Other than Michael Essa’s new E46 chassis for 2013 this has to be the biggest news of the 2013 off-season to date. Vaughn Gittin Jr. and Falken Tire have one of the longest standing partnerships in Formula Drift history until the end of the 2012 season. We reported just after the 2012 SEMA Show that Vaughn Gittin Jr. was seen testing the Nitto NT05 tire and it now seems to be a complete deal. This is quite exciting news for Nitto Tire and we are curious if this will result in them dropping some other drivers in 2013 to make budget. The one last question I think everyone has on our mind is what will Falken Tire do with all this spare cash on hand for 2013?
Vaughn was missing from the 2012 SEMA team release so we are guessing this was a planned move before the season fired up. I wish they would put Walker Wilkerson or Danny George in a great teal/blue ride instead of taking all that money over into ALMS or Supercross. Vaughn will debut on the Nitto NT05 tire at the St. Louis Auto Show at the end of January and keep moving through 2013 with his new partnership. Below is the press release fired out this afternoon.
Formula Drift Champion Vaughn Gittin Jr. is
excited to announce that he has joined forces with Nitto Tire. Fueled by passion and
innovation, Nitto Tire is a perfect match for Vaughn and his always forward-thinking
team. Vaughn, who is undeniably one of drifting’s most iconic drivers, will represent
Nitto Tire and showcase their max-performance tire’s superior performance and
capability through competing in the Formula Drift Championship and China’s WDS
Series. He will also be performing exhibitions and experiential events all over the
world, where many will have the opportunity to ride shotgun in his Monster Energy
Nitto Tire Ford Mustang RTR.
From Vaughn: “I am pumped to be working with Nitto Tire! As I enter this new
chapter of my career, it feels great to be aligned with a brand that is committed
to winning and progression, just as I am. I have always been focused on working
just as hard off the track as I do on it, and Nitto’s innovative marketing efforts and
awesome tires will compliment that well. It is very clear that our overall passion
and future goals align perfectly, and I could not be happier with what the future has
to offer surrounding this partnership.”