- The Pit+Paddock Performance Car Invitational show returned to Formula DRIFT Irwindale for the second year in a row with presenting partner Vibrant Performance.
- A curated selection of 25 vehicles was on display which ranged from high-end supercars and motorsports icons to grassroots tuner builds.
- The rarest vehicles included the McLaren P1 from Pit+Paddock’s 2022 SEMA Show booth and a Millennium Jade R34 GT-R M-Spec Nur, 1 of 156 in the world.
- Hero race cars were also part of the exhibition which included the Evasive Motorsports x Turn 14 Distribution Tesla Model 3 which claimed “Fastest EV” at the 2022 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.
- Fresh after winning the Pit+Paddock x ENEOS SEMA Show Car Contest, Ashley Robinson and his twin-engine-powered Nissan 350Z made the journey from Northern California to be a part of the car show.
- To cap off an astonishing 20th anniversary season of Formula DRIFT, the round at Irwindale Speed hit record ticket sales with more than 20,000 people over the entire weekend, keeping the flow of spectators extremely busy in the car show area.
REDEMPTION FROM THE RAIN
In Southern California, it rains around 30 days a year on average. We’re spoiled here with warm weather and constant sunshine on the regular, which is why there are so many car events that fill up our weekends year-round. However, when the clouds do come in and the water begins to sprinkle, our first instinct is to postpone or cancel events because we know that most people won’t dare drive their project cars in the rain. This was the case for Pit+Paddock’s Performance Car Invitational last year as severe weather conditions at Irwindale Speedway resulted in some no-show cars and a smaller attendance than expected. With this still in our mind, we knew 2023 would be our redemption year as there was nothing but blue skies and 80-degree temps in the forecast. The second annual Pit+Paddock Performance Car Invitational at Formula DRIFT Irwindale presented by Vibrant Performance was destined to be a banger, and sure enough, it delivered!
SMALLER SHOW WITH BIGGER BANG
Following a successful Seattle show that featured more than 60 elite vehicles and 10,000 fans, our Irwindale event would use a smaller footprint since we needed extra space to activate our Ride with Dai program. Inevitably, this meant we needed to pack more of a punch despite being limited to 25 vehicles. If I had to be honest, this was an extremely daunting task as there are so many top-notch builds in Southern California to highlight, but in the end, our team did our best to curate the widest array of vehicles possible, ranging from supercars and race heroes to street-tuned Japanese and Euro builds.
FRONT ROW BANGERS
McLaren P1. As featured in the 2022 Pit+Paddock SEMA booth, we welcomed the Anti Social Social Club x Inozetek McLaren P1 that wears the limited edition Metallic ASCC Spectrum film and BBS wheels.
Tesla Model 3. Driven by Dai Yoshihara at Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in 2021 and in 2022 where it claimed the unofficial “Fastest EV” title, the Evasive Motorsports x Turn 14 Distribution has had its livery completely stripped giving it a fresh look for spectators to admire.
Nissan Skyline GT-R M-spec Nur. When it comes to dream cars, the R34 Skyline GT-R M-spec Nur edition is at the top of the JDM food chain with auction prices seeing upwards of half a million US dollars. It was a pleasure to have Greg Park’s build which sports a Z-Tune front bumper, Mag Blue TE37s, and GReddy parts.
BMW M4 Competition. Built for time attack battles, the Art of Attack M4 Competition is one of the wildest G-series BMWs in the world with a custom roll cage by Riley Stair, CSF cooling upgrades, 700hp, and prototype RS Future aero.
Toyota GR86. A Super GT-inspired GR86 with a Honda K24 swap using a Rywire harness, Haltech dash, and Radium Engineering fuel components, Daniel Song never ceases to wow people with his builds.
Porsche 911 GT3. Sometimes less is more, which is the case of Chris Jurilla’s Porsche 992 GT3 Touring. The Olive Green beauty on BBS Motorsport E89 wheels was recently showcased in the Akrapovic booth at Rennsport Reunion.
Nissan 350Z. Fresh after winning the grand prize in the Pit+Paddock x ENEOS SEMA Show Car Contest, Ashley Robinson had a crowd around his Nissan 350Z the entire show.
The show at Formula DRIFT Irwindale is our last Performance Car Invitational of the year, and we couldn’t have done it without our presenting partner Vibrant Performance, the 25 car show exhibitors who spent their entire day with us, and the hardworking staff of Formula DRIFT and Irwindale Event Center.
As for what’s next on the horizon, we are looking forward to continuing our celebration car culture with our next Grid Icons event this October 22nd at 405 Motoring. Together with H&R Springs, we will be taking you back to the hay days of the VW/Audi scene. See you Sunday!