Justin Pawlak

A Complete Review of Just Drift’s Top Drift Round 1

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The Top Drift Pro Am 2014 season kicked off this past weekend, March 30, on the balcony of Willow Springs in Rosamond, California. The morning of the main event was cloudy outside with icy winds. Many of us were expecting some rain, but it just didn’t happen. The clouds moved out pretty quickly, while the drivers set off for practice in the first three hours of the day.
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After lunch, qualifying began, with somewhere around 60 drivers competing for the top podium. After a few hours of qualifying (there were a lot of drivers), the Top 16 was set.
The first battle starred Alex Heilbrunn and Darin Burgess. Alex took the win in his forrest green s13 coupe.

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Eric Martinez went up against Mike Bolanos in the second battle. Martinez managed to take victory over Bolanos’ red s13.
Donovan Brockway faced off with Adam Knapik in the third battle. They stuck fairly close to each other, but Brockway managed to walk away with the win.

In the fourth battle, Daniel Giraldo faced Tyler Page-Howell. Giraldo kept a small gap on his lead run, and stuck close on the follow. He had a great line through both runs and won the match.

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Battle five featured Spike Chen, who has been on the podium twice up to this point in the 2014 season, versus Kyle Lumm, the Socal Sidewayz 350Z driver from San Diego. Kyle dirt dropped on the second run, and Spike Chen moved on to the Great 8.

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Jason Kim and Cody Sarem battled it out on the tarmac in the sixth face-off. Jason Kim took the win over Cody Sarem, who spun first on the entry during the lead run, and then going into turn 2 on the follow run, spun again.

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Dan Burkett faces Drew Ostrowski in the seventh round. On the first run, Ostrowski hit the cones upon entry in his Lexus SC300. Burkett took the win in his FC RX7.
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The final battle of the Top 16 came down to Adam Levi and Joe Tardiff. This battle was especially tough to decide a victor. After two “One More Time’s”, Adam Levi took victory over the black sc300. Tardiff spun right at the entry behind the green building.

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The tournament moved right into the Great 8 from there. First up was Alex Heilbrunn versus Eric Martinez. They had a good run, but Heilbrunn took the win, and ended the competition for the SC300.

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Next up was Daniel Giraldo in his white AE86 versus Donovan Brockway. Daniel pulled away with the better flow and took the win over Brockway’s E30.

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Spike Chen went up against Jason Kim in the third Great 8 battle. Both had solid runs, but it seems like Spike Chen was just a little cleaner with way more power and took the win.

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Dan Burkett and Adam Levi had the final bout of the Great 8. The two stuck together and were unbelievably close during both runs, but Dan Burkett managed to gain victory over Levi.

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The final 4 began. First off were Spike Chen and Dan Burkett. Dan spun into the dirt in the second turn and Chen took the win, assuring him his third podium finish of the season.

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Alex Heilbrunn went up against Daniel Giraldo, but both cars experienced difficulty and they both took a 5 minute break. It was a race to see who could finish their car. Miraculously both cars were good enough to race within the 5 minutes. Heilbrunn had lost 3rd gear and Daniel Giraldo broke his shifter lever. Alex Heilbrunn took the win against the Hachi Roku.

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Next up, Daniel Giraldo and Dan Burkett duked it out for 3rd place. Giraldo took the win for that, which left us with the undecided factor of the 1st place finisher.
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Alex Heilbrunn and Spike Chen, two extremely aggressive drivers, lined up for the winner’s race. It was a heated run, with both drivers choosing aggressive lines; they did an amazing job at staying glued to each other’s doors. When the time for podium came, it was decided that the winner is Alex Heilbrunn! Spike Chen came in second, and Danny Giraldo in third place.

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It was amazing to see all of the drivers efforts in the top 16 and qualifying. There was so much smoke being made (mostly by Heilbrunn and Chen), and it was a hot, long weekend. The battles got really aggressive, and it is quite impressive for Alex Heilbrunn to take the win with a missing 3rd gear, as well as for Daniel Giraldo to come back after flux welding his shifter to take 3rd place. I was blown away by the hard work and dedication of the drivers and I can’t wait to see what Round 2 will bring us!

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Check out the Gallery: http://www.wreckedmagazine.com/gallery/thumbnails.php?album=382&page=1

Formula Drift Long Beach Practice/Qualifying [GALLERY]

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Formula Drift Long Beach kicks off this weekend. Check out the rest of the gallery:

http://www.wreckedmagazine.com/gallery/thumbnails.php?album=385

Formula Drift Round 1 Bracket Breakdown with Tandem Battles

KenGushi

Here are the Top 32 brackets and we grouped together the potential Top 16 pairings as well. Sit back and get ready for an insane Round 1 of Formula Drift with the new season officially underway. Here is how they are set:

LEFT BRACKET

1 Michael Essa vs. 32 Jeremy Richter
16 Patrick Mordaunt vs. 17 Mats Baribeau

8 Chelsea DeNofa vs. 25 Dennis Mertzanis
9 Forrest Wang vs. 24 Carl Rydquist

4 Kenneth Moen vs. 29 Geoff Stoneback
13 Kyle Mohan vs. 20 Robbie Nishida

5 Fredric Aasbo vs. 28 Marc Landerville
12 Conrad Grunewald vs. 21 Jhonnathan Castro

RIGHT BRACKET

2 Vaughn Gittin Jr. vs. 30 Dave Briggs
15 Darren McNamara vs. 18 Dean Kearney

7 Chris Forsberg vs. 25 Daijiro Yoshihara
10 Pat Goodin vs. 23 Daigo Saito

3 Tyler McQuarrie vs. 30 Tony Angelo
14 Odi Bakchis vs. 19 Ken Gushi

6 Justin Pawlak vs. 27 Jeff Jones
12 Ryan Tuerck vs. 22 Alec Hohnadell

Formula Drift Long Beach 2014 Qualifying [RESULTS]

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1. Michael Essa
2. Vaughn Gittin
3. Tyler McQuarrie
4. Kenneth Moen
5. Fredric Aasbo
6. Justin Pawlak
7.Chris Forsberg
8. Chelesa Denofa
9. Forrest Wang
10. Pat Goodin
11. Ryan Tuerck
12. Conrad Gruenwald
13. Kyle Mohna
14. Odi Bakchis
15. Darren McNamara
16. Pat Mordaunt
17. Mats Baribeau
18. Dean Kearney
19. Ken Gushi
20. Robbie Nishida
21. Jhonnattan Castro
22. Alec Hohnadell
23. Daigo Saito
24. Carl Rydquist
25. Dennis Mertzanis
26. Dai Yoshihara
27. Jeff Jones
28. Marc Landreville
29. Geoff Stoneback
30. Tony Angelo
31. Dave Briggs
32. Jeremy Richter

Justin Pawlak Wall Rides of Long Beach

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Justin Pawlak compiled this wall ride photo of him tagging the Streets of Long Beach outside clipping point wall from 2009, 2011, and 2013. His 2013 Formula Drift season wound up in a bit of a disaster when he went too deep in his first qualifying run and wrecked the car. His team at RTS did get it repaired so he could make his second qualifying pass. Here are some videos to boot with these amazing pictures.

2009 Formula Drift Long Beach Wall Tap

2011 Formula Drift Long Beach Qualifying Run

2013 Formula Drift Media Day (First Run off the Rig)

2013 Formula Drift Qualifying Run 1 with Crash

Falken Tire 2013 Formula Drift Season Year in Review [VIDEO]

The Falken Tire team compiled a season of highlights for the 2013 Formula Drift season in this video. Things didn’t quite go to plan this season with the teams best finisher Justin Pawlak only coming sixth in the championship. The 2014 season for Falken Tire should be interesting with the biggest news to date released about Dai Yoshihara hopping into a Subaru BRZ.

Just Drift Presents All Star Bash / Toy Drift at WSIR [VIDEO]

This Vimeo video from Just Drift shows off what fun all these drivers had collecting toys for the holidays. In attendance was BG, Justin Pawlak, Matt Powers, Odi Bakchis, Danny George, Matt Field, Forrest Wang and plenty of other familiar drifting stars from the west coast. Will Roegge made an awesome video with some awesome follow car action.

 

StateofStance Visits the Get Nutz Lab in Las Vegas [VIDEO]

Here is another video from the Las Vegas shop of Forrest Wang’s Get Nutz Lab from SEMA time. Ryan Tuerck paid a visit to the shop and smashed up a 240sx and now the guys from StateofStance are in attendance as well to make a little video of the amazing course they have built.

Formula D: Title Fight by State of Stance [VIDEO]

Check out State of Stance’s video highlighting some of the most action-packed moments at Formula Drift’s Title Fight in Irwindale. They were able to capture some pretty cool runs such as the close tandem battles with Daigo Saito  going against Falken drivers Justin Pawlak and Pat Goodin and previous years’ champions Chris Forseberg and Daijiro Yoshihara going head to head.  In the video you’ll be able to see Ryan Kado and Corey Hosford and their aggressive, nearly wall-scraping performances. Lastly, you can see a few high-angled, smokey runs featuring Mike Essa, ending with him being awarded the 2013 series champ.

2013 Bash Bangers Part 5 – All-Star Bash [VIDEO]

The fifth installment of Bash Bangers comes from All-Star Bash. Insert 2pac soundtrack and you have quite the recap of the West Coast American drift’s biggest event by far. Put together by the guys from Hoonigan.