By Mohammed Mirza
Two Saudi car enthusiasts have opened Jeddah’s first purpose-built racing track for radio controlled (R/C) cars. Muhannad Mudeer and Naif Shalabi set up Jeddah Drift Track to provide R/C car enthusiasts with a dedicated R/C car track where they can race, participate in drifting competitions and become part of the R/C drifting community in Jeddah.
As you enter Jeddah Drift Track, you can’t help but notice the youthful and energetic vibe that the place carries. Lined up on the corners of the track are R/C car drifting fanatics holding sophisticated remote controls in their hands, while their remote controlled miniature versions of American muscle and Japanese supercars compete. Think of it as a stance-oriented meet in miniature and you aren’t too far off from the whole atmosphere.
Behind it all, there’s a massive R/C drifting community. Hardly any community member comes with a stock or entry-level remote control drift car. Jeddahwis have clearly taken this little hobby and truly transformed it, thanks to the sheer dedication of die-hard R/C drifters. Members of the community regularly take part in drift events that are held at the track and continuously focus on improving their already modified cars.
The drift track is equipped with ramps and bollards for drifting specialists to test their skills on. However, the R/C cars are not available on a rental basis here and thus only those who own R/C cars can use the drift track. Yet there are many onlookers who just come and watch the R/C cars compete.
Adjacent to the track is an R/C car merchandise store that stocks all what an R/C car enthusiast will ever need; from rims, spoilers, over-fenders, remote controllers to side skirts – an R/C car enthusiast can’t ask for more.
Converting a polycarbonate chassis into a final R/C drift car depends upon the imagination of the hobbyist and of course the execution. While modifying their cars, R/C car fanatics in Jeddah have kept realism as their top priority. Their knowledge of the scene, the way in which they recognize popular trends and replicate them faultlessly in miniature form is commendable. Considering most of them are actually into cars themselves, it’s not surprising that they can pinpoint trends, draw inspiration from them and create something unique.