A Look Back at 2015 – Part 1

Perhaps you’ve heard, but 2015 is about to wrap up. Crazy, right? Where did the last 12 months go? Anyway, with another year almost behind us let’s take a look back at what happened; the events, part installs, achievements, and all of the fun we had.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – 2015 was the busiest year I’ve ever had in terms of cars. I attended more meets and shows than I ever have before in a single year and it made for a really memorable season. I met some great new people, was able to see (and share photos of) some incredible cars and heard lots of positive feedback from you guys which was motivation to carry on with the sometimes hectic pace.

As I write this it occurs to me that it may almost sound like I may be complaining about said pace, but I’m really not. If it was a problem, it was a first world problem for sure and one that I’ll happily accept. At the end of the day cars are my number one passion and I wanted to make the most of the 2015 season by taking part in as much as possible, and I’m pleased to say I did just that. Countless times I’d rush home from work only to turn right around and leave again, spend the evening out, and then return home only to work through the photos, all while fitting this in around work for MacKenCo.

Each year when I look ahead to the coming season I make note of things I wish to do – for example, attend Driven, attend Sunday School, fit certain parts, and so on – but the top objective for 2015 was definitely just to take part in more events and get the most out of the nice weather we had, while we had it. Job done.

I’m sure that by now you’re wanting me to get on to the photos, so I’ll do just that. Thank you everyone for the positive feedback and support this year and I hope you enjoy this two-part review of the last 12 months.

Part One: January to June 2015

Jan 2015 Focus photoshoot 1

Of course, we begin with January. Not surprisingly not much was happening at this point in time (snow and car shows don’t really work well together) so I kept busy with coordinating some new parts for the coming show season, and took a few photos of the car here and there. Side note – looking at this picture now, the sedan looks really naked to me without the side stripes.

Facelift Focus lip kit 3

In January it was discovered that Ford had designed an optional lip kit for the facelifted Focus sedans, and this was great news for ’12-’14 four-door owners like myself because it meant we would potentially have a new rear valance available to fit to our earlier cars. At this point we could only make educated guesses as to whether or not it would actually fit, but it wasn’t long before it was verified.

2016 Focus RS 5

While this was exciting news for some of us, come February Ford revealed something much more impressive to say the least; the new Mk3 Focus RS. At last we could see the monster that Ford had been working on. Fast-forward to present day and some can be spotted in the wild, with customer deliveries getting closer and closer. I can’t wait to finally see them in person and really hope I can get the opportunity to at least sit in one, or maybe even drive one (polite hint to any local readers that have ordered one…haha).

2015 sedan valance 2

Later that month, Kyle Mcgrew and Rebel Devil Customs confirmed that the aforementioned new rear valance would indeed fit ’12-’14 sedans and provided some photos so that I could share the news. Kyle’s sedan received the new part and as far as I know, is still the only pre-facelift sedan to wear it.

Driven Part 4 177

Nearer the end of February it was announced that Driven was going to return to Calgary, which was both very exciting and great motivation to get to work. It had been two years since the last Calgary show, when I attended with the UCCarClub.

ST sedan valance 1

March was a rather exciting month as the first photos could finally be shared of a long-awaited, top-secret project that Rebel Devil Customs had been working on. Josè and I received the first and second ST Sedan valances, respectively, and fitted them to our cars in preparation for the announcement.

ST sedan valance 10

The ST Sedan valance was a piece that many had been asking for, for quite a while, and we were very honoured to be part of the project and have our cars be used for the reveal.

ST sedan valance 3

The valance and new rear wing were also the first new parts to go on the sedan following the announcement that Driven was coming. In my eyes they made a huge impact on the overall appearance of the car and really complemented the existing modifications well.

3D Carbon wing 5

Following the first photos of the sedan’s updated exterior, I devoted another post to looking at the 3D Carbon wing in more detail. I explained at the time that prior to fitting mine, I had only ever seen the wing installed on one Mk3 which was the car used in 3D Carbon’s own photos. In fact, to this day I still have yet to see another Mk3 with this wing.

3D Carbon wing 4

Because there were only limited photos available online I wanted to show more of the wing in the hopes it’d be useful for any fellow sedan owners who were debating picking one up for their own car.

Painted interior trim March 2015

Also in April was the first teaser that a new car had been added to our stable, one which quickly failed to stay stock…

4 and 5 7

…and continues to change further.

Spring Thaw 2015 11

By the end of April, at last shows and meets started to return. Spring Thaw took place on the 26th of that month, and this year it was held at the Grey Eagle as opposed to Deerfoot Mall as it had been previously.

Spring Thaw 2015 8

Selfishly I was happy with this as it meant I had a shorter drive, but there were some issues with congestion (especially when it came time for everyone to roll out). Regardless it was a great day and it was awesome to see so many beautiful cars and trucks out in the sun again.

2015 Season Opener 2

Shortly afterwards it was the annual 780 Tuners season opener so I packed my camera and some clothes in the Focus and left for Edmonton.

iM Season Opener 2015 11

As luck would have it, the weather quickly turned ugly the night of the meet with heavy rain and hail. I feared the meet would be called off but at the last minute the skies cleared enough for the gathering to go on as planned. I enjoy going to the season opener each year because it’s a perfect excuse for a weekend trip out of town and I get to see cars from different cities and sometimes, provinces.

iM Season Opener 2015 6

It was at this year’s opener that I met Brooks (owner of the brown Evo above) and his girlfriend Lindsay as we happened to be staying at the same hotel that weekend. They made the trip to Calgary for Driven a few weeks after, and joined us at Sunday School later in the summer too.

Driven 2015 5

Speaking of Driven, before we knew it it was time to get the cars finished and cleaned up. Most of us met at Market Mall where we proceeded to turn a number of heads, and we had a good chance to chat and catch up before going over to the oval to set up for the next day.

Driven 2015 36

Driven 2015 was amazing and definitely saw a higher standard of cars attend than in years past. That’s not a negative comment on previous shows mind you, but rather a positive one on this year’s, and specifically on the progress that our local scene had seen since 2013’s show. It was clear the bar had been raised.

Driven 2015 19

Special note – Benjamin’s TSX drew no shortage of attention at Driven and went on to end 2015 on a high note to say the least. It went to SEMA in November, won the 2015 Tuner Battlegrounds competition, and landed on the cover of the upcoming February/March of PASMAG!

Bill MacKenzie Ford Focus sedan 12R

Following Driven I took advantage of the Focus being near spotless and captured some photos. I probably would have done so anyway simply because of how clean it was but I needed a set which I could edit and send off to fifteen52.

ST sedan 1552 feature

They had expressed the desire to feature the sedan and not long after receiving the photos and information they posted the feature; I was extremely proud to see the Focus up on their website.

GE June 3 2015 9

By June the weekly meets were in full swing and that’s when I began to I find myself often attending two or even three a week! It made for a very busy, very enjoyable summer and we were able to meet many great people and see some amazing cars.

Mazda Meet 4

I also attended a Mazda meet after being invited by Yolanda, which was a nice way to spend an evening.

Mazda Meet 7

At that meet I was also able to finally meet Mike in person when he arrived with his RX-7. It’s quite the attention-getter, and so was another RX-7 which we saw at Grey Eagle a few days later.

GE June 10 2015 11

That’s because it happened to be sporting a Veilside Fortune kit! For a ~10 year old kit on a ~20 year old car it still looks phenomenal and seeing one in person was unreal.

Fitting the ST valance 1

Later in June I turned the focus back to the ST Sedan valance and 3D Carbon wing by publishing photos showing the work that went into fitting them to the car. I wanted to provide more information on the pieces and also hopefully have it serve as some reference material for anyone installing them.

Fitting the 3DC wing 1

While some may see them as just another couple of pieces, both are rather special to me as with them my longstanding vision for the exterior finally became a reality and what I had pictured in my head (and rendered on the computer) for so long was finally sitting before me.

June 19 1

As June carried on we attended more meets and continued to enjoy the warm, sunny nights. I’m definitely missing those right now…

GE June 24 2015 22

And that’s it for today’s post! Be sure to check back tomorrow for part 2, covering the second half of 2015! I’d say it was definitely the busier half of the year in terms of events and car-related activities. Looking back, I have some photos which I was very pleased to have been able to capture, including some of the ‘Holy Trinity’ – the P1, LaFerrari, and 918 Spyder.

More meets, more shows, more great memories. Tomorrow!

-Bill

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