I get asked on a pretty regular basis why I started Downshift. To be honest, at first I didn’t really have a clear cut answer. I’ve never really thought about it, which is why I decided to create this special post. The more I think about it, the more I begin to realise the reasons behind why all this started in the first place. It was started…for all of you. Lets be honest: no one in Australia was doing what I was when I started this, and it is sad really. We have such a vibrant scene over here in Australia and none can argue that it doesn’t get the recognition that it truly deserves.

Well, actually…we had such a vibrant scene.

Within the past two years, and especially in the past year, the scene has been getting shredded by the authorities. They seem to be hunting us more than ever and spending all their time trying to widdle away the last guys who really try to keep it alive. So many people quit the scene last year, which is enough evidence to show just how hard it is to build a car with the police watching everything you do (including pinning you for everything from wheels being 1mm out past the guards, to being ‘too loud’). But in the last six or so months, it seems that people are getting that feeling for the scene again. You get the sense that more and more people are joining our pursuit to push this shit beyond merely a hobby. They’re trying to create a entire lifestyle!

When I look at the American scene, it really makes me smile, more so than most things. Not only because their shit is tight in terms of car quality, but because cars are a lifestyle over there. They have events month in month out, different meets every week and a culture brimming with heart. This is what I want! I want to have something to look forward to every week, a massive event every month. Yeah, we have the regular JDM meets and events every so often, but that is it. It is a start, don’t get me wrong, but there’s still a long way to go. Have a think about it though: if there were no JDM meets, what would we do every month? Aside from this, there are really no other good street scenes. The ones that currently exist are so heavily patrolled that there really is no point showing up in the first place. Imagine if our scene was like the states, where people don’t give a shit about the cops. Imagine we just built our cars for us, and to spend time with good mates.

We all need to band together and help out if we want to move forward. We need to support each other and attend events whenever we can. If we show that we are not slowing, the cops will realise this is a fight they cannot win. Imagine if the auto scene died. If the authorities manage to scare every last one of us away from modding cars. It isn’t something that is impossible, I can assure you that. I for one could not live in that world, and I know that if you are reading this, neither can you.

Why, you ask, the melodramatic post? Well, I was linked to a video by my boy Braydon (white Ek Civic with tucked B16 in shaved purple bay), and it really hammered home exactly why Downshift exists. It isn’t for my portfolio or for me to rant on about how much replica wheels suck and God knows what else. It is something that if big enough, can be a spark in this cultures engine and push the scene in the direction it needs to go.

Do yourself a favour and watch this:

Thanks for reading the site, even if it was for one minute. We appreciate all of you who support us and we are going to try and give back to the scene as much as we can. Because in all honesty, I love my community, my mates, and my cars. Without them, I would just be another misguided d00d throwing all his cash at his car.

Rory O’Donovan

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