Mad Mike Whiddett

Formula Drift Releases Driver List for SEMA Ignited Demo

FormulaDrift.SEMAIgnited.LasVegas

In case you haven’t got a Formula Drift fix in for the 2015 season you can see some pro FD drivers in the Las Veags Convention Center Gold Lot on Friday after SEMA. From what I understand, with a SEMA badge you can walk in free to the show. Military + Student ID is free but you must present at entry. If you cannot get in free with any of these options the promo code FORMULAD50  will give you 50% off and make the ticket $10. Here are the drivers in attendance –
Dai Yoshihara
Odi Bakchis
Mike Whiddett
Mike Essa
Alex Heilbrunn
Robbie Nishida
Daigo Saito
Dean Kearney

10 Things I learned From Formula Drift Final Fight at Irwindale Speedway

10. Daigo Saito’s Perfect Irwindale Record Comes to An End at 16 Wins

DaigoSaito

Part of me was starting to think that Daigo Saito would retire before losing at Iwindale Speedway. Sadly, a Top 16 battle with champion Fredric Aasbo after a riveting OMT battle saw Daigo Saito finally fall at the House of Drift. This puts his career track record for Irwindale Speedway at a whopping 16-1. Never has one driver been so dominate in Formula Drift history at one track and I hated to watch his undefeated record come to an end.

9. Mad Mike Whiddett Nailed It This Weekend

MadMikeWhiddett

Mad Mike Whiddett looked pretty solid at Irwindale this weekend. His return to Formula Drift in general had much more impact than his first season and I hope he returns for 2016. He made quite a run this weekend at Irwindale Speedway finally losing to the champion in the Great 8. He easily disposed of Ryan Tuerck and James Evans putting him firmly in 19th for the championship. Not a bad result considering he missed Long Beach and New Jersey.

8. Struggling Drivers Don’t Rise to Occassion at Irwindale

DaveBriggs

The bottom of the Pro list is where a ton of drivers needed to put down big performances to stay in the Pro series or at least put up points to prove they have what it takes still to compete. Dave Briggs suffered a malfunction and was eliminated early, Joon Maeng couldn’t get a score good enough to place in the Top 32 for qualifying, and Nikolett Szanto didn’t even turn a wheel. A pretty sad showing that was amplified by Mats Baribeau who crashed during qualifying and didn’t make the Top 32 as well. It will be sad to not see some of these guys in the Pro ranks for 2016, especially since I think most issues they had were mechanical.

7. Irwindale Speedway Might Not Be Going Away

Nobody really wanted to speak either way 100% but from what I gathered it is a high probability (over 50%) that Irwindale Speedway will host Formula Drift next year and possibly a few years after that with some luck. Either way, we took on a special project at Wrecked Magazine to pay tribute to the House of Drift which will come out later this month. We talked to drivers and fans about their personal favorite moment from the tracks history.

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2015 Formula Drift Championship [RESULTS]

FredricAasbo.Cha,pion

The 2015 championship is a wrap! Fredric Aasbo followed up his second place finish last year with a championship in 2015. Ken Gushi was right on his heels the whole way in what wound up a Scion dominated season. The Scion brand finished 1,2, and 4 during this Formula Drift season which is unparalleled by any OEM in this sports history. Chris Forsberg took his Nissan 370z with a respectable 3rd place season finish to follow up with his 14 championship run. Here is how the Top 20 finished up for 2015 –

1. Fredric Aasbo – 530
2. Ken Gushi – 431
3. Chris Forsberg – 382
4. Ryan Tuerck – 367
5. Odi Bakchis – 363
6. Masashi Yokoi – 324
7. Justin Pawlak – 287
8. Forrest Wang – 285
9. Matt Field – 282
10. Alec Hohnadell – 272
11. Kenneth Moen – 247
12. Daigo Saito – 238
13. Vaughn Gittin Jr – 226
14. Dean Kearney – 220
15. Chelsea DeNofa – 212
15. Tyler McQuarrie – 212
17. Pat Mordaunt – 211
18. Pat Goodin – 207
19. Mad Mike Whiddett – 192
20. Charles Ng – 191

Formula Drift World Championship contenders will grow – FD Canada Drivers List

FredricAasbo

Prior to this weekend’s Formula Drift Canada round, only nine drivers had qualified for the World Championship by driving in the Formula Drift Japan round. In order to be in contention for the World Championship title, drivers must drive in one of the three international rounds (Japan, Canada, and the yet TBD China round). However, the China round is invite-only, so drivers really only had two options. After the Texas round, here’s the current standings in the World Championship among the 9 drivers who are in contention:

Fredric Aasbo – 480 Points
Odi Bakchis – 396 Points
Masashi Yokoi – 309 Points
Matt Field – 263Points
Daigo Saito – 257 Points
Dean Kearney – 205 Points
Charles Ng – 175 Points
Robbie Nishida – 144 Points
“Mad” Mike Whiddett – 141 Points

The drivers list for this weekend’s round contains an additional four names that will be added to this list.

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10 Things I Learned from Formula Drift Round 6 Texas

10. New Track Layout is Huge Success 
OdiBakchis
The old track was a bag of crap with a single entertaining element when some of the guys would do wild entries into the sweeper (see Odi from 2014 above). The new track layout is a huge improvement, so I would like to applaud Formula Drift for making this switch. Texas still managed to bring more controversy than other rounds of the series even though it was ran in reverse. Even though this track produced the longest Top 16 in series history, I do like running this layout way more. The complexity of this layout really separates the men from the boys.

9. Two Painful Championship Slips
Screenshot 2015-08-22 13.53.33
Watching Odi Bakchis and Matt Field fall out of the championship due to random mechanical failures was a tough one to watch. Odi Bakchis lost his wheel studs in the Dean Kearney Top 32 battle which all but removed him from any championship hope. This coming after he produced at a high level throughout the last five rounds of the season. This mishap also really hurts him in the World Championship race where him and Aasbo are the two major contenders to win it all.

Matt Field earlier in the weekend suffered engine issues and rushed to qualify which didn’t workout so well and he got a 0. Sad to see these guys dominate all season and fall short towards the end of the 7 round series. You do need a decent amount of points from each event to win making it a marathon instead of a sprint.

8. Formula Drift Safety is Solid
vaughngittinjr

While most fans have been harping on the negatives of this weekend I would like to point out that the safety in this series is phenomenal. The biggest fear I see in drifting is the potential of hitting the car at an odd angle into a wall or breaking on a bank and flying into the wall. Most accidents that look tame to the naked eye cause the worst results due to all the force and impact being put onto the drivers body from one point of impact. If you see an accident that looks wild with spinnings and multiple contact points, the driver tends to be in good shape. This crash with Vaughn was another testament to HANS and the team who built his car. Video of crash on FB. A look over at Indy this weekend shows the true dangers of motorsports and how lucky Vaughn is to be in great shape.

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10 Things I Learned from Formula Drift Round 5 Seattle

10. Championship Dreams Shattered Left and Right!
OdiBakchis.ChrsiForsberg

This Seattle event marks the first time I watched so many big names and championship hopeful drivers go down for the count so early in the weekend. First, it was Ryan Tuerck going out to Stoneback in the Top 32 with a mechanical failure. Then Vaughn Gittin Jr. defeats Nitto teammate Odi Bakchis in the Top 32 putting the #1/#2 championship drivers out with 16 points + qualifying for the weekend. Then Top 16 swept up Chris Forsberg and Ken Gushi cleaning the slate of all the forward momentum from this season for those four drivers. Fredric Aasbo side stepped all the land mines and took home first place and built a huge gap in the championship for himself leaving the next two rounds a big mystery.

9. Forrest Wang Being Faulted for Inactive Chase, HUH?
ForrestWang.S15Silvia

Who knew that Mad Mike was that fast or Forrest Wang was that slow? The inactive chase penalty against Forrest Wang seemed beyond harsh to me. The judges need to wake up please! You cannot fault a guy for inactive chase when he is driving his ass off but his car is just beyond slower than another car (see Faruk Kugay vs. Alex Heilbrunn in Pro 2 for same stupid call). The inactive chase was made for the penalization of cupcaking when one driver has a dominant lead and then doesn’t chase. I always recall Jim Guthrie vs. Vaughn Gittin Jr. at Wall Speedway as a perfect utilization for this. You cannot punish people for not building drag car/rocket ships or I guess now you can do just that…. I never got the impression Wang was cup caking around the course. I think it was a tough way to end a great Top 32 battle. Not sure if I have a better answer for this one but it just feels like a bad beat in my gut.

8. Yokoi Is the New Chelsea DeNofa
Yokoi

This guy has the most insane tandem follow runs of this season. I wish drivers would get out of his way so he could keep winning. His first battle with Pat Goodin was wild and I think he edged out Goodin in the end but judges went OMT. His chase on the OMT was just balls deep insane but sadly he made contact with Goodin and lost. Sound like someone else you know? Yes, Chelsea DeNofa who at times performs the best tandem follow runs the world has ever seen but mostly to a detriment in the end. Can Yokoi overcome that issue and continue to put on a show that is entertaining everyone while running clean? I guess time will tell us but he is looking more serious round by round in that chromed out 2JZ powered S15 Silvia.

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2015 Formula Drift Round 5 Qualifying [RESULTS]

KennethMoen

Formula Drift qualifying at Evergreen Speedway was an interesting one. It went quickly but so many drivers scored a zero due to the rain and then transition to dry during the weekend. It was a tough one and we just wish that the weather would behave for a weekend already. Here is how they qualified-

1. Kenneth Moen 89
2. Ryan Tuerck 87
3. Fredric Aasbo 87
4. Ken Gushi 85
5. Kristaps Bluss 84
6. Forrest Wang 84
7. Matt Field 81
8. Chris Forsberg 80
9. Alec Hohnadell 79
10. Chelsea DeNofa 79
11. Odi Bakchis 78
12. Justin Pawlak 77
13. Pat Mordaunt 77
14. Michael Essa 77
15. Pat Goodin 76
16. Charles Ng 76
17. Daigo Saito 76
18. Masashi Yokoi 75
19. Dai Yoshihara 75
20. Tyler McQuarrie 75
21. Dean Kearney 74
22. Vaughn Gittin Jr. 74
23. Conrad Grunewald 74
24. Kyle Mohan 73
25. Nate Hamilton 72
26. Jhonnattan Castro 68
27. Mad Mike Whiddett 67
28. Matt Coffman 66
29. Brandon Wicknick 66
30. Dan Savage 64
31. Geoff Stoneback 62
32. Jeff Jones 61

Top 32 Tandem Battle
Left Bracket
Kenneth Moen vs. Jeff Jones
Charles Ng vs. Daigo Saito

Chris Forsberg vs. Nate Hamilton
Alec Hohnadell vs. Kyle Mohan

Ken Gushi vs. Brandon Wicknick
Pat Morduant vs. Tyler McQuarrie

Kristaps Bluss vs. Matt Coffman
Justin Pawlak vs. Dean Kearney

Right Bracket
Ryan Tuerck vs. Geoff Stoneback
Pat Goodin vs. Masahi Yokoi

Matt Field vs. Jhonnattan Castro
Chelsea DeNofa vs. Conrad Grunewald

Fredric Aasbo vs. Dan Savage
Michael Essa vs. Dai Yoshihara

Forrest Wang vs. Mad Mike Whiddett
Odi Bakchivs vs. Vaughn Gittin Jr.

2015 Formula Drift Japan Drivers List

FredricAasbo.RSR.ToyotaFT86

Formula Drift Japan is coming up this weekend and is an official Formula Drift World Championship round. Mad Mike Whiddett is listed to be driving a Mazda RX7, Matt Field is listed in a S14, and a ton of Japanese drivers are throw in the mix. Here is the full drivers list –

1. Yuji Saito
2. Mitsuru Yoshioka
3. Hokuto Matsuyama
4. Chiam Benjamin
5. Kenji Takayama
6. Yoshichika Tamagawa
7. Shinichirou Saito
8. Masataka Hawashima
9. Shunnosuke Mito
10. Daisuke Nakamura
11. Masayoshi Tokita
12. Shinji Minowa
13. Tetsuya Hibino
14. Kawabata Masato
15. Tomokazu Hirota
16. Masao Suenaga
17. Takahiro Imamura
18. Toshiharu Kazama
19. Hirohide Tanaka
20. Tsutomu Fujio
21. Tetsuya Iha
22. Inafuku Ryo
23. Yoshinori Shinozaki
24. Shigehisa Sasayama
25. Yuki Inaoka
26. Keiichirou Kadekaru
27. Noritsugu Totani
28. Tadahiro Fukada
29. Yuji Tanaka
30. Kazumi Takahashi
31. Daichi Oshiro
32. Sheng Nian Ng
33. Kazuya Iizuka
34. Michihiro Takator
35. Kiyotaka Yamazaki
36. Toshimitsu Masuda
37. Atsushi Taniguchi
38. Yoshitatsu Kaneda
39. Koji Yamaguchi
40. Yusuke Kusaba
41. Daisuke Hasegawa
42. Tomohiro Nakamura
43. Kenji Yaminaka
44. Kazaya Taguchi
45. Andrew Gray
46. Manabu Fujinaka
47. Kazuki Hayashi
48. Kuniaki Takahashi
49. Charles Ng
50. Daigo Saito
51. Dean Kearney
52. Mad Mike Whiddett
53. Robbie Nishida
54. Masashi Yokoi
55. Matt Field
56. Fredric Aasbo
57. Odi Bakchis

Another Look at Formula Drift Road Atlanta [GALLERY]

MadMike

TannerFoust

Jaron Cole took on Road Atlanta for us as well to document what happened at one of the best Formula Drift events in history. The entertainment and driving value never sell short when the series rolls into Georgia. Follow the link below to comb through another excellent gallery.

 

Check it out: http://www.wreckedmagazine.com/gallery/thumbnails.php?album=449

10 Things I Learned from Formula Drift Road Atlanta

TeamRowdyFans
10. The fans at Road Atlanta Are Still Ridiculous
The fans and atmosphere seem to be one of the most entertaining parts of Road Atlanta each year. Fans bring posters, beer, EZ-Ups, and loud voices making it by far 100% the best atmosphere on the Formula Drift circuit. Something about sitting in clay on a big hill makes your experience so much more intimate than big concrete and steel bleachers.

TannerFoust.VWPassat

9. Tanner Foust is Gone Until Irwindale
Tanner Foust had a lackluster return to Formula Drift in the VW Passat which kind of has left me disappointed. The fact he won’t return to the car until Irwindale makes me even sadder. This Euro/Chevy fusion project I felt was going to turn a corner any minute now and start dominating our sport. We can thank Geoff Stoneback for crushing our dreams of VW domination over the Road Atlanta weekend but more on that later. If Tanner Foust needs more seat time before Irwindale he is openly invited to attend any of the three remaining Street Driven Tour events this season!

OdiBakchis

8. Odi Bakchis – The 2015 Champion Contendor No One Is Talking About
Odi Bakchis just took the championship lead from Fredric Aasbo this weekend by a solid 44 points. Is anyone even talking about Odi Bakchis winning a championship before this weekend? My guess is probably not but he managed to score BIG points in two consecutive rounds with two different cars. At some point we need to stand by and acknowledge that he could win this thing in 2015 leaving the big funded teams in the dust. Not to mention he could also win the World Championship since he has a car ready for Asia.

JustinPawlak
7. Justin Pawlak Drove the Best This Weekend
JTP really showed me his most talented driving this weekend throwing that Ford Mustang around a course that left me speechless. I actually think his second qualifying run earned him somewhere in the 95+ column on his qualifying run. He really should of landed on the podium but that is racing for you. If he can keep up this progression in the new Ford Mustang he will land several podiums before the season was over. If you missed his second qualifying run, do yourself a favor, and dig it up from DailyMotion and give it a watch.
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