Formula DRIFT Round 1: Streets of Long Beach Breaks Attendance Record

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Long Beach, Calif. – April 21, 2011 – Formula DRIFT made history during the first event of the 8th season of competition, as Round 1: Streets of Long Beach became the most attended drift competition in the history of the Series. Over 16,000 fans came to the near capacity event, outdrawing previous events.

Previously, the 2010 Formula DRIFT season finale, the Red Bull Drifting World Championship held by Formula DRIFT, and the original D1 Exhibition Match produced by Formula DRIFT co-founders Jim Liaw and Ryan Sage were some of the most attended drifting events.

“The first event of the 2011 Formula DRIFT Championship season was a tremendous success, and we thank the fans for their enthusiastic support of the Series,” said Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “Formula DRIFT is dedicated to providing the best drifting competition and entertainment in the world and we look forward to the rest of the season.”

Adding to the success of the first event, DriftStream, Formula DRIFT’s live webcast, reached over 289,000 unique IPs over the Friday and Saturday broadcast. DirecTV also captured the event in 3D with an air-date to be announced. The FD TV team filmed all the action in HD for the Formula DRIFT television program that will air on the VERSUS network in the US and various international networks starting August 14.

Round 1: Streets of Long Beach Results

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Formula DRIFT Round 1: Streets of Long Beach Results;
Justin Pawlak Takes the Victory at the Season Opener

Long Beach, Calif. – April 10, 2011 – Justin Pawlak in the Falken Tire Ford Mustang earns the victory at the first event of the 2011 Formula DRIFT season. Matt Powers in the Need for Speed Nissan S14 takes second place with Daijiro Yoshihara in the Discount Tire / Falken Nissan S13 rounding out the podium in third place.

Round 1: Streets of Long Beach provided fans with action and excitement through the weekend. The debut of new vehicles and new drivers added to the anticipation for the new season. The Driftstream brought live coverage to fans watching at home.

“With any new season comes change, so seeing fresh faces to the podium is a part of that,” says Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “The level of driving skill continues to elevate. It is a sign that the 2011 season will be as competitive as ever. I would not be surprised to see more upsets and new faces to the podium.”

Justin Pawlak finds the top of the podium for the very first time in his career. Pawlak remained consistent through the rounds advancing to the Finals against Matt Powers. His consistency paid off and Pawlak was able to secure the victory. The consolation round pitted Daijiro Yoshihara in the Discount Tire / Falken Tire Nissan S13 against 2009 Formula DRIFT champion, Chris Forsberg in the NOS Energy Drink Nissan 370Z.

“I owe it all to the guys at ASD and Falken Tire for this victory. Without them this could not have been possible,” said Justin Pawlak, winner of Round 1: Streets of Long Beach. “This victory feels unreal. I have worked so hard for this and can’t believe I’m on top to start out the season.”

The 2011 Pro Championship season continues for Round 2: Road to the Championship at Road Atlanta on May 6-7. Tickets are available to purchase online now.

2011 Pro Championship Standings

The Formula DRIFT Driftstream Continues into the 2011 Season

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The Formula DRIFT Driftstream Continues into the 2011 Season;
New Features to Debut at Round 1: Streets of Long Beach on April 8-9, 2011

Long Beach, Calif. – April 8, 2011 – After a very successful 2010 Pro Championship season and two International events for the Driftstream, Formula DRIFT will continue providing live coverage through the online platform. New features will be implemented for the 2011 season.

During the 2010 season over 1,000,000 viewers tuned in to watch the live action unfold over the 7 Pro Championship events. The combined traffic for both the Formula DRIFT UAE Invitational at Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi and the Formula DRIFT Global Challenge at the Qatar Racing Club topped 95,000 in only 8 hours of on-track action. Over 1 million minutes were watched during these 2 events that aired in the United States in the early hours of the day. During the Qatar event, the Driftstream also implemented for the first time live color commentary from the 2010 Formula DRIFT champion, Chris Forsberg as he gave his expert commentary during the action and interacted with fans.

“The Driftstream has been a tremendous addition to our program and has provided all of the action of a live event directly to the fans,” said Ryan Sage, vice-president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “We look forward to continuing the success of the Driftstream throughout the 2011 season, while constantly looking for ways to improve the program for the fans.”

The Driftstream will continue to innovate itself and will introduce new features for the 2011 Pro Championship season. GoPro cameras will be utilized to allow interaction between fans and Formula DRIFT drivers and celebrity guests. A new Facebook application will also be launched this season. The new features will debut on April 8-9 during Round 1: Streets of Long Beach. New sponsors for the season include Need for Speed, Nitto Tires, GoPro, Enkei, ACT, Kenda Tires, Motegi Racing and Mishimoto.

The Driftstream can be watched through: www.justin.tv/driftstream, www.driftstream.tv, www.formulad.com/live, and www.facebook.com/formuladrift. The Driftstream will begin airing the Round 1: Streets of Long Beach action at 11:30 (PST) on April 8-9.For more information visit: www.formuladrift.com

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.