This week we are in Osaka, Japan - to squeeze between boxes packed full of Japanese parts most of us can only dream of, to get the low down on Streeter Corporation and the mysterious man that is Jesse Streeter.
Jesse is an Australian who left it's shores in 2003 for a 6 month Japanese holiday. The reason behind this half year trip was drifting, as it was in it's early days and almost non-existent in Australia, it only made sense to head straight to the source: the streets of Japan.
A stroke of luck while out on the Asahi's one night left Jesse friends with a drift workshop early on in his trip. This quickly lead to the sourcing of his first S13 Silvia, countless hours of driving and guess what.. a 6 month holiday that still hasn't ended 11 years later.
It's easy to see why the holiday quickly transformed into permanent residence. Leaving Australia hoping to get his hands on a drift car and to drive as often as possible was the goal.What he found himself doing was being full immersed in what was arguably the best period of Japanese drifting in history. Drifting was young and thriving in the early 2000's with hundreds of cars hitting the mountains and port area's each night, in fact the streets were so popular that food stalls parked up in the hustle and bustle of it all was common practice. Having a car and driving next to these - many now legendary - drivers, Jesse was never going to be leaving at any great pace.
Once stuck in Australia trying to build up a drift car, Jesse knew the great level of difficulty that was involved in getting his hands on well priced Japanese gear. What started as supplying a few friends with parts, has now turned into one of Japan's most popular performance parts exporters - Streeter Corporation.
More parts come in and out of these doors than you could ever imagine. Parts which aren't your run of the mill factory replacements either, this is the most sort after stuff Japan has to offer. Whether it be parts that are second hand, brand new, for cars, for motorbikes, for scooters, you name it, Jesse gets it.
With 8 staff sorting, packing and sending parts full time, it's by far the busiest workshop we have visited. It's controlled chaos - space is hard to come by in Japan, so making do with the small area they have is what they do best.
Stashed in the corner is one of the many, many impressive vehicles Jesse has accumulated over the years.
Anyone with half an interest in drifting has heard of Jesse and his many Nissan Silvias that regularly grace the famous Meihan Sportsland circuit in Nara. Driving with the best in Japan has washed off on Jesse, who is in many peoples minds one of the most aggressive and highly skilled non-Japanese drivers there is. A view that after watching a video of Jesse drive, you will strongly share.
Hiro-san - who can be seen here hard at work - is another top level driver that is part of Kansai's infamous 'All Purple Driving Team'. Hiro-san just happens to be a good friend and employee of Streeter Corp.
A few month's back we completed a project consisting of a one off run of our Bancho overall for the boys at Streeter Corp. A custom roll call print consisting of Kansai's All Purple Driving Team, Streeter Corporation and Auckland's C's Garage (who spent a lot of time with Jesse in past years), glad to see them getting a workout.
Jesse definitely lives a life that we all envy, driving on the worlds best tracks and streets with the best drivers in Japan. A life that doesn't come easily however and as a result he is one of the hardest workers we have met during out travels. Thanks to Jesse and Akemi at Streeter corporation for letting us snoop around the place and a huge thanks to Laurence of jdmism for the photos.
We will let the boys get back to work, but you can definitely expect more from Laurence and Jesse in the coming months.
Building and fabricating is only half the fun...