Exhibition of Seattle’s Top Builds Draws Thousands of Spectators at Formula DRIFT

Photography: Neri Valenti

  • For the second year in a row, Pit+Paddock collaborates with partners Formula DRIFT and Radium Engineering to host a curated car show at Evergreen Speedway.
  • Dubbed the “Performance Car Invitational”, more than 60 street-tuned vehicles from the Pacific Northwest region were displayed in front of an audience of more than 10,000 drift fans.
  • Pit+Paddock coordinated a trio of elite vehicles to wow spectators which included Dai Yoshihara’s R33 Skyline GT-R, GReddy’s Pandem widebody Mazda RX-7, and the Anti Social Social Club x Inozetek Ferrari F40.
  • With the help of presenting partner Radium Engineering, every car show exhibitor was gifted a limited edition Leen Customs “DAI33” Skyline GT-R pin, which will be available on the Pit+Paddock online store soon.
  • Two Best of Show awards were handed out to Ekk Sengchantha’s K-swapped 1987 BMW 325is and Terry Suvonnarith’s DC2 Acura Integra.
  • Continuing the momentum of an unforgettable 20th anniversary season of Formula DRIFT, the next Performance Car Invitational will take place on Saturday, October 14th at FD Irwindale.

The Pacific Northwest is a region that doesn’t receive the spotlight as much as it should in the car scene, much due to the fact, that it’s damp and grey three seasons out of the year. This, in turn, means the number of large-scale car events is limited to the summer months. But having lived in Seattle for 23 years, and having been heavily involved in the community since I attended my first car show at the age of 15, I knew it was a car scene rich with good people, talented builders, and super clean cars. It was a no-brainer for Pit+Paddock to collaborate with presenting partner Radium Engineering to host back-to-back car shows at the 2022 and 2023 Formula DRIFT Seattle round.

A FOCUS ON PERFORMANCE AND QUALITY

We named the show “Performance Car Invitational” for two reasons. First, exhibiting vehicles needed to have a primary focus on performance and use only high-quality parts. Our goal wasn’t to showcase a bunch of overly stanced cars or off-road rigs, but instead, a collection of builds that would resonate with the type of tuning we like to advocate here at Pit+Paddock. Second, given our limited footprint at Evergreen Speedway, and knowing we wanted to give each build the space they deserve, we invited a diverse array of modified vehicles that would best portray the performance car scene.

The collection of Japanese cars was well represented; there was no shortage of Nissan 240SX, Silvias, and GT-Rs. There was also a strong contingent of Hondas and Euros, both of which you’d never see at a Formula DRIFT round a few years ago. In total, 60 vehicles were displayed at the Performance Car Invitational, which was a healthy improvement from the 2022 show.

TRIFECTA: DAI33, GREDDY RX-7, F40

Something we pride ourselves on at Pit+Paddock is being able to provide enthusiasts with a unique experience at our events. So, while we knew we had many local bangers at our Performance Car Invitational, we went the extra mile by bringing out a trio of superstar builds that we knew most folks in the Pacific Northwest had never seen before.

The first car was Dai Yoshihara’s 1996 Nissan Skyline GT-R, which broke ground at the 2022 SEMA Show. We’ve been lucky enough to bring it out to our Cars+Coffee: Builders Edition, DAI Homecoming event at Turn 14 Distribution headquarters, Wicked Big Meet, and Grid Icons. Showing off the 750hp GReddy-built R33 to thousands of fans in Seattle who could appreciate its insane build quality was an absolute treat.

The second build which headlined the Performance Car Invitational was the Mazda RX-7 designed by Kei Miura of TRA Kyoto and built by GReddy for the 2018 SEMA Show. The 400hp FC RX-7 has since changed ownership to the folks at Intec Racing and having it on display at Evergreen Speedway was one of the rare times it’s seen the public eye in the last five years.

Lastly, we owe Greg Park a huge thank you for allowing us to bring out the Anti Social Social Club x Inozetek Ferrari F40. Many of you will remember the F40 when it was wrapped white at the Pit+Paddock booth at the 2021 SEMA Show. It’s now one of the most famous supercars in the world due to its provocative pink wrap.

NOT GOING HOME EMPTY-HANDED

Unlike most car shows, we don’t want to dwell on giving out an overabundance of awards. Our mission is to bring together an elite group of cool cars in the hopes of inspiring enthusiasts – something we feel is worth more than a trophy. But that didn’t mean we couldn’t give extra kudos to a couple of dope builders that deserved the recognition. With the help of Radium Engineering, we created two Best of Show awards that came in the form of co-branded Apple AirPods Pro 2nd Gen headphones, then presented them to Ekk Sengchantha’s K-swapped 1987 BMW 325is and Terry Suvonnarith’s DC2 Acura Integra. In addition, each car show exhibitor was gifted a limited edition Leen Customs pin of Dai’s R33 Skyline. A small number of pins will be available for sale at the Pit+Paddock online store in the coming weeks.

PARTNERSHIP CONTINUES 

With another successful car show in the books, we are excited to continue our partnership with Formula DRIFT at the next two rounds. On September 15 and 16, we will be hosting the next “Ride with Dai” experience at Utah Motorsports Campus. We’ll continue the drift ride-along program at Irwindale Speedway on October 13 and 14, in addition to our last Performance Car Invitational show of the year. 

To apply to be featured in the car show, please e-mail info@pitpaddockstg.wpenginepowered.com.



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OFFICIAL PARTNERS