Round 5: Throwdown at Evergreen Speedway Results; Chris Forsberg Takes the Victory

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Long Beach, Calif. – July 21, 2013 – Formula DRIFT presented by GoPro returned to the Pacific Northwest to a sold out crowd. Chris Forsberg in the NOS Energy Drink / Hankook Tire Nissan 370Z takes the victory and the championship points lead.

The fans came out in droves for Round 5: Throwdown at Evergreen Speedway and for the second year in a row the event was held in front of a sell-out crowd.

“Each year we look forward to the action and excitement at Evergreen Speedway and this year did not disappoint. The championship chase is heating up with only two events left in the season,” stated Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “The chase is as close as it has ever been and we look forward to returning to Texas for the next round of competition and then the Finals in Irwindale.”

Heading into the event, returning champion Daigo Saito had a commanding points lead, but with an early exit in the Top 32, an opening for the other drivers became present. In the consolation round, Aurimas “Odi” Bakchis in the Nexen Tire Nissan 240SX battled Fredric Aasbo in the Hankook Tire / Scion Racing tC. Wheel and tire problems helped give Aasbo the win and the third place finish. The final battle pitted Michael Essa in the GSR Autosport / Yokohama BMW M3 against Chris Forsberg. After a close battle, Forsberg edged out Essa to take the victory and the lead in the 2013 Pro Championship points standings. Essa also moves into second place overall.

“Hats off to my crew for giving me a perfect running car this weekend as they were hustling really hard since Thursday’s practice to get the car dialed in for today,” said Chris Forsberg, winner of Round 5: Throwdown. “It is a testament from last year’s season to this year just how much you can improve with a hard working crew and the support of great sponsors. I’m excited for the win and the lead and can’t wait for the next event.”

With only 2 events remaining the championship is up for grabs with less than 35 points separating the top five drivers from the title. Formula DRIFT continues to Round 6: Showdown at Texas Motor Speedway in Dallas Fort Worth, Texas on September 13-14, 2013.

Newegg Signs on an Official Livestream Sponsor of the Formula DRIFT Championship

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Long Beach, Calif. – July 15, 2013 – Formula DRIFT has announced online retailer Newegg as an official sponsor of its Livestream broadcast. Newegg branding and clickable links to Newegg’s selection of automotive products will be featured on Formula DRIFT’s website, Livestream and newsletter. Newegg will also provide digital content to be seen through the Formula DRIFT channels along with special promotions.

Upcoming Livestream events take place at the Evergreen Speedway on July 19-20, Texas Motor Speedway on September 13-14 and Irwindale Speedway on October 11-12. Formula DRIFT’s Livestreams can be viewed at www.formuladrift.com/live.

“Formula DRIFT fans and Newegg customers have a lot in common which is why we thought this sponsorship was a great fit for both of us,” said Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “We are happy to have Newegg on board for the rest of the season.”

In addition to featuring a comprehensive selection of computers and consumer electronics, Newegg also carries a wide selection of the latest and greatest automotive products for the Formula DRIFT fan. Through the company’s Newegg Marketplace program, professional sellers are able to market their automotive products in a range of categories such as car electronics, performance parts and accessories, replacement parts and exterior/interior accessories to Newegg’s 22 million registered users.

“We’re proud to sponsor Formula DRIFT’s Livestream broadcast and look forward to working together,” said Sophia Tsao, head of Newegg Marketplace. “We hope Formula DRIFT fans will take advantage of Newegg’s great prices and deals on automotive products.”

For more information about Formula DRIFT, visit www.formuladrift.com. To shop Newegg’s selection of automotive products, visit www.newegg.com/auto/promotionstore/ID-19.

Round 4: The Gauntlet at Wall Speedway Results

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Daigo Saito Takes the Victory

Long Beach, Calif. – June 22, 2013 – Formula DRIFT presented by GoPro returned to Wall Speedway in New Jersey for Round 4: The Gauntlet. Daigo Saito the driver of the Achilles / Bridges Racing Lexus SC430 increases his Championship point lead with his second victory of the season.

For the second year in a row, Round 4: The Gauntlet showcased action in front of a sold out crowd in New Jersey. This event marks the half-way mark for the season with the championship in the sights of a few of the top drivers.

“We are happy to return to New Jersey for the ninth time,” stated Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “After Hurricane Sandy devastated the area last year, we are proud to be able to contribute and bring some economic stimulus to the region with our Series. On top of that we were treated to world class action in front of a capacity crowd.”

The new course configuration at Wall Speedway proved to be challenging and exciting for the drivers. A few of the top teams were taken out early in the competition opening the door for others to move ahead in the event. In the consolation round with Chris Forsberg in the NOS Energy Drink / Hankook Nissan 370Z against Darren McNamara in the Falken Tire Nissan 240SX the action heated up when McNamara had a mistake that gave Forsberg the third place finish. The final battle pitted the number one qualifier Justin Pawlak in the Falken Ford Mustang against champion Daigo Saito. Pawlak on his chase run went a little too hard and spun out giving the victory and increasing the Championship point lead to Daigo Saito.

“I’m very happy to have this win and remain in 1st place,” said Daigo Saito, winner of Round 4: The Gauntlet. “It feels like I won a championship tonight going against some of the top competition in the Series with Vaughn, Fredric, Darren and Justin and I look forward to the next event.”

Formula DRIFT continues to Round 5: Throwdown at Evergreen Speedway in Monroe, WA on July 19-20, 2013.

Round 3: Invasion Results; Michael Essa Takes the Victory

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Long Beach, Calif. – June 1, 2013 – Formula DRIFT presented by GoPro returned to Palm Beach International Raceway for Round 3: Invasion. Michael Essa in the GSR Autosport / Yokohama Tire BMW M3 takes the victory and moves into third place overall in the standings.

Round 3: Invasion returned for the third consecutive season to South Florida to a capacity crowd. The fans were treated to exciting on-track action intermingled with the Slammed Society car show and display of cars from the Targa Trophy.

“South Florida continues to prove to be a viable market with another capacity crowd,” stated Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “The spirit of competition also continues to rise and is at the highest level it has ever been, which has made an amazing season thus far.”

The skies cleared up for the main event day and the crowds flocked to the venue. The technical track featured a fast entry that proved to be a challenge for some of the drivers with many favorites failing to enter the later rounds of competition. The consolation round pitted Robbie Nishida in the Bridges Racing / Achilles Lexus SC300 against Vaughn Gittin in the Monster Energy / Nitto Tire Ford Mustang. After failing to reach the line after a Competition Timeout following mechanical problems from the previous round, Gittin conceded to give Nishida the win and third place. The final battle pitted Michael Essa in the GSR Autosport / Yokohama Tire BMW M3 against returning champion Daigo Saito in the Bridges Racing / Achilles Tire Lexus SC430, who also won this event last season. The battle was fierce, but Essa took the victory after Saito had a slight error in his chase run. This is Essa’s first Formula DRIFT pro championship podium and victory, which moves him into third place overall in the standings. Saito in the process moves into first place overall with Gittin closely behind him in second place.

“It’s surreal. We started this week with some issues and didn’t qualify well,” said Michael Essa, winner of Round 3: Invasion. “The team put together a solid car and thanks to Yokohama Tire, Bilstein, Garret and the rest of the sponsors we were able to win. We need to keep the momentum going and I can’t wait for the next round.”

For more information visit: www.formuladrift.com

Formula DRIFT Professional Championship Presented by GoPro 2013 Standings After Three Rounds
1. Saito, Daigo Achilles Tire / Bridges Racing Lexus SC430 257 Points
2. Gittin Jr., Vaughn Monster Energy / Nitto Tire Ford Mustang RTR 244 Points
3. Essa, Michael GSR Autosport / Yokohama BMW M3 241.50 Points
4. Forsberg, Chris NOS Energy Drink / Hankook Nissan 370Z 202 Points
5. Aasbo, Fredric Hankook Tire Scion Racing tC 197.50 Points
6. Yoshihara, Daijiro Discount Tire / Falken Tire Nissan S13 195 Points
7. Moen, Kenneth Lutz Performance / Nexen Tire Nissan 240SX 184 Points
8. Pawlak, Justin Falken Tire Ford Mustang 182.50 Points
9. McNamara, Darren Falken Tire Nissan S14 180.50 Points
10. Bakchis, Aurimas Nexen Tire Nissan S14 166.50 Points
11. Tuerck, Ryan Team Retaks / Maxxis Scion Racing FR-S 150.50 Points
12. Field, Matt CX Racing / Blacktrax Nissan 240SX 144.50 Points
13. Wang, Forrest Get Nuts Labs Nissan 240SX 136.50 Points
14. DeNofa, Chelsea BC Racing BMW 3 Series 130 Points
15. Nishida, Robbie Bridges Racing / Achilles Tire Lexus SC300 127.50 Points
16. Powers, Matt Nitto Tire / Fatlace Nissan S14 119 Points

Round 3: Invasion Event Results
1. Essa, Michael GSR Autosport / Yokohama BMW M3 Winner
2. Saito, Daigo Achilles Tire / Bridges Racing Lexus SC430 Second Place
3. Nishida, Robbie Bridges Racing / Achilles Tire Lexus SC300 Third Place

Manufacturers Championship Standings After Three Rounds
1. Ford 426.50 Points
2. Lexus 414.25 Points
3. Nissan 386 Points
4. Scion 379 Points
5. BMW 371.50 Points

Tire Championship Standings After Three Rounds
1. Falken 461 Points
2. Achilles 417.50 Points
3. Nitto 408 Points
4. Hankook 399.50 Points
5. Yokohama 320.50 Points

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