ROCKINGHAM — With the field narrowed down to 16 drivers in MB Drift’s Battle of Little Rock, several of the grassroots drifting series’ top contenders went head-to-head to advance to the next round at Rockingham Speedway.
Drivers compete against each other in tandem runs — each taking turns leading and following.
First up were Joe Busam and Corey “Shake” Mendenhall, who placed first and fourth, respectively, at Hot Summer Nights in July. Busam also won the fourth round and the season in 2021.
Busam pulled out the win, moving on to the top eight.
The next round pitted Drake Carter — who placed third in the final round last year — against Round 1 winner Drew Riggins.
Riggins was making his return to the competition after sitting out for Round 2.
Earlier in the day, Carter had several do-overs against Andreas Mesner.
With Carter landing a huge dirt drop entering the second hairpin turn on the back side of the track, the judges gave the go-ahead to Riggins.
Devin Bruce, who placed second in 2021’s third round and took out points leader Justin Bauer in the first elimination bout, fell to OK Drift driver Kyle Vanderpool, the third-place winner last month.
The next match-up was between July’s top qualifier Joshua Buster and 2021 Round 3 winner Brandon Goodman.
Their initial runs were too close to call, so the judges had them make two more runs, with Goodman getting the nod.
The following battles saw Dan Stoneburner take out Tevin Baysa, Nick Abbott smoke Kyle Clayton, Dustin Walker out-manji Darin Onorati, and Paul Smith pull out a win over Todd Cooper.
The RO will have more on the Battle of Little Rock later this week.
See more photos from the match-ups below.