From an asshat-driven $528,000 Ferrari F50 getting totaled to Ray Kelly hunting down Manhattan record-holder Afroduck to bikers shutting down highways with near-deadly consequences, NYC has seen a lot of failed attempts at public-roads hoonage. Formula Drift pro Ryan Tuerck came to NYC and ripped properly sideways without incident. How'd he do it?
Let's start with the most obvious things going on in this video that made it possible to be filmed and released without any arrest warrants.
- Though they're in New York (and within view of the Manhattan skyline at times), they don't actually try and drive like they're possessed on any roads within the five boroughs. This is good, because weaving through traffic in Manhattan will make you the receiving end of a manhunt.
- They choose two main locations: a deserted airfield and a tiny two-lane road in the middle of nowhere. They also shot at the crack of dawn, so they ended up with pretty empty spots with not too many people around.
Sure, it's safer to drift on a disused airfield or a deserted road, but that's not really enough to ensure you won't a) get arrested b) crash into something like a tree c) crash into another car or d) all of the above, culminating in likely serious jail time and probably serious news coverage. It's better than driving like an asshat with other people around, but it's not a good idea. Don't do it.
Here's the secret trick of Tuerck and his crew.
- They closed the roads.
Yes, they actually did. I know from secondhand experience in this business, that seeing a disclaimer that says "closed course" doesn't always mean anything. Just because you write those words at the bottom of your video doesn't make them true.
Tuerck and Shoot First Media, which produced the video, claim that they did really close the roads where it says so in the video.
Our videos always have a fun wild vibe to them but we are always very concerned with safety and doing things the right way. I don't want to give away all of my secrets but we make a huge effort to find cool locations that are abandoned and then go through the proper channels to get permission to make a few runs. Some cases we bring along a local police officer to temporally shut down a road as we make a quick pass. We do almost all of our shots in 1 or 2 takes so we don't need to have the road shut down for very long which makes it easier to get officials to allow us access.
Personally, I had no idea regular human beings could get roads closed. Tuerck responded.
You certainly can. Everything just costs money.
Sadly, it ain't cheap. Neither Tuerck or his producer Andy Laputka gave me a quote other than "ridiculous." Bear in mind that Tuerck is a professional driver who has sponsorship money to work with and even he had to save some of his budget from other videos to afford to close the roads in this one.
So that's it. All you need is to get some sort of permission/permit and hire your local police force as your security, so to speak, if you want to drive like a goddamn lunatic on public roads — and I'm talking street racing, drifting, whatever you can get the cops to agree to with a sufficiently large stack of bills.
Only two questions remain: are you smart enough to coordinate your dumbass street racing friends into making an organized event? Do you have enough money to afford a proper road closure?
Right now the responsibility rests on broke, punk gearheads to make sure road closures happen. If local police forces were smart, they'd reach out to street racers and drifters to help make coordinated, closed events happen.
Of course, they could always just waste money chasing illegal drivers with helicopters, but that doesn't always work out well.