Daigo Saito

Federico Sceriffo Set to Debut Ferrari 599 in Formula Drift

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Rumor on the street is Italian Federico Sceriffo is headed to Formula Drift this season with this yellow Ferrari 599 in tow. A possible Orlando Speed World or Road Atlanta debut is just around the corner for this professional drifter. Here are some videos of him in action in case you have never seen him drift before.

More info on him and car:
https://www.instagram.com/fsceriffo/

https://www.instagram.com/fffdrifting/

Daigo Saito is Back with a Corvette in 2017 and a Formula Drift Return

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It looks like Daigo Saito will be running a C6 Corvette in D1 Grand Prix in Japan and according to Wanli, is set to return to Formula Drift for 2017. The Wanli release isn’t quite clear on their return to Formula Drift but we assume Daigo Saito will be running with them. Not sure on any other drivers that will be running with them but Fredric Aasbo did run on them in Asia last year from what we understand. Here is what the Wanli release says from Tokyo Auto Salon.

 

  “In 2017, Wanli Tire will keep cooperating with Daigo Saito in D1 to defend champion honor and to participate in American FORMULA DRIFT to realize Wanli Tire’ dream dominating the drift fields of China, Japan, USA, Russia. Daigo Saito’s car participating in D1 Grand Prix 2017, CORVETTE, also appeared in TAS in advance which indicated its determination to win the champion again.”

Daigo Saito builds a Ferrari 599 GTB drift car [SPY SHOT]

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As if we needed any other proof that Daigo Saito can make any car driftable, Saito and his Fat Five Racing shop have recently built this Ferrari 599 GTB car into a driftable chassis. In the background of this shot, you can also see a Ferrari 458 chassis that is likely also a drift car. Ryan Lanteigne actually showed a preview of this car on Instagram a few weeks back, but this is the first peak of the car that was apparently built for a Chinese customer. Of course, this is far from the first exotic car Saito has build, as evidenced by the Battle Drift video Saito filmed last year with Vaughn Gittin Jr.  Hopefully we can find video of this build very soon!

 

A few more pics below the jump

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D1GP Round 3/4 at Tsukuba Circuit [RESULTS]

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Daigo Saito is finding it much easier to pursue world domination back home in Japan this season or maybe it is just those Wanli Tires!? Daigo Saito took home his third victory in a row at Tsukuba Circuit Course to kick off the D1GP season. Daigo managed to beat Teruyoshi Iwai (Mazda Miata) in the final battle to secure an amazing third victory in a row.

1. Daigo Saito
2. Teruyoshi Iwai
3. Masato Kawabata

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The weekend was a double event weekend so soon after his victory Daigo was back at it again to try and win four rounds of D1GP in a row. Daigo wound up falling just short after winning 14 tandem battles in a row he finally earned a loss in the final four to Hokuto Matsuyama after Daigo couldn’t drift any longer due to a steering issue. He was very close to winning a fourth event in a row!

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Here is how Round 4 finished:
1. Tomohiro Murayama
2. Hokuto Matsuyama
3. Daigo Saito

2016 D1 Grand Prix – Round 2 Fuji [RESULTS]

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Daigo Saito continued his winning ways at the second round of D1 Grand Prix, which took place at Fuji Speedway and was dubbed “Warfare”. The second win since moving to WanLi tires gives Saito a fairly strong lead on the championship, although Kawabata-san has finished just behind him in both rounds and could take over the lead if Saito falters. There are 7 total rounds of competition in D1GP this year, with the next round being a twin round in late June at Tsukuba.

Here’s a look at the final results of the second round of D1GP:

1st – Daigo Saito –  Wanli Fat 5 Racing JZX100
2nd – Masato Kawabata – Toyo Tires Trust Racing R35
3rd – Shinji Minowa – Team AP Boss Potenza JZX90
4th – Yoichi Immamura – OTG Motorsports ZN6

Daigo Saito Wins D1 Grand Prix Round 1

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Daigo Saito walked away from Formula Drift in 2016 to focus on the D1 Grand Prix series and it looks like that extra focus has worked. Daigo Saito defeated Kawabata in a great final battle to win the first round of the 2016 D1GP series. I guess his new tire sponsor Wanli has built a solid product and is helping him back on the road to a championship. The D1 and Formula Drift series have some schedule conflicts this season so running both seasons in full was going to be impossible for Daigo Saito.

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One of our awesome readers Sanlis, put together an interesting chart on Daigo Saito’s D1GP finishes over the past five seasons and show he has been just a step off the championship.

2011- 2nd Place
2012 – 2nd Place
2013 – 4th Place
2014 – 15th Place
2015 – 2nd Place

Cleary he has been right there as far as a D1 championship in the last 5 years, but retiring from Formula Drift for the season might give him a chance to break that second place streak. Daigo Saito will be able to return to Formula Drift at anytime due to the former champions clause preventing him from being relegated to Pro 2 for next season. Here is how D1GP finished Round 1-

1st – Daigo Saito
2nd – Masato Kawabata
3rd – ideyuki Fujino
4th – Yusuke Kusaba

Daigo Saito No Longer in Formula Drift – Still With Wanli Tire As Reported

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Daigo Saito is officially official not coming back to Formula Drift for the 2016 season. Just five days ago I made a post predicting that “Pretty big announcement that makes me think no Daigo Saito in Formula Drift for 2016.” when we broke he was running Wanli Tires in Japan for D1GP. So now Achilles Radial has released an official statement that Daigo is not returning to America this year. Bye Daigo and thanks for the memories!

 

OFFICIAL STATEMENT ON DAIGO SAITO

There have been many rumors floating around lately, and we find it unfortunately necessary to address them. Daigo Saito notified us that he intended to focus on D1GP and would not be competing in Formula Drift in 2016. Achilles Tires will be returning as a Major Sponsor of Formula DRIFT USA, and this series will be the cornerstone of our motorsports marketing efforts globally. Without a commitment to compete in the series, it did not make sense to continue the relationship. We wish Daigo the best of luck in his future endeavors.

Achilles Motorsports will be making our official 2016 Motorsports Program announcement on March 24th.

Daigo Saito Moves to Wanli Tire for 2016

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For quite some time we have been hearing rumors about Daigo Saito and Achilles Radial breaking up and it looks like that has come true. Dennis shared us this image of Daigo Saito’s Lamborghini sporting Wanli Tires today (original post found here). It also appears that D1GP has gotten the memo and under the Tokyo Drift listing has his team as Wanli Fat Five Racing (here). Pretty big announcement that makes me think no Daigo Saito in Formula Drift for 2016. I checked with my contacts and was told Wanli is not a tire sponsor of Formula Drift for 2016. We will see where the chips fall but losing Daigo in 2016 would be a huge loss for the series.

2016 D1NZ Round 3 at Taupo [RESULTS]

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It turns out that Nico Reid might prove to be unstoppable at D1NZ this season. He takes home a second victory in a row after dominating the competition at ASB last week. Fanga Dan got a little aggressive in his tandem chase run trying to run through and over a Nissan Silvia in the process. The whole stream of the event is still available here if you want to check out how the action happened at D1NZ Round 3.

 

Here is how they finished:
1st – Nico Reid
2nd – Cole Armstrong
3rd – Bruce Tannock

How Sikky Saved the Nissan GT-R Rear End

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Daigo Saito had some serious issues with his rear end on the Nissan GT-R he brought into Formula Drift. He kept breaking the rear of the car, at least once an event, due to the serious load Formula Drift puts on the car. After the Formula Drift Orlando round of competition, he decided enough was enough and reached out to the guys at Sikky Manufacturing in Maryland to develop a solution that would hold all the power his GT-R puts down. Sikky determined that one of their quick change rear setups would solve the issues and they quickly went to work. After completely tearing down the rear of the car, Sikky scanned the OEM sub frame and sheet metal floor pan with their FARO arm to create a CAD model that would allow them to design the new rear end. The new setup was designed, tested and put through the motions on the computer before any parts were even made. Once the concept was finished and checked out the real fun began.

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Sikky started with a OEM R35 GTR sub frame. The new steel pieces that would hold the quick change rear in place were laser cut and bent per their CAD design. Positioned perfectly to account for driveshaft and axles Sikky was able to design a mounting system that would hold this massive rear. The end result is an impressively strong rear that is ready to handle all the abuse Daigo Saito would throw at it the rest of the season. If you just compare the two photos of the rear end you can see how stout they built the new Nissan GT-R rear end.

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This buff Sikky sub frame cradles the quick change rear in the proper place and prevented the team from running into any more rear issues for the remainder of the season. The clearance with the sway bar and exhaust are centimeter tight but just managed to work perfectly and fit within the Formula Drift rulebook.

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The progression of the Nissan GT-R in Formula Drift has been a slow growth process but with companies like Sikky on the team I can imagine Daigo Saito will be making a championship run sooner than later, perhaps in 2016?

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