At one end of the Japan Super Show facility, there was a space put aside for the Car Hop contest. The first thing that amazed me was that instead of having a 6-foot chain-link fence, there was a 3-foot PVC pipe fence surrounding the hopping pit. It was like there was an accident waiting to happen, but I also noticed that nobody was that close to the fence, so I guess that discipline goes a long way in Japan.

As I stepped into the pit, I was greeted by a model who’s wearing a small one-piece bathing suit. Then I noticed that she had a stopwatch around her neck and a microphone in her hand. After a few minutes she started to thank the sponsors and introduced the first car to hop in the pit. To my surprise, she was one of the judges and I was wondering why we can’t have judges like this back in the States.

The first car out, a Honda Civic hatchback, hit more than 50 inches on the first few hits of the switch. I was so amazed that I immediately thought that I need to see someone do that to my Toyota Echo. After that, everything went smoothly. A few other small Civics showed what they were made of in the Single- and Double-Pump Hop, and then it was time for the head-to-head competition where competitors get eliminated depending on who gives up first and who’s hitting more air. It was crazy, especially when a female, maybe about 18 years old, took home the bragging rights that she was the best behind the switch, eliminating people left and right without any hesitation.

When the show’s over, we headed outside where we’re greeted by more fans and lowrider fanatics. Well, I can’t wait until I head out there again some time soon. And if you’re wondering if you should attend the Japan Super Show, you really should. There’s nothing in the world like the warm welcome of strangers who embrace what you do and just take it to a whole different level. Of course, that’s just my personal opinion.