Formula DRIFT Round 5: Throwdown Results;
Daijiro Yoshihara Takes the Victory and the Lead in the Standings
Long Beach, Calif. – July 23, 2011 – Formula DRIFT returned to Evergreen Speedway for Round 5: Throwdown. Daijiro Yoshihara in the Discount Tire / Falken Nissan S13 takes the victory and the lead in the overall Pro Championship points standings. Attendance records were broken as the event reached capacity for the venue.
Round 5: Throwdown reached capacity as fans came in droves to Evergreen Speedway. Attendance was up over 10% from last season continuing the increase in numbers for the Series. Fans were treated to an exciting round of action from the top drivers in the sport.
“The Pacific Northwest has an amazing fan base, which was proven today,” said Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “We are excited to see the growth of the sport and the Series this season with a continued increase in attendance at each event.”
The competition heated up with the final four drivers aiming to move closer in their chase for the championship. Fredric Aasbo in the Need For Speed / Scion Racing TC went head to head with Rhys Millen in the Red Bull / Hankook Hyundai Genesis Coupe and edged out the former champion earning third place. The Finals matched up the 2009 champion, Chris Forsberg in the NOS Energy Drink / Hankook Nissan 370Z with Daijiro Yoshihara. Yoshihara took the victory and gained the lead in the Pro Championship point standings and remains the leader with a commanding lead in the Tires.com Triple Crown bonus.
“It feels great to be in the lead,” stated Daijiro Yoshihara, winner of Round 5: Throwdown. “After the Top 32 when Justin Pawlak was taken out of the competition I knew I had a good chance to win, but I didn’t want to think about points and focused on winning one round at a time, which worked! We have 2 competitions left so I need to focus on them still before I can think too much about the championship.”
The Formula DRIFT Championship continues for Round 6: After Dark at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway on August 26 – 27. Tickets are available to purchase online.
Formula DRIFT Top 32 Qualifying Scores from Round 5: Throwdown at Evergreen Speedway
1 T. McQuarrie #17 94.5
2 J. Pawlak #13 93.5
3 R. Millen #67 89.6
4 D. Yoshihara #9 86.9
5 O. Bakchis #723 86
6 C. Grunewald #79 85.1
7 J. Maeng #51 83.7
8 F. Aasbo #151 82.1
9 D. Kearney #43 81.3
10 R. Tuerck #44 80.3
11 M. Essa #101 76.4
12 V. Gittin #1 75.7
13 M. Powers #665 75.1
14 W. Wilkerson #95 74.7
15 C. Forsberg #64 74.5
16 A. Lee #81 72.8
17 A. Pfeiffer #88 71.4
18 O. Graven #113 71.2
19 D. McNamara #8 71
20 C. Ng #84 66.8
21 M. Field #777 66.5
22 K. Mohan #99 65.1
23 T. Yoshioka #21 64.6
24 R. Gallagher #425 62.8
25 R. Petty #808 61
26 K. Gushi #33 60.6
27 C. Martinez #951 60.5
28 R. Nishida #31 57
29 J. Jones #29 56.1
30 R. Kado #614 55.2
31 D. Mertzanis #323 52.3
32 L. Longberger #28 52.2
Formula DRIFT Round 4: The Gauntlet Results;
Conrad Grunewald Wins at Wall Speedway
Long Beach, Calif. – June 18, 2011 – Formula DRIFT returned to Wall Speedway for Round 4: The Gauntlet. The capacity event was action packed with Conrad Grunewald in the Hankook Tire Chevy Camaro taking the victory. This marked Grunewald’s first victory in Formula DRIFT history and second podium since 2005.
Round 4: The Gauntlet at Wall Speedway was another exciting event where the combination of the banking on the track and the competitive nature of the drivers pushed them to the limits. As a result a few of the vehicles were damaged in competition in dramatic fashion keeping them from advancing to the later rounds. The fans witnessed a true showing of world class drifting.
“Despite the brief storm that caused chaos after qualifying on Friday, the Formula DRIFT community pulled together to help one another to put on another great event,” said Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “Fans came out to fill the capacity of the venue on Saturday to showcase the ever growing sport this season.”
The final four vehicles gave a tremendous show for the fans with the first battle pitting number one qualifier Ryan Tuerck in the Mobil 1 / Gardella Racing Chevy Camaro against Conrad Grunewald in the Hankook Chevy Camaro. Tuerck went high on the banking, making impact which damaged his vehicle taking him out of the competition and automatically giving him fourth place. Current points leader Justin Pawlak in the Falken Ford Mustang faced teammate Daijiro Yoshihara in the Discount Tire / Falken Nissan 240SX to meet Grunewald in the finals. Yoshihara lost the battle and took third place due to Tuerck’s damaged vehicle and moved into second in the Pro Championship points standings. The finals saw a battle of American muscle with Pawlak facing Grunewald. Grunewald edged out Pawlak for his first victory of his career. Pawlak remains the points leader with this third podium finish of the season.
“I’m really happy for the team,” stated Conrad Grunewald, winner of Round 4: The Gauntlet. “We overcame a lot to get to this position this weekend. And I am overwhelmed to be on top of the podium for my first time and especially to do it by beating a Ford Mustang.”
The Formula DRIFT Championship continues for Round 5: Throwdown at Evergreen Speedway on July 22-23. Tickets are available to purchase online.
For more information visit: www.formuladrift.com
Formula DRIFT Round 2: Road to the Championship;
Daijiro Yoshihara Takes the Victory and Lead in the Point Standings
Long Beach, Calif. – May 9, 2011 – Daijiro Yoshihara in the Discount Tire / Falken Tire Nissan S13 takes the victory and leads the points standings in the Pro Championship and Tires.com Triple Crown. Darren McNamara in the Falken Tire Saturn Sky places second and Toshiki Yoshioka rounds out the podium in third in the Retaks Nissan S13.
Round 2: Road to the Championship brought fans from all across the South East region together to watch an exciting round of competition. Road Atlanta hosted the event for the 8th consecutive year of Formula DRIFT.
“The championship chase heats up at Road Atlanta,” says Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “Over the past 8 seasons the crowd has grown each year and because of that we are proud to announce a 3-year extension at this venue. We started here 8 years ago and look forward to continuing through 2013 where we will celebrate our 10th season.”
Toshiki Yoshioka found the podium again after a one year hiatus and placed in 3rd beating John Russakoff in the consolation round. The finals pitted Falken Tire teammates Daijiro Yoshihara and Darren McNamara. With consistent driving Yoshihara again found the podium this season and won his second consecutive victory at Road Atlanta. With this victory Yoshihara moves into 1st place overall in the Pro Championship standings and takes the lead in the chase for the Tires.com Triple Crown.
“The crowd was so crazy. I love this place,” said Daijiro Yoshihara, winner of Round 2: Road to the Championship. “I’m so happy to win at one of my favorite tracks in front of such a great crowd.”
The 2011 Pro Championship season continues for the first time in Florida for Round 3: Invasion at Palm Beach International Raceway on June 3-4. Tickets are available to purchase online now.
For more information visit: www.formuladrift.com
Formula DRIFT Round 1: Streets of Long Beach Results;
Justin Pawlak Takes the Victory at the Season Opener
Long Beach, Calif. – April 10, 2011 – Justin Pawlak in the Falken Tire Ford Mustang earns the victory at the first event of the 2011 Formula DRIFT season. Matt Powers in the Need for Speed Nissan S14 takes second place with Daijiro Yoshihara in the Discount Tire / Falken Nissan S13 rounding out the podium in third place.
Round 1: Streets of Long Beach provided fans with action and excitement through the weekend. The debut of new vehicles and new drivers added to the anticipation for the new season. The Driftstream brought live coverage to fans watching at home.
“With any new season comes change, so seeing fresh faces to the podium is a part of that,” says Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “The level of driving skill continues to elevate. It is a sign that the 2011 season will be as competitive as ever. I would not be surprised to see more upsets and new faces to the podium.”
Justin Pawlak finds the top of the podium for the very first time in his career. Pawlak remained consistent through the rounds advancing to the Finals against Matt Powers. His consistency paid off and Pawlak was able to secure the victory. The consolation round pitted Daijiro Yoshihara in the Discount Tire / Falken Tire Nissan S13 against 2009 Formula DRIFT champion, Chris Forsberg in the NOS Energy Drink Nissan 370Z.
“I owe it all to the guys at ASD and Falken Tire for this victory. Without them this could not have been possible,” said Justin Pawlak, winner of Round 1: Streets of Long Beach. “This victory feels unreal. I have worked so hard for this and can’t believe I’m on top to start out the season.”
The 2011 Pro Championship season continues for Round 2: Road to the Championship at Road Atlanta on May 6-7. Tickets are available to purchase online now.
2011 Pro Championship Standings