Netflix’s Hyperdrive Will Keep You On the Edge of Your Seat

Hyperdrive Featured Image

Executive producer Charlize Theron and this amazing cast of women (and men)  perform fantastic feats on four wheels. And we can’t get enough.

Charlize Theron pitched this show to Netflix as “American Ninja Warrior meets Fast and Furious.” While that is a true testament of this show, there were pros and cons. Hyperdrive will surely keep you on the edge of your seat…or couch.

Hyperdrive: the Brutally Honest Truth (SPOILER ALERT!!!)

Hyperdrive starts off with 28 contestants and only one will win.  The course spreads over 100 acres in an industrial park, with challenges like the Supernova (which requires pulling the Rockford Turn), driving through shipping containers, drifting to hit targets, the leveler (aka a seesaw), rail slides, and watercourses.  Hyperdrive not only tests driving skills but the car as well. If I’m being completely honest, I have a love-hate relationship with the show.

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Let’s Begin with the Pros

While with pros come cons, there were a lot of pros during this season of Hyperdrive. There was a lot of time and money put into the filming and for that, I highly respect everyone involved in making this come to life. Below are some of the best parts of this show that made it simply amazing.

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Female Drivers Take on a “Man’s Sport”

YESSSSS!  This had to be one of the best pros of this show. A lot of racers out there are male and not enough females make it onto the track. It’s very few and far between. Yes, there are female racers, but it’s more of a “man’s sport.” These ladies were highly impressive, and even though some were more experienced than others, they all did amazing and proved to the world that women also have skills and can be part of this sport. Here is a list of some of the females that competed.

Girls are part of the car culture, get over it boys!

Stacey Lee May the “Queen of Smoke”

She had to be one of my favorites, even though she didn’t make it past the first course.  There is a clip of Charlize Theron going to Stacey’s home in Johannesburg, South Africa, and speaking with her family in their native tongue, while also going for a ride in Stacey’s 1986 BMW 325. Stacey is seen hanging out of the car while it’s spinning around. This girl’s skills were truly impressive.

I was crushed when her car didn’t make it and shed a few tears because you could see just how much this meant to her. Her father sold his tow truck to get her to the U.S. to compete. I have no doubt that this was just a stepping stone to her full-blown career as a professional driver. Also, I’m happy to report that since she’s gone back home to South Africa, she has landed some amazing sponsorships and has made a name for herself.

Sara Haro, the Underdog

A truck driver, born in Florida, but raised in Sweden, this amateur driver did not disappoint.  Even though she does still have a little ways to go with her driving skills, you could tell she did the absolute best in her 2014 Ford Mustang. Watching her race was pretty awesome.

Brittany Williams of Lite Brite

Another female that showed us women can dominate this sport. She and husband are the creators of Lite Brite, their Youtube channel which focuses more on a different type of car culture; off-roading. In Hyperdrive, Brittany competed with her 2008 Nissan 350Z. The Texas native surprised everyone with her driving skills, and I’m sure she has us all on the edge of our seats when she just made the rail slide (more on that later).

Corinna Graff the Drift Beast of Germany

Also known as the drift beast from Germany. Racing with her Mercedes Benz E500, this woman was hands down one of my favorites. Her husband was also part of this competition, racing in his BMW E28 5 series. Corinna is incredibly deserving of the name drift beast. Not only are her skills immaculate, but she’s one tough lady. There was one obstacle called the water cannon, where she actually got injured. She was rushed to the hospital and they allowed her to come back and finish her lap. After that incident, they took that obstacle out of the course.

Karolina Pilarczyk the best European Female Drifter

As someone who’s roots are in Poland, I was really rooting for her. Karolina is from Poland and came here to compete in her 1998 Nissan Silvia S14. But even though she made it to the show, she didn’t make it very far in the competition. However, it was nice to hear the Polish language in this show and root her on in Polish as well.

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A Girls Guide To Cars | Netflix'S Hyperdrive Will Keep You On The Edge Of Your Seat - Happy Crowd

Rooting on their fellow competitors PC: Netflix

The Adrenaline Rush is No Joke!

A lot of scenes had me on the edge of my seat. There were other scenes where I actually got emotional because I understood what they were feeling.  They put all of this time into their cars and for them to just break down, it truly broke my heart.  However, while I was watching I kept imagining myself on the track and what I would do, or even how I would do. Being a car enthusiast for so many years (and being one of a handful of girls who drove manual in my home town), it was nice to see the behind the scenes and the sacrifices these people made to get to where they are today.

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Even the Cars are Diverse

The diversity of cars was insane!  There was anything from drift happy cars, American muscle, to cars like the Lamborghini Huracan. My favorites were all of the older cars that were built specifically for this race.

Want to see a more eclectic car collection, check out the cars of Stranger Things 3.

Professional and Street Racers Come Together

Not only was the diversity of the cars awesome, but the diversity in racers was refreshing too.  You had people like 20-year-old Diego Higa who was proving that he’s not too young, to females, to other drivers all over the world, drifting instructors like Axel Francois and Atsushi Taniguchi, and many more. It was interesting to see people from all different types of skill sets and different car cultures come together.

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Let’s Discuss the Cons

Of course, there were cons to this show. Being someone who has watched races, and about 90% of the car shows out there, there will be some criticism. While it’s great to see that Netflix is trying to have some great car shows, there are some things that they need to take a look at first. Of course, as a racer, one must always remember the dangers that can be fatal, along with some of the annoyances or “playing dirty.” Here are some of the cons I found with Hyperdrive.

Cons are constructive criticism that people will listen to, to improve.

Playing Dirty on the Track

In Episode 4, there was something that happened that really grinded my gears. One of the contestants (Omar Salaymeh) in my opinion, played dirty. In this course, you test your skills of drifting by having to hit targets with the back end of your car. A driver would receive disqualification points (seconds off your final time) if you didn’t hit them with the back end. He didn’t drift, so instead, he hit the targets by opening his door. Unfortunately, they allowed this in the competition and this almost made me stop watching. For a course where you are testing your driving skills, this was utterly unfair. I’m not sure that anyone could comprehend how disgusted I was when I saw this. Although, he does have a cute dog.

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Some of the Courses were a Little Extra

Some of the challenges were a bit too much and did not test the driver’s skills, just the car itself which resulted in some people breaking down. As someone who has modified their cars, this would have broken my heart if a car that I spent thousands of dollars on broke down because of water.  I’m also the type of person who apologizes to their car if they hit a pothole. The watercourses (I mean, the water cannon injured one of the drivers) and the leveler were unnecessary, and in no way tested the skills of the drivers. Stacey Lee couldn’t even complete a course because her car just completely shut off because of water damage. That part of the course did not test any sort of driving skill.

Read more about avoiding driving in water with this article.

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The Announcers of Hyperdrive PC: Netflix

They Need Better Emcees

The emcees annoyed me at times. They had really corny jokes (although, I do love puns), and they should have had more car-savvy announcers.  At one point the announcers had become somewhat predictable and you knew exactly what they were going to say.  It would have been hilarious if they had the guys from The Grand Tour commenting. Imagine Jeremy Clarkson narrating the entire show. Now, that is a million-dollar idea! You’re welcome Charlize Theron. Although, I do know this would be a conflict of interest since they are part of Amazon.

The Most Intense Moments, In my Opinion

Hyperdrive displayed some pretty insane moments. Below, we will be highlighting some of the craziest things that happened in this season’s episodes.

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Diego Higa, Known as the “baby faced assassin” Wins!

I wouldn’t say that I was shocked when Diego won. You can tell that this is his passion, and because he’s so young, he had something more to prove. That being said, it drove him to really do his best. There was a point in time where I honestly thought he had lost first place. It was really close with his other Brazilian friend and fellow racer, Joao Barion.  Diego and Joao are friends in real life and Diego taught Joao how to drift.

A Girls Guide To Cars | Netflix'S Hyperdrive Will Keep You On The Edge Of Your Seat - Brittany Rail Slide

Texas Native, Brittany Williams Epic Railslide PC: Netflix

The Mind-blowing Rail Slide Save

Brittany’s rail slide was a really scary moment. I thought this poor girl was going to go over and end up in the water, but she saved herself last second with getting back onto the track. I’m sure her husband and mom were terrified in this moment, but so proud of her for being resilient!


The water cannon accident that shocked everyone. Photo: Netflix

The Water Incident that Shocked Everyone

Corinna’s water cannon, windshield accident was hands down one of the most intense parts of Hyperdrive. I felt for Corinna at that moment. She was more upset about not completing the course than actually getting hurt. The water cannon had actually dumped all of its water on the windshield of Corinna’s Mercedes, causing it to shatter to the point where she actually had glass in her eye. Corrina was taken to the emergency room and even came back to complete her lap with no windshield. She is the definition of the hashtag #likeaboss.

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Photo: Netflix

Fielding Shredder has No Boundaries

He was quite the “controlled” reckless driver until he miscalculated his drift and went straight into a wall.  Fielding was not hurt and walked away from the crash. He was marked as a DNF in that round but made a comeback when they allowed the disqualified drivers to race one more time to be put back in the competition.

Want to learn how to prevent a crash?  Read this article for more information.

A Girls Guide To Cars | Netflix'S Hyperdrive Will Keep You On The Edge Of Your Seat - Atsushis Leveler Jump

Atsushi’s Leveler Jump PC: Netflix

The Accidental Leveler Jump

Atsushi’s leveler jump had me on the edge of my seat. This happened very early on in the Netflix series. Atsushi did not know that he had to wait for the green light to be able to get back on the leveler (which is basically a seesaw for cars), and he booked it up that leveler not knowing there was a ramp sticking straight up. He ended up accidentally jumping over that, but no worries because he and his car were fine.

Stacey Lee May Marked as DNF

Stacey Lee May, better known as the “Queen of Smoke” in South Africa, sacrificed so much to get to Hyperdrive. Her dad had sold his tow truck to be able to pay for this. When Charlize visits Stacey’s home and takes her for a ride, I think it’s one of the most iconic moments in drifting history when she’s seen hanging out of the car while the car is still spinning. When they show her father just embracing her, it was truly emotional. The emotions that they were both feeling at that moment are unimaginable. I had extremely high hopes for Stacey when I saw the trailer for Hyperdrive and I really thought “wow, this girl can win this!”

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Long Live the Dodge Charger

Alexandre’s emotional break down had me upset. I had high hopes for Alexandre and his Dodge Charger, but unfortunately, the break downs of the show truly hurt my heart. While, I’ve never had a break down while racing, I have had my car totaled at no fault of my own. I have put time and money into my car, and I could never imagine being so close and having my car die.

The female Chief Engineer behind the Dodge Charger.

Don’t Try This at Home

While this show was truly interesting to watch, we do need to make a disclaimer that it is dangerous. Some of these accidents could have been incredibly fatal. No one should be racing unless you are equipped with the proper gear and the proper track.  Have you watched Hyperdrive yet?  If so, what did you think?

A Girls Guide To Cars | Netflix'S Hyperdrive Will Keep You On The Edge Of Your Seat - Hyperdrive

Monica is a Centenary University grad with her MBA. She was always a creative person, and found that creating... More about Monica Siembieda