Forrest Wang Lost – The Devil’s Advocate Perspective


Behind the hype train of hate, confusion, and misinformation I am delaying the 10 Things post until tomorrow to whip up a full and in-depth review of the Forrest Wang vs. Chris Forsberg Top 16 battle. The fans and viewers keep screaming for consistency and rules to apply so Formula Drift can be more clear cut. Well, let’s dig deep into this one.


This map was displayed clearly and discussed during the mandatory drivers meeting. This is referred to as an acceleration/deceleration map. The denotations of green should be a section of the course where you are on throttle and the red sections are acceptable braking/slowing down areas. This is a pretty clear understanding of the course. To promote very close proximity and tandem battles you have these maps so drifters can run close tandem and understand/expect where drivers will scrub speed/slow down.


In fact, Mad Mike Whiddett addressed this very topic in the drivers meeting after going over the accel/deaccel map. Mad Mike went on to ask about having big angle off the bank and slowing up/scrubbing speed. The judges replied to him no, they want to see a nice balance of angle and speed, while being on throttle, to set up a re-initiation for outer zone two (seen above).

Top 32 versus Tyler McQuarrie


In the Top 32 battle it is pretty easy to see why Forrest Wang was the victor. In no way do I see the judges rewarding Forrest Wang for his violation of the rules above. In fact, I imagine he was probably docked points for these actions. However, Tyler McQuarrie drove worse than a first time Pro Am drifter against him. That means, in a mistake versus mistake analysis Wang clearly was the winner with far less mistakes and cleaner runs.

Screenshot 2016-06-20 15.02.37
Screenshot 2016-06-20 15.02.46
Screenshot 2016-06-20 15.03.20

The judges call OMT here when I actually think Wang earned the win. The only real error I see Wang making was on his chase run he left the track on the inner bank which probably even outed the run in the judges mind, who were all three consistent on the call. The OMT battle had Andy Yen favoring Forrest Wang and the other two judges going OMT again. Tyler did a little bit better overall on this battle and I think it should be noted Forrest Wang was much faster across that section in the OMT battle visually. He is on throttle, less smoke, more angle.

Top 16

Screenshot 2016-06-20 15.10.50

Thanks Shoot First Media for this side by side screen shot here that will lead us into the Top 16 battle because I don’t want to analyze this Top 32 battle to death. I think if McQuarrie was simply cleaner/smoother around the course and better in the follow position he gets a win here. Note above, in this side-by-side video the amount of smoke Forrest is making from Top 32 to Top 16.

Forsberg gets the win! #throwingangleishismo #throwingangleallday #greatjobavoidingcontact #mimictheleadcar

A video posted by jeff woodruff (@jazzy_jz_jeff) on

If you still have serious dispute over the contact in question, this angle clearly shows zero smoke coming from Wang’s tires in slow motion. It does cut away at times to the front of the car for some reason but he is clearly not accelerating in an acceleration zone (See graph above).

ForrestWang.AMdrift 13499559_10209481045248006_1619662041_o I spent hour of my day overlooking content, video, clips, and speaking to other drivers/teams in the paddock about this battle. The conclusion I came to is the judges were 100% consistent with the guidelines they set out for the race. Everyone talks about a lack of consistency, but I just don’t see it. I cannot find any evidence of Forrest Wang even being on throttle (visual sounds from fan videos) and these images from David at AMDrift clearly just show no new smoke being produced by the car. NOW, do I agree with those guidelines they put forward is a whole other can of worms I am not going to explore. Everyone is crying for the judges to be clear and consistent and I just don’t see where the lack of this is. ForrestWang If this is truly a Forrest Wang retirement from Formula Drift I think the timing is poor for him and I will leave my thoughts on that announcement at just that. I do really hope he returns to Formula Drift at some point to compete as the most stylish drifter in America.  


UPDATED 6/21/2016 at 9:00AM PST:  Here are three notes I wanted to add to this story on our end.

1. Here is Chris Forsberg following Forrest in Tandem:

2. Had several people tell us that Forsberg’s brake lights were not working and he didn’t use them. David Karey at AmDrift was kind enough to provide/post this: 13402627_145578389194606_1020997007_n


3. Forrest Wang’s car does look broken by all accounts coming off the bank. I won’t speculator further and it is just my opinion :

We love @forrestwang808 but it’s time y’all see something important during his battle with @chrisforsberg64. No stealing this like a douche. Use a proper repost program or you get treated like a dumbass. Vid and photos by @davidkarey the magnificent. @formulad #fdnj

A video posted by @amdrift on

Thanks for doing detective work AmDrift!

I attended my first drift event at Road Atlanta in 2005 while shooting for Import Racer Magazine (RIP). Since then I have produced drift content for PAS Magazine, Modified Magazine, Drifting Magazine (RIP), and many more publications. I was the producer of the movie Slide America and then helped found this website in 2007.


  1. Angelo says:

    Is it possible he (forsberg)didn’t see him through smoke screen?

  2. Lawntang says:

    @Hamza Bodice

    You are implying that the drivers aren’t showing an amazing amount of skill and talent and bravery by driving at crazy speeds mere feet or sometimes inches apart from one another. That is inaccurate.

    We may require drivers to fill zones and get close to inside clips, but we don’t tell them where to transition, we don’t give them the line to drive between clips generally, we say make it look fast and smooth and dangerous. As you can see, even if we give them certain rules to follow, only a few drivers can do that consistently, and that generally means they will keep on driving until they’re on the podium. When other drivers make mistakes, it makes for some exciting driving and things get interesting.

    Our goal is to see the lead driver do a clean lap of the track to show that he is capable of doing so without making any mistakes, thus showing the skill and talent of the driver and the knowledge of the team setting the car up. If the lead driver makes mistakes, they will be held against him. If he doesn’t, they gain an advantage.

    In the chase position, making things random is an easy way to end up with even more boring tandem, as the lead can do whatever they want and you’ll end up with more crashes, or a lot of spins from the chase car. The lead car is setting the pace, and if the pace is inconsistent or random, you can’t expect a chase car to be within any proximity. If you think otherwise, you don’t understand just how close these guys are driving to each other, the speeds they’re doing it at, and how quickly things happen at those speeds with that proximity.

    Now I keep reading about how stylish and gangster Forrest was on that run with Forsberg, but if you pay attention, he has said to others that his tires lose grip after the first run, he isn’t able to drive as well because of the lower grip, and he clearly made a mistake at IC1 on his lead run by throwing too much angle and slowing down significantly. I fail to see how that is in any way stylish? If you are driving a drift car and throw too much angle and almost spin out but manage to catch it, your friends watching or chasing you on the track won’t call it stylish, they’ll say you messed up, but hey nice save (or they’ll be mad at you because your almost spin caused them to smash into your car). I’ve been there and done it myself, but thankfully I’m just doing it for fun with a beat up battle car, so I don’t care.

    We’re not trying to make drifting boring, we’re trying to give the drivers the most level playing field when it comes to proving which one of them is the most stylish, the most consistent and the most hungry for the win. All drivers have their moments of clarity, their moments of brilliance and their moments of failure, but in the end it’s the driver that minimizes the moments of failure during a weekend that will end up on top of the podium.

  3. Justin Yamashiro says:

    So after taking @Rwdybyz advice to listen to the drift cast and I follow with saying everyone else should as well.
    With that being said, if they’re wanting it to be more speed over angle then why was wisefab even permitted to be legal? Everyone knows what angle that kit provides.

  4. Lawntang says:

    @Justin Yamashiro

    We still like angle, we just want it to be used in the right area. Driving past an inside clip that is essentially a straight line transition between 2 larger corners should be done with a healthy mix of speed and angle, not only angle but no speed. It isn’t smooth, it isn’t a chaseable lead in that area and it isn’t what we asked for.

    Like I said earlier, we like angle to be used in tighter corners to slow the car instead of using an ebrake or foot brake. In the case of New Jersey, we told them to use big angle to slow the car and attain the T&G area after IC3, then hang onto that angle through to IC4.

  5. Steffan says:

    Are they really only doing 38mph coming off the bank like that BlackVue dash cam shows?

  6. Eddi Hughes says:


    the new photos that amdrift release changes everything, should def be something people need to see

  7. Mr E says:

    Congratulations FD, even your own drivers think Forrest got boned.

    Golf clap

  8. Nunyuh says:

    This is why there are certain rules and judging criteria in FD.

  9. Runjz says:

    @Lawtang no one really expects you to find your notes from TX from last year. Hell, 30 seconds after the run you said ” I can’t even remember the last run” and “I don’t want to say anything wrong here.” We all get it.

  10. Jabroni says:

    @Justin Yamashiro almost every E46 chassis in FD is on wise fab and they are all very fast with Fast Kenny and the HGK car being two of fastest cars on grid. And Kenny drives with the same if not more angle than Forrest at times.

  11. Grazzrootz says:

    If Forsberg had been leading and the same thing had happened, forrest would have went home. You can Bullshit around the point all you want to but you guys ride Forsberg’s dick.

  12. Super says:

    I am still laughing at the fact you are dodging the brake light question. Unless I missed it. Please reply to that, non working equipment should be loss in points.

    Either way you cut it, who ever crashes into the person in front is deemed at fault. I don’t really care how your logic wants to work around that but its pretty clear. This is a game of monkey see monkey do. You are expected to predict the driver in front, if he was lost in smoke maybe you guys should limit horsepower. It doesn’t even look cool with smoke covering the car behind them, its a handicap and people exploit it. Chris might want to brush up on his following skills.

  13. shakotandann says:

    while we are getting technical with rules what about the lighting rules and how Forsberg had no taillights and should not have been able to compete in the run or the tinted headlight rule whitch would make forsbergs car illegal all season. not that his headlights bother me but seems fishy denofa gets dq’d at previous event for doing what everyone else has been doing… wang gets hung out to dry for driving like a boss… and Forsberg runs every event not in compliance, guess rules aren’t the same for the alliance or aasbo… in my opinon wang isn’t leaving because of this one event if the judging would have been fair and consistent wang would have been champion last season… Forrest is not the first stylish causality in FD…. where are Matt Powers, Taka Aono, Walker Wilkerson, Ross Petty, Conrad Gruenwald, Matts Bearibeau, Daigo Saito, etc… anyways im looking forward to watching other events now and not listening to Jarrod anymore

  14. Forsberg did 9/11 says:

    All of this talk about the judges being biased is a red herring. An obviously delicious red herring when you take into consideration the history of FormulaMustangBroDrift but a red herring nonetheless.

    The way that Forrest was running the course that day it was going to be nearly impossible to beat him in follow. Ryan your statement that he wasn’t always the same may be true, but his angle in the accel zone was in fact always monstrous – this is how Forrest always has driven. For over a fucking decade.

    Forsberg is a veteran. He knows Forrest, he knows Forrests style and he sure as shit knows how Forrest was running that portion of the track. He knew. Plain as day he knew. He knew, his spotter knew and the rest of his team knew.

    What happens when rules are in place in any major sport? Competitors use them to their advantage. Take everything that has been said here about the judges expectations and the rules regarding the accel zones and the mystical speed and angle combo that FD wants to keep in place to keep their MustangBro drivers and sponsors happy. Those rules are made to be followed, and that’s, in theory, a great thing for consistency in competition.

    Look at it from a neutral perspective with all that in mind, and the answer should hit you clearly: this entire debacle was intentional. Driver knew he couldn’t match what Forrest was laying down, saw a rule he could exploit, and exploited it. But that rule of course is in direct contradiction with the tradition of the sport itself, hence why people are livid:

    I don’t know if this was premeditated by anyone in particular or done on the fly. One would think that a real sanctioning body would investigate. But FD won’t because they know they are already teetering on extinction.

    But all that aside, intent or no intent, premeditation or no premeditation, what FD has done is set a ridiculously dangerous precedent. What this “ruling” says is that if someone slows in an accel zone, it is Ok to risk a drivers life and limb by hitting them, because you will be rewarded with a win. There is a reason why the follow car is always supposed to mimic the lead and this is the very reason. Rules like the one that FD so strenuously stands by today risk lives, and that part has been completely overlooked.

  15. isho says:

    “You are expected to predict the driver in front” Not doing what you were told to do during a drivers meeting is being unpredictable. Following someone who is unpredictable at one part of the track should be deducted for it. Kindergarten logic right there.

  16. Super says:

    So he was “slow” in a fast section that doesn’t mean you just drive into his door. Stop making excuses. Apparently he wasn’t that good at predicting. Say what you want he did nothing to warrant a t bone. Did you look at how flattened is rocker was after that hit? It wasn’t a tap it was a full on hit. I’m not trying to defend Wang but it is what it is. Chris fucked up and Wang paid the price

  17. Wrecked Magazine Staff says:


    If you look at this story and scroll up…… we have a photo of Chris working LED brake strip just above you.

  18. isho says:

    @Super you’ve got multiple people here with more experience than any of us providing actual proof with valid arguments, but somehow you still assume it was his fault. What?

  19. Donald Gladden says:

    All that map proves, is that FD is just another rung in the ladder to the big time in NHRA. There’s a reason why the people mentioned left FD. I hope someone is able to pull a Tsuchiya-san and create their own Series.

  20. Super says:

    @isho. I am blaming the poor judging standards. It should have been a re run not automatic fault. In the end it doesn’t bother me, I still get to enjoy drifting with my friends whilst not spending a fraction of what these dudes spend just to get fucked all day.

    At this point its all in the hands of the drivers, no drivers means no series. It’s an absolute joke how much they give out for prize money versus how much profit they gain. Maybe the presidents should step their salaries down, or fire Jarod at least, I think we all feel the same on that.

  21. OriginalDrifter says:

    Any change in attitude with McQuarrie publicly saying the judges never talked about not slowing down in the drivers meeting and that he thought Wang should have won?

  22. Hosford Hugger says:

    if wang had a broken control arm, he might have spun out on the next transition even if Forsberg didn’t hit him.

  23. Gets Too Nuts For FD Laboratory says:

    Let me go ahead and waste more of my time explaining why everyone is having a problem with people not doing their jobs.

    I’ll get straight to the point, being the real issue here is not so much Chris’s mistakes but the inconsistency in the calls being made and the judging criteria. The fact each round the judges contradict the written rules about style, line and angle. Adding things like debeading a tire not being a zero and letting drivers qualify and finish their runs with debeaded tires or missing a tire completely.

    Lets go back one round to Orlando, Would love for @Lawntang to comment on what they told Forrest’s spotter why he lost to Alec even though the fans saw a more dominant run by Forrest. I believe it was along the lines of “Forrest threw a uncharacteristic low amount of angle through the infield” even tho the judges said nothing about throwing big angle through this portion of the track. Frustrating but we let it go as we have in the past.

    Let’s go back two more rounds to Atlanta. Forrest dirt drops on his leading run against Odi, clearly a mistake by Forrest and I’m not doubting that by any means. BUT he’s immediately back on course, Odi is back on his door after the dirt drop, exits the keyhole as does Odi. As Forrest transitions out of the keyhole Odi is off in never never land 4×4 through the dirt and gets left in the dust (literally) ….OK? Fine we don’t say anything and let it go. I’d love to mention Dai straightening after exiting the track against Alec as well just to throw in another example of Get Nuts on the short end of a call

    I really would like to go back to Texas last year to talk about the call against Forrest and Chris, then Alec and Chris but I know Lawntang lost his notes before the runs were even over and didn’t want to say anything wrong (besides the wrong call)

    OKAYY fast forward to last weekend! Tyler LOST to Forrest and when questioning the judges they told him ” your job as the chase car is to follow the lead car, if he throws big angle, you throw big angle, if he goes off course, you go off course, if he slows down, you slow down”

    I keep hearing people say Forrest broke an arm and that’s what caused him to scrub speed. I have some of my own footage as well but we’ll just let you guys blame that on Forrest. Let’s go to Chris’s lead run, You really have to be Blind to say Forrest was not all over Chris’s shit and followed his shallow angle throughout the track (mind you he was on fresh set of Hankooks) IMO Forrest had the advantage as Chris didn’t do anything special on his lead run to overpower Forrest’s Chase. Ok now Forrest’s lead run, Forrest is on the wall like he has been since Thursday Practice, Chris, lets admit he screwed up his initiation and fell back and bobbled. Doing so he V lined it towards Forrest to gain proximity, STRAIGHT IN A HEAVILY WEIGHTED ZONE! Which the judges made it sound like it was the most important zone on the course. Ok he’s back on Forrest door, Forrest transitions off the bank with tons of angle, Chris messes up again and comes off the bank early and straight. Now he’s lost in all the smoke Forrest created with SPEED and ANGLE. Let’s pause here to step back and look at what the chase car should be doing at this point. 1. listening to his spotters notes which are should be along the lines of Forrest being really slow during this transition and allegedly throwing “too much angle” now even tho they repeatedly said throwing angle is in Forrest M.O. Now what happen again in Orlando, Forrest thew low angle throughout the infield against Alec and he LOST because it was uncharacteristic of him to do so. MY opinion is Chris’s thought back to Irwindale last year where Forrest was the #1 qualifier for ridding the whole wall with good angle and throwing basically 90 degree angle at the 1st inner clip, scrubs speed and transition perfectly with enough speed to extend out to the next outer zone. Now do we all remember Forrest getting paired up with Chris and losing because Chris couldn’t follow Forrest crazy big angle line? Yeah I believe that’s what happen and Chris knew he lost that battle and speeds off the track before they even point to the winner. Which this leads me to think that Chris and his spotter had some kind of animosity because they knew he was going to do the same thing and Chris couldn’t follow that line due to not having the ability to throw that kind of angle. Now I’m not gonna say that he hit Forrest on purpose but it’s just kinda weird you hear Chris say “fuck that guy” on his in car Black Vue camera and his spotter flips Forrest the bird like they were right about what was going to transpire in the run. Also why is it no one has released Forrest Black Vue footage to show exactly how fast he was indeed going? You guys are not wrong about Forrest suspension arm hyme breaking but from my footage it looks like it breaks after you hear impact but I won’t even argue with you guys. Anyways at this point id go again and agree this run was a wash since and Forrest had a mistake according to you guys and Chris is at fault for his straight line approach on the bank and into Forrest door. But What I think is even if Forrest threw half the angle as he had been doing all weekend and didn’t slow down that Chris was still going too fast and practically straight through the smoke dude to messing up coming off the bank early. I think even in this run Chris had 2 mistakes and Forrest had one if you want to blame the impact on him. Which in my eyes Forrest had a 1 point advantage on BOTH runs. But id be willing to call both a wash JUST to prove that it should have at least been OMT, fans might not have understood and I wouldn’t really either but it would have been a lot better call than handing Chris a win at no point did he out drive Forrest or deserve. Both cars were fixable and it would have been a more neutral call. Regardless of the impact I think Forrest would have laid down the same run he did just like he did against Tyler so IMO Chris’s had no chance of following that line UNLESS Forrest just bobbled and drove off course.

    Now lets take a minute to talk about Chris’s brake lights not working, I know for a FACT Kevin wells went around and checked everyone’s brake lights before the event. Now what I see in this pic of Chris’s brake lights on 1. it’s after impact which could mean there’s some kind of switch, maybe gps controlled, hob switch ect… 2. a picture is a lot easier to photoshop/edit than a video 3. There’s multiple views/angles of TWO cars coming to a stop and you can see one cars brake lights and not Chris’s. I could see multiple points where Chris was definitely left foot braking and there were no lights to be seen….

    I also think it was pretty sad to hear Lawntang and the Drift cast guys use Forrest Financial situation as an excuse why he quit. You have no right to make these assumptions or make him look like he doesn’t have money to run your little series. And you guys also no nothing about his sponsorship situation so why are you making asses out of yourselves? IF you had in fact known about it you might appreciate how much Forrest cared about competing in FD and how many (better in my eyes) opportunities to drift else were and actually win and make money. Forrest isn’t in FD for the money, there’s a reason at one point FD was awarding him with “best drifting style” “best driving suit” and “fan favorite car”. Since last year all these things have slowly been falling out of site and I don’t believe its Forrest not putting in the work/effort.

    Lastly what I think Forrest is tired of and quit is because of inconsistency in judging and no future to be seen as far as improvement. 32 cars showed up to the event and 30 competed, I know of 4 people that have been also considering quitting FD for these same reasons.

  24. Hamza Jodicke says:

    @Lawtang I’m not implying the drivers aren’t displaying amazing amounts of skill. But you seem to be implying that all drivers have an equal chance at winning. That is untrue. All I’m saying is if you have more money then the guy next to you then as a result you will have a better car. If you have more horsepower, a better suspension setup and more reliable car or enough budget to afford more engines of course your going to be more competitive especially when the layout of the course and the way you drive it is already laid out for you. If you produced a graph of the cost of the competitors car builds and placed that next to their win loss ration you would definitely see a connection. There needs to be a cap on spending for car builds , you want to make the sport more competitive then take it the next step and introduce limits on spending for builds.

  25. Disgrace says:

    Feel sorry for Forrest the most stylish driver ever to compete in FD.
    Judging is utter shit , been watching FD for many years but this was the last race that I have seen for sure…