• Specially prepared Dodge Challenger and Dodge Viper SRT10 are set for new season of drift competition
• Samuel Hübinette Racing welcomes European ProDrift champ Dean Kearney as second driver
• 2011 Formula DRIFT season kicks off at the Streets of Long Beach (Calif.) April 8-9
• Hübinette and his Dodge Challenger drift machine will be available for demo rides from
9 a.m. – 4 p.m. on Saturday, March 26, at the Sixth Annual Spring Festival at Orange County Great Park (ex El Toro Marine base)
Two-time champion Samuel Hübinette is set to unleash a one-two Dodge punch on the Formula DRIFT (FD) Series in 2011.
The “Crazy Swede,” who returns for a second year of dual owner and driver roles, will drive his own Samuel Hubinette Racing (SHR) Dodge Motorsports Dodge Challenger, while new teammate, European ProDrift champ Dean Kearney will pilot the SHR Dodge Viper SRT10, sponsored by V-LEDS-Federal.
Dodge Motorsports will again serve as primary sponsor for Hübinette’s Challenger. V-LEDS will take the primary sponsorship role on Kearney’s Dodge Viper SRT10, while veteran Brad Manka will return as crew chief for both SHR machines.
“We’re very excited about the upcoming season and can’t wait to get to Long Beach,” said Hübinette, who earned two FD championships in his first three seasons, including the series’ inaugural year in 2004. “The SHR Dodge Challenger should be even more formidable with a year of competition under our belt, and Dean Kearney is a talented, young driver who will surely be competitive right out of the gate in the SHR Dodge Viper SRT10.
“I’m also very grateful to continue important relationships in 2011 with sponsors such as Dodge, BFGoodrich, and welcome in new sponsors, including Discount Tire and V-LEDS. We intend to repay their support by putting on the best drift show we can and by bringing home some victories and competing for a championship,” Hübinette added.
Kearney is more than ready to join Hubinette in the SHR spotlight. The 22-year-old native of Waterford, Ireland, nicknamed “Karnage” is an accomplished driver, having captured the 2009 European Pro Drift Championship.
“This is a perfect fit for me, and I feel right at home with Samuel and the whole SHR family,” Kearney said. “With driver nicknames ‘Crazy Swede’ and ‘Karnage,’ fans are going to quickly see SHR as one of the most exciting teams in all of drifting this season.”
Dodge is looking forward to another successful season of drift competition. “Samuel brings a ton of passion and experience to everything he does for Dodge, so we’re excited to be back with Samuel Hübinette Racing in 2011 and look forward to the arrival of a second champion, Dean Kearney in the SHR Dodge Viper,” said Bryan Viger, Head of Dodge Motorsports. “We can’t ask for a better team to represent Dodge and Dodge Motorsports in the Formula DRIFT Series.”
Jake York, president and CEO of new team sponsor V-LEDS, one of the largest automotive LED replacement bulb retailers in the world, shares the enthusiasm as the 2011 season opener approaches. “We can’t wait to see our logo on the SHR Dodge Viper SRT10,” York said. “Dean is sure to quickly let loose on the Streets of Long Beach and we look forward to the start of the season and developing a long-term relationship with SHR.”
Hübinette, Kearney and SHR kick off their season in the 2011 FD Round One event on the Streets of Long Beach, Calif. on April 8-9. The season continues at Road Atlanta, Braselton, Ga., May 6-7; Palm Beach International Raceway, Palm Beach, Fla., June 3-4; Wall Speedway, Wall, N.J., June 17-18; Evergreen Speedway, Monroe, Wash., July 22-23; Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Aug. 26-27; and Irwindale, Calif., Oct. 7-8.
Formula DRIFT is saddened that the economy has caught up to another company close to Formula DRIFT. Mopar took a big gamble with our start up Series from day one and believed in the sport of drifting. During their partnership with NuFormz Racing and Samuel Hubinette, they amassed the most wins in FD history and 2 championships (2004 & 2006). We look forward to Chrysler’s restructuring and their eventual return to Formula DRIFT. In the meantime, we will work to assist NuFormz Racing to be able to finish off the 2009 season. The NuFormz/Hubinette combination is a world class championship organization, fans and sponsors can count on more success from them in the future.
– Official Announcement by Formula DRIFT Holdings, LLC
Mopar® Announces Plan To End Sponsorship Of NuFormz Racing
Decision is part of Chrysler LLC’s comprehensive restructuring plan
Center Line, Mich. — Mopar®, Chrysler LLC’s Parts division, announced it will end its majority sponsorship of the NuFormz Racing team, which competes in the Formula Drift (FD) Series. Mopar’s sponsorship of the NuFormz Racing team will conclude following the June 5–6 event at Wall (N.J.) Speedway.
“As part of Chrysler’s comprehensive restructuring plan to revitalize our business and succeed as a stronger car company, we’re rigorously reviewing all expenditures and making tough business decisions,” said Mike Accavitti, Director of Brand Marketing and Strategy, Chrysler LLC. “The decision to end Team Mopar’s sponsorship of NuFormz Racing was difficult because of our long-term relationship with the team and all of the success we’ve enjoyed competing in Formula Drift.
“We wish the team nothing but the best in the future,” Accavitti added. “At this time, we plan to continue supporting our other racing sponsorships into the foreseeable future.”
NuFormz Racing team owner Shaun Carlson and driver Samuel Hübinette have enjoyed long and illustrious careers competing under the Team Mopar banner. Carlson debuted with Team Mopar beginning in 2002 as a driver in the NHRA Sport Compact division. He went on to pilot the Team Mopar/SRT® Dodge Stratus R/T NHRA Pro Stock car for Don Schumacher Racing during the 2006 season.
Carlson and Hübinette teamed up in the FD Series in 2004 and quickly shot to the top of the emerging new motorsport. Hübinette claimed victory in the first-ever FD event in his Mopar Dodge Viper, maintained by Carlson, and went on to capture three of four 2004 events and the overall championship in the inaugural FD season. Hübinette, with Carlson as team owner, powered to his second FD championship in 2006. Hübinette, owner of a series-high nine career FD wins, also claimed runner-up finishes in the FD point standings in 2005 and 2008.
“I had a great eight-year run as a member of the Team Mopar family, and want to thank the company for all the great memories I’m taking away,” said Carlson. “It’s a tough decision, but given the current economic environment inside and outside of racing, I certainly understand it.
We’re going to work as hard as ever to cap off our success with Team Mopar with a convincing win at The Gauntlet race in early June.”
More than 70 Years of Mopar
When Chrysler bought Dodge in 1928, the need for a dedicated parts manufacturer, supplier and distribution system to support the growing enterprise led to the formation of the Chrysler Motor Parts Corporation (CMPC) in 1929.
Mopar (a simple contraction of the words MOtor and PARts) was trademarked for a line of antifreeze products in 1937. It also was widely used as a moniker for the CMPC. The Mopar brand made its mark in the 1960’s–the muscle car era. The Chrysler Corporation built race-ready Dodge and Plymouth “package cars” equipped with special high-performance parts. Mopar carried a line of “special parts” for super stock drag racers and developed its racing parts division called Mopar Performance Parts to enhance speed and handling for both road and racing use.
Today, Chrysler LLC’s Parts division is responsible for the distribution of nearly 350,000 authentic Mopar replacement parts, components and accessories for Chrysler, Jeep® and Dodge vehicles sold around the world. To assure quality, reliability and durability, all Mopar parts and accessories are designed in strict adherence to Chrysler engineering standards.