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KSportUSA and Bondurant School Car Show, Go Kart Racing, and Drift Exhibition

KSportUSA and Bondurant School Car Show, Go Kart Racing, and Drift Exhibition

By Nicole James

Photos by

Hans Marquez, Joe Lombrana, and RJ Lane

Many car enthusiasts have been to what is now called The Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park, formerly known as Firebird International Raceway, but how many of us have been over to The Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving within the complex? Sure, we have all seen the Bondurant cars, but today the school was open to the public.

With about two and a half weeks’ notice and information only spread on Facebook and by word of mouth among the car community, this KSport and Bondurant event had a great turn out on a hot and humid Saturday afternoon.  Admission was free, and car enthusiasts were able to park their cars on the Bondurant Schools Main Skid Pad. For $20 per race, people could race on the Bondurant Superkart School Purpose built Go Kart track in between the Drift Exhibitions featuring Corey Hosford in the KSportUSA Nissan 350z and Matt Powers in the Fatlace Nissan 240sx.

CSJ got the chance to talk with World Champion and legendary racer, Bob Bondurant and his Wife Pat. Bondurant told CSJ about some of his personal highlights from his long and legendary career including the time he teamed up with Carroll Shelby to take on Enzo Ferrari, winning races in all over Europe. For all kinds of different drivers of any skill level, The Bob Bondurant School of Performance Driving is something to experience.

“Come to Bondurant, we have a multitude of classes. We teach teens just starting out, professional drivers, military Special Forces and security professionals. We have team sports, a two day advanced class. Even classes for Paraplegic citizens.” said Pat Bondurant. The inspiration for the Paraplegic classes came from an accident Bob Bondurant suffered in 1967 when a steering arm in his McLaren broke at 150mph causing him to flip 8 times, injuring his ribs, legs, feet, and back injuries. Doctors told him he would never walk again. Bondurant overcame his injuries but was not able to race again.

Some things are changing at the school as well. “Keep an eye out for the Women’s academy coming very soon. I think a lot of women can be intimidated by the male drivers and instructors and often the wives are left just sitting on the bleachers all day while their husbands have fun. We want to offer the women a chance to get behind the wheel in a comfortable environment.” Pat Bondurant said. “We also have 32 2014 C7 Stingrays on the assembly line for us. They should be delivered the end of September. 30 of them will be manual and two of them will be automatic with paddle shifters. We will also be offering a class that teaches drivers how to use their paddle shifters. A lot of cars are coming out with them and not many drivers know what to do with them.” Pat Bondurant said. New renovations to the school will also be made with more places for spectators to watch the classes and events going on at the school, new paint and landscaping will also be done to the facility.

CSJ also got the opportunity to sit down with Corey Hosford who organized the event. “I wanted this event to be really casual. I didn’t want to have to micromanage everything, I want people to come hang out, do what they want, have fun, mingle connect, no separation or segregation.” said Hosford. Hosford said he was happy with the way the event turned out and how many people showed up. “I got a lot of calls from radio stations and stuff wanting to promote the event but I just said no. I wanted real car enthusiast to show up which is why I kept it just social media and word of mouth.” said Hosford. Hosford has been an instructor at the Bob Bondurant School of Performance driving for 11 years. He has been drifting for about 3 years and has spent 16 years racing. Hosford told CSJ he got into drifting because he had an initial interest in it, “It was all about being in the right place at the right time, having the right connections, I started with KSport and competed for the first time at XDC Phoenix in 2011.”

“The Arizona car scene is really diverse, I think it should be more of a community so there are more networking connections and knowing the right people so there are more opportunities for different things. It is when people do stupid things on the streets that gives the Arizona car community a bad name, I am working on bringing drifting back hear at Bondurant so drivers have a safe place to learn and work on their skills. It is all about logistics and insurance now. KSport has a lot of big plans coming up which we will announce in the next few months.” said Hosford.

Unfortunately, The Fatlace 240sx driven by Matt Powers broke down after one of the first few drift exhibitions of the day, but Corey Hosford kept the energy up with his 350z. He pleased the crowd with his long and loud burn outs, and flew around the corners with ease. Overall the event was a success. Following the event was a cruise to the Metro Meltdown Show hosted by Desert Street Scene.

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