Congrats to Ken Gushi Toyota Pro/Celebrity Race Winner

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Congratulations to Ken Gushi for his 2nd place overall finish in the Toyota Pro / Celebrity Race coming in 1st place over all the other Pros. Gushi battled through a 30 second handicap that the “Pro” drivers are given from the start of the race and weaved his way past the other Pros and Celebrity drivers as he closed the gap on winner actor William “Bill” Fichtner. Gushi looked good in the 10 lap race and had the best lap time of the day 1:46:429.

Other celebrities included: MMA fighter Tito Ortiz, Kevin Jonas (Jonas Brothers), and actor Djimon Hounsou. Other Pros included Scion Racing driver Chris Rado and previous celebrity winners Frankie Muniz, and Brian Austin Green. Toyota will donate $5000 to the Racing for Kids charity and an additional $5000 to the winner’s charity.

The Toyota Pro/Celebrity Race is scheduled to be broadcast on the Speed Channel on Sunday, May 1, at 3 p.m. EDT and will be rebroadcast after that. (See local listings or www.speedtv.com for times.)


(podium image provided by Ron Bermudez)

Tanner Foust Announces Temporary Retirement From Formula DRIFT

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February 10, 2011

Tanner Foust Announces Temporary Retirement From Formula DRIFT;
Papadakis Racing and Team Need For Speed Announce the Signing of 2010 Formula DRIFT Rookie of the Year, Fredric Aasbo

Long Beach, Calif. – February 10th, 2011 – Formula DRIFT has announced that 2-time Formula DRIFT champion, Tanner Foust will temporarily step away from the sport of drifting. In conjunction, Papadakis Racing and Team Need For Speed have announced the signing of the 2010 Formula DRIFT Rookie of the Year, Fredric Aasbo.

“Tanner’s semi-retirement is bittersweet for the Series as he has become one of the most recognizable drivers on the circuit and is one of the most competitive spokesmen for Formula DRIFT,” said Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “As with the growth and progression of the Series we can expect to see opportunities brought to many of the drivers and wish Tanner more success in his career both on and off the track. His departure will leave a spot open for a future star of drifting to rise, which we are excited to see.”

Foust has announced his temporary retirement from drifting due to a demanding 2011 schedule of European Rally events, X-Games and television responsibilities. The 2-time Formula DRIFT champion and Tires.com Triple Crown bonus winner will be competing one last time in the Rockstar / Papadakis Racing Scion tC on February 25, 2010 during the Formula DRIFT UAE Invitational competition.

“I owe a lot to Formula DRIFT and Stephan Papadakis. This sport, Stephan and his team have been, and will remain, an integral part of my motorsports life,” said Tanner Foust, from his home in San Juan Capistrano. “This was a hard choice to make, but with my schedule looking even busier than last year’s I will not be able to fully commit to the 2011 Formula DRIFT season. However, I am looking forward to competing in the Rockstar Scion tC for one last time in Abu Dhabi this month.” With an open seat, team owner, Stephan Papadakis has enlisted the highly touted and talented driver, Fredric Aasbo. In addition, a newly created partnership with Team Need For Speed has solidified the alliance. Aasbo will be competing in the brand new Need for 2011 Scion tC this season with the competition debut during Round 1: Streets of Long Beach on April 8-9, 2011.

“Our new partnership with Need For Speed and having Fredric behind the wheel of the new Need for Speed 2011 Scion tC is very exciting,” stated Stephan Papadakis, team owner of Papadakis Racing. “To be aligned with such a top brand in the gaming world is a dream of ours. The synergy between our programs is a natural fit. We build crazy cars for competition and they have the technology for the world to drive them! It has been a pleasure to work with Tanner for the past 5 years and our team thanks him for his hard work and determination and wish him nothing but the best.”

The 2011 Formula DRIFT season begins on April 8-9, 2011 and will mark the debut of many cars, drivers, and teams. For more information visit: www.formuladrift.com

Formula DRIFT Round 7: Title Fight Results

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Formula DRIFT Round 7: Title Fight Results;
Tanner Foust Takes the Event Victory while Vaughn Gittin, Jr. is Crowned 2010 Champion

Long Beach, Calif. – October 10, 2010 – Formula DRIFT entered the final event of the 2010 season at the Toyota Speedway at Irwindale for Round 7: Title Fight. Tanner Foust in the Rockstar Energy Scion Racing TC takes the event victory and becomes the Tires.com Triple Crown winner, while Vaughn Gittin, Jr. in the Monster Energy / Falken Ford Mustang is crowned the 2010 Formula DRIFT champion.

The Toyota Speedway at Irwindale hosted the finale event to a sold out crowd. The action was non-stop all weekend featuring the Formula DRIFT ProAM championship, Fatlace One of One Showcase car show, and the Formula DRIFT championship. In addition this was the first drifting event to be filmed in 3D by DirecTV with an air-date to be announced. The event was also featured live online via the DriftStream to a global audience.

“It was another successful event to cap off an amazing season,” said Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula DRIFT. “To end the season at the Toyota Speedway at Irwindale to a sold out crowd in one of the largest event markets in North America showcases the strength of drifting fans.”

The finale event did not fail to disappoint showcasing intense drifting action to determine a new champion. The battle for third place pitted Darren McNamara in the Falken Tire Saturn Sky against Michihiro Takatori in the BF Goodrich Nissan S15. McNamara pushed his car too hard hitting the wall taking himself out of the competition giving Takatori third place. The finale battle put 2-time Formula DRIFT champion Tanner Foust against Vaughn Gittin, Jr. After a close One More Time battle, Foust edged out Gittin to take the event victory and also secure his first Tires.com Triple Crown bonus prize.

“This was one of the most epic Formula DRIFT events of all time,” said Tanner Foust, winner of Round 7: Title Fight. “This is the best track to drift and in front one of the biggest crowds. The drivers stepped it up from the Top 32 and on and gave everyone attending a great show. No one seemed to care about protecting their car and threw it all out there. I can finally close the door on my chase for the Triple Crown as I’ve been chasing it for years being so close multiple times and want to give it up to Tires.com for the opportunity.”

With his advancement into the Top 16, Vaughn Gittin, Jr. secured the 2010 Formula DRIFT championship. Gittin found the podium 6 out of the 7 events through the season on his way to his first championship.

“This is just simply unbelievable,” exclaimed Vaughn Gittin, Jr., 2010 Formula DRIFT Champion. “This has been a dream of mine for the past 7 years. It is a true accomplishment for my team and a testament to their commitment to the sport.”

For more information and details visit the Formula DRIFT website at: www.formuladrift.com

Formula DRIFT Professional Championship 2010 Point Standings

1. Gittin, Vaughn Monster Energy / Falken Tire Ford Mustang 632 Points
2. Foust, Tanner Rockstar Energy Scion TC 568.50 Points
3. Tuerck, Ryan Mobil 1 / Maxxis Tire / Gardella Racing Pontiac Solstice 515 Points
4. Yoshihara, Daijiro Discount Tire / Falken Tire Nissan S13 514 Points
5. McNamara, Darren Falken Tire Saturn Sky 477.50 Points
6. Forsberg, Chris NOS Energy Drink / CFR Nissan 350Z 439 Points
7. Millen, Rhys RMR / Red Bull Hyundai Genesis Coupe 417 Points
8. McQuarrie, Tyler Falken Tire Nissan 350Z 396.50 Points
9. Takatori, Michihiro BF Goodrich / Exedy Nissan S13 374 Points
10. Hubinette, Samuel SHR-Dodge / BF Goodrich Dodge Challenger 357 Points
11. Pawlak, Justin Ford Racing / Falken Tire Ford Mustang 354.50 Points
12. Grunewald, Conrad Hankook Tire Chevy Camaro 295 Points
13. Aasbo, Fredric Japan Auto Toyota Supra 279.50 Points
14. Maeng, Joon Full Tilt Poker / Nitto Tire Mazda RX-8 271.25 Points
15. Gushi, Ken Scion Racing / RS*R Scion TC 252.50 Points
16. Powers, Matt Need for Speed / Nitto Tire Nissan 240 238 Points

Round 7: Title Fight Event Results

1. Foust, Tanner Rockstar Energy Scion TC 1st Place
2. Gittin, Vaughn Monster Energy / Falken Tire Ford Mustang 2nd Place
3. Takatori, Michihiro BF Goodrich / Exedy Nissan S13 3rd Place

Tires.com Triple Crown Final Standings

1. Foust, Tanner Rockstar Energy Scion TC 273 Points
2. Gittin, Vaughn Monster Energy / Falken Tire Ford Mustang 249 Points
3. McNamara, Darren Falken Tire Saturn Sky 228 Points