Tauranga drift couple Drew and Jodie Donovan are among a group of international drifters heading to overseas to help grow the profile of the sport in China.

The couple got the call-up last week to fly to China to join top local drift team NND for the first two rounds of this year's China Drift Championship.

The invitation came from China-based Moroccan drifter Simon El Alaoui Zidane, who through the pre-season has been piecing together a group of international guest drivers to help grow the profile of the sport in his adopted home country.

Globe-trotting Kiwi engine tuner Ross Honnor from New Plymouth, whose 16-year-old son Liam has also been invited to join the team, was the person who initially put Drew and Jodie's names forward.

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Though they will have to wait until they get to China to nut out the finer details, Drew and Jodie will be based in Shenzhen near Hong Kong – where the first two rounds of the China Drift Championship are being held.

Tauranga couple Jodie and Drew Donovan Photo / Fast Company/Drift
Tauranga couple Jodie and Drew Donovan Photo / Fast Company/Drift

"It's very much one-step-at-a-time at the moment. And I don't really think it has sunk in the opportunity Jodie and I have been presented with," Drew says.

"Obviously, both Jodie and I have competed overseas before, but in each case then we've known about the tracks, the other drivers, and the level of competition.

"All we know about China is that the sport has taken off in a big way there and that rather than run on circuits like we generally do here they run on temporary tracks in stadiums or huge car parks.

What they're looking forward to however, says Drew, is being able to turn up and drive.

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