Formula DRIFT Round 4: The Gauntlet Results

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Formula DRIFT Round 4: The Gauntlet Results;
Aurimas Bakchis Fights His Way to Victory



Long Beach, Calif. – June 3, 2017 – Formula DRIFT Black Magic Pro Championship presented by BlackVue Dash Cameras returned to Wall Speedway in New Jersey for the fourth event of the season. Aurimas “Odi” Bakchis in the Falken Tire / Drifz Wheels Nissan 240 battled his way to victory.

“As we hit the half way point of the season, there’s still plenty of action left,” said Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “These are the best drifters from around the world and the championship is still up for grabs.”

The Advance Auto Parts Round 4: The Gauntlet showcased tough competition throughout the event weekend. Over 1 million viewers tuned into the Livestream to watch the exciting action.

The Final 4 pitted Michael Essa in the Achilles Tire / Essa Autosport BMW M3 against Kristaps Bluss in the HGK / Mast / Motul / Wisefab BMW E46 on one side of the bracket. The battle of the BMWs went to the 2013 champion, Essa as he took advantage of a mistake by his opponent. Bakchis was set to face off against Matt Coffman in the Nexen Tire / Coffman Racing Nissan 240, but after failing to repair his vehicle within the allotted 5 minutes, Coffman had to bow out giving Bakchis the win. In the final battle, Essa faced off against Bakchis, with the first run being a very competitive outing. The second battle ended in dramatic fashion as Essa’s tire debeaded coming off the bank and Bakchis’ motor gave out just as he crossed the finish line. Bluss rounded out the podium in third place for the second consecutive event.

“I feel amazing. It was a very hard battle for us the whole weekend,” said Aurimas “Odi” Bakchi, winner of the Advance Auto Parts Round 4: The Gauntlet. “We had lots of challenges, but my crew pulled it together and allowed me to drive like an animal and kept my car somewhat together just enough as it literally blew up right at the finish line. The timing couldn’t have been better and I couldn’t be happier.”

The action continues to Round 5: True North at Autodrome St-Eustache in Montreal, Canada on July 15-16. For more information visit, and find Formula DRIFT on Instagram @formulad, Facebook, Twitter @FormulaDrift, and Snapchat – formula_drift. Tune into Formula DRIFT on CBS Sports and check your local listings for airtimes.

Advance Auto Parts Round 4: The Gauntlet Event Results

1. Bakchis, Aurimas Falken Tire / Drifz Wheels Nissan 240 Winner
2. Essa, Michael Achilles Tire / Essa Autosport BMW M3 2nd Place
3. Bluss, Kristaps
HGK / Mast / Motul / Wisefab BMW E46 3rd Place
4. Coffman, Matt Nexen Tire / Coffman Racing Nissan 240 4th Place
5. Deane, James Worthouse Drift Team / Falken Tire Nissan Silvia 5th Place
6. Aasbo, Fredric Rockstar Energy / Nexen Tire Toyota Corolla iM 6th Place
7. Yoshihara, Dai Falken Tire / Turn 14 Distribution Subaru BRZ 7th Place
8. Jones, Jeff DOC Racing Nissan 240 8th Place
9. Denofa, Chelsea BC Racing / Nitto Tire Ford Mustang RTR 9th Place
10. Tuerck, Ryan Gumout / Nameless Performance / Hankook Toyota 86Falken 10th Place
11. Pawlak, Justin Roush Performance Ford Mustang 11th Place
12. Gittin, Vaughn Monster Energy / Nitto Tire Ford Mustang RTR
12th Place
13. Rintanen, Juha STR Racing Wheels / Nexen Tire Nissan Silvia 13th Place
14. Heilbrunn, Alex IMR / Nitto Tire BMW M3
14th Place
15. Hamilton, Nate Team Enjuku / BC Racing / Hankook Tire Nissan 240 15th Place
16. Nishida, Robbie Jerry Yang Racing Nissan GT-R 16th Place

2017 Formula DRIFT Black Magic Championship Presented by BlackVue Standings After 4 Events

1. Deane, James Worthouse Drift Team / Falken Tire Nissan 240 297.00 Points
2. Essa, Michael Achilles Tire / Essa Autosport BMW M3 241.00 Points
3. Aasbo, Fredric Rockstar Energy / Nexen Tire Toyota Corolla iM 230.00 Points

2017 Manufacturer Championship Standings After 4 Events

1. Toyota 441.00 Points
2. Ford 326.00 Points
3. BMW 241.00 Points
4. Dodge 204.00 Points
5. Nissan 155.00 Points
6. Mazda 86.00 Points

2017 Tire Championship Standings After 3 Events

1. Falken 590.00 Points
2. Achilles 526.00 Points
3. Nexen 483.00 Points
4. Hankook 398.00 Points
5. Nitto 373.00 Points

Formula DRIFT Atlanta 2017 By Super Street Magazine

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In the aftermath of James Deane’s improbable victory at Round 1 of the 2017 Formula DRIFT Championship in Long Beach, Calif., this past April, a lot of drifting fan boiz got all excited because it looked like new blood in a JDM rocket was coming to America to shake things up (a la Daigo Saito in 2012). We got the impression e-thugging contrarians were dancing in the streets over the season opening shocker. But then Round 2 in the oval at Orlando Speed World happened in early May and, on the surface anyway, Deane looked fallible, even human, as the podium was nothing but past FD champions. Fast forward another couple weeks, though, to Round 3 at Road Atlanta and the Irish wheelman changes the story again.

In Long Beach, Deane had to take out a couple of past champions and a couple of could-be champions in his first Formula D action in seven years. In Braselton, Ga., he had to contend again with thrice series champ Chris Forsberg in the NOS Energy Drink 370Z — the second time in three events — while also dispatching heavyweights Ken Gushi in the Greddy Performance 86, Matt Field in the Falken Tire S14, Alec Hohnadell in the Urban Air Initiative S14, and finally fellow Irishman and pal Dean Kearney in the Oracle Lighting Viper. Trust us when we say this has been no cakewalk for the Worthouse pilot.


Formula DRIFT Orlando Coverage by Boostiao

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Orlando Speed World is one of our most preferred Formula Drift championship stops, although it looks like a “simple” transition layout after its long banking is a challenge for all teams.


It is also the first date of the interesting category PRO2! Here Travis Reeder shows us that you can finish the course even if you lose a rubber.


Luis Lizardi would reach the top position of the classifier in the PRO2 but would fall in the first round of qualifiers of the top 16.


Formula Drift Road Atlanta – 2017 By What Monsters Do

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When it comes to tracks on the Formula Drift schedule, there are none better than Road Atlanta. Automotive action happens the entire time youÆre there from nearly sun up to sun down, and well into the night. ItÆs why fans always look forward to it and it makes for an amazing, party-like atmosphere. It also helps that, despite not being an oval track, fans can see nearly everything thanks to the bowl structure of the turn 10/keyhole complex. This is Road Atlanta and here is what you missed by not being there.

Drifting is a sport of the senses û the sight of cars getting sideways, the smell of burnt rubber, the sound of cars pushing maximum horsepower, and sometimes even the taste of spent race gas. ItÆs quick, itÆs dirty, and it just pulls you in even if you try to resist. ItÆs why it works so well in a confined environment like most of the oval tracks Formula Drift visits. ItÆs the same reasons people love monster trucks and thatÆs not a knock on the series. The fans are there for the entertainment of automotive action.