Strong crowd support and a thrilling final battle between eventual winner Johnny Latham, from Christchurch, and Bruce Tannock, from Hamilton, has virtually assured the return to Manfeild of the annual D-Comp pro-am drift event.
"The Manawatu fans came out in force," said event co-organiser Drew Donovan.
"We won't know exact crowd figures for a couple of days but the support means we'll certainly be looking at bringing the event back here next year."
Now in its fifth year but previously held at Taupo's Motorsport Park, the event attracted 27 entries from Auckland to Christchurch with two battle brackets, Top 15 and 16 on.
Manawatu driver Ian McShean was the winner of the lower bracket, battling his way to earn a final top 16 spot in his Mazda 13B turbo rotary-engined Datsun 120Y.
Though he was then beaten in his first top 16 battle by top qualifier and eventual runner-up Tannock, McShean's efforts behind the wheel did not go unrewarded.
"He was the crowd favourite, for sure," said Donovan.
Before he could get his hands on the $2000 winner's purse, Mazda RX7 V8 driver Latham had to battle his way through the top 16, top eight and final four then go "one more time" (when drivers have to repeat a battle when the judges can't split them first time round) with fellow D1NZ national drifting championship pro driver Tannock.
For his efforts Tannock earned $1500 for second, with third-placed Aaron Lawson, from Wellington, (Nissan S15 V8) claiming $1000 and Ricky Lee from Whanganui (Mazda RX7) winning a draw for the final $500.
- © Fairfax NZ News