Round 2: Road to the Championship Results

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May 11, 2013

Round 2: Road to the Championship Results;
Daigo Saito Takes the Victory

Long Beach, Calif. – May 11, 2013 – Formula DRIFT presented by GoPro continued to Round 2: Road to the Championship at Road Atlanta. Defending 2012 champion, Daigo Saito in the Achilles / Bridges Racing Lexus SC430 takes the victory.

Round 2: Road to the Championship returned for the tenth consecutive season to the home of the inaugural Formula DRIFT competition at Road Atlanta. This is the only course on the circuit that has paved a custom section of the track specifically for drifting. Despite the intermittent rain, the fans in Atlanta came out in force and stayed through to the end of the event. Road Atlanta has the largest attendance for the Series outside of California.

“Drifting is chaotic and unpredictable,” stated Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “Today showed the ability of the Formula DRIFT drivers to adapt to the changing conditions while still performing.”

The rain slicked track proved to be a challenge as the event entered into the Top 16 portion of the competition. Heading into the competition, Daijiro Yoshihara in the Discount Tire / Falken Tire Nissan 240SX held the points lead, but surprisingly failed to make it into the Top 16, opening the opportunity for other drivers in the point standings. Michael Essa in the GSR Autosport / Yokohama Tire BMW M3 faced Vaughn Gittin, Jr. in the Monster Energy / Nitto Tire Ford Mustang RTR in the consolation round. Gittin won third place and takes the lead in the 2013 Pro Championship point standings. The final round pitted Darren McNamara in the Falken Tire Nissan 240SX against returning champion Daigo Saito. McNamara on the first run misjudged the speed of Saito and ran into his car causing damage and giving up the advantage, which his team was not able to overcome. Saito earned his first victory of the season and moves into second place overall.

“This almost feels like revenge from Long Beach since I was only able to make it into the Top 16 at Round 1,” said Daigo Saito, winner of Round 2: Road to the Championship. “The track conditions were horrible and it could have been anyone that won, but I am happy that I was able to pull off the victory. Thanks to the team and Achilles for helping make this all possible.”

For more information visit: www.formuladrift.com

Formula DRIFT Professional Championship Presented by GoPro 2013 Standings After Two Rounds
1. Gittin Jr., Vaughn Monster Energy / Nitto Tire Ford Mustang RTR 172 Points
2. Saito, Daigo Achilles Tire / Bridges Racing Lexus SC430 161 Points
3. McNamara, Darren Falken Tire Nissan S14 156 Points
4. Essa, Michael GSR Autosport / Yokohama BMW M3 141 Points
5. Yoshihara, Daijiro Discount Tire / Falken Tire Nissan S13 137 Points
6. Aasbo, Fredric Hankook Tire Scion Racing tC 136 Points
7. Forsberg, Chris NOS Energy Drink / Hankook Nissan 370Z 135 Points
8. Tuerck, Ryan Team Retaks / Maxxis Scion Racing FR-S 125.50 Points
9. Moen, Kenneth Lutz Performance / Falken Tire Nissan 350Z 120 Points
10. Powers, Matt Nitto Tire / Fatlace Nissan S14 119 Points
11. Pawlak, Justin Falken Tire Ford Mustang 116.50 Points
12. Bakchis, Aurimas Nexen Tire Nissan S14 112 Points
13. DeNofa, Chelsea BC Racing BMW 3 Series 105 Points
14. Mohan, Kyle Nexen Tire / Mazdatrix RX-8 86 Points
15. Wang, Forrest Get Nuts Labs Nissan 240SX 82 Points
16. Field, Matt CX Racing / Blacktrax Nissan 240SX 81.50 Points

Round 2: Road to the Championship Event Results
1. Saito, Daigo Achilles Tire / Bridges Racing Lexus SC430 Winner
2. McNamara, Darren Falken Tire Nissan S14 Second Place
3. Gittin Jr., Vaughn Monster Energy / Nitto Ford Mustang RTR Third Place

Manufacturers Championship Standings After Two Rounds
1. Ford 288.50 Points
2. Scion 261.50 Points
3. Nissan 248 Points
4. BMW 246 Points
5. Lexus 239.75 Points

Tire Championship Standings After Two Rounds
1. Falken 330 Points
2. Nitto 311 Points
3. Hankook 270 Points
4. Achilles 243 Points
5. Nexen 228.50 Points

Motegi Racing Super Drift Challenge Results

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Long Beach, Calif. – April 21, 2013 – Formula DRIFT hosted the inaugural Motegi Racing Super Drift Challenge during the 39th annual Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. Matt Powers in the Fatlace / Nitto Tire Nissan S14 took the event victory.

The inaugural Motegi Racing Super Drift Challenge brought motorsports action under the lights for the first time in 39 years during the annual Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. Sixteen of the top Formula DRIFT drivers competed for a $25,000 prize purse.

“To have been able to bring professional drifting competition to the masses during the 39th annual Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach is remarkable,” stated Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “To do it for the first time under the lights of the famous Long Beach street course is something special.”

The action under the lights gave a new dynamic for the drivers with ever changing track temperatures along with the plumes of white smoke under the fluorescent lights proved to be challenging. Fredric Aasbo in the Hankook Tire Scion Racing tC in the Final 4 battle hit the outside of clipping zone 2 damaging his vehicle and failing to continue in the competition taking home fourth place. Walker Wilkerson in the Achilles Radial / Fueled Racing Nissan S14 automatically took the third spot with Aasbo out in the Top 4. Powers battled the number one qualifier Michael Essa in the GSR Autosport / Yokohama Tire BMW M3 in an exciting Finals match and edged out Essa to take home the inaugural victory.

“The final battle with Essa was super sick,” stated Matt Powers, winner of the Motegi Racing Super Drift Challenge. “I would have been happy with second place, but am stoked and looking forward to the rest of the season.”

The Formula DRIFT Pro Championship presented by GoPro continues at Round 2: Road to the Championship at Road Atlanta on May 10-11, 2013.

Motegi Racing Super Drift Challenge Results

Winner – Matt Powers
2nd Place – Michael Essa
3rd Place – Walker Wilkerson
4th Place – Fredric Aasbo

Round 1: Streets of Long Beach Kicked Off the Tenth Season of Formula DRIFT Presented by GoPro to a Sold Out Crowd

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Round 1: Streets of Long Beach Kicked Off the Tenth Season of Formula DRIFT Presented by GoPro to a Sold Out Crowd;
Daijiro Yoshihara Takes the Victory and Leads the Championship Points Chase

Long Beach, Calif. – April 13, 2013 – Formula DRIFT presented by GoPro begins the tenth season of competition with Round 1: Streets of Long Beach. Daijiro Yoshihara in the America’s Tire / Falken Tire Nissan S13 takes the victory and leads the championship points chase.

Round 1: Streets of Long Beach started off the tenth season of Formula DRIFT presented by GoPro to a sell out crowd. Fans were treated to a vendor village, Slammed Society car show, a display of vehicles from the Targa Trophy and a skateboard demo from the Action Sports Kids Foundation of Long Beach.

“To start our ten year anniversary season in front of a sell out crowd sets a great tone for the season to come,” stated Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “We owe it all to our drivers, sponsors and the fans for helping to make the Series what it is today. We look forward to another exciting season.”

Experience became the deciding factor with all three spots on the podium being found by ten-year veterans who also are past champions of the Series. The 2009 Champion Chris Forsberg in the NOS Energy Drink / Hankook Nissan 370Z was too much for Chelsea DeNofa and earned third place. The final battle pitted 2010 Formula DRIFT champion Vaughn Gittin, Jr in the Monster Energy / Nitto Tire Ford Mustang against the 2011 champion Daijiro Yoshihara who also was the number one qualifier. On their first run Gittin made a small mistake at the hairpin giving Yoshihara the edge. A consistent second run by Yoshihara secured his victory giving him the first victory of the season.

“This was my first time to win in Long Beach. I’ve been on the podium a few times, but winning here was one of my goals and I was able to achieve that today, “said Daijiro Yoshihara, winner of Round 1: Streets of Long Beach. “I also qualified first so this was the best way to start off the season, but it is still a long way to another Championship. I hope to win another Championship this season.” Formula DRIFT presented by GoPro continues at Round 2: Road to the Championship at Road Atlanta on May 10-11, 2013.

For more information visit: www.formuladrift.com

Formula DRIFT Professional Championship Presented by GoPro 2013 Standings After One Event
1. Yoshihara, Daijiro America’s Tire / Falken Tire Nissan S13 112 Points
2. Gittin Jr., Vaughn Monster Energy / Nitto Tire Ford Mustang 92 Points
3. Forsberg, Chris NOS Energy Drink / Hankook Nissan 370Z 79 Points
4. DeNofa, Chelsea BC Racing BMW 3 Series 75 Points
5. McNamara, Darren Falken Tire Nissan S14 64 Points
6. Tuerck, Ryan Team Retaks Scion FR-S 64 Points
7. Gushi, Ken Greddy / Hankook Scion FR-S 62 Points
8. Essa, Michael GSR Autosport / Yokohama BMW M3 62 Points
9. Moen, Kenneth Nexen Tire Nissan 240SX 58 Points
10. Saito, Daigo Achilles Tire / Bridges Racing Lexus SC430 57 Points
11. Aasbo, Fredric Hankook Tire Scion Racing tC 56 Points
12. Bakchis, Aurimas Nexen Tire Nissan S14 56 Points
13. Kado, Ryan DNA Motoring / Nexen Tire Nissan 350Z 55 Points
14. Powers, Matt Nitto Tire / Fatlace Nissan S14 55 Points
15. Mordaunt, Patrick Apexi / PM Racing / Diamond Lexus SC430 54.50 Points
16. Pawlak, Justin Falken Tire Ford Mustang 54.50 Points

Round 1: Streets of Long Beach Event Results
1. Yoshihara, Daijiro America’s Tire / Falken Tire Nissan S13 Winner
2. Gittin Jr., Vaughn Monster Energy / Nitto Ford Mustang Second Place
3. Forsberg, Chris NOS Energy Drink / Hankook Nissan 370Z Third Place

Manufacturers Championship Standings After One Event
1. Ford 146.5 Points
2. Nissan 137 Points
2. BMW 137 Points
4. Scion 126 Points
5. Lexus 111 Points

Tire Championship Standings After One Event
1. Falken 176 Points
2. Nitto 167 Points
3. Hankook 141 Points
4. Yokohama 116.5 Points

Formula DRIFT Announces Launch Of 2013 Formula DRIFT Insider Web Series

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Long Beach, Calif. – April 10, 2013 – Formula DRIFT has announced a renewal of the highly popular, behind the scenes web show, “Formula DRIFT Insider”. The first episode will kick-off on Thursday April 11th on the eve of the very first live event of the year, Round 1: Streets of Long Beach on April 12-13th. Subsequent episodes will be available every other Thursday on Formula DRIFT’s YouTube page. Formula DRIFT Insider features behind the scenes coverage of the premier drifting brand in the world, Formula DRIFT.

“Formula DRIFT Insider is a really fun and cool project for us. We get to not only deliver exclusive content to fans, but we also are able to tell a story between rounds that would not be available otherwise,” says Ryan Sage, Host of Formula DRIFT Insider.

The first episode of Formula DRIFT Insider will inform viewers on what is new for the 2013 season and will be available exclusively on Formula DRIFT’s YouTube page at www.youtube.com/formuladrift.

For more information on Formula DRIFT, visit: www.formulad.com

To watch Round 1: Streets of Long Beach Live visit: http://new.livestream.com/FormulaDrift/LongBeach

JR Hildebrand to Race Formula Drift Series for TylerMcQuarrie Racing

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JR Hildebrand to Race Formula Drift Series for Tyler McQuarrie Racing

(Carlsbad, CA) – IndyCar Series racer JR Hildebrand to include Formula Drift to his schedule for the 2013 season.

Tyler McQuarrie Racing is proud to announce Hildebrand to drive the No. 6 Chevrolet Camaro at select rounds of the Formula D series. Hildebrand, who will also run fulltime in the IZOD IndyCar series, joins McQuarrie as a second part time driver in the 2-car team.

“This will be my 10th year in Formula Drift and my 2nd year as a team owner,” said McQuarrie. “To partner with JR Hildebrand, and to have him compete as our 2nd driver is huge for our team and a big step for Formula Drift. This is something JR and I have been working on for some time now, so to see it become a reality is awesome!”

Hildebrand drives the No. 4 National Guard Panther Racing Chevrolet in the IZOD IndyCar Series and his best IndyCar finish of 2nd came in 2011 at the Indianapolis 500, after which Hildebrand was named Indy 500 Rookie of the Year.

“I’m pumped to join Tyler with his Mobil1/GoPro/Hankook Camaro program to get into Formula D,” said JR. “Since as early as 2004 I’ve thought drifting was an awesome and unique area of Motorsport, so I’m very excited to finally get involved myself.”

Conrad Grunewald Racing also joins Tyler McQuarrie Racing as technical partner for the 2013 season. “I’m very pleased to be a part of the technical partnership with Tyler McQuarrie Racing. We both have the same goal of winning events and bringing GM a Manufactures Championship in Formula Drift. By working in unison we will have a stronger effort towards our goals,” said Grunewald

“Joining forces with Conrad only adds to that, as we all work together to develop our larger program,” said Hildebrand. “For sure I’ll be leaning on

those guys throughout the year, hopefully just not too much on the racetrack!”

“Our number one goal is to win events and Championships and our new technical partnership with CGR will help us while working with GM to develop the most competitive Drift Camaro in Formula Drift,” said McQuarrie.

Tyler McQuarrie Racing is proud to welcome our newest sponsor Hankook Tires as the Official Tire of Tyler McQuarrie Racing as well as the continued support from Mobil 1 Racing, GoPro, Chevrolet, GM Performance Parts, BC, ACT, Forgestar, K&N, Wilwood, Ignite, OMP, Car West Auto Body, SPY Optics, GoPuck Battery, Panther Graphics, and Enterprise.