Bigger, better, wetter…

Leading into event weekend the early to midweek rain forecast grew darker. The projected radar view of Virginia and into neighboring states looked like a bowl of spilled pea soup. The information coming from the organizers and the venue was hopeful yet cautious. HyperFest planners worked closely with Virginia International Raceway staffers to get the best out of what looked like a Slip-N-Slide on steroids.

This event, on the face leading in, looked similar in prediction to a certain music festival that is undergoing some hard scrutiny and an uncertain future. The difference is the scope and the planning outside of the actual race track.

Virginia International Raceway staff may be on hand but some events are hosted by the organizers who lease the track and facility. Such is the case for HyperFest and NASA Mid-Atlantic and a music festival that went way off course. The difference is that HyperFest looked ahead to the weather and made adjustments with caution in the forefront. The music festival had promoted the biggest and the largest and pushed the envelope of containment even if the weather had cooperated. Growth on foundation has made HyperFest a car party destination. Advertised growth without a real track record of success made the Blue Ridge Rock Festival flounder under its own weight with the weather as an added calamity.

A constant contact of planning for fans, ticket holders and vendors opened the week into the weekend. There were event bits moved forward and some cancelled outright. The ground was saturated and pooled so the off-road bits were taken off the schedule. The KONI Jet-Hot Downhill Attack and Motul / Speed Trend Burnout Contest were moved to Friday from Saturday. Fans were urged to be prepared with “shelter in place” plans and rain possibilities.

Club HyperFest (left) Motul / Speed Trend Burnout Contest (Right) Photos courtesy HyperFest

The oddity, as it played out, was the weather. Friday and Saturday were humid and cloudy. The rain did come but after sunset and hit or miss on evening activities. The toy ride KONI Attack hit just minutes after the rain did but added to the spectacle with no real need of water balloons from the gallery. The burnout lit up the smoke with lights and sound and the rain faded into the later hours.
Saturday was also mostly opposite of the previous forecast. The rain came but later and patchy as the lasers and lights lit the night over Club Hyperfest.

The racing… The drifting… The stunt and car shows and presentations went off under cloudy but dry skies. Fans that had tickets and fans that came as the weather opened up were treated to the show and shows that make HyperFest.

This party transcends the traditional car racing event. NASA Mid-Atlantic racing put on a full course show with cars from across the spectrum. Results can be found on the NASA website. Motorcycle high jump trick shows, tandem drifting, video gaming and RC drift with music and Paul Reed Smith guitars were tapped with ride-alongs and open fan participation. The weekend shaped up well beyond the damp predictions.

The baseline is that this is a “car” event that combines motors and a little mayhem. There is a sense of the unpredictable and the unhinged at HyperFest. It’s much like drifting… Going sideways but with control and style. The planning and the attention set the foundation for the weekend so there was flexibility to make adjustments as needed. That is why HyperFest makes moves forward and a music festival stumbles.

Look forward to the next HyperFest for 2025. Look ahead for the schedule at Virginia International Raceway for the remainder of 2024. IMSA, Fanatec GT and the VIR SpeedTour are big shows on easy tickets for race fans at VIR.

We have some photos from Haltech HyperFest. Just a few…