Formula Team DRIFT Competition at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach

Posted on

Formula DRIFT will be participating once again at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. The main competition will take place on Sunday, April 15 at 3:40 PM following the IZOD Indycar race.

The teams will be judged on style, execution and overall crowd reaction. Teams of 2 cars will wow the crowds while drifting the entire Grand Prix street course. Guest judges include Andy Yen (FD head judge), the 2011 champion Dai Yoshihara and 2-time champion Tanner Foust.

Drivers participating include:

Cyrus Martinez
Jeff Jones
Mauricio Ornelas
Taka Aono
Mike Essa
Joon Maeng
Odi Bakchis
Kyle Mohan
Tony Brakohiapa
Pat Mordaunt
Ryan Bell
Walker Wilkerson
Dennis Mertzanis
Enrique Mendoza

Formula DRIFT Round 1: Streets of Long Beach Results

Posted on

Justin Pawlak Wins the Season Opener for the Second Consecutive Season

Long Beach, Calif. – April 7, 2012 – Justin Pawlak in the Falken Tire Ford Mustang earns the victory at the first event of the 2012 Formula DRIFT season. Daijiro Yoshihara in the Discount Tire / Falken Nissan 240SX takes second place while Formula DRIFT rookie Daigo Saito, in the Achilles Tires / Bridges Racing Lexus SC430 rounds out the podium.

Round 1: Streets of Long Beach kicked off the 2012 season to a sold out audience. The largest driver pool participated in the two-day event with the largest rookie field of any season with 19 rookies.

“Starting the season to a sold out crowd is a great feeling,” says Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “The drivers stepped up and provided a highly competitive event that sets the tone for the rest of the year. We’re looking forward to how the season will unfold.””

Justin Pawlak found the top of the podium for the second consecutive season in Long Beach taking the lead to start the 2012 Pro Championship season. Pawlak battled the 2011 Formula DRIFT champion, Daijiro Yoshihara, in a hard fought battle to win the event. Yoshihara defeated Formula DRIFT Asia champion and rookie Daigo Saito in the Top 4 to move on to Finals eventually taking second place. Saito defeated Matt Powers, who finished in third place in 2011, in the consolation round to find the podium in his very first Formula DRIFT Pro Championship event. Saito is now leads the new X-Mini Rookie Challenge.

“Its just amazing to come back to Long Beach and put down another win 2 years in a row,” said Justin Pawlak, winner of Round 1: Streets of Long Beach. “This is a great way to start the season and go for the championship.”

The 2012 Pro Championship season continues for Round 2: Road to the Championship at Road Atlanta on May 11-12. Tickets are available to purchase online now.

For more information visit:

Formula DRIFT Professional Championship 2012 Point Standings After 1 Event

1. Pawlak, Justin Falken Tire Ford Mustang 106 Points
2. Yoshihara, Daijiro Discount Tire / Falken Tire Nissan S13 92 Points
3. Saito, Daigo Achilles Tire / Bridges Racing Lexus SC430 78.50 Points
4. Powers, Matt Need for Speed / Nitto Nissan S14 69.50 Points
5. Tuerck, Ryan Team Retaks Nissan 240SX 66 Points
6. McQuarrie, Tyler Mobil 1 Camaro 64 Points
6. Millen, Rhys Hankook / Rhys Millen Racing Hyundai Genesis Coupe 64 Points
8. Forsberg, Chris NOS Energy Drink / Hankook Nissan 370Z 63 Points
9. Gushi, Ken Scion Racing Scion FR-S 62 Points
10. Moen, Kenneth Lutz Performance Nissan 350Z 61.50 Points
11. Grunewald, Conrad Hankook Tire Chevy Camaro 57 Points
12. Aasbo, Fredric Need for Speed / Papadakis Racing Scion TC 57 Points
12. Kado, Ryan Ryan Kado Racing Nissan 350Z 56 Points
14. Mohan, Kyle Nexen Tire / Mazdatrix Mazda RX-8 55 Points
15. Bakchis, Aurimas “Odi” Bakchis Motorsports Nissan 240SX S14 54.25 Points
15. Yoshioka, Toshiki RS*R Nissan Silvia S15 54.25 Points

Round 1: Streets of Long Beach Event Results

1. Pawlak, Justin Falken Tire Ford Mustang Winner
2. Yoshihara, Daijiro America’s Tire / Falken Tire Nissan S13 Second Place
3. Saito, Daigo Achilles Tire / Bridges Racing Lexus SC430 Third Place

Nitto Tires Continues Support of Formula DRIFT for Seventh Consecutive Season

Posted on

February 23, 2012

Long Beach, Calif. – February 23, 2012 – Formula DRIFT is proud to re-sign Nitto Tires as a Major Sponsor for the 2012 Pro Championship Series.

Nitto Tire will be on-site at each event as a sponsor of the Series as well as competing with their drift team. The Nitto team will compete on the NT05 tire.

“Nitto Tire is proud to continue its support for Formula DRIFT for the seventh season,” said Harry Kong, Marketing and Events Specialist for Nitto Tire. “This motorsport combines competiveness with excitement for both automotive enthusiasts and the general public. For 2012, Nitto will continue to use the Nitto NT05 as the tire of choice for the drift due to its predictability and durability under drifting environments. As a major sponsor, Nitto Tire will be integrated into 14 episodes of the Formula DRIFT TV broadcast on NBC Sports as well as a contributor to Formula DRIFT’s successful live-stream coverage. As the popularity of this motorsport grows, our fan base grows with it. Currently with over 1.2 million fans on the Nitto Tire Facebook page, we have a large outreach to help bring the excitement of drifting to our fans.”

For 2012, Nitto will be sponsoring Joon Maeng with the Nitto Tire / Mazda RX-8, Matt Powers with Need for Speed / Nitto Tire S14, Michael Essa with the GSR Autosport / Nitto Tire Z4, and lastly a new addition to the Nitto Tire team, Toshiki Yoshioka with the RS-R / Nitto Tire S15.

Formula DRIFT Round 1: Streets of Long Beach Tickets On-Sale

Posted on

Formula DRIFT Round 1: Streets of Long Beach Tickets On-Sale;
Ninth Season of Competition Begins on April 6-7, 2012

Long Beach, Calif. – February 15, 2012 – Formula DRIFT prepares to begin the ninth professional championship season. Round 1: Streets of Long Beach on April 6-7 tickets are now on-sale and can be purchased online via the Formula DRIFT website,

“We are especially excited to kick-off another 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 in the Championship. 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 championship defense for Daijiro Yoshihara, the debut of the Scion Racing FR-S driven by Ken Gushi, and the introduction of a new judge to the Series. New drivers and vehicles will make their debut at this season opener including 2011 Formula Drift Asia Champion Daigo Saito leading the international charge of drivers from 14 nations.

Tickets are now available for Round 1: Streets of Long Beach on April 6-7, including reserved seating, 2-day ticket packages, and VIP tickets. Tickets can be purchased through, Ticketmaster outlets, and the Long Beach Convention Center box office. Ticket prices start at $28 online with reserved tickets available for Saturday’s competition day. 2-day packages are also available along with VIP ticket packages. Save on additional fees by purchasing your ticket at the Long Beach Convention Center box office directly.