Monday, August 8, 2011

Tokyo Drift - Behind The Scenes With Fifth Gear


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Takahashi Ryōsuke (known in English adaptations as "Ry") is modeled after the "Drift King" Keiichi Tsuchiya's mentor and retired race car driver, Takahashi Kunimitsu. (高橋 涼介 Takahashi Ryōsuke) One of the most skilled drivers in the series (he is the Red Suns' fastest member as well as their leader); he and his younger brother Keisuke (the Takahashi Brothers, also known as the Rotary Brothers because they both drive RX-7 versions) have been featured in racing magazines and are regarded highly by other drivers. Ryosuke drives a Mazda FC3S RX-7 and was previously undefeated until he met Takumi Fujiwara. Ryosuke is very serious about racing; he pours over technical data just like any professional driver and he's one of the few drivers with skills as a mechanic to match those he possesses as a driver. He can usually be found in his room going over data on his laptop. He is known to be able to tell what kind of modifications have been made to a car just by hearing it, and what a driver is capable of just by watching the car drift. Ryosuke's fame is so wide spread throughout Japan that he has been given the moniker, "Akagi's White Comet". His only rival would be Kyouichi Sudou. They argued about racing theories when Ryosuke ended Kyouichi's winning streak a year before the series' start. Currently, he is enrolled in college studying medicine, and planning to become a doctor to work at his father's clinic. But before retiring from street racing, and with only one year of racing left, he estimates, and assembles a new team (named Project D) aimed at capturing all of the records in Japan. In Fourth Stage, he's a coach for Project D while his brother Keisuke races in his place.
Keisuke (高橋 啓介 Takahashi Keisuke; known as "K.T." in the English adaptations) is the number two driver for the Red Suns. Keisuke drives a Mazda FD3S RX-7 and is a skilled driver, second only to his brother. Keisuke is a rather hot-headed young man and does not like losing. Keisuke is also known to drive with his emotions, for example if he realises that he cannot win his driving suffers and if he is in the lead he is carefree and much relaxed. Before Ryousuke got Keisuke involved in street racing he was the leader of a Bosozoku gang. He joins his brother's new team and has a rivalry with Takumi. Keisuke races the Hillclimb (Uphill) on most races, while Takumi races the downhill. Keisuke isn't analytical like his older brother, and Ryousuke's ability to compute and analyze amazes Keisuke. But at the same time, Keisuke's ability to think less while he's driving, and to do only what he feels amazes Ryosuke. While Ryousuke has decided that he won't race much longer, and that he will become a doctor in the future, Keisuke has dedicated his life to racing, his eventual goal is to become a professional racer. But first he must defeat Takumi. Though visibly getting along, they still have some kind of argumentation over who is the ace, he has respect for Takumi. He stated once he was not as strong minded as Takumi, because Takumi fell asleep really fast before a great battle, making him ask himself if he knew what was pressure.
One of Takumi's friends, Iketani (池谷 浩一郎 Iketani Kōichirō; known as "Cole" in the English adaptations) works at a local gas station with both Takumi and Itsuki. Itsuki admires him, as Iketani is leader of the local racing team, the Akina Speed Stars. Iketani drives a Nissan S13 Silvia. At first, Iketani thinks that the Speed Stars are the best drivers in Akina but later his boss Yuuichi tells Iketani of the mysterious driver of an AE86 who was the fastest driver in his time, and that he suspects that the driver is the owner of the local tofu shop. He is an average racer at best, but his skills are decent enough for him to be leader of the Speedstars. It is Iketani (along with Itsuki) who explains to Takumi the practice of referring to street-racing cars by their chassis codes, since this is the simplest way of denoting different body style/engine combinations. For example, instead of specifying the 1983-1986 Toyota Sprinter Trueno or Corolla Levin with the 4A-GE engine, one can simply call it an AE86, or more simply, an "Eight-Six".


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