Mon | Nov 20, 2017

Graham’s Red Hot Daihatsu Cuore Knows No Bounds

Published:Sunday | October 29, 2017 | 12:02 AMLatara Boodie

A hobby that began as an extension of a father’s livelihood developed into a passion for the need of speed. Denniston Graham, along with his 1995 Daihatsu Cuore, is the definition of a pocket rocket. Being the only one in his class with this type of car has set Graham apart from the pact as an underdog. However, as the popular Jamaican saying goes, you can be ‘little but tallawah’. Automotive sat with Graham to discover what drives the man behind this red-hot Diahatsu Cuore and how he plans to blaze the trail to success.

Graham explained that his earliest memory of racing began as a toddler, who was always wrapped around his father’s neck from meet to meet. “I grew up always seeing my father working on a car and being around racing. Overtime I started to learn a lot and it became a part of me,” Graham told Automotive. His father, Neville Graham, was the first owner of the racecar, and is heavily involved in its transition from an ordinary car into a mean motor machine.

This easy going young man describes himself as a hands-on leaner who is willing to try new things to improve his skills as a racecar driver. His track reputation is fairly new since he has only started racing professionally for just a year. However, his reputation on the street is someone who always beats the odds.

“It usually starts from the underground and then you build your name from there,” Graham noted. “Everybody has a Honda or another big engine car. I am the only one with such a small engine on the track and is still able to be competitive,” explained Graham. 

“My small car can do the same things that other cars can and give them hell. When people see this car, they wonder what it can do. However, when they hear it they say, ‘hold on something does not add up’. Then when they see the car driving they ask what is under the bonnet,” Graham recounted while laughing.

The main person that helps him to keep his car in tip top shape is his fabricator, Corey “Taz” Walters. “He is helping me to reach to the next level that I want to be with the car,” Graham told Automotive.

“My focus for racing is to have fun. I am the underdog, I have nothing to lose,” declared Graham, who prides himself on choosing an uncommon racecar and putting it to use on the track. “Once I am having fun everything else will fall into place,” he said. His portfolio boasts a number of trophies mainly in drag racing, for which he has won second place in 2014 and 2015.

When asked about his challenges with the car Graham revealed the emotional attachment of him and his father to the 1995 Daihatsu Cuore. At one point, Graham said he lost confidence in the car and wanted to sell it, but his father advised him not to give up when faced with a challenge in life. With this lesson Graham went back to racing with a vengeance and declared that he would be the little car to beat all the others.