When you take almost 100 drivers, as many cars, a race track, and an organization that knows how to put it all together, you get one of the largest drifting events in the Midwest. Drift Indy, the driving force behind the wildly successful No Star Bash, brought the historically traveling series back to Kil-Kare Speedway in Xenia, Ohio for the second year in a row to give drivers of all skill levels a venue to hone their skills, drive with friends, and maybe do just a little partying along the way.
The once again sold-out spectacle brought in drivers from all over the Midwest and beyond. While Nissan's venerable S-chassis platforms turned up in droves (as to be expected), one interesting aspect of this year's Bash was the influx of BMWs, notably E36 and E46 platforms, perhaps the most the event has ever seen. Notable other sightings include a couple of Nissan Laurels, a manual-swapped E38 7 Series, and perhaps most unusual, a Lincoln Mark VII built from a mix of '80s and '90s Ford parts bins.
Driver skill levels were as varied as the cars they turned up in, from those just starting out to those at the Formula DRIFT level. The progression of some of the novice drivers in just two days' time could definitely be seen, owing itself to the sheer amount of seat time available and the help of the more seasoned drivers.
Speaking of, Geoff Donati and Jonathan Hurst, who earned their Formula D Pro 2 licenses through the now-defunct Midwest Drift Union that made a stop at this very track last year, brought their Pro 2 cars out do some pressure-free driving. It was interesting to watch a few of the "then vs. now" tandem runs between the recent licensees and the ex-FD competitor Mike Skudlarek in the same car he's competed in the pro level years ago.
Of course, it wouldn't be a Bash nor an event at Kil-Kare if at least one driver didn't plant his car in the wall, and this year proved far more destructive than in 2017. Many drivers left the track in cars missing considerably more pieces than when they arrived, but thanks to the safety protocols put in place by the Drift Indy staff and track crews, everyone walked away without injury.
Somewhere in between all this was a roller dog eating contest on Saturday afternoon, with six competitors seeing who could eat the most roller dogs in a three-minute period. One of the drivers, Nathan St. John, would take home the title, consuming six of the Midwest delicacies within the time limit before downing a seventh purely because he could.
No Star Bash will no doubt return for 2019, though when and where will likely be a mystery for the foreseeable future.