Formula DRIFT vice-president and co-founder, Ryan Sage has been selected by SEMA in their “35 Under 35.” According to SEMA News, “These are people who know what’s going on at ground level, who see opportunities that are now forming and who travel in circles that might be very different from those of our “old-school” industry leaders. As a group, they are adept at leveraging technology to create value and gain a marketing or customer-service edge. They are dedicated to continuous improvement. Most are at their workplace well beyond normal working hours, covering more ground, looking to set trends or trying to invent something their customers do not yet know they need.”
Check out the cover and Ryan’s feature below.
Excerpt from article
According to Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of Formula Drift, economics play a huge factor in youth motorsports involvement.
“Motorsports participants skew older in most cases because motorsports are more expensive than sports like surfing, basketball or even golf,” Liaw explained. “An older individual tends to have more disposable income. Yes, there are a lot of young drivers in development—kids that are go-karting, young drivers going through development series such as F2000, Indy Lights, etc.—but they are rare and few and are funded by family money.”
Along with the motorsports mentioned above, drifting not only remains a favorite of young performance enthusiasts, but has also developed a cultural following.
“Cost of entry is low,” said Liaw. “Participants are much younger. If you look at the profiles of Formula Drift Pro Drivers, they range from 21–39, representing a dozen countries and multiple ethnicities. The majority of them have Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts, which shows that they are social-media savvy and are early adaptors to these new technologies. In 2012, we had 38 drivers commit to the entire tour, showing that most of them consider Formula Drift a major priority—if not the priority—in their driving careers.”
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SEMA created a new award this year to recognize the top young individual from the specialty-equipment industry who is making breakthroughs in new products, establishing new approaches to business or setting new trends. President and co-founder of Formula DRIFT was nominated for the award as well as presented a SEMA Hall of Fame award during the annual SEMA Awards banquet.
The Association enlisted the help of SEMA members for the nomination process to help identify those individuals who exhibit the same pioneering spirit as the original first-generation industry founders.
The SEMA Gen-3 Innovator Award winner was chosen based on the following criteria:
A “Gen-3 Innovator” is a young individual from the specialty-equipment industry who is making breakthroughs in the areas of new products, new approaches to business or setting new trends.
The candidate must work in the automotive aftermarket industry.
The candidate must be under 40 years of age as of December 31 of the current calendar year.
Congratulations to Brian Reese of COMP Cams for being announced the winner of the award.