How Youths of Minna Are Using Car Drifting Stunts As a Tool For Brotherhood

The city is known for social events like a horse race, commonly known as Hawa; often organized to celebrate things like a sister’s wedding, a brother’s walimah, a friend’s graduation, etc. The most spectacular and grand Hawa however, occurs only during Sallah celebrations. The whole city meets to watch, and the King is usually part of the horse riders; not racing, but making a royal appearance. But another social event Minna is known for is Car drifting stunts.

Car drifting is the process of overly accelerating a car around a stage, causing it to release a cloud of exhaust fumes in its trail. This is done for fun and competitions and is becoming increasingly popular amongst youths of Minna, the capital city of Niger State.

Wikipedia defines car drifting as,

“A driving technique where the driver intentionally oversteers, with loss of traction in the rear wheels or all tires, while maintaining control and driving the car through the entirety of a corner. Car drifting occurs when the rear slip angle is greater than the front slip angle, to such an extent that often the front wheels are pointing in the opposite direction to the turn (e.g., the car is turning left, wheels are pointed right or vice versa, also known as a reverse lock or counter-steering)”

Car drifting stunts first started in Japan in 1970, by a man named Kunimitsu Takahashi. He was first a motorcyclist and then a driver. He would go on to win major awards for car drifting competitions.

The end aim of car drifting is usually to produce exhaust fumes from the burning of car tires.

Keiichi Tsuchiya, another Japanese, known as the “Drift King” came into history upon encountering Tahakashi’s drifting techniques. Sometime in the late 90s, particularly in 1996, Drifting began to gain more popularity outside of Japan, in places like California.

Drift League presents Tokyo Wedding Party

On 10th February 2019, Minna car drifters converged at 3-Arm Zone to have Drifting stunts in celebration of a sister of one of their top members who recently got married. They called it Tokyo-Wedding Party from the Drift-league. Before this, they had made a flyer and shared it across social media, inviting people to come to to to to watch.

The bride was in attendance with two of her friends to witness the fun celebration. Her hands and feet had henna, and her face was heavily made up. She wore a black hijab.

At 4:30 pm, the stage was still mostly empty and exuded a serene, peaceful atmosphere, even though the event had scheduled for 4:00 pm.

Soon, drifters and spectators started to arrive in trickles. Some of them had customized t-shirts. Most casually dressed in t-shirts and jeans.

When the first car arrived, it did so with a grand announcement; tires were screeching hard against the cemented inter-locked ground as people cheered.

In about an hour, the arena was full of drifters and watchers alike. And so the fun began. As spectacular as the view often was, it sometimes left fear in the mouth of watchers especially first-time viewers. But not for the young men standing around the arena and cheering loudly as each car began its show.

In about an hour, the arena was full of drifters and watchers alike. And so the fun began. As spectacular as the view often was, it sometimes left fear in the mouth of watchers especially first-time viewers. But not for the young men standing around the arena and cheering loudly as each car began its show.

A small car first drove into the arena and began to accelerate round and round in a way that made eyes dizzy. And then it drove off the cemented road into a corner filled with sand. Once there, the driver began to press hard on the accelerator, while at the same time steering the wheel in a direction opposite the direction the tires were headed. This sent the tires rolling hard against the sand in one direction and then breathing loads of sand in, and leaving clouds of dust erupting into the air. Once this was achieved, the car veered back onto the road and accelerated hard, leading the tires into burning smoke out in spirals and spirals of fumes that drove the crowd into cheers.

Several cars did this in turns, each trying to outdo the one before it, producing more and more smoke.

As night drew closer, the bride and her two friends, who had been mere viewers before now, were invited into one of the cars whose turn it was to drift. They went in. Once the car started, they began to scream in what could have been terror, or excitement, or both. But the driver did not stop. He drifted until the tires burned and there were thick clouds of smoke. By the time he finished, and the three women alighted from the car, they each clutched their chests in obvious terror and tried to gain their breaths back. The crowd cheered.

Towards the end of the show, word went round that there was to be a Hawa on the 24th of February, in honor of a member’s brother who had recently done his Qur’anic graduation.

There is a fabric that binds the youths of this city together, and it is called brotherhood.


This article is a collaboration between Writer, Hauwa Shaffii Nuhu, and Photographer Victor Adewale.

This project is part of a final assignment to conclude my time at That Green Tea. I am available for any future literary collaborations as needed. Follow me on social media on IG: @waasishafii and Twitter: @waasishafii

All images are the original work of Victor Adewale on IG: @victoradewale_ and Twitter: @victoradewale_

  1. Drifting (motorsport). (2019, January 22). Retrieved February 13, 2019, from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drifting_(motorsport)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: