With roots in action sports, Mad Mike Whiddett has always been accustomed to speed. He started out in BMX and began competing in motocross at the age of 6. In his late teens he took to freestyle motocross and earned himself the name 'MAD MIKE’ for his high risk antics, often resulting in broken bones and concussions. Mike’s love for cars also started young when he and his friend’s would hoon in cheap rides they’d pull apart and put back together. His involvement in the NZ car scene increased when he dominated the New Zealand burnout festival Skidfest, winning five years in a row. In 2006 after seeing a D1NZ event and following the many injuries with motocross, Mike ruled "with age comes a cage" (roll cage) and began work on his first drift car in 2007. By his second ever drift event he'd knocked out the then D1NZ Champ!
In his first year competing, Mike launched himself on the global drift radar, earning a top 4 spot in the New Zealand D1 competition and therefore a ticket to the World All Stars event in California. Here, he made the top 16, not bad for his first year competing. Off the back of this in 2008, he finished Top 8 in the Red Bull World Drift Champs in Long Beach.
Mad Mike is now a household name in the drifting community. He was even featured in EA sports 2011 game Need For Speed Shift 2 Unleashed with his signature rotary powered RX8. 2012 saw him win the World Powerslide Championship and following this Mike came up with an idea for his very own drift event. In 2014 he launched Drift Shifters, an event which bi-annually transforms the Auckland CBD into an adrenaline filled, pinball inspired drift track. He won the first event in 2014 (with points awarded from speed and proximity triggered sensors, not judges) and hopes to see it eventually go global with plans to set it up in Tokyo soon. Drift Shifters returns to Auckland at the end of 2016.
A global ambassador for the sport of drift, Mike was the first drifter to ever be invited to the Goodwood Festival Of Speed in the UK and has won ‘Most Thrilling Driver’.
Now, with his custom twin turbo rotary Mazda MX-5 dubbed ‘RADBUL’, Mad Mike is shifting his focus to the international drift series Formula Drift, taking him across the U.S and into countries such as Canada, Thailand and China. Last year he reached the top 16 of Formula Drift in Atlanta, Seattle and Orlando and hopes to crush it again in the 2016 season.