when i was young, i fancied driving a sports car. the small tiny crave started when my uncle bought a fiat. i don’t remember what model was it. i was 3-4 years old that time. i don’t remember much though. then he bought RX-7. although i didn’t have any chance of driving it, being on the passengers seat was such a great experience to me. time flies by and now he no longer drove that RX-7. sold the car when i was still in school.
then comes Initial D. the anime that starts the crave all over the world. people starts to look into street racing. back then i was so impressed how the anime goes from one episode to another. years later, Fast and Furious came out – dragging more people into street racing. but unlike Initial D, Fast and Furious concentrates on Drag Racing. so everyone wants to drag on those days. traffic lights serves as “START” point. straight lane up to a kilometer becomes their favorite hang out place. being young and naive – i enjoyed that as well. but just as spectator. i can’t afford to own a car, not to mention a car that can sprint that fast. although i enjoyed watching that, i never wanted to drag. i can’t feel the thrill in drag races. its about clutch and gear shift. for as long as u can time that well – u won’t have much problem apart from driving a lousy car. as the world evolves from one day to another, drifting storms the world. street racing now are then slowly divided into drag races and drift races. drift is fun. but i only see that as something to show-off. perhaps drifters see this in different view.
only about couple of years ago – i realized there’s another type of racing. Touge. *slowpoke*.. anyhow touge is comparable to WRC. and i’ve followed WRC ever since i was still in school. its about precise braking, top speed, handling and proper gear shifting to win the race. no matter what car u drive – the biggest difference would be the driver’s skill. when i found out about touge, it excites me the most. dangerous – adrenaline rush – fun – pure satisfaction. i wish one day i’d be able to be a Touge Driver.
Touge is a Japanese word literally meaning “pass” as in mountain pass or a road between two mountains. Touge refers to the narrow winding mountain roads.
Due to steep elevation changes, a series of turns and bends, sometimes called cut backs, is needed to provide access to and from the higher elevations. Aside from construction limitations, like not being able to pave a road straight up the side of a mountain, the winding road is intended as a safety measure – typically preventing drivers from reaching extreme speeds while on the mountain.
Nevertheless, street racers and motorsport enthusiasts alike seek to test their drifting skills on the touge. Eventually, these touge racers began to adopt driving techniques used by rally drivers to help maintain their momentum through the corners. From touge racing, drifting was born.
Touge racing typically has two stages — an uphill and a downhill tsuiso battle. One car leads the race uphill, while the other car leads the downhill stage. Since touge races feature narrow mountain roads, overtaking is extremely difficult and unsafe so another means of winning is by never letting the lead car brake away from your front bumper when you are chasing. The lead car wins if the space between the cars increases considerably. If any car spins out or crashes, the other driver wins the race.
Although illegal, touge racers take precautions like forming roadblocks while other drivers are racing – street racers don’t want to wreck their cars or hurt other people. Touge racing has become popular outside of Japan in part to drifting entertainment like Initial D anime and manga.
a short explanation on Touge from Drift Japan.