Yokohama Tire, 2015 sponsor of one of the most exciting motorsports to date – Formula Drift sponsors several talents driver’s including former champions and our team travelled to Seattle for the 5th round of the 2015 Championships to see our Yokohama ADVAN AD08R tires in action. Driver’s who competed include former 2013 Champ Michael Essa, Young Up & Comer Matt Field, and International Talent Masashi Yokoi.
Although Team Yokohama missed the podium this round, they had some absolutely amazing performances & we have all the action directly from the track.
We’ve been busy here at Essa Autosport, and our 2013 SLP Camaro that will debut at the Formula Drift season opener in Long Beach has come a long way. In our first and previous update, we had just pulled the Camaro in for a few shots before the teardown. Fast forward to the present, the car has been stripped and cleaned, caged, and we are starting to piece together what we feel will be a competitive machine for the 2015 season.
SLP – Street Legal Performace‘s amazing support of our program continues. Supporting us in being competitive in the power field, SLP sent a set of their long tube headers over to accompany their supercharger kit on top of the LS3 that will be going back in the car. We are going to need all the torque we can get to run the walls in Long Beach, and these parts are great additions to the build.
BMR Suspension has come aboard the program, providing the parts that will enable the Camaro to be driven to its full potential. Thanks to BMR, we have a full setup of rear adjustable control arms, rear subframe bushings, front and rear sway bars, and a very solid set of engine mounts. The suspension is going to be rock solid paired with Suspension Techniques coilovers.
Forgestar Wheels continues their support of our drift program. The Camaro will be running a pair of Forgestar CF5V 19×9 wheels with Yokohama Advan AD09R 245/40/19 tires in the front, and 19×10 CF5V wheels with Yokohama Advan AD08R 275/35/19 in the rear.
Clutch Masters is handling the task of sending the supercharged power to the rear with an 850 Series Twin Disc system custom set to our specs, activated by a Clutch Masters internal slave. Down the line, the stock rear subframe was modified to fit a Speedway quick change diff. The Clutch Masters setup should put all that power through the diff and result in plenty of tire smoke.
Long Beach is a brutal track. Our FD legal cage with NASCAR door bars will enable Mike Essa to feel comfortable to put on a show in the pilot’s seat. Safety is a big part of professional drifting, and our number one goal is to give our sponsors and fans the best performance possible, and go home at the end of the day.
Michael Essa and the Essa Autosport team would like to thank all the companies that stepped up to the plate to make this year possible. The support has been fantastic, and our fans that stuck with us are amazing too! We cant wait to see what this machine and its parts are capable of. Stay tuned for more Essa Autosport updates, and be sure to stop by and cheer us on at Formula Drift Round 1 – Streets of Long Beach on April 10-11.
Essa Autosport is excited to announce a new partnership with SLP for the 2015 Formula Drift season. Michael Essa will be piloting a 2013 Chevrolet Camaro SS generously provided by SLP, stepping away from the BMW platform the team has popularized in Formula Drift since Essa’s early professional drifting career. Together with SLP and parent company Roush, Essa Autosport will be teaming up with friend Justin Pawlak, making for an interesting Chevy/Ford conglomeration in the Formula Drift paddocks.
With the first round of Formula Drift quickly approaching on April 10-11 in Long Beach, the Essa Autosport team has their work cut out for them. The Camaro is currently in the tear down stage for upgrades such as Formula Drift legal cage and restraints, drivetrain upgrades such as transmission and differential, and several steering and suspension upgrades to make the car handle Essa’s extreme angle driving style. The full tear down, weight reduction, and power adding process will be extremely limited due to budget and time restrictions. Essa Autosport expects an interesting 6-7 weeks of building the car and sourcing parts.
Testing is expected to be done nearing the car’s debut in Long Beach. Cutting it close to the big event ensures that no corners will be cut in the build in order to make early testing days. Essa Autosport has high expectations for the addition of the Camaro to their professional drift program. The first year in a chassis is tough, but Essa’s team is excited and motivated to work through the shake down and tuning process to earn results and podium appearances they strive for.
The 2015 Formula Drift season opens on April 10-11 in Long Beach, one week before the world renowned Grand Prix of Long Beach.
Words and photos by David Karey – AmDrift.com – email@example.com