2015 & 2016 BDC champion and 2017 IDC champion Jack Shanahan is undoubtedly a force to be reckoned with behind the wheel. His dominance on British soil with back to back championship titles was followed with an IDC Pro class title in 2017. However recent news from Cork, Ireland is that the youngster will not contest the BDC Pro class in 2018. For the 2018 season, Shanahan instead has his sights set on Europe and will compete in the full 2018 Drift Masters European Championship (DMEC).
Jack, however, won’t be alone on his European conquest because it will be a Shanahan double team, as younger brother Conor Shanahan – who took home third place in the BDC Pro class in 2017, as well as the IDC Pro-Am title – is also set to join him on the DMEC grid.
DMEC is set to combine 50 of the world’s greatest drifters, but Jack and Conor Shanahan won’t be the only drivers from western Europe on the grid. 2017 Formula Drift champion James Deane will join them in Europe, with plenty more familiar names still set to join the grid.
With the news of both Shanahan brothers stepping away from UK drifting, and with Matt Carter dominating in 2017, who will be the one to step things up this year and take home the championship? If anyone can take it away from Carter that is!
Could it be the gentle giant of Team Driftworks, Martin Richards? Martin spent much of his career doing battle all across Europe but has decided to focus on homegrown competition in 2018. Last season saw him step under the Driftworks umbrella and pilot their 2JZ-powered R32 to 4th place in the championship. This season sees a comprehensive chassis diet and upgrades that are set to push Richards even further into the title fight.
Or, could the hero of the season be 2017’s Round 1 success story Oliver Evans? Last season he was a relatively unknown driver that showed up to Rockingham Motor Speedway and proceeded to take down the whole BDC Pro-Am and Pro grid, until meeting his match with 2017 BDC Champion Matt Carter in the final.
Evans continued his form for the remainder of the season placing 5th in a championship class that at the start of the season he didn’t even know he was competing in. Evans has also chosen to step under the VP Racing Fuel team for 2018, with the goal of championship triumph very much in his sights.
So despite not competing in the entire 2018 BDC season, the Shanahan brothers will be aiming to make appearances at select BDC 2018 events. Stay tuned for more information on what events you’ll be able to see the Irish duo back at.
Before then, make sure you’re in Rockingham Motor Speedway next weekend to see who takes maximum points at our season opener!