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Can You Drift Legally if You Don’t Have a Driver’s License?

For many years the answer to this question has been no. The rule has always been that you must be of legal driving age to drift. There is now an exception if you complete a Safe Driver Training course.

In California, on March 16th, Dominic Martinez, who is 14 years old and does not yet have a driver’s license, was allowed to legally drift at Sonoma Raceway. Generally, you need a license at any drifting location or raceway. This is to ensure that everyone at the track is capable of driving safely. Part of drifting is knowing the ins and outs of driving legally. You can’t know how to drift and race without first knowing how to drive within the confines of the law.

For drivers that want to experience the same thrills as Martinez, they will have to find the right place to drift. You won’t to be able to just drift in your neighborhood, or on any streets for that matter as it’s completely illegal. But, there are many race tracks that allow you to legally race, drift, and compete against others. So you will want to look locally in your yellow pages, or a quick Google search will help.

Drifting is Getting Bigger and More Diverse

Drifting is a past time since at least the 70s and is continually growing its community and media attention. With the thrill and exhilaration of pulling off skillful maneuvers, and driving faster than normal, sometimes with dream cars that the drivers themselves build and customize, it’s no surprise that teenagers, such as Dominic Martinez in the video, are now actively participating in drifting events.

Why Should I Drift at Events and on Race Tracks?

Not only is drifting at events and race tracks safer and more fun than illegally doing it on the streets, but there is a sense of being a part of your local community. You can meet new people who are interested in the same thing you are. You can be part of a competitive scene if you’re interested in how you stack up against others. At every event and track, there are a variety of skill ranges, so you don’t have to be really good or experienced to go. You can participate, learn how to drift and even improve with advice from others. Newcomers are always welcome!

Get Your License

If you’re interested in drifting or racing legally, the first big step is to get your license. Once you have that, most race tracks will let you drift if you have a rear-wheel drive vehicle (but only in singles, if you’d like to drift with others, you will also need a roll cage). Basically, any stock sports car out there is rear-wheel drive. If you do not have one, you are most likely driving a forward-wheel drive car, or, all-wheel drive (off-road vehicles). Then contact the track you want to go to and find out more about the events that are going on.

Have fun out there and remember to drift safely and legally. Sign up today with to help get you started with getting your license and gaining the knowledge required to understand how to drive.

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