Catching Up With – David Goldstraw

Sarah from our media partner Drivetribe has a chat with one of the fastest-rising stars in UK drifting.

Q1. Hi David, can you introduce yourself to the readers of this BDC interview please?
My name is David Goldstraw, I’m 29 from Coventry and I’m a PRO2 driver with a 2002 Lexus IS200.
Q2. What age were you when you started drifting?
I started pretty late, I was 27 when I first did a drift day and that was at Santa Pod and I spent all day in the play pens doing donuts mainly.
Q3. Apart from your drift car, what cars have you owned?
Weirdly my first car was a Volkswagen Scirocco MK2 when I was 16 which was a gift from my uncle, I’ve owned a Civic TypeR, Lexus GS430, numerous Lexus IS200’s, Mk1 Golf GTI which I’m currently doing a Honda K20 swap on and recently sold my Toyota Mark II JZX110.
Q4. What first caught your attention about drifting?
Coming from a background of working in motorsport I’ve always liked things fast but not too technical, so never been a fan of F1 for example, but drifting was just raw and like nothing else. It’s fast, loud, smoky and just all round crazy to be honest! What’s not to like but it was the presentation of the cars and the noise that did it for me. The style of drifting is what attracted me to it. I was into the “dub” scene in my younger years, but when I realised that you could express the building of drift cars however you wanted and a lot of the time the crazier the better, that’s just something that stood out and I needed to be a part of. And particularly the Japanese car scene, the S-chassis, the JZXs, Laurels, Corollas etc, it’s all cool stuff that you don’t see on the everyday drive.
Q5. How long have you been drifting, how did you get started?
So I’ve been drifting just over 2 and a half years now. May 2018 was my first go at drifting. I always just wanted to build something so that’s what I did. So I spent 2 years in a dusty barn V8 converting my IS200 and I actually didn’t really build it for drifting, I just went crazy with it and made it unique. So after it was finished I booked a Santa Pod day so I could go and give it a bit of a thrashing, and it just clicked and I kind of thought “I’m not too bad at this drifting thing”. Afterwards I put a roll cage in it, added some additional steering lock knuckles and decided it was going to be a drift car. It all really started when I bought a Honda Civic in 2013 and I started going to shows like JDM Combe and Trax et cetera, watching the drift demos and walking around the drift cars was always the highlight for me. I used to think of all those guys as celebrities! 2016 was when it really got started when I watched the Drift all stars event in London, that’s when I thought I needed to get something rear wheel drive and give this a go!
Q6. Was there an event round on the BDC2020 calendar you were the most excited about?
Teesside, definitely! I love that track. For me it’s almost the perfect combination of what you need to make a drift track exciting. Fast run up, big entry into a fast corner for some big smoke and a good opportunity for the chase car to get close, then two tight technical hairpins to really get proximity and some exciting battles going. Although, it’s also a track where you can get out-dragged off the start line by the faster cars, which for me is basically every car on the grid haha. But honestly, all the events are equally as exciting. If someone had said 2 years ago that I would be a BDC driver, I would have laughed at them! Still doesn’t seem real if I’m honest!
Q7. Is this your first proper competition car?
Yes my trusty Lexus is my first and only competition car. I’ve actually never drifted anything else! Put me in something with a turbo and I would fail miserably! I’ve driven an MX5 for a couple of laps in Buxton, but other than that I’m still very new to drifting and especially new to competitions.
Q8. Why did you pick this car?
Affordability and looks. IS200’s in the UK got to a price a few years ago of around £600 for a half decent one, I’ve owned 4 and all have been sub £1000 and reliable as always! They are horrendously boring in standard form and very slow, although drift-able with some small modifications. But it just looks good, it can have that Japanese 4 door look but without spending JZX money. I know it’s common and doesn’t have the JDM status, but you can make them look really good with some tasteful modifications and a lot of people just don’t see the fact that a lot of the chassis and platform is JZX crossover, so it shares all of its underbody components for JZX90/100 and 110, but for £1000 for the whole car. Plus, you dent a door it’s like £20 for a replacement, or just buy a whole car for £200 and there’s your full spares package!
Q9. For you which is better, being a spectator or a participant?
Spectating is fantastic. And I think competitions like the British drift Championship really make an effort to make coming to watch turn into a good day out. It’s not just a case of sitting on the sidelines and watching, there’s halftime shows, crazy demos, trade stands etc! Going to watch a BDC event for me was one of those up at 4am type days and you just couldn’t wait to get there. Even if you don’t follow the sport or have any interest in it or cars, I know people who have come to watch or watch on BDC Insider and they are genuine fans of it now because it’s exciting and different.
As someone new to the participant side I can honestly say it’s the best and worst experience all rolled into one. By worst I mean sitting in the queue to do your qualifying run for 40 minutes knowing that this is your one shot to show everyone you have what it takes, for me it’s terrifying. But when I look back I miss that buzz, that adrenaline you get when the cameras and spectators are on you judging your every move, it’s hard to explain but the other competitors will know what I mean. The best experience as the sport is just epic as a whole, everyone has a laugh, everyone’s helpful and it’s all round a great community, even if you’re going to battle someone, you can go and chat to them and have a laugh about it, it’s strange, but having that attitude means you can really go all out and put it on their door!
Q10. So you entered BDC on a permit and you gained a license, which entitled you to drive in Pro2, tell us more about that!
Well, it really was an unreal and confusing experience for me! I was at a Teesside practice day just having a fun day, and BDC were there doing some filming and promo. Charlie Hulme and I were twinning together all day as we are of similar power and we know each other’s driving style so can really push and learn every run.
Next minute I get a message from none other than Matt Stevenson asking me to come to Driftland Round 1 as a wildcard entry as he was impressed with my driving on the practice day. So, obviously I agreed and full steam ahead for 2 weeks time to get the car up to BDC regulations, buy a van to get there with and general panic and nerves. I turned up and just drove my usual. I struggled with the line in practice but got it eventually, and was just consistent with it all weekend, which showed as I actually got top qualifier in PRO2 with a 94 point run! Everything was definitely in my favour that day as I actually got 2nd place on the podium. 2nd place meant i could have a go in PRO class.. literally a dream! I qualified 7th and finished 12th after losing my top 16 battle. So I’m glad I proved to the BDC team that their choice of picking me wasn’t a bad one!
Q11. If you could battle against any drifter who would it be and why?
That’s tough as there are so many talented drivers around the globe! I’m going to be relatively generic here and say James Deane would be one as you can guarantee a perfect lead and an exciting chase. Fredric Aasbo would also be cool, or even someone like Nobuteru Tanaguchi in the old D1 HKS Altezza as that car inspired the idea to use an IS200 as a drift car.
Q12. What was your favourite battle at Round 1 of BDC?
Dylan Kehoe in the Final 4 I think. Mainly due to the fact I thought I had lost. I don’t actually use a spotter, I have people like my girlfriend Katy message me and some of my team try and tell me what’s going on or what has happened, but I don’t have a walkie-talkie, so after the first run I’m so caught up in the moment I don’t have time to take my gloves off, get my phone out and see what happened!
So for me on my lead all I heard was Dylan’s savage RB powered S14 smashing off the limiter next to me, and then in my chase I just couldn’t keep up so figured I had lost on lack of proximity. They pointed the flag at me to say I had won, I then had to ask Lee Lawrence, the BDC grid organiser if I had actually won and if I was in the final! Honestly I couldn’t believe it.
Q13. You have an endless amount of money to build a new car for BDC. What car would you build and why?
So realistically a JZX110, I just sold one which is the annoying part, but it was too clean to turn into a drift car. Again it’s readily available chassis components, 1JZ under the bonnet and it’s cool because there isn’t one in competition in the UK, and being different is better in my eyes! But, money no object would probably be a Lexus RCF/ RC. Andrew Gray uses one in competition in Japan and it’s just an amazing looking car! Kazama/Powervehicles RC200 if you want to look it up.
So, Lexus UK if you fancy sponsoring me one…
Q14. When you retire from BDC what do you want to be remembered for?
The guy who got wildcarded into the BDC at Round 1, qualified 1st and finished 2nd overall. That will live with me forever!
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