Twenty Fifteen

It’s the last day of December 2005, I’m cruising in my dropped Tornado Red Golf Mk2 on the covered in snow streets of the City of Opportunities, a virtually seventy thousand inhabitants small post-industrial village in Silesia, south-west Poland. My homeland. Snow is falling, all around me… We just had the real white Christmas, just as the ones that Frank used to know but I’m not listening to any Christmas carols, feck no, the brand new audio system in the boot and Magnat speakers front and back attempt to cover the symphony of the 1.6 Pierburg carb engine coming loud through the straight pipe. Strolling slowly on the snowy streets the windscreen wipers take care of the fluffy snow flakes falling on the windscreen before they fully melt from the heat inside. Ennio Morricone’s Once Upon of Time in America plays off a CD as I stroll through Piastowska Street a.k.a Bahnhofstraße, occasionally pulling the hand break with my right hand for that bit of craic on the snow, sliding at the corner infuriating old women coming back from the evening mass, making their confessions no longer valid with all the curses they would have thrown at me seeing me passing by the ex butcher’s shop, revving up to keep the Mk2 snow slide trajectory right across this sweet curve… Kurwa mać, where did all this time go? It’s been 10 years since then, it’s been 11 years since I got sick – I want to lower them all.

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The anniversary 10th year of this incurable sickness, 2014, has ended well and I was looking forward to 2015 – the 11th year among asphalt grazing yokes. The special one, I thought, since I’m born on 11th of the 11th somewhere around 11 to 11am… numbers. So for a good start I met up with Stee in January to test my new lens on his stunning Japanese import Volkswagen Golf Mk3 GTI 16v – which was my favourite build on the Irish scene of the Year 2014, quite likely because of the sick static lows and BBS RS’ that Stee rolled over Dublin’s ramps on a daily basis.

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This is how we do it here in Dublin, come and visit us. I missed the bouncy bouncy ride of the ol’ good JOMs and as my Vento was still built in progress, bored with the Mk4 1.4 beast, I knew I needed something that Tigger likes the most to bring me the smile back. Two years ago I moved to a place where a Prussian wall decorates one of the bigger buildings in the area, a big bumper Mk2 GTI welcomes everyone entering our little town, an another one, also a big bumper GTI is parked up just down the road. Further away the car mechanic has yet another VW Golf Mk2 GTI, a small bumper model this time… all in one town. It’s been almost ten years I live in Ireland and I’ve only seen Mk2s at the shows… I ordered a pepperoni pizza and… I got it delivered in an another Mk2. Something was telling me to get a Mk2. So I got one, a blue 1987 Golf GL with a story… and all chrome trim, mint.

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Blue Mk2? Great! I thought and I got Hella Blue Magic tail lights to match the blue velour GL seats inside… Up the Dubs! Dublin’s flag on the back shelf and I was ready to go to Belfast for Dubshed… but the GTINI boys told me this wasn’t the best idea, “my Polski friend”, to bring 87-D blue yoke with Baile Átha Cliath all over the place… Pfizer stuff, could go hard up in Belfast, boy, thence I got a hella heckblend and borrowed some matching wheels of my mate Szymon. The rest of the year Mk2 rolled on the standard GL steelies, the BBS’ found a better home… on an another Mk2 – Karl’s Jetta TDI.

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#DubshedPrep, #DubshedStress, sweat and almost permanent grease under nails is the standard in the first three months of each year for every serious Irish dubber. It was great to experience it all again getting the Mk2 ready, sweating. Dubshed is still undeniably the best show on the Irish scene, although once again our Polski mugs weren’t allowed in in the place where the after party was held… don’t worry, we will not drink all your vodka. Anyway, the pre-party was a KO.

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I got a blue Mk2 Golf, I turned all blue in Belfast – KO! Bad start to the vodka drinking paraolympics, I was afraid I might not qualify for the national team for the May World Championship in Austria so I have decided to open the season with my Polish and German friends at Wolfsgruppe BBQ in Poland. Family matters. It was a great and very laid back season opener with exclusive premiere of Loniek’s latest video production. We fought to the last bottle of Tyskie eventually drawing with the German National Tyskie Trinken Team at the final whistle.

Texas Got Stretch

The next day was great, apart from the weird feeling in the gut, the standard of cars was awesome and the new location for the BBQ at a lakeside in Środa Wielkopolska turned out very picturesque. Texas’ VW Caddy Mk1 has totally taken over the show with it’s custom Lincoln Town Car alloys rolling sick stretch.

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In May the big day came, the Christmas of the dubbing world – Wörthersee. Disappointed that for an another year my friends didn’t manage to swap the new engine into my Vento, I’ve decided to respray it 24 hours before heading over ‘am See’. I always wanted to have an army green Vento, a supercharged army green Vento, 11th year was the year to do it… Together with Kosa and my dad, using a hand powered torch we’ve resprayed it in a dark warehouse using a few rattle cans. We’ve nicknamed her “Bundeswehr” and with Kosa, as the navigator, we set off on a piss-keeping mission with battalion HQ in Faak am See. We’ve made contact with local low enforcement. Our staff vehicle has been awarded with a special diploma certifying that she’s low enough for Wörthersee – 35mm from the ground, for only €100 a pop.

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You can’t go wrong with Wörthersee. Although Baran’s E28 was fussy and causing trouble from day one, dead clutch slave cylinder required stubborn owner to jack the BMW up and bleed it up to 10 times a day. Kupplungszylinder Spritzen. We couldn’t source the parts so he’d cruise around in the beautiful Alps on shiny 18″ BBS RS changing gears without clutch, cursing the BMW but in the evenings we’d have a splendid time with the rest of “the national team”. Did he regret coming? Sure he did not! My other mate Lukas who has traveled all the way from the UK in his slammed Passat just to take a nap and head back also said he loved it although he was gutted he couldn’t stay longer but he still said that the exhausting trip was worth it. The spirit of Wörthersee. It’s not a show. What you call it?

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Wörthersee is a wonderful place, though it was a little bit too jammed this year. It’s a paradise, but not because of the cars but thanks to all the people who make this event so special – friends! They really make you come back there every year…

Drake's Lexus IS F

…and this is what Drake does… He’s a veteran, he has been at Wörthersee for 11 years in a row and this is not his last word. His addicted and, yes, he can bring a Lex am See… but will we bring our Corrados in 2016 though? We will see!

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May was a very intensive month, right after a week in the dub paradise in Austria I hooked up with Wojtek whose rat Škoda Felicia I have met earlier in April on one of the streets of my hometown. We did a quick shoot in a local scrapyard and after we drove over to a local VAG show where, to my surprise, my rattle-canned Vento won for the best paint work… It’s been a busy month, a busy year. Wojtek is still waiting for the results of the shoot… don’t use the bat, dude. In 2016 all the backlog will be cleared – #NewYearResolutions

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I didn’t even get a chance to get a good night of sleep after my return to Ireland that month – in the morning we were already on the way to Limerick for the annual VW & Classic Car Show. Piotr’s E39 was my favourite “Passat” of the show.

The Night Before RACEISM Event

In June I went over to Poland once again for the two main shows out there. The saucy tandem started in the historical capital city of Upper Silesia – Oppeln, known now as Opole. Being located only 40km north from my hometown I could not miss out on this one so we have once again mounted on the ‘Bundeswehr’ to enjoy Raceism Event. The show proved to be the best in the country in terms of the build quality, some have even nicknamed it – the little Polski Wörthersee or Wörthersee in a pill as many of this years top projects seen am See earlier have also made their way over to this top class show. That very saucy selection of the best European builds was on show for two days but the the Friday night before the event turned out to be the most entertaining.

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The other show we have went to on the next weekend was Wolfsgruppe’s VAG Event. I could possibly write many nice words about this show… there’s no point. You know I love it. Undeniably the nicest and most laid back show of the year! The Home!

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What makes VAG Event so special? The people? The cars on show? The awesome weather? The nice Polski girls at the pool? It’s a weekend of awesomeness! Don’t forget to bring your own Tyskie… a few crates of them.

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VAG Event is a lot more than just a show… it’s a weekend long festival!

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Long time ago I have stopped going to all these shows to see cars, sure I see all of them every day flooding my Facebook timeline. I go to all these shows to meet with friends, ‘the syndicate’, and to have good time. Cars are fun, the gossip says that some of my mates are on the hunt for the nicest ones out there, at least that’s Speed’s plan for 2016. I’ve heard he wants to buy out all Mk1s in Poland… and possibly in Germany, he has 3 top ones so far.

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Wolfsgruppe VAG Event – Nothing Else Matters – Fitment, Friends, Family! – my favourite show of the year!

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The scene has changed a lot in the last years and only a few shows out there are for the dubbers by the dubbers – not for the money. To some extent, as I see it, the scene has switched to an arms race, a competition, an ego booster and a self-efficacy drug for a few. It is not the same as it was a decade ago. It’s about fame and internet swag. This year Praks literally ate the scene in Poland with his long anticipated VW Corrado project. It’s understood, she’s a stunner! #FameGainer

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I never thought I will fly across the big pond but in August together with my ice hockey team we flew over to Canada for a little tournament. I even had played on Toronto Maple Leaf’s practice rink, Wayne Gretzky was training kids on the rink beside – I was the worst player to play in there, probably. Of course I couldn’t waste such an opportunity to look into the local scene so I contacted one of the local blogs to help me get around. Funny enough the blog I have contacted is called the same as one of our local ones – Squeaky Clean. That’s not all, after a few days it turned out that the owner – Matt is also originally Polski… born 30km from my hometown. Two Matt’s from Silesia taking over Toronto!

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We have also went to Toronto’s No. 1 car show – Importfest. I remember that the standard of the cars was unreal apart from a few ricer wonders hiding in the far corner of the hall… but I can’t seem to remember any of the cars on show really…

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From the sunny Canada with frosty ice hockey breaks I came back to rainy Ireland. Business as usual or maybe not. Straight away after my return in association with Raceism United we’ve got ourselves busy with Heatwave Motor Show – Ireland’s longest running motor festival, to host an indoor µ-show, a selection of nice yokes of all makes – xPOSED! Our small micro-show turned out very successful and who knows what will the 2016 bring to the Irish scene. The weather people are forecasting a blow of fresh air, I’ve heard somewhere.

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Some of the fresh air has already arrived on the scene with Stee’s new monthly meet up’s – Steecism! The new tradition was born in October and it’s going strong. Last three editions of this new meet in Dublin area proved that the scene here wants a bit of style and class. All makes and models are welcome… so you are, if you’re sound you might get an invite to our wee clique. Roll on 2016 with some awesome bonus Steecism events coming up! There’s no try!

The Mk2 Year

I have begun the year in January with a quick shoot of Darragh’s early Mk2 GTI, soon I got myself an early Mk2 as well. Later in February I have shot Mo’s static Mk2 1.3 – though on Lenso’s she was a stunner! Also this year’s Dubshed turned out to be full of Mk2’s. During one of my visits in Poland I have shot Kosa’s show-stopping small-bumper Mk2 GTI 2.3 V5 Turbo on custom Ronals – hometown build! #OK plates! And while am See I have also shot Fonik’s perfect big-bumper Mk2 GTI R32… It was a Mk2 year! We have some nice Jettas in here too.

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Mo's VW Golf Mk2 1.3

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#Steecism No.2 - November in Maynooth

Limerick VW & Classic Car Show 2015

Limerick VW & Classic Car Show 2015

#STEECISM #1 - October Meet in Walkinstown

Thanks Mk2 for an awesome year. You’ve been a bitch sometimes but I still love you 😉

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It’s the last day of December 2015, I’m cruising in my dropped Stratos Blue Golf Mk2 on the flooded roads of County Dublin. For a bit of change from the standard overcast Irish sky we’ve got a few sunny patches today, hurricane Frank seems to have given up. The other Frank too. I have forgotten what are white Christmas, maybe Wall Street’s Jordan knows. I don’t care, I slowly crawl over these fecking ramps listening to the tape I’ve got for Christmas – a Once Upon a Time in America soundtrack by Ennio Morricone playing unclearly through the almost 30 years old paper speakers. My left hand changes gears as I pass the Gardai, I’m driving slowly, within the limit – respecting the classic car. I know where I am going. But where is the scene heading?

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Happy New Year everyone! May 2016 will be full of perfect fitment, classy wheels and awesome shows with your closest friends. Big up for ‘the syndicate’ for a great year – can’t wait for the Gonzo press reporting live and the championship am See! Have a good one lads! Safe!

Roll on 2016!

Steecism ¾ - Surviving Storms
#Steecism No.2 - November in Maynooth