Kneeling on Hot Asphalt: The Proposal Trackday
Ever thought of how you’d spend the perfect birthday? Perhaps on the track all day with a few friends, cooler full of drinks, packed lunch, and overall good vibes and good company? Pretty doable, no? Like the rest of us, Angelo Magtoto had the same idea – except he had quite the trick up his sleeve to put the icing on the cake.
In a nutshell, Angelo managed to pull off the perfect trackday for himself. All his close friends and their cool cars, family, sumptuous food grilling, and the whole track closed off for all of us to play in all day. While we were all there to celebrate his birthday like any good friend should, everyone knew the real reason why we all made our way to Batangas that day – at least, everyone except Angelo’s girlfriend.
Capping off what would have been the perfect birthday is something even more special – a perfect proposal. Everyone knew the plan that day, but the scheme pretty much all happened later on in the afternoon. Till then we had all day to play in an empty circuit, and boy did the guests come with quite a few different toys.
Our circle of friends mostly started out with drifting before any other discipline, that said a good number of them brought rear-wheel drives to play with on track. As expected, Nissans are well represented among us with a 350Z, a Sileighty, and a 2017 Nissan GTR among the cars that came out to play.
I guess it’s safe to say the Sileighty had the most fun out there. Remember Patrick and his Yellow 350Z? We told you he had a few other toys built for the track.
Front-wheel drives will always be a staple on our local circuits, but oddly enough that day there weren’t any serious Hondas to be seen. There were however a couple Minis like this lady-driven Clubman poking around the track.
With Angelo being an active member of the AWD Squad (heck, he owns both sides of the coin), a good few from that group made their way out to the track that day – mostly with Subarus.
These days the Toyobaru has become a regular sight at the track, during that day there were a couple 86-es running all 200 horses of N/A power all day long. Those guys clearly made good use of track time, that’s for sure.
We tend to forget that Toyota also had a decent rear-wheel drive offering back in the early ‘00s; At least, all of us except this guy. This Lexus IS200 was converted into full Toyota Altezza-spec, sporting a 3SGE Beams and the six-speed manual from the Japan-only model. Fancy seeing this car being stretched out on track, something different from the usual suspects to say the least.
Neither Jaime nor myself brought our toys out that day, the RX7 currently has driveline issues while the S15 is leaking transmission oil. Not having a ‘car’ didn’t stop me from hitting the track though. Free track time is free track time, and if this daily driver of mine is anything to go by you ought to have no excuse for not driving out there!
Of course the star of the show that day were Angelo’s trifecta of cars. Despite having close to stock exteriors, the innards of these cars are nothing to scoff at – they’re all wearing RAYS TE37 SLs after all. Between the STI and the Evo though, it’s clear from this photo which one saw more track time that day. Shall we feature these cars in detail once Angelo cleans up the Evo’s wheels?
To be honest, I’m still a bit baffled at how our good friend Angelo managed to propose at the circuit. While it seems like the perfect place to propose on track for most of us, our significant others would very much beg to differ – heck, they would most likely find it as the last place they’d want to say ‘Yes’ in. There’s not much scenery at Batangas Racing Circuit, nor are there any flowers. Not to mention it’s too far flung from anywhere convenient too. But if the smiles on the couple’s faces were anything to go by, perhaps the venue didn’t matter after all.
Congratulations once again to Angelo and Love!
Words by Aurick Go
Photos by Jaime Echavez