Formula DRIFT 2015 – Seattle By NW Motiv

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Mixed weather and a series of unfortunate events made the Seattle round of Formula DRIFT one for the ages.

by Armin H. Ausejo  by Armin H. Ausejo & Vinnie Nguyen

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July is traditionally the driest month of the year for the greater Seattle area, and with as hot as the weather has been lately, there was no reason to believe that Formula DRIFT weekend would be any different. Of course, as luck would have it, Formula DRIFT’s fifth round in Seattle would turn into a meme: “Best Seattle Summer in Years? Here’s some rain for FD weekend.” While the rain didn’t affect the majority of the PRO or PRO2 competition, it definitely made its presence felt at some very key moments.

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Friday’s PRO practice started off quite dry, albeit under overcast skies. However, once qualifying began, showers pushed through, making the drifting slow and serene rather than its exact opposite. Many of the PRO drivers spun out on their first runs, making many people question if an entire field of 32 drivers would even be possible. 1000+ horsepower and slick roads don’t mix well together, and the highest qualifiers barely scored 60 out of 100 possible points. Even much of the media retired to drier surroundings, but being Made in the Rain, NWMotiv’s photographers toughed it out. Things were looking pretty dire, but as the first round of qualifying came to a close, the rain stopped and smoke once again filled Evergreen Speedway. Kenny Moen soon became the top qualifier, with championship points leader Ryan Tuerk qualifying second and Fredric Aasbo qualifying third.

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After a short break, the PRO2 competition was on, but not without a few retirements during practice and qualifying the day prior. Local favorite Chris Jeanneret ran into some mechanical issues during Thursday’s PRO2 qualifying, leading to him hitting the wall and taking him out of competition altogether. During Friday’s practice, Hiro Sumida hit the wall right after the 5/8s in spectacular fashion, throwing headlight glass and fender parts everywhere. Cameron Moore and Ian Fournier were pitted against each other in the 8th and 9th qualifying spots respectively, which was bittersweet for the crowds as both are local drivers.

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Fournier ended up with the win, and along with fellow Vancouver area native Brody Gobble, led the local charge for PRO2’s second round victory. Unfortunately, neither was able to make it to the finals, and James Evans ended up on the top spot of the PRO2 podium after PRO2 championship points leader Alex Heilbrunn retired after hitting a wall.

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Saturday morning started off with some apprehension thanks to the weather. The skies opened up as pit crews were getting the PRO cars ready, and it was clear that everyone was worried that it would continue to rain throughout the day. Fortunately, as the gates opened at 11 am, the raindrops stopped and practice conditions remained dry, but cool. The Top 32 was fierce from the very start, with a handful of one-more-times and a few questionable wins.formuladrift-2015-nwmotiv-7

The strangest of all of these was undoubtedly between Tyler McQuarrie and Justin Pawlak, where it looked as if Pawlak nudged McQuarrie off his line and into the wall, McQuarrie aggressively tried to take his line back, and Pawlak ultimately T-boned him into the final wall. After a long judging conversation, Pawlak ended up with the win over McQuarrie, much to the chagrin of the crowd.

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Not long after this, it was as if the weather gods agreed with the crowd and opened up the skies once again just as the Top 4 competition began. The newly slick roads were incredibly challenging for the remaining four drivers, but Alec Hohnadell was able to best Pawlak to move onto the finals, leaving Pawlak in third place since he qualified higher than Pat Goodin. With Ryan Tuerck retiring early with mechanical problems, Fredric Aasbo was pitted against Hohnadell for the final rainy battle. Aasbo’s consistency and experience in the rain ultimately led to his victory, but nevertheless Hohnadell had plenty to celebrate with his first ever podium finish. With the victory, Aasbo took over the top spot in the PRO championship standings from Tuerck.

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This year’s Formula DRIFT Seattle was definitely one of the more eventful rounds in recent memory. It had just about everything a drift fan could possibly ask for, and we’re quite happy as always to be able to cover it. Hopefully next year, more local drivers will be able to show everyone what they can do.

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Top 32 Play-by-Play: Formula Drift Rd 5 Evergreen Speedway By DrivingLine

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Evergreen Speedway sits around 45 minutes Northeast of Seattle in the city of Monroe, and is home to the annual Washington State fair. In years past, Evergreen has awarded the first Formula Drift career podium or event win to more drivers than any other event, continued last season by Dean Kearney earning his first career podium.

Continue reading Top 32 Play-by-Play: Formula Drift Rd 5 Evergreen Speedway By DrivingLine

Formula DRIFT Round 5: Throwdown Results

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Formula DRIFT Round 5: Throwdown Results;
Fredric Aasbo Takes the Victory and the Lead in the Standings

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Long Beach, Calif. – July 25, 2015 – Formula DRIFT presented by GoPro returned to Evergreen Speedway for Round 5: Throwdown. Fredric Aasbo in the Rockstar Energy Drink / Hankook Scion tC takes the victory and lead in both the Pro Championship and World Championship standings.

Round 5: Throwdown provided plenty of on-track action and excitement for the capacity crowd at Evergreen Speedway. With shifting weather conditions, the drivers had to make constant adjustments throughout the weekend making for a technical competition. Over 330,000 fans tuned into the Driftstream over the weekend to see the action unfold.

“This was quite an event as we witnessed the consistency of Aasbo to take the victory and see the talents of a young driver in Alec Hohnadell to reach his first podium,” said Jim Liaw, President of Formula DRIFT. “This event saw a shakeup in the Pro Championship standings, which will be interesting to see how the rest of the season plays out.”

The semi-finals saw Alec Hohnadell in the 11 Racing Nissan S14 go against veteran Justin Pawlak in the Roush Performance / Car Crafters Ford Mustang. Hohnadell advanced to the Finals with both drivers receiving a double zero on the second run of their battle and having the advantage on the first run. Pat Goodin in the Enjuku Racing / Falken Tire Nissan S13 lost out to the consistent driving of Fredric Aasbo. Pawlak finished in third place with the higher qualifying position than Goodin. The rain began to pour into the Finals and Aasbo proved that he can handle the wet conditions taking his second consecutive victory and his third victory of the season. Aasbo moves into the top position in both the Pro Championship and World Championship standings. Hohnadell earned second place for his first career Pro Championship podium.

“What a wild rollercoaster of an event,” said Fredric Aasbo, winner of Round 5: Throwdown. “It was wet, it was dry, it was intermediate and I think growing up on the snowy, frozen lakes of Norway was a huge advantage. We kept it cool and ended up with the win and are exactly where we want to be leading the points championship.”

The 2015 Formula DRIFT season will continue to Round 6: Showdown on August 21-22 at Texas Motor Speedway. For more information visit: www.formuladrift.com and find Formula DRIFT on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Tune into Formula DRIFT on CBS Sports and check your local listings for airtimes.

 

Round 5: Throwdown Event Results

 

1. Aasbo, Fredric Rockstar Energy Drink / Hankook Scion tC Winner
2. Hohnadell, Alec 11 Racing Nissan S14 2nd Place
3. Pawlak, Justin Roush Performance / Car Crafters Ford Mustang 3rd Place
4. Goodin, Pat Enjuku Racing / Falken Tire Nissan S13 4th Place
5. Field, Matt CX Racing / Yokohama Nissan S14 5th Place
6. Saito, Daigo Achilles Radial Nissan GT-R 6th Place
7. McQuarrie, Tyler Mobile 1 / GoPro Chevrolet Camaro 7th Place
8. Gittin, Vaughn Monster Energy / Nitto Tire Ford Mustang RTR 8th Place
9. Moen, Kenny Bridges Racing / Achilles / Gatebil Nissan S14 9th Place
10. Gushi, Ken GReddy Racing / Hankook Tire Scion Racing FR-S 10th Place
11. Forsberg, Chris NOS Energy Drink / Hankook Tire Nissan 370Z 11th Place
12. Denofa, Chelsea BC Racing / Chelsea DeNofa Motorsports / GT Radial BMW 12th Place
13. Essa, Michael SLP Performance / Yokohama Tire Chevy Camaro 13th Place
14. Whiddett, Mike RedBull / Mobil 1 Mazda “Radbul” 14th Place
15. Coffman, Matt Coffman Racing Nissan S13 15th Place
16. Stoneback, Geoff Achilles Radial / Parts Shop Max / Enkei Nissan S14 16th Place
 

2015 Formula DRIFT Championship Presented by GoPro Top 3 Standings After Five Rounds

 

1. Aasbo, Fredric Rockstar Energy Drink / Hankook Scion tC 373.00 Points
2. Tuerck, Ryan Ryan Tuerck Racing / Retaks / Maxxis Scion FR-S 297.00 Points
3. Aurimas “Odi” Bakchis Feal Suspension / ARK Performance / Nitto Nissan 240SX 293.00 Points
 

Manufacturers Championship Standings After Five Rounds

 

1. Scion 785.00 Points
2. Nissan 417.00 Points
3. Ford 407.00 Points
4. Chevrolet 300.00 Points
5. Mazda 225.00 Points
6. Dodge 170.00 Points
7. Infiniti 159.00 Points
8. BMW 139.00 Points
9. Toyota 105.00 Points
 

Tire Championship Standings After Five Rounds

 

1. Hankook 751.00 Points
2. Nitto 516.00 Points
3. Achilles 510.00 Points
4. Falken 485.00 Points
5. Yokohama 447.00 Points
6. Maxxis 401.00 Points
7. GT Radial 266.00 Points

Formula DRIFT PRO 2 Evergreen Speedway Results

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Formula DRIFT PRO 2 Evergreen Speedway Results;
James Evans is Victorious

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Long Beach, Calif. – July 24, 2015 – Formula DRIFT PRO 2 continued the season at Evergreen Speedway for the second of four rounds of competition. James Evans in the Sikky Racing Nissan 350Z takes the victory.

PRO 2 continued to the Pacific Northwest at Evergreen Speedway for the second round of the 2015 season. The on-track conditions were demanding with many vehicles seeing damage through the course of the event.

“The level of competition in PRO 2 has created an exciting element to the event weekend,” says Jim Liaw, President of Formula DRIFT. “We are only half way through the PRO 2 season and it will be interesting to see how everything unfolds.”

Evans faced off with PRO 2 points leader, Alex Heilbrunn in the IMR BMW 3-Series, in the finals. On the first battle, Heilbrunn went into the wall and was unable to continue giving Evans his second consecutive victory at Evergreen Speedway. Evans moves into second place in the PRO 2 standings, while Heilbrunn maintains his top position. Faruk Kugay in the Bay Shore Supply / Limitless Motorsports Nissan S14 lands in third place for the event and moves into fourth place in the standings.

“It wasn’t the way I wanted to win out there, but I’ll take the win,” said James Evans, winner of Round 2 of 4 events of PRO 2 Championship. “It was a pretty tough battle to get to the finals, but it’s been a good weekend for us.”

The 2015 Formula DRIFT season will continue to Round 6: Showdown on August 21-22 at Texas Motor Speedway. For more information visit: www.formuladrift.com and find Formula DRIFT on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Tune into Formula DRIFT on CBS Sports and check your local listings for airtimes.

 

PRO 2 Round 2 of 4 – Evergreen Speedway Event Results

 

1. Evans, James Sikky Racing Nissan 350Z Winner
2. Heilbrunn, Alex IMR BMW 3-Series 2nd Place
3. Kugay, Faruk Bay Shore Supply / Limitless Motorsports Nissan S14 3rd Place
4. Hull, Taylor N/A 4th Place
5. Gray, Andy DriftEbisu.com / Achilles Tire Toyota Chaser 5th Place
6. Litteral, Ryan N/A 6th Place
7. Goble, Brody Indy Speed Shop V8 240SX 7th Place
8. Fournier, Ian N/A 8th Place
9. Wicknick, Brandon Chase Bays / RUN2JZ Nissan S13 9th Place
10. Moore, Cameron N/A 10th Place
 

2015 Formula DRIFT PRO 2 Top 3 Standings After Two Events

 

1. Heilbrunn, Alex IMR BMW 3-Series 194.00 Points
2. Evans, James Sikky Racing Nissan 350Z 143.00 Points
3. Gray, Andy DriftEbisu.com / Achilles Tire Toyota Chaser 137.00 Points