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How Drift Nirvana (solo comp) is judged

    Judging drifting is probably the most difficult part of the sport. Unlike Time Attack or your normal HPDE day, drifting is subjective. In the end, that means a judge decides who wins or loses. At Drift Nirvana, we lack drift boxes, radar guns, or any fancy equipment. We have a pen and paper.

    Fret not! There is a rhyme and reason for everything. The following are the general guidelines used to judge solo comp runs at DN.

    Ideally, Orange loop (aka pistol grip) on Shennandoah is broken into 10 turns. Theoretically it's 11 or even 12 but we simplify for DN. We also judge from 2 gazebos. All 10 turns are too much for one judge to judge or even see from any one point in the track. We use 2 judges; one at the first gazebo for turns 1-5 and another at the middle gazebo for turns 6-10.

    Again, ideally, each corner is judged with a total of 10 points. 3 points for speed, 3 points for speed, 3 for angle, and 1 special point for show offs or a very impressive run. At 10 points a corner, that's 100 points total.

    In real life, this isn't the case. Runs go by so quickly that is impossible to constantly evaluate, add, and repeat for 5 turns while the radio calls out the number of the next car about to go. After literally trying to do this for hours, we have created a general rubric for each half section.

    1-10 - Barely drifting if at all. You basically gripped or undered the whole time. aka not really drifting
    11-20 - Basically drifting corners one at a time. No linking or terrible line if they do. That is, Sliding some corners
    21-30 - There was a drift every corner or every other corner. Drive may be slow and/or just not getting much angle. IE they are sliding most corners
    31-40 - Linking most corners but still struggling a bit. May be slow but have good angle or vice versa or have a terrible line. These drivers will drift all corners but might miss one or be slightly off
    41-50 - At this point, you are linking every corner. You also have decent angle. At this point, we judge line more than anything. We also count errors. These drivers will make every corner.

    Spinning is - 10 points (IE no points for that corner)
    Missing a section is -10 points for each section (Most people miss the hammer or take the range straight)
    3 wheels or more off is -10 points

    Remember to take the totals from above and X2 since each judge only does 5 corners out of 10.

    Typically, a Tier 3 driver will move up into Tier 2 when they consistently score in the mid 50s or higher.

    If you have any questions, email me at yoshi at

    If you'd like to see your scores from this year's DN events, go here!