Round one is in the books and Brian Peter has once again emerged as the victor. With a lot of cars unable to qualify much less make top 16, the decision was made to run a top eight instead. And while the final field may have been halved, the action was no less intense.
After Brian Peter knocked out Paul Beiswenger and Dan Sommer took out Evan Steiner, it was time for former MDU champion and Formula D driver Mike Feiock and Chris Gonzalez to do battle, where Feiock got the win.
“I went against Gonzo and led well, and he apparently spun out on the entry or went in the grass, and I guess I got the advantage at that point,” Feiock said. “But when I followed him I caught up to him and basically straightened out a couple times, which I was awarded the win for whatever reason. I kind of thought it was going to be a one-more-time, but it wasn’t.”
“I made a stupid mistake in competition against Mike Feiock,” Gonzalez said. “I went to grab by e-brake on initiation, and I had to re-grab for it, and by that point it was too late and I was in the dirt off track. But I had a blast and I’m not disappointed in any way. I’m here, the car worked and we did well.”
When it was time for Kyle Crangle (who surprised everyone including himself with a second-place qualifying run) and Rolando Alfaro to do battle, Crangle switched to Mike O’Mara’s S13 due to it being more competition-ready than his mostly stock and still in very good shape S14.
“I’ve had that car for nine years now, so keeping it as nice as I have for as long as I have for how much driving I do with it, I’m happy,” Crangle said. “I don’t want to wad it up against somebody just for the sake of getting a trophy.”
“Kyle’s really consistent but he was in a new car so I gave him room,” Alfaro said. “When I led I think he went off at the end of the track so I got the win.”
Oh and what a dirt drop that was. Often teased for never leaving St. Louis to drift, Crangle said his high qualifying position might make him re-think that.
“Qualifying second and looking at some of the names on the list, and seeing my name on that list, it gave me a little bit of hunger,” Crangle said. “I don’t know if I’ll run the full tour but competition drifting has never really been my thing. I never considered myself good enough to be a competition driver. I don’t push hard enough, my car’s not a competition car, I drive it on the street. First motion is to get the engine running again and back into shape, and once I got that setup, the guys at Nocturnal Motorworks might set me up with a cage.”
After Peter took down Sommer, that meant Alfaro would face Feiock in the top four.
“I led pretty well,” Feiock said. “On the chase run I gave him a little too much room because I was afraid I was going to catch him again, because he’s got a pretty stock 350Z. I assumed I was going to catch him and had nowhere to go, so I left too much room and his car is actually surprisingly fast while drifting so he ended up getting the win.”
“(Mike’s) known as one of the best drivers in MDU,” Alfaro said. “I was a little nervous but I had to just go out there and give it my all. And somehow he kind of bobbled and I did pretty much my qualifying run with him leading so I got the win.”
Feiock’s loss meant he would be right back out to face Sommer for third place.
“With Feiock I had no idea if I could even keep up,” Sommer said. “I pulled a pretty good lead and had a pretty good follow run and it was a tighter match than I thought it was going to be and I got to move on.”
And with that, the final stage was set between Peter and Alfaro.
“The final battle was awesome,” Alfaro said. “It was probably one of the most memorable battles I’ve ever had. We ended up going one more time and on my follow run I dirt dropped and wasn’t able to link up after that. I knew I needed to throw down and make it my hardest run, and I thought I did. Brian even said he couldn’t keep up, which I thought was mind blowing. He ended up getting the win because I’m a little more underpowered. I think he deserves the win and the battle was amazing so I’m pretty happy with the day.”
Peter echoed some of those sentiments.
“That was a close battle,” Peter said. “I was expecting a slower car. I left a little bit of room on entry and once we were drifting, I was like, this dude’s pretty fast. I was catching him but not very quickly. I underestimated Rolando a lot. He’s a great driver and really cool dude. I’m really looking forward to driving with him some more.”
And as he had so many times before, Brian Peter came out on top and was awarded a Grip Royal steering wheel and trophy by Plasma Tracks.
Midwest Drift Union round two will occur on Saturday, May 17 at Mid-America Motorplex in Pacific Junction, Iowa. We hope to see you there!