Formula DRIFT Round 5: Throwdown Results;
Fredric Aasbo Takes the Victory and the Lead in the Standings
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|
After qualifying in a close second spot behind Ken Gushi at New Jersey’s Wall Speedway yesterday, Speedhunters driver Fredric Aasbø battled through the ranks and the rain today to take his second top podium spot for the 2015 Formula Drift season.
The win came after an epic battle on the bank with Dean Kearney at the round dubbed ‘The Gauntlet’. And we suspect Kearney, who hails from Ireland, was at a distinct advantage in the wet conditions thanks to his home country’s lovely climate. The Irishman started his climb to the final behind the wheel of his Oracle Lighting Dodge Viper by beating Vaughn Gittin Jr. in the Air Force Top 32 – and things only got better from there. But in the end, Kearney couldn’t quite match the precise, consistent Aasbø and his Rockstar Energy Drink/Hankook Tires Scion tC in the GoPro Final Battle.
The struggle for third and fourth positions was fought out between Japan’s Masashi Yokoi in his D-Max Nissan Silvia S15…
And Ryan Tuerck in his Retaks Scion FR-S, seen here battling Scandinavia’s Kenny Moen. Tuerck would take the win for third after some tense moments.
Aasbø’s win at the same place he took his very first Formula Drift round victory last year, and another solid performance from Tuerck has really tightened up the 2015 FD Pro Championship. In fact, right now just 8 points separate the top three drivers! Ryan Tuerck leads on 275.00, closely followed by Odi Bakchis in second with 274.00, and Fredric Aasbø sits in third on 268.00. The pressure will definitely be on for this trio at the fifth round ‘Throwdown’ at Evergreen Speedway in Seattle, Washington, next month.
We’ll be back soon for a closer look at how the New Jersey event played out, so keep an eye on Speedhunters.com for the full story in the coming days. In the meantime you can check out all the battles from ‘The Gauntlet’ via Formula Drift’s On Demand video service.
There was a lot of doubt in the air with dark clouds, heavy rains, and thunderstorms looming at the horizon. Nobody had any idea what to expect. All options were on the table: cancel the event, re-schedule, or modify the existing schedule. Finally, the organizers decided to leave everything as is. In the end, those who kept the faith got rewarded with one of the most exciting drift competition to ever take place in Canada.
As soon as practice started we knew we were dealing with a whole new level of competition says Haig Kanadjian, one the the three judges of the event. For the first time at l’Autodrome St-Eustache, the first clipping point was set-up right at the entrance of the track. It was impressive since judges and spectators alike could not see the cars accelerate from behind the grandstands until they would suddenly appear on track at speeds hovering around 125 – 130km/h, just seconds before initiating their first drift towards the first clipping point.
Francis Tassé was the driver who was able to hit the highest top speed during practice with 137 km/h on the clock. The new layout counted 6 clipping points; four interior clipping points and 2 exterior ones. Judges were also pleased to see that most drivers had the ability to complete the layout with fluidity and with minimal corrections. In fact, the little amount of accidents throughout the event spoke to that matter.
To judge this first event of the season, FD Canada retained the services of Haig Kanadjian and Kevin Grenier, two well- known Quebec drifters. There was also Brian Eggert, one of the 3 current FD judges. The workload between the 3 judges was divided into 3 sections:
Brian: Style 30 points
Kevin: Angle 25 points + Style 10 points
Haig: Line 25 points + Style 10 points
In Brian’s case, the 30 points allocated for style were also sub-divided into 3 categories: global impact, fluidity, and engagement.
Kevin and Haig on the other hand broke down their first 25 points by six for each clipping point. The first 5 clipping points were given 4 points each and the last one 5 points, for a total of 25 points. As for the 10 points allocated for style, each of the two judges would look at one specific area of the track. In Haig’s case, he focused on the very first clipping point, ‘It’s an important moment because it often gives the tone to the rest of the lap’. As for Kevin, he focused on the first outer clipping point at the back of the track, where drivers were expected to get as close as possible with their rear bumpers. What is interesting is that 50% of the total score is given for style, a reminder that drifting is all about the show!
It was not long before the qualifications reflected the performances seen by the judges during practice. Jeff Laflamme marked the best score with a solid 92 points. ‘It was almost a perfect run. With Laflamme, we are always on the edge of our seats. We think he is about to spin out because he has so much angle but he manages to keep things under control,’ says Haig.
Jonathan Guitard placed second during qualifications. ‘Guitard seems to have benefited from the tips he got all weekend from veteran drifter Marco Santos,’ says Haig.
As for third place, it was taken by Scion driver Pat Cyr. ‘I think Pat runs one of the best tires on the market,’ explains Haig. Combined with the power of his 2JZ, the lightweight of his car, and his talent and experience, Pat seems to have found a winning combination. In fact, Haig also believes that Scion FR-S drivers, such as Pat or Ryan Tuerck for example, took a few years to figure out the new chassis but have now found the recipe for success.
Top 16 started on the right foot. First, the weather was holding out and all drivers got to run on the dry. Second, the Top 16 took shape into nail biting battles and tight races. The judges had their work cut out. There were several instances where they had to break down each decision, review the replays, and make tough calls.
After many fierce battles, the crowd got rewarded with a picture perfect finale. Pat Cyr and Francis Doyon gave a great show. Pat showed a lot of consistency and Doyon had a lot of angle. In the end, Pat was able to leverage his talents as a ‘’chaser’’, keeping things real close to Doyon’s car. Doyon on his end had a harder time keeping up with Pat’s Scion FR-S. Although Pat lost a few points for hitting a cone, he still managed to come out on top. Haig does point out that Doyon is a rising star, ‘If he keeps doing what he is doing now, there is little doubt he will become one of the next stars of the show’.
The other battle for a step on the podium pitched Francis Tassé against Jeff laflamme. Laflamme who mastered his car all weekend lost control during the fight which gave the win to Tassé. Since 3rd place is decided by comparing qualification scores (Doyon 77 – Laflamme 92), Laflamme took 3rd place.
So the fight for the top spot was between Francis Tassé and Pat Cyr. Two very different drivers with very different cars. Both drivers did exceptionally well but the judges gave the win to Pat Cyr. A total of 11,250$ were given out in prize money: 5000$ to 1st place, 3000$ second place, 2000$ third place, and 250$ for the remaining top 8 drivers.
The first round of the season is now in the books. Although the bad weather had a negative effect on spectatorship, the race has clearly shown that drifting in Canada is now at a whole new level. Don’t miss round 2 on July 18-19 in Montmagny.