B Is For Breisladden – Speedhunters

If you’ve caught any of our Gatebil coverage over the years, you’ll be familiar with the word Breisladden.

It’s easy to explain what it is in a few words, but often the details are left out. Today, I thought we could take a closer look at this unique sub-event.

The Breisladden – which simply translates to power slide – was first contested at Gatebil Rudskogen 2001. Back then, competition drifting was in its infancy and a far cry from how we know it today. It was a different time, with different cars and different rules.

This video from Gatebil Rudskogen 2003 should give you some idea of what the Breisladden was all about 20 years ago.


Preparation differs from team to team. For some, it’s just a new set of tires required; for others, like FD driver Simen Olsen, last-minute repairs are needed – in his case a clutch replacement.


But what are the rules? For the viewer it might look simple: slide your way around a corner at high speed and hold the line. That’s the Breisladden in a nutshell, but the judges have a couple more boxes to tick. Let’s take you through an entire run at Gatebil Motorsenter…


First is a burnout to warm the tires, which is pretty standard at any drift-related event. While there aren’t any points rewarded here, it’s still a nice little pre-show for the spectators.


From the start line, drivers immediately put pedal to the metal. Many like to use sheer horsepower to drift their way into the first corner, while others go as fast as they can before yanking the e-brake to initiate their slide.


It’s critical to have both speed and angle at this point to score high in the remainder of the run. Being aggressive can either give you an edge, or quickly put you in the sand.


After turn one comes the long second turn, nicknamed Storsvingen. Here, drivers need to hold massive angle and speed with as little steering and throttle correction as possible. The amount of smoke being generated is also important. Without smoke, there is no Gatebil. That’s a fact.

Being right in the middle of it, perched high on a scissor lift, the judges have an unimpeded view over the judged section. It must look so cool to see the track completely engulfed in smoke; the fans certainly love it.


If everything has gone to plan, drivers approach the finish line with the rear of their cars right on the clipping point marker. It’s all over in a matter of seconds.


The judges score each run, and the top 20 go on to battle in the following day’s final. More than 100 cars took part this year, but there can be only one winner.


The vast majority of cars that take on the Breisladden are rear-wheel drive drift machines, but it’s the four-wheel drive maniacs that steal the show. And when you hear the name ‘Alm’ introduced, you know things are about to get wild. Here we have Kenneth Alm‘s brother Fredrik doing Gatebil properly – sideways with all four tires lit up.


Four-wheel drifting has been a part of the Breisladden since the start, and while it isn’t as popular now as it was back in the day, it’s always great to see. Watching an Audi Quattro go all-out is something special.


For me, the Breisladden is the highlight of the Gatebil Rudskogen weekend. It’s awesome to see fans and competitors give their all. But what do the drivers think?


Simen Olsen: “For me, the Breisladden is more of a fun competition, but most of us are competitors so I guess we all want to win! It’s not so much about special technique, but it is all about full throttle, going as wide as possible, being smooth, and getting as close as possible to the very last cone. I normally to try and figure out a good setup that gives me the grip I need, so I can easily control the car being on-throttle during the transitions instead of using the e-brake.”


Fannar Þór: “It’s one thing to take part in Gatebil and be among all the heroes and have a chance to prove yourself, but the Breisladden gives you a feeling you don’t get elsewhere on the track. It’s a bit of a ‘one shot, one opportunity’ thing with all the spectators on the hill, the evening sun and all the attention on you for 15 seconds. It’s like stepping on a big stage compared to Iceland, stressful, but at the same time an awesome feeling.”


Per Erik Hovden: “The Breisladden really shows that you don’t need a million dollar car to have fun. I feel like people often forget what drifting is all about – that is, showing what you can do with what you have. I know I can’t win the Breisladden with my grassroots BMW E46 Compact and its original 2.8L engine with 190hp, but I know I can win a few smiles from the crowd while I clutch kick around the corner several times. I put 4bar of air pressure in the oldest tires I can find and see how it goes. Low-cost cars are the most fun!”


Joachim Haugenes: The Breisladden is one of the most fun things about Gatebil. You have everyone from first-time drifters to professional all in the same competition. But it’s not so easy to train for and be 100% prepared. You have the whole track for yourself and need to start drifting without rolling speed, and then have just 30 seconds to shine. The technique is ‘never lift the gas’, and that’s what I like the most about it. The Breisladden is almost the same as when I started six or seven years ago, but the level of driving just keeps getting higher every year.”


It’s interesting to hear the different perspectives of those who compete in the Breisladden. If there’s one thing that everyone can agree on, it’s that there aren’t really any rules regarding what you can and can’t compete with – if it drifts, you’re good.

The Breisladden competition has always brought the best out of Gatebil, and I can’t wait to experience it once again.

Alen Haseta
Instagram: hazetaa

Credit : Source Post

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