Formula DRIFT and DIRECTV Go For Round Two With 2011 Season Opener in 3D

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Formula DRIFT and DIRECTV Go For Round Two With 2011 Season Opener in 3D

First-Ever Drifting Street Event to be Produced in 3D, Available Exclusively on n3D, Powered by Panasonic

Long Beach, Calif. – April 6, 2011 – Following last year’s successful 3D broadcast of Formula DRIFT’s “Round 7, Title Fight” event, DIRECTV and Formula DRIFT take another spin around the track with the production of Formula DRIFT’s 2011 season opener, Round 1: Streets of Long Beach. The race will be the first-ever drifting street race to be produced in 3D and will be available exclusively on n3D, powered by Panasonic, this summer.

The season opener will be held in Long Beach, Calif., on April 8-9 and is the only drifting event on the circuit to legally utilize real city streets. The race will debut a new suite of cars and drivers to the Formula DRIFT series and will be co-hosted by DIRECTV Red Zone Channel host, Andrew Siciliano, actress and TV host, Mayleen Ramey, and co-founder of Formula DRIFT, Ryan Sage.

DIRECTV will also test new production techniques for this event, including new camera angles of the course and in-car cameras that will give viewers the driver’s perspective of the track. Last year’s final round in Irwindale, Calif., was rated the most watched original 3D program on DIRECTV and continues to be re-aired in 3D on the n3D channel, as well as in 2D on The 101 Network.

“The 2010 Final Fight 3D event was a great success for our n3D channel and we are excited to continue our partnership with Formula DRIFT, as well as our support for the sport of drifting,” said Chris Long, senior vice president, DIRECTV Entertainment. “Filming on the streets in Long Beach versus on a track will give the broadcast a completely different feel and we are looking forward to testing new production techniques that will truly make 3D fans feel like they are in the driver’s seat.”

“DIRECTV captured the excitement on the high banks during the 2010 season finale at the birthplace of American professional drifting at the Toyota Speedway at Irwindale,” said Jim Liaw, president and co-founder, Formula DRIFT. “Now, DIRECTV will be able to capture the unique and intense setting that is the season opener, through the only legal professional drift competition on city streets.”

DIRECTV offers more 3D programming than any other television provider in the country. n3D, powered by Panasonic (Ch. 103), the nation’s first 24/7 3D network, is available at no additional cost to millions of DIRECTV HD customers. In addition to exclusive 3D coverage of special events such as the 2010 MLB All-Star Game and the 2010 U.S. Open Tennis Championship, the n3D channel also gives customers access to exclusive, original 3D programming such as DIRECTV’s award-winning series Guitar Center Sessions and Guy’s Big Bite in 3D. The 3D programming available both on n3D and DIRECTV CINEMA are all powered by Panasonic. DIRECTV also offers 3net and ESPN 3D as part of its 3D programming platform.

DIRECTV HD customers, who received a free software upgrade that enabled them to access 3D channels on DIRECTV, will need a 3D television set and 3D glasses to view the programming on DIRECTV. For more information on n3D, powered by Panasonic, please visit www.DIRECTV.com/3D.

For more information contact:
John Pangilinan
The ID Agency for Formula DRIFT
213.802.0863
john@theidagency.com

Robert Mercer
DIRECTV
310.964.4683
rgmercer@directv.com

Formula DRIFT Announces Ryan Lanteigne as a New Judge for the 2011 Season

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Formula DRIFT Announces Ryan Lanteigne as a New Judge for the 2011 Season;
Lanteigne to Replace Ernie Fixmer on the Judging Panel

Long Beach, Calif. – April 6, 2011 – Formula DRIFT has announced the addition of Ryan Lanteigne to the Formula DRIFT judging panel for the 2011 Pro Championship season. Lanteigne will take Ernie Fixmer’s position as the third Formula DRIFT judge.

Fixmer has recently taken a position in the aerospace field and will be unavailable to judge the Formula DRIFT domestic events due to time commitments. He is still very dedicated to the sport of drifting and will continue to be part of the community, but looks forward to the new career opportunity. His departure creates an opening in the 3-judge panel where Lanteigne will take over the role of third judge.

“We are happy to see Ernie taking a position in the field he loves and though we are saddened by his departure, Ryan will be a great addition to the Formula DRIFT family,” said Ryan Sage, vice-president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “Not only is Ryan a seasoned driver, he has judging experience and has worked with both Tony (Angelo) and Andy (Yen) which is a great way to start the new relationship.”

Lanteigne brings both the experience as a professional driver and judge for the Drift Mania Canadian Championship (DMCC). Lanteigne has a working experience with both current Formula DRIFT judges Andy Yen and Tony Angelo and they have expressed their approval for Lanteigne to join them on the judging panel for the 2011 Pro Championship season.

“I am truly very excited and honored to be a part of the Formula DRIFT family. We were fortunate to have Formula DRIFT judges in the Canadian series when I was competing, which introduced us to the rules, scoring and demands of the big leagues early on,” said Ryan Lanteigne, new Formula DRIFT judge. “After my early retirement, working as a judge with Tony and Andy really opened my eyes to the intricacies of the sport while reinforcing just how important it is to be impartial and objective while in the judging tower. I look forward to meeting all of the drivers at Round 1: Streets of Long Beach and to the entire season ahead.”

Lanteigne will make his debut as Formula DRIFT judge on April 8-9, 2011 at Round 1: Streets of Long Beach.

Formula DRIFT Revs up for Eighth Championship Season

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Formula DRIFT Revs up for Eighth Championship Season;
Round 1: Streets of Long Beach April 8-9, 2011

Long Beach, Calif. – March 10, 2011 – Formula DRIFT prepares to begin the eighth professional championship season. Round 1: Streets of Long Beach on April 8-9 to feature world class drifting action, debut of new cars and drivers, vendor midway, driver autographs, open pits, car show and more.

“We are especially excited to kick-off the new season in Long Beach,” said Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “This will be our fifth consecutive year utilizing the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach Street Course, which is the only street course on the circuit. With new drivers, new competition vehicles and non-stop drifting action we are expecting another sell-out crowd.”

Round 1: Streets of Long Beach will feature the return of champion Vaughn Gittin, Jr., the much anticipated debut of the Need for Speed 2011 Scion TC of Papadakis Racing with Formula DRIFT rookie of the year Fredric Aasbo behind the wheel, 2009 Champion Chris Forsberg and his new NOS Energy Drink Nissan 370Z, along with the rest of the talented driver pool. Newly added for this event will be an expanded VIP section and multiple Jumbotrons for better viewing throughout the venue.

Tickets are now available for Round 1: Streets of Long Beach on April 8-9, including reserved seating, 2-day ticket packages, and VIP tickets. Tickets can be purchased through www.formuladrift.com, Ticketmaster outlets, and the Long Beach Convention Center box office. Ticket prices start at $27 online with reserved tickets available for Saturday’s competition day. 2-day packages are also available along with VIP ticket packages.

For more information visit: www.formuladrift.com

Formula DRIFT Announces Formula DRIFT Global Challenge on March 18 in Qatar

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Long Beach, Calif. – March 8, 2011 – Formula DRIFT announces the Formula DRIFT Global Challenge on March 18, 2011. The inaugural event will be held at the Qatar Racing Club in Doha, Qatar.

Following the successful Formula DRIFT UAE Invitational event at Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi, Formula DRIFT will be holding the first Formula DRIFT Global Challenge in Qatar. The Qatar Racing Club in Doha, Qatar will host the event on March 18, 2011. Nine drivers will compete, including seven of the top Formula DRIFT Pro Championship drivers: Chris Forsberg, Tanner Foust, Michael Essa, Tony Brakohiapa, Fredric Aasbo, Mike Whiddett and Daijiro Yoshihara. Those 7 drivers will joined by Formula DRIFT Asia Championship stars, Tengku Djan Ley of Malaysia and Kiki Sak Nana of Thailand. The competition will be in a similar to the 8 car head-to-head format to the UAE Invitational.

“It’s really exciting to have so much interest for the sport in the region,” said Formula DRIFT vice president, Ryan Sage. “After such a great event at Yas Marina, I can’t see any way better to bring drifting to this region than to head to the Qatar Racing Club as this is the epicenter for motor sports in that Qatar. We are honored to be working with His Highness Sheikh Khalid bin Hamad Al Thani on what should be another great event.”

“We could not be more excited to be hosting a Formula DRIFT event at the Qatar Race Club in Doha,” stated Sheikh Khalid bin Hamad Al Thani, Chairman of the QRC. “We have just completed the most successful drag racing season to date for the Arabian Drag Racing League. Adding Formula DRIFT to our schedule furthers our goal of providing the people of Qatar and the GCC region with an exceptional motor sports experience in a world-class motor sports facility. We will continue to be a leader in the GCC region in pursuing partnerships with organizations like Formula DRIFT, who can bring some of the world’s best motor sports events to Doha and the people of Qatar.”

The event will be streamed live via the DriftStream and will be featured on Formula DRIFT TV on VERSUS as a half-hour special. For more information visit: www.formuladrift.com

Tanner Foust Announces Temporary Retirement From Formula DRIFT

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February 10, 2011

Tanner Foust Announces Temporary Retirement From Formula DRIFT;
Papadakis Racing and Team Need For Speed Announce the Signing of 2010 Formula DRIFT Rookie of the Year, Fredric Aasbo

Long Beach, Calif. – February 10th, 2011 – Formula DRIFT has announced that 2-time Formula DRIFT champion, Tanner Foust will temporarily step away from the sport of drifting. In conjunction, Papadakis Racing and Team Need For Speed have announced the signing of the 2010 Formula DRIFT Rookie of the Year, Fredric Aasbo.

“Tanner’s semi-retirement is bittersweet for the Series as he has become one of the most recognizable drivers on the circuit and is one of the most competitive spokesmen for Formula DRIFT,” said Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “As with the growth and progression of the Series we can expect to see opportunities brought to many of the drivers and wish Tanner more success in his career both on and off the track. His departure will leave a spot open for a future star of drifting to rise, which we are excited to see.”

Foust has announced his temporary retirement from drifting due to a demanding 2011 schedule of European Rally events, X-Games and television responsibilities. The 2-time Formula DRIFT champion and Tires.com Triple Crown bonus winner will be competing one last time in the Rockstar / Papadakis Racing Scion tC on February 25, 2010 during the Formula DRIFT UAE Invitational competition.

“I owe a lot to Formula DRIFT and Stephan Papadakis. This sport, Stephan and his team have been, and will remain, an integral part of my motorsports life,” said Tanner Foust, from his home in San Juan Capistrano. “This was a hard choice to make, but with my schedule looking even busier than last year’s I will not be able to fully commit to the 2011 Formula DRIFT season. However, I am looking forward to competing in the Rockstar Scion tC for one last time in Abu Dhabi this month.” With an open seat, team owner, Stephan Papadakis has enlisted the highly touted and talented driver, Fredric Aasbo. In addition, a newly created partnership with Team Need For Speed has solidified the alliance. Aasbo will be competing in the brand new Need for 2011 Scion tC this season with the competition debut during Round 1: Streets of Long Beach on April 8-9, 2011.

“Our new partnership with Need For Speed and having Fredric behind the wheel of the new Need for Speed 2011 Scion tC is very exciting,” stated Stephan Papadakis, team owner of Papadakis Racing. “To be aligned with such a top brand in the gaming world is a dream of ours. The synergy between our programs is a natural fit. We build crazy cars for competition and they have the technology for the world to drive them! It has been a pleasure to work with Tanner for the past 5 years and our team thanks him for his hard work and determination and wish him nothing but the best.”

The 2011 Formula DRIFT season begins on April 8-9, 2011 and will mark the debut of many cars, drivers, and teams. For more information visit: www.formuladrift.com