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Formula D


Formula Dopeness >>> 2015 Gets Off to a Crazy Start!!

April 14, 2015 • By


After coming so close to his first championship last year, Fredric Aasbo has returned as a man on a mission. While it may not have been an easy victory for him and his crew, he proved that the little-tC-that-could can still compete with the big bad V8s with a nearly perfect weekend.


The tC looks absolutely stunning this year, with the super aggressive Rocket Bunny kit and signature black-and-yellow Rockstar livery.


Those sticky Hankook RS3s help to not only make this car one of the fastest on the grid, but also lay down tons of smoke. Surprisingly, it seems as though there was less smoke from a lot of the cars when compared to the last couple of years…Did anyone else notice this or are we crazy?


Obviously Aasbo didn’t get the memo about putting out less smoke.


When talking about tire smoke and style, there’s one name that always comes to mind; Forrest Wang and his new Get Nuts Lab Silvia S15.


The car looks gorgeous, and Wang really knows how to put on a show with it. His second qualifying run was bonkers, as he scraped all the outer zones perfectly and threw out tons of smoke. That helped him earn a 97 and the top qualifying spot.


He couldn’t maintain that momentum on Saturday however. Going up against the lowest qualifying driver, Matt Coffman, in the first battle of the Top 32, he couldn’t quite keep up and Coffman put down two great runs to advance. Wang’s hopes of a championship this year may have been defeated already, as it is extremely difficult to make up for the 87 point deficit to Aasbo.


Coffman looked like a changed man, and even though his car looked the same as last year, it was a completely different beast.


In practice Friday morning, he stuffed the rear end into the wall, but he adapted quickly and came out swinging on Saturday. This could be a breakout season for Coffman, if he can manage to keep the car in one piece.


Another driver to watch for is “Rapper” Dan Savage and his Sikky RX-8. After winning the Pro 2 Championship last year, he has carried that momentum into Long Beach with a strong performance.


He qualified 10th with an 83 point run, and took out Kristaps Bluss in the Top 32 to grab a solid amount of points.


As he currently sits in 12th, he could easily finish in the Top 10 this season and be a thorn in the championship contenders’ sides.


Another dark horse this year will be Dai Yoshi – wait, sorry, that’s Pat Goodin.


It looks like his Enjuku Racing team has gotten the turbo V8 S13 dialed in perfectly, because Goodin was looking more comfortable than anyone else on the track all weekend.


The car looks great, and even with all that turbo V8 power under the hood, it’s one of the quietest cars in FD. That’s not a bad thing…It’s actually kind of cool to hear the tires squeal and not be deaf by the time the car goes by.


We’re confident that Goodin will grab his first podium this year, and be a force to be reckoned with all season.


This beautiful car here is piloted by none other than 2014 Rookie of the Year Geoff Stoneback.


Even though this was arguably the toughest week of his life, Stoneback showed why he was ROTY in 2014 with some excellent driving.


In case you didn’t know, Stoneback is the long lost brother of Daigo Saito. The more you know.


He took out Ken Gushi is the Top 32 with a great chase run.


Stoneback had to go up against Fredric Aasbo in the Top 16, which was not going to be the easiest of battles…


But he put up a hell of a fight and only lost to the event winner by the smallest of margins. Stoneback will be looking to improve on a solid 2014 season with some great points hauls like this one.


Alec Hohnadell raced with Enjuku Racing last year, but after falling short in the ROTY chase he has switched over to work with the guys over at Get Nuts Lab.


It seems like they know what they’re doing, because Hohnadell was absolutely ripping all weekend. The car clearly fits his aggressive, on-throttle style, which should help him to really show how good he is this year.


One of the new drivers this season is Masashi Yokoi, who has come over from D1 to compete.


His D-Max Silvia S15 is, to put it bluntly, the best looking car in FD. Period.


The reflective vinyl is a great touch to compliment the aggressive, yet stylish, D-Max bodykit.


Usually when popular drivers come over to FD from other series around the world, it takes a few events for them to get comfortable with the style of driving and setup that is needed to succeed here. Yokoi doesn’t follow history though, as he had one of the fastest cars all weekend and looked fairly comfortable on the street circuit.


As you can see, he didn’t let Fredric Aasbo intimidate him at all…A mistake from Yokoi gave Aasbo the win in the Top 32, but Yokoi made a mark on everyone with his aggressive chase style.


Although he’s not technically new, Tanner Foust must feel like a rookie after a 5-year hiatus from the sport.


The new VW Passat might be on the lower end of the power spectrum in FD, but Foust is one of the best in the biz and made the best of it.


A crash in practice just minutes before qualifying meant he barely qualified, and another incident with the Turn 10 wall during his Top 32 battle with Justin Pawlak meant his weekend came to an early end. There’s no doubt that the two-time champ will be back on top at some point; the question is how soon he can make that happen.


Notably absent from the Top 16 was Chris Forsberg, who made an uncharacteristic mistake in his battle with Pat Mordaunt which cost him the battle.


The car looks great, but it seemed as though he and his team were struggling to find the right setup throughout the weekend.


He qualified 2nd with a 94, which he said was a “conservative run,” but he never looked like the “Mr. Consistent” he has been for years. However, don’t be surprised if you see him destroy everyone at Atlanta in a few weeks time; Forsberg will be out to defend his title and close the huge gap to his main rival Aasbo.


Forsberg’s Drift Alliance brother Ryan Tuerck is looking like he finally has a car and a team behind him to fight for a championship.


The car looks great, with the throwback Toyota Racing colors. What looks even better is the way he is throwing it around like it’s a missile car.


The amount of smoke he is throwing out is ridiculous, and he looked super consistent all weekend. This could be the beginning of Tuerck’s best season yet.


It’s been a while since Tuerck has stood on the podium, and he cherished every moment up there in 3rd place.


Falling just a bit short of Tuerck was Matt Field, who is determined to not repeat the mistakes and car problems that had plagued him in 2014.


Field was shredding from the moment he hit the track on Friday morning to the OMT battle with Odi Bakchis ended his weekend by the smallest of margins.


His signature highlighter-yellow S14.5 is crazy fast and throws tons of smoke. Even though he met the tire barrier after contact with Robbie Nishida in the Top 8, he still showed that he is one of the best drivers in FD and that he can be a championship contender this season.


Many people had their doubts about the Hyundai Genesis Coupe that Odi Bakchis is piloting this year for the international events, but Bakchis worked his magic and set the car up to allow him to perform just as well as last season.


Bakchis finished 4th last season in the championship standings, and has come back this year looking for a championship.


His battles with Matt Field in the Top 4 were some of the best tandem runs we’ve seen at Long Beach, showing that both drivers will be fighting tooth and nail for the podium at every event.


A costly mistake in his final battle with Fredric Aasbo showed that he needs to come through in the clutch or he will finish just below the championship contenders as he did last year.


With the first round finished and the second round in Atlanta coming up soon, the points standings are as follows:

1. Fredric Aasbo – 105

2. Odi Bakchis – 83 (-22)

3. Ryan Tuerck – 68 (-37)

4. Matt Field – 68 (-37)

5. Vaughn Gittin Jr. – 52 (-53)

6. Tyler McQuarrie – 51 (-54)

7. Robbie Nishida – 51 (-54)

8. Pat Mordaunt – 50 (-55)

9. Chris Forsberg – 38 (-67)

10. Justin Pawlak – 36 (-69)

We’ll have even more content from Long Beach, so keep an eye out for it!

I’d like to end this post with a message for everyone in the drifting community.


Geoff Stoneback’s brother-from-another-mother, Mark Lenardon, was involved in a very bad motorcycle accident early in the week before the event. Geoff got out to Long Beach from his home in Pennsylvania as soon as he could, and helped care for Mark in the hospital while Mark’s family made their way in from Michigan.

I’ve partied and shot with Mark for years now at Formula D and at ClubLoose, and I can easily say he was one of the funniest, down to Earth guys I’ve ever met. I’m honored to call him a friend.


I had the pleasure of meeting Mark’s father at the hospital, and he told me that the love and support that has poured out from the drifting community has kept his family strong.

Mark will forever be remembered as the fun-loving and talented media guy who always had a way to make someone laugh.

Mark, I speak for everyone at OMGDrift when I say that we will miss you more than anything, and that our love for you goes out to your wonderful family.

We’d also like to send our love to Geoff for his amazing acts of kindness for Mark and his family.


-Mike G.


Formula Drift Dopeness >>> Top 32 Results and More Photos!!

April 11, 2015 • By


Top 32 is over, and there were some crazy upsets and great driving. Top 16 starts in less than an hour!

Matt Coffman (32) vs. Robbie Nishida (16)

Matt Field (8) vs. Dai Yoshihara (9)

Vaughn Gittin Jr. (4) vs. Charles Ng (20)

Justin Pawlak (5) vs. Odi Bakchis (12)

Chris Forsberg (2) vs. Pat Mordaunt (18)

Ryan Tuerck (7) vs. Dan Savage (10)

Fredric Aasbo (3) vs. Geoff Stoneback (14)

Chelsea Denofa (27) vs. Tyler McQuarrie (11)


Formula Drift Dopeness >>> New Cars Around the Paddock!!

April 9, 2015 • By


Even though there was no driving today, we decided to check out some of the sweet cars that were unloaded today that weren’t at Media Day earlier in the week.

Dopeness, Events, History, Interviews, News, Pretty Pictures, Pro-Am, Review, Season Review, Uncategorized

Pro-Am Dopeness >>> Rolando Alfaro Earns Pro 2 License For 2015

December 4, 2014 • By


If you’ve ever been to a pro-am event, chances are you’ve seen a wide range of cars turn up, ranging from nearly stock daily drivers to fully built Formula D spec rides. One might make the assumption that it’s these high horsepower, competition focused builds which are sure to consistently be the winners. But proving you don’t have to throw down huge horsepower figures and expensive builds to make it to the top, Rolando Alfaro took his backup car to a second place finish in Midwest Drift Union this year, netting him a Pro 2 license for 2015. More after the jump!

Dopeness, Driver Profile, Events, History, Interviews, News, Pretty Pictures, Pro-Am, Review, Season Review, Uncategorized

Pro-Am Dopeness >>> Brian Peter Earns Pro 2 License For 2015

November 26, 2014 • By


When the smoke had settled after a hard-driven 2014 season, Brian Peter emerged on top once again as the Midwest Drift Union series champion and earned his Formula D Pro 2 license for 2015. We take a look back at his road to the championship. More after the jump!

Formula Drift Dopeness

Formula Dopeness >>> My First Year With Formula Drift!!

October 28, 2014 • By


The 2014 Formula Drift season has been a period of extensive growth for myself. Two years ago, I knew absolutely nothing about drifting, had zero interest in cars, and could never see myself as a photographer. Last year, I was introduced to drifting and somehow found that I actually really enjoyed it. After a year of watching OMGDrift’s owner Drew Fishbein and many other photographers produce amazing images from each event, I decided to try my hand at it. I couldn’t be more thankful that I got the opportunity to participate as media for Formula Drift this past season.

For the first round, Long Beach, I rented camera equipment because I had only just begun shooting about two months prior. As it was the first major event I shot, I was incredibly nervous. I’m very shy, and can be a bit dependent if I’m unfamiliar with my surroundings, so walking onto the track, surrounded by photographers who were years ahead of me in experience was intimidating to say the least. I could sense others watching me, wondering if I even knew what I was doing (which the answer is, no, I certainly did not feel like I knew anything). Despite my fears and uncertainty, Long Beach was incredible. Shooting there only solidified my desire to continue with photography, and I decided to purchase my very own camera and lens. Following Long Beach, I excitedly bought a Canon 6D and a 70-300L lens (and joined the ranks of all the other Americans in debt, before this I only had student loans, no kidding!). I couldn’t wait to try out my new camera, but due to financial reasons I didn’t get to use my new gear at another Formula Drift event until the fifth round in Washington. It was a tough decision, but since I had invested so much money into purchasing a camera body and lens, I couldn’t justify traveling across the country to Georgia, Florida, and New Jersey.

The fifth round of Formula Drift was fantastic! Out of the four tracks I shot at, Evergreen Speedway was my favorite. The layout provided a lot more freedom for shooting locations than I have encountered at other race tracks. I was still pretty nervous, though I had garnered a bit more practice with providing media for events between the first and fifth round. Drew and I drove up to Washington from Los Angeles, and it was my first time ever going to Washington, so I was extremely excited to be there. I think it was at this round that I began feeling more comfortable and confident in my photography, which I believe is evident in the pictures I produced. It was also at this round that I found out someone had been spreading rumors about me and my photography. Apparently, because I am so new to the game, someone told others that Drew was actually the one taking all my pictures and I then claimed them at my own. It was upsetting to think that anyone could think so low of me, but I ended up using this as fuel to only work harder and refine my photography skills more.


I was looking forward to going to Texas for the sixth round. I had driven to Forth Worth last year, for the first year that Formula Drift was at Texas Motor Speedway, and attended the event as a spectator. Drew and I had a difficult time driving there last year, with a blowout in Arizona that left us spending a ton of money on a car rental for the rest of the trip, so we decided to fly to Fort Worth this time instead. Since I had attended the event the year before as a spectator, I was excited to have the chance to go past the gates and onto the track as a photographer! It was a very busy and nerve-wracking weekend, because I was the sole photographer for OMGDrift at this event. I definitely felt the pressure of providing full coverage from the weekend. I even went outside my comfort zone and shot drivers at the autograph sessions and in the pits. Before then, I really was only comfortable photographing drifting and having little interaction with shooting people, which I attribute to my shy persona. At this point, I started feeling comfortable with photography, and I stopped relying on Drew to tell me where to go (before then, I always asked him what I should do for virtually everything). At this round, I also had my first experience with shooting in the rain, which was an interesting challenge for me, but I enjoyed it. There’s something about rain that makes pictures look so much more spectacular than they would in dry weather, in my opinion.

The final round of the 2014 Formula Drift season took place at Irwindale Speedway in California. I sat in the stands and watched this event last year, so I was excited to be shooting as media this year. It wasn’t my first time shooting on track at Irwindale however, because Formula Drift had introduced Thursday night drifting at Irwindale Speedway during the summer. I provided media at two events during the summer, which was a completely beneficial experience because it gave me more opportunities to practice. Subsequently, I felt decently confident going into the seventh round. I tried out many different shooting locations and found myself actually feeling a lot of disappointment in my work. Perhaps it was because the track was so different from Evergreen Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway, which both offered sprawling layouts, making me feel less confined to one location, but I felt like my photos weren’t on the level that they should be. I eventually knocked out of this funk by the main competition on Saturday and found spots that I loved shooting from. I think some of my sharpest, most clean pictures have come from this final round.

When I look back at all I’ve done this season, I see tremendous growth (honestly, my Long Beach set is terrible!), and I still have such a long way to go. I’m eager to see how much more I can improve and continue to learn in photography. I now want to try out other motorsports besides drifting, but I cannot wait for the 2015 Formula Drift season!