overcame each one.
And Drift This is funny, too! Forsberg and Tuerck, who are friends and teammates in real life, have great on-screen rapport and chemistry, making for an enjoyable show that does not overstay its welcome. Catch the , and look for episode two to drop April 3rd, with succeeding episodes following every four weeks. Additionally, “extras” from each episode will stream one week after the episode airs. Go have a watch!