Toshiki Yoshioka

A Look at Nitrous in Drifting and Chris Forsberg’s 370z Setup

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Nitrous Oxide brings up images of hot rods, drag strips, and 200-mile-per-hour runs, but the history of its use is long in the drifting world as well. From the D1 Grand Prix to Formula Drift, nitrous use is well known and used in turbocharger setups to overcome boost lag as well as a nearly instantaneous boost in power for naturally aspirated setups. Chris Forsberg also knows nitrous and it’s more than just the name of the energy drink he’s associated with. His pro-car uses a very unique setup and his consistency shows that it’s rather reliable if tuned right and utilized in the right situation.

Even in the earliest days of professional drifting in Japan, nitrous oxide was used in cars where extra power was needed but a turbocharger wasn’t necessarily the right choice in power adder. In the early days, turbocharger and supercharger technology wasn’t as sophisticated as it is now so boost lag, where the turbocharger wasn’t being driven fast enough to produce boost, was a big concern and superchargers weren’t a great choice because they aren’t exactly an easy bolt on as installing a turbo with a log manifold. Nitrous, on the other hand, is nearly instant as soon as you hit the button to activate it, easy to install since all you are doing is plumbing it and the fuel system, and tuning nitrous for power is as simple installing a jet. Ok, that’s still making it too simple but you get the rough idea on why it’s looked to as the go-to for power adding.

NOS: Not Just for The Fast and the Furious

Nitrous is really good for naturally aspirated setups in a world of turbos and superchargers. Many of you may be familiar with the Droo-P Toyota Corolla AE86 once driven by Toshiki Yoshioka. The car made 300-horsepower with individual throttle bodies in a 1.8-liter displacement but without a turbo. That was thanks to a “twin-shot” “dry” nitrous setup by Nitrous Oxide Systems (NOS), “dry” meaning no additional fuel was injected with the nitrous when activated. The opposite, a “wet” setup, injects fuel and nitrous at the same time. We’ll touch on how nitrous works in a moment but it shows the power you can get out of such a simple setup. Just imagine what kind of power you can get out of something with a bigger displacement, more cylinders, or a second type of power adder and you can see how this could start to make sanctioning bodies weary of it.

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The D1GP/JAF Ban

That’s exactly what happened with the D1 Grand Prix and why you don’t see it used anymore. Prior to the prohibition of its use in competition in 2014, the D1GP and its sanctioning body the Japan Automobile Federation (JAF) were already considering banning it. Not only was it expensive to use but Japan was looking into regulating nitrous oxide by making it labeled as a scheduled drug. This would have meant that use outside of medical purposes would be prohibited nationwide. What pushed the ban over the edge was an incident at the 2013 Tokyo Drift where Akinori Utsumi and Naoto Suenaga made impact and Suenaga’s car went airborne. That was all it took – the D1GP and JAF banned nitrous from use in their sanctioned events in 2014 and on. However, use in non-JAF events hasn’t been banned and is why you will still see it used when allowed in Japan. It’s still very expensive to purchase bottles and refills of it, though.

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How It Works

Read More…

Toshiki Yoshioka to drive Apex’i Lexus SC430, not Kuniaki Takahashi

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We stumbled on this photo of Toshiki Yoshioka sitting in the Apex’i Lexus SC430 on social media (complete with his name on the door card and all), and have confirmed with the team that Yoshioka will be driving the car this weekend instead of Takahashi. Yoshioka has missed most of this season in his Subaru BR-Z after placing 24th overall last season, only driving in Texas but failing to qualify. Takahashi came into the season with a lot of hype, but did not live up to it as we noted after Long Beach. Takahashi currently sits in 41st place and will not qualify to compete in Pro 1 next season, being relegated to Pro 2.

2014 Formula Drift Round 6 Texas Qualifying [RESULTS]

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Wow, a pretty wild qualifying session that barely avoided the rain thanks to a delay due to asphalt chunking up off the track. Here is how they finished up with Forrest Wang dropping an insane top qualifying run:

1. Forrest Wang – 94
2. Chris Forsberg – 89
3. Chelsea DeNofa – 88
4. Dean Kearney – 87
5. Odi Bakchis – 86
6. Fredric Aasbo -86
7. Daigo Saito – 83
8. Ken Gushi – 82
9. Dai Yoshihara – 82
10. Ryan Tuerck – 81
11. Michael Essa – 81
12. Tyler McQuarrie – 80
13. Vaughn Gittin Jr. – 80
14. Pat Goodin – 77
15. Jhonnattan Castro – 77
16. Conrad Grunewald – 77
17. Geoff Stoneback – 76
18. Ryan Kado – 75
19. Kenneth Moen – 74
20. Matt Field – 73
21. Matt Coffman – 73
22. Justin Pawlak – 73
23. Robbie Nishida – 71
24. Joon Maeng – 70
25. Kyle Mohan – 69
26. Marc Landerville – 68
27. Darren McNamara – 68
28. Charles Ng – 68
29. Taka Aono – 67
30. Karl Osaki – 67
31. Juha Rintanen – 66
32. Will Parsons – 66
Read More…

How the Drifters Stacked Up at Pikes Peak Hill Climb

KenGushi

As we mentioned in our introduction post three drifting drivers hit the hill to compete in the Pikes Peak Hillclimb. Out of 130 competitors they fared pretty well with one even getting on the podium for his class.  Here is how they finished:

17th- (3rd in Class – Time Attack) Ken Gushi – 10:33.188
19th- (4th in Class – Time Attack) Toshiki Yoshioka – 10:34.564
123rd- (9th in Class – Pikes Open) Danny George – DNF

Pikes Peak 2014 – Drift Edition

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Another summer has arrived and more drifters are set to tackle the big mountain this week! So this weekend is Drift Week in Colorado where at Pikes Peak International Raceway drivers will get $10k in prizes (Matt Field won last year). The big show is happening just up the mountain for the world’s most famous HillClimb weekend. Here is who we have found attending related to drift. Keep an eye out for these guys on the Pikes Peak Livestream! Former Formula Drift driver Tony Brakohiapa was on the list but won’t be in attendance due to vehicle issues with his Ford Mustang.

Danny George – Formula Drift Mazda Miata
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Ken Gushi – Greddy Scion FR-S
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Toshiki Yoshioka – GTNet Subaru BRZ
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Motegi Super Drift $25k Challenge Qualifying [RESULTS]

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Motegi Super Drift $25k Challenge has wrapped up day one with practice and qualifying! Dennis Mertzanis and Brandon Wicknick never managed to make a pass and Robbie Nishida lost his hood due to it not being latched on the first pass. Everyone else successfully gained a score for the weekend. He is how they finished:

1. Forrest Wang – 87
2. Daigo Saito – 85
3. Odi Bakchis – 84
4. Kenneth Moen – 84
5. Fredric Aasbo – 81
6. Michael Essa – 80
7. Dean Kearney – 76
8. Toshiki Yoshioka – 70
9. Jeff Jones – 69
10. Ryan Kado – 66
11. Kuniaki Takahashi – 62
12. Charles Ng – 59
13. Kyle Mohan – 50
14. Robbie Nishida – 0
15. Brandon Wicknick – 0
16. Dennis Mertzanis – 0

 

Top 16 Tandem Pairings
Forrest Wang vs. Dennis Mertzanis
Daigo Saito vs. Brandon Wicknick
Odi Bakchis vs. Robbie Nishida
Kenneth Moen vs. Kyle Mohan
Fredric Aasbo vs. Charles Ng
Micahel Essa vs. Kuniaki Takahashi
Dean Kearney vs. Ryan Kado
Toshiki Yoshioka vs. Jeff Jones

Toshiki Yoshioka Bringings Retaks S13.5 to Super Drift

Toshiki Yoshioka didn’t return for this season of Formula Drift in his Subaru but he will be making a return in the old Retaks S13.5 to compete in Super Drift. Some savvy readers I am sure noted he was on the entry list for this weekends race at the Long Beach Grand Prix. Yoshioka is ready to hop into the drivers seat and compete for the $25k starting tomorrow with qualifying.

Motegi Wheels $25k Super Drift Challenge [DRIVERS LIST]

MattPowers

This weekend during the Long Beach Grand Prix selected drivers have been entered to participate in the Motegi Super Drift Challenge for a big purse of $25,000 on the line. Qualifying happens Friday night at 7:00pm during the Long Beach Grand Prix and the main event tandem competition takes place Saturday at 7:00pm! Here is the drivers list:

Odi Bakchis
Fredric Aasbo
Ryan Kado
Mike Essa
Robbie Nishida
Dean Kearney
Brandon Wicknick
Forrest Wang
Dennis Mertzanis
Charles Ng
Jeff Jones
Kenneth Moen
Toshiki Yoshioka
Kyle Mohan
Kuniaki Takahashi
Daigo Saito

10 Things I Learned from Formula Drift Round 1 This Weekend

FDLB

This weekend marked the start of the 11th season of Formula Drift and my 10th year anniversary covering the sport. To celebrate my tenth season I put together 10 things I learned from the start of the 2014 Formula Drift season.

10. The Fanfare of a “D1GP” Driver Coming to Formula Drift is OverTakahashi

The Japanese drivers movement in Formula Drift just isn’t what it used to be. Kuniaki Takahashi arrived this weekend with little to no fanfare or “buzz” from the respective crowd. The fact that other drives are vanishing, like Toshiki Yoshioka, also shows that sponsors don’t  want to throw money at them either. Take it for good or bad but simply having D1GP credentials isn’t getting you very far in 2014. You have to perform on the track to get noticed.

9. The Canadian Drivers Deserve More RespectMarcLanderville

No one in America seems to respect Canadian drifting very much for some reason. The series’ instability probably doesn’t help but the Canadian contingent in Formula Drift is really holding its own these days. Marc Landerville did fantastic this weekend in his Standard Suspension 240sx and probably would of won ROTY if he ran all 7 rounds in 2013. Dave Briggs just gets better every single year and gave Vaughn Gittin Jr. a run for his money in Top 32 this weekend! Then Mats Baribeau took Michael Essa to battle (that after rewatching the Livestream today I am convinced he really won and the judges overlooked a huge correction/straighten from Michael Essa).

Regardless they took home ROTY in 2013 and clearly have the cars and driving skill to go blow for blow with American drift drivers as they have shown in 2013 and are continuing through 2014. Later this year, Formula Drift even has a demo going on in Montreal.

8. The Mandatory HANS Device was a Brilliant Safety Addition JoonMaeng

Personally, I have witnessed a ton of insane drifting accidents. I laid my eyes on Chris Cook launch his Dodge Viper into the air at NOPI LA, saw Dennis Mertzanis split his 240sx on a uneven stacked k-rail, and watched Chris Jeanerret flip over at Irwindale last season. One thing all of these accidents had in common was the huge movement of the drivers’ heads as the car battled with gravity and physics before coming to a stop.

The image I posted above of Joon Maeng’s 240sx shows it flying into the wall and his head is clear as day, sitting properly in the back of the seat. In fact, you can look at our gallery images of the wreck or our video to see that his head didn’t really move at all. This is a huge safety addition that Formula Drift has implemented before anything awful has happened to a driver in one of these wrecks. 

7. The old ARK Hyundai Genesis is Still Crap. Pat Mordaunt Deserves BetterPatMordaunt

During the preseason this was already a move that had me scratching my head. In case you didn’t realize, this weekend Pat Mordaunt and Dennis Mertzanis campaigned twin identical cars from the outside with different colored seats and vastly different engine packages. The one Pat Mordaunt is campaigning is actually the white Genesis coupe that Dennis drove last year. Last year that car was a pile of crap and suffered a ton of vehicle malfunctions keeping Dennis out of competition.

Pat sitting on the sidelines with a blown engine right out of the gate really shows this car wasn’t actually made much better in the long off-season. Pat deserves much better and I feel the only way they should remedy this situation is throwing away the LAMBDA V6 Hyundai motor and giving him a 1000hp Vortech Supercharged LS7 engine like Dennis Mertzanis (who made into the Top 16). Oh yeah, did I mention the motor that popped this weekend was already the backup motor since the original blew up in testing?

6. If Chelsea DeNofa Could Only Overcome Mechanical Issues….ChelseaDeNofa

Chelsea DeNofa is one of the most exciting tandem drivers on the grid with an out-of-this-world tandem style. His BMW is quite possibly his biggest opponent in the series. He went out in 2013 due to mechanical failures more than defeat by other drivers. This problem seems like it is going to continue in 2014. If Chelsea could ever sort out this car 100%, he could easily finish the season in the Top 5.

5. Alec Hohnadell and Geoff Stoneback Are the Future of this SportAlecHohnadel

I singled out both of these drivers mainly because they qualified for Top 32 on their first try and didn’t look “out of place”. Geoff Stoneback made his first pass ever in the car right at qualifying and still drove the car into the main show. These guys have style and have cool enough heads to perform when it counts, so watch out for these two in the very immediate future. They both led me to believe they can be 2014 Rookie of the Year.

4. Michael Essa Was Not a Fluke ChampionMichaleEssa.2014

The championship last year was won in less than desirable conditions for Michael Essa and his team. With a blown engine he sat on the sideline and hoped that Forsberg couldn’t finish high enough in the points to bump him into second. His real challenge in the off-season was leaving GSR Autosport and running his own program for the 2014 season. Well, he answered the critics’ questions pretty loudly with a top qualifying spot and third place finish.

3. Kenneth Moen Could Contend for the 14 Championship and More Europeans Are ComingKennethMoen

Kenneth Moen finally got out of that beat-to-hell Nissan 350z chassis and dominated the competition in this Nissan 240sx. The way he attacked the Turn 10 wall was just mind boggling. His second qualifying run, after crashing in practice, slotted him with a qualifying run in the 90s! Kenneth Moen is going to contend for a championship in 2014 pending some huge disaster. Quite a few top European drivers were roaming around the paddock this weekend and some of them told me flat out they are working on a way to come compete in Formula Drift.

2. Chris Forsberg is Serious About a Championship and Hyper FocusedChrisForsberg

Chris Forsberg is a changed man in 2014. He has this intense focus I have never seen from him since I first met him in 2005. His car going “to the dark side” just seems like a mirror image of how he is taking on the season. He looked like he was going to win Round 1 on Friday morning and saw it through by facing one of the hardest brackets of the weekend and finishing first. Chris isn’t going to feel redemption for 2013 unless he wins the 2014 championship and that is clearly what he is thinking about 24/7.

1. The New Format Is Brilliant but 3rd Place Battle Elimination was an Over StepFordMustang.Drift

In my 10 years of attending Formula Drift as a fan, reporter, and photographer, this was the best run event I have attended. The judging fixes were spot on and many “first timers” in the audience I spoke with were entertained throughout the weekend. The event ran so smoothly that it ended almost one hour before the city imposed sound curfew. So my only thing is – since the events are running so well and ahead of schedule, can we just go ahead and get the third place battle back please?

First off, I would have loved to see Michael Essa and Justin Pawlak do battle for a spot on the podium. The fact that Michael Essa won his Top 8 battle and secured a place on the podium didn’t sit well with me. He could of parked it (not run his Top 4 battle) and stood up on the podium. So a top qualifier could win three tandem battles and take a podium spot under this new system just seems all too easy for that many championship points.

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

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