Benson Hsu

 
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Age: 37

Hometown: Temple City, CA

How you got into drifting:

Because of my friends who were really into drag racing and car shows, we watched a lot of Option video and read the magazines. I didn't have the money to successfully do what they did, so I decided to work on my driving instead. Thanks to the internet, I became friends with other people, such as Dave and Mark from Slide Squad, did a lot of touge driving and street drifting and the rest is history.

Judging experience:

Drift Day Competitions in So Cal and Midwest, Top Drift, NOPI Drift, and Final Bout

First drift car:

1991 Nissan 240sx

First event:

When I started, drifting was not allowed at any race tracks. We had to go undercover at SpeedTrial events in 2001 and drift in the back sections of Streets of Willow and act like we were just going too fast in the corners.

Favorite drift car:

Koguchi's black 180sx with the engine pushed back, v-mount, and Blitz Z2 wheels

Favorite track:

I've never driven it, but one day I hope to spend several days at Nikko Circuit.

Biggest drift inspiration (driver(s)):

Taniguchi was my favorite when it came to solo driving. He had so much speed and control, yet inside the car he was so calm and smooth like he could see everything in slow motion. When it came to tandem driving, Kumakubo was my favorite. It's a lot more common now, but back then, nobody could drive up on a person's door like Kumakubo could. He was so aggressive but could keep it under control at the same time.

Other involvement in drifting:

I was a drifting instructor for Speedtrial and Club4AG since Drift Day 1. I competed in several competitions including Option Ikaten, Falken Drift Showoff, D1GP, Formula D, and RS-R Drift Festivals. Today I continue to be VP and head instructor of Drifting Pretty and just drive for fun when I have the chance.

Why Super D Cup?

Super D embodies a spirit that I really like. The competition gives a nod to the exciting style of driving that inspired me as a young driver and emphasizes it so that it can continue to inspire the next generation of drivers. I'm really relieved and excited that Japanese influence is still relevant in American drifting.

Words of wisdom for competitors:

Have a really good understanding of yourself and your car. I, as well as everybody else, can see it when you're in complete control of your car while pushing it to its limit. Nothing is more exciting than seeing that, whether you're driving an 80hp AE86 or a 400hp s13. Also, don't worry about what other drivers are doing. No car is the same, so you all shouldn't be driving the same. Drifting is an expression of yourself and Super D is a great place to showcase that. Above all else, though, make sure to have fun and "drift with your smile" as Kumakubo would say.

 

 

Yusef Wallace

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Age: 29

Hometown: Berkeley, CA

How you got into drifting:

My interest in cars began the summer before my freshman year of high school. I was into Japanese supercars like FD RX7s and Supras. I would buy the tuner magazines but they were all full of HIN show winners and cars that didn’t get driven. Then I saw an article in an old Super Street magazine about drifting and Japanese cars. It was called “Right Hand Rides”. There were a few busted 180SXs and Silvias that “drifted”. Went and looked it up and that sealed the deal!

Judging experience:

I’ve judged a few events at Thunderhill in the past. One that ended with Julian and Ryan going at it!

First drift car:

FC RX-7

First event:

First one I went to was Drift Showoff 2003, where I saw fellow judge Benson compete against Koguchi! First event I drove was a Thunder Hill full track day

Favorite drift car:

For my personal car, I would choose any S-Chassis. But my favorite car I like to see drifting is a FD RX7.

Favorite track:

Meihan! But I really wish I could have driven Sekia Hills.

Biggest drift inspiration (driver(s)):

Hiroshi Fukuda for just how wild and powerful his 180SX was back in 03-05. His driving style was very different too. Short gearing and a crazy sounding car! Kazuhiro Tanaka when he drove the S15. All of Team Burst, Akinori Utsumi, Atsushi Kuroi, Kazuya Bai, and Fumiaki Komatsu for really getting me into it! Kansai style!

Other involvement in drifting:

Helped get Naoki Nakamura here for Super D Matsuri, Works for Wolfreign Motors, and Stacked Inc in Osaka, Japan. I am always trying my best to expose my friends to the purest form of drifting from Japan, giving any advice or suggestions when I can!

Why Super D Cup?

Because there is no better way to follow up Super D Matsuri than this. We all need to raise the bar for grassroots drifting and this is the way to do it!

Words of wisdom for competitors:

Drive hard! Drifting is not new here anymore. I want to hear you on the gas! Be on each others doors (not through them) and put on a show! You all know what you have to do!