Vaughn Gittin Jr.

2016 Formula Drift Round 4 in New Jersey [GALLERY]

AndyGray.FDNJ
ChrisForsberg.VaughnGittinJr
RyanTuerck.KenGushi

 

 

All of the action and photos from Formula Drift New Jersey are here! Mike Tseng did some great coverage capturing the moments leading up to the Vaughn Gittin Jr. victory at Wall Speedway in New Jersey.

Check out the Gallery: http://www.wreckedmagazine.com/gallery/thumbnails.php?album=472

10 Things I Learned from Formula Drift New Jersey Round 4

BMWM3

10. The BMW chassis is looking Hot in 2016
Man, the BMW chassis is looking like it should be hot property after this drift season. BMW has seen a podium at 75% of the events this year and some of the most notable drifting has come from the likes of Essa, Moen, Heilbrunn, Bluss, and DeNofa all in the BMW camp. The changes in the series seem to favoring this chassis in a big way.

VaughnGittinJr
9. Vaughn Gittin Jr. Ties Sam Hubinette for Event Wins Record
Vaughn Gittin Jr. battled his good friend Chris Forsberg in the finals at Wall Speedway and won! It was also a tie-breaker between the two friends. Chris Forsberg and Vaughn Gittin Jr. both had 8 event wins going into this event in New Jersey. It also happened to be a home track for both drivers who grew up within hour of Wall. Tons of narrative and storyline here as Vaughn Gittin Jr. prevailed and tied the record holder Sam Hubinette now with 9 event victories. An even crazier point made by our stats guru Jacob Leveton, Vaughn’s first win actually came after Sam Hubinette’s last win of their respective careers.

ForrestWang
8. Forrest Wang Retirement is Tough to Swallow
Forrest Wang retiring from Formula Drift is a tough one to realize and swallow for fans. He has the best drifting style in Formula Drift but all good things must come to an end. I also see him coming back before the end of this season but that is just pure speculation that I have no evidence for. I am kind of bummed that the Wang/Forsberg battle managed to overshadow what was a super exciting event. If you missed the event or have live under a rock, here is our analysis of the Top 16 battle.

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Vaughn Gittin Jr. vs. Alex Heilbrunn – OMT Battle – Judging Review with Ryan

VaughnGittin.AlexHeilbrunnLeading
I asked Ryan L. (Formula Drift judge) to come and provide some commentary about his calls. This is his ruling on the Vaughn Gittin Jr. vs. Alex Heilbrunn Final Four OMT battle.
Gittin leading: Gittin initiates really well and stays up high on OZ1, rubbing his bumper on the guardrail. Slight lack of proximity on imitation from Hailbrunn, he is lower on OZ1 with less angle. He gains proximity by mid OZ1, joins with Gittin as he comes off of OZ1. Vaughn does a great job on OZ1, Heilbrunn straightens just before he comes off of the bank, and does a slight shimmy on the flat just before IC1, before gaining angle again before IC1. Heilbrunn with low angle passing by IC1, regains proximity by OZ2. Gittin fills OZ2 with angle and hits both IC2 and IC3. Heilbrunn with good proximity through infield to finish, Gittin does a good job of attaining IC4.
AlexHeilbrunnLead
Heilbrunn leading: Good initiation from Heilbrunn, but he is lower on OZ1 than Gittin was, and Gittin has better proximity through OZ1 on the same line as Heilbrunn. Heilbrunn comes off of OZ1 early and passes by IC1 with low angle. Gittin loses proximity exiting OZ1 and by IC1. Heilbrunn with good angle through OZ2, puts one tire up on the bank (1wheel off). Heilbrunn misses IC1 (beyond all 3 hash marks at the clip), misses IC3 (looks like he’s beyond the 3 hash marks as well) with low angle. Gittin has very low proximity at this point. Heilbrunn does a good job of reaching the T&G but is slightly off of IC4. Gittin with somewhat better proximity than through the infield, but still low.
AlexHeilbrunn.Gap
Judge Ryan L Verdict: I chose Gittin for a few reasons. First of all, Gittin’s lead run was very, very good. Probably the best line and angle combo on OZ1 during all of Top 32. He did what we asked by running as close to a 100 point qualifying lap, which we repeatedly said was very important to do in the lead position. Secondly, Heilbrunn straightened exiting OZ1 while chasing Gittin, which I can’t overlook. Thirdly, Heilbrunn gained some distance on Gittin while leading, but he missed 3 critical points with lower angle while doing so: IC2, IC3 and IC4. It looked like an attempt to get away from Gittin, which he did, but he did not fulfill his duties as a lead driver in doing so.
We pulled clips from this video on NetworkA that shows all of Vaughn’s runs to his victory. Sadly Network A doesn’t have embed capabilities and they also didn’t isolate this run from what I could find:
http://formuladrift.networka.com/na-fd-vgruns

2016 Formula Drift Round 4 at New Jersey [RESULTS]

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Vaughn Gittin Jr. continues his focus and domination of the 2016 season in his three wheel Mustang. Wow, a bummer that Forsberg had an issue in follow forcing him to call 5 minutes or this battle could of been for the ages. The Vaughn Gittin Jr. follow run for him to win the event was insane! Rookie Alex Heilbrunn held his own and pushed Vaughn into an OMT battle but didn’t have enough in it. Here is how the podium finishes:

1. Vaughn Gittin Jr.
2. Chris Forsberg
3. Alex Heilbrunn (Rookie)
4. Ken Gushi

2016 Formula Drift Round 4 New Jersey Qualifying [RESULTS]

DaiYoshihara

Here is the qualifying results from a gorgeous day in New Jersey. Only 30 drivers managed to get points this weekend leaving two bye runs for the top qualifiers into the Top 32. Dai Yoshihara looked insane during qualifying with two 93 point runs to lock in first place on Odi Bakchis on a style score tie breaker.

1. Dai Yoshihara 93
2. Odi Bakchis 93
3. Chelsea DeNofa 92
4. Vaughn Gittin Jr. 91
5. Fredric Aasbo 90
6. Ryan Tuerck 89
7. Chris Forsberg 88
8. Robbie Nishida 87
9. Alex Heilbrunn 84
10. Tyler McQuarrie 84
11. Ken Gushi 82
12. Justin Pawlak 82
13. Krisptas Bluss 81
14. Matt Field 80
15. Michael Essa 78
16. Alec Hohnadell 78
17. Dean Kearney 77
18. Jhonnathan Castro 76
19. Charles Ng 75
20. Andy Gray 75
21. Kyle Mohan 75
22. Juna Rintanen 75
23. Forrest Wang 74
24. Geoff Stoneback 74
25. Matt Coffman 73
26. Jeff Jones 72
27. Pat Goodin 72
28. Pat Mordaunt 64
29. Cameron Moore 55
30. Faruk Kugay 54
31. Mad Mike Whiddett Did Not Run
32. Kenneth Moen Did Not Run

Tandem Bracket Left
Dai Yoshihara vs. BYE
Alec Hohnadell vs. Dean Kearney
Robbie Nishida vs. Matt Coffman
Alex Heilbrunn vs. Geoff Stoneback
Vaughn Gittin Jr. vs. Cameron Moore
Kristaps Bluss vs. Andrew Gray
Fredric Aasbo vs. Pat Mordaunt
Justin Pawlak vs. Kyle Mohan

Tandem Bracket Right
Odi Bakchis vs. BYE
Michael Essa vs. Jhonnathan Castro
Chris Forsberg vs. Jeff Jones
Tyler McQaurrie vs. Forrest Wang
Chelsea DeNofa vs. Faruk Kugay
Matt Field vs. Charles Ng
Ryan Tuerck vs. Pat Goodin
Ken Gushi vs. Juha Rintanen

2016 Formula Drift Round 3 Orlando Speed World [GALLERY]

MichaelEssa.KristapsBluss VaughnGittinJr DirkStratton

Formula Drift rolled into Orlando Speed World and aside from the ridiculous heat and the glued tires it was a really fun event.

 

Check out the Gallery: http://www.wreckedmagazine.com/gallery/thumbnails.php?album=470

10 Things I Learned About Formula Drift Orlando

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10. Can Jhonnattan Castro Keep Finding that Potential?
The last time I remember Castro driving this good was at Homestead in Miami two season ago. He actually looked solid and consistent out of the box and it wasn’t the biggest shock to me when he took out Vaughn Gittin Jr. in the Top 16. Jhonnattan needs to spend some serious time figuring out why he manages to drift so good in Florida. I cannot figure out if its because he is close to home, the humidity, his family/friends around, or just a random round he focuses in on drifting. He has the driver ability and talents in my eyes. Now, he just needs to dig up what makes him more focused and repeat repeat repeat.

ChrisForsberg.Slow
9. Chris Forsberg’s 370z Looked Slow and Off the Pace
This season seems to of left behind Chris Forsberg’s 370z in terms of pace and speed around the course. All weekend at Orlando Speed World his car looked visually slower than some other teams on the grid. This was highlighted in a major way with his battle against Kristaps Bluss in the Final Four. If you watch the runs, Forsberg enters on Bluss door but then the BMW just powers through the course and speeds up at angle around the bank and Forsberg’s 370z cannot seem to do that. The car isn’t so slow that is belongs in Pro 2 or anything but his speed while drifting could make the difference between a third championship and finishing fourth place.

NoTireDrifting
8. Drifting without Tires
The rule changes with a tire debead seemingly have confused about 90% of Formula Drift fans out there. I will try and clear it up quickly but it might require its own follow up post. Last year the rule was – a tire debead at anytime in a tandem battle resulted in a loss. In 2016, the rules state you cannot fix a tire debead but it does not result or impact a zero score. So, for example, Jeff Jones in qualifying lost a tire and kept drifting around the course. He was given a 70 for his run and the tire had no impact directly on the score but you have to imagine it slowed him down impacting his score from him having say, four tires. So, if you are in the first part of a tandem battle, you lose, because a car without a tire doesn’t pass tech to run again. If its the second run of a battle and you can keep going then its fair game. Now, here are the list of battles impacted by this rule. I respect Formula Drift for putting a line in the sand and I think teams need to figure out other ways than running 11 PSI in tires to get grip out of the car. Also, in the case of JTP – let the dude put air in his tires for crying out loud after contact and deflation.

1. Nate Hamilton Pro 2 Top 16 Battle (Loss Due to Tire Debead)
2. Mad Mike Whiddett Top 32 Battle versus Ken Gushi (Loss Due to First Round)
3. Fredric Aasbo Top 16 Battle vs Kyle Mohan (Loss Tire in follow and still won)
4. Justin Pawlak Top 16 Battle after contact with Forsberg (Ran but Spun Due to Low Tire Pressure)
5. Fredric Aasbo Final 4 Battle with Tyler McQuarrie (Lost on First Run and Tire Remounted)

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2016 Formula Drift Championship Standings – Round 3 Orlando [STANDINGS]

Aasbo-Orlando-Podium

Fredric Aasbo pushes himself into prime position to defend his 2015 championship by winning the event in Orlando, jumping into first place in the overall standings. Gittin Jr. fell to second due to his top 16 exit, while Forsberg moved up into third place overall with his second podium of the season.

Here’s a look at the Top 16 Formula Drift standings after 3 of 8 events:

1 Fredric Aasbo 206 points
2 Vaughn Gittin Jr. 194 points
3 Chris Forsberg 168 points
4 Odi Bakchis 153 points
5 Tyler McQuarrie 150 points
6 Ken Gushi 133 points
7 Kristaps Bluss 132 points
8 Chelsea Denofa* 122 points
9 Dai Yoshihara 120 points
10 Alec Hohnadell 116 points
T11 Matt Field 105 points
T11 Ryan Tuerck 105 points
13 Michael Essa 103 points
14 Forrest Wang 102 points
T15 Kenneth Moen 101 points
T15 Patrick Mordaunt 101 points

*Updated to reflect the removal of tandem points due to tire issue

2016 Formula Drift – Round 3 Orlando Qualifying [RESULTS]

VaughnGittinJr.ThreeWheelDrift

Vaughn Gittin Jr. continued his success from Atlanta, backing up his ‘perfect weekend’ with a second consecutive top qualifying effort. In total, 11 drivers had a score in the 90’s, showing just how quickly the drivers adapted to the track conditions. Many drivers stated that the conditions through the middle of the track are rough, and we saw several drivers lift a wheel or two as they crossover through the middle. It will be interesting to see how this plays out in tandem tomorrow.

Here’s a look at the final qualifying results for Orlando:

1. Vaughn Gittin Jr.
2. Ryan Tuerck
3. Odi Backhis
4. Fredric Aasbo
5. Matt Field
6. Chris Forsberg
7. Michael Essa
8. Dai Yoshihara
9. Tyler McQuarrie
10. Forrest Wang
11. Justin Pawlak
12. Kenneth Moen
13. Charles Ng
14. Ken Gushi
15. Pat Mordaunt
16.Chelsea DeNofa
17. Jhonnattan Castro
18. Matt Coffman
19. Mad Mike Whiddett
20. Kyle Mohan
21. Geoff Stoneback
22. Dean Kearney
23. Alec Hohnadell
24. Faruk Kugay
25. Juha Rintanen
26. Kristaps Bluss
27. Cameron Moore
28. Robbie Nishida
29. Andy Gray
30. Jeff Jones
31. Pat Goodin
32. Alex Heilbrunn

Here’s the tandem ladder, for those following at home:

Vaughn Gittin Jr vs Alex Heilbrunn
Chelsea Denofa vs Jhonnattan Castro
Dai Yoshihara vs Juha Rintanen
Tyler McQuarrie vs Faruk Kugay

Fredric Aasbo vs Andy Gray
Charles Ng vs Kyle Mohan
Matt Field vs Robbie Nishida
Kenneth Moen vs Geoff Stoneback

Ryan Tuerck vs Pat Goodin
Pat Mordaunt vs Matt Coffman
Michael Essa vs Kristaps Bluss
Forrest Wang vs Alec Hohnadell

Odi Bakchis vs Jeff Jones
Ken Gushi vs Mad Mike Whiddett
Chris Forsberg vs Cameron Moore
Justin Pawlak vs Dean Kearney

10 Things I Learned at Formula Drift Road Atlanta

DaiYoshihara

10. Is Dai Yoshihara Finally Back?
Watching Dai Yoshihara in qualifying I felt he was looking really good and finally putting some runs together. I looked over at Chelsea DeNofa’s spotter in fact (and told him that Dai Yoshihara would win the event during practice). Sadly, Vaughn Gittin Jr. spoiled my prediction but Dai Yoshihara is starting to look back to his old self. He has been a driver looking really short on confidence so perhaps the return to the podium will help him remember what winning feels like. This was his first podium since Long Beach in 2013. His car has looked far behind the other 86/BRZ chassis in the sport but maybe this was the start of his comeback tour!

AlecHohnadell.FormulaD

9.Alec Hohnadell Will Win An Event This Year
Alec Hohnadell has grown and developed faster than almost any drifter I have seen. The kid is world class and knows how to win things. His progression in Formula Drift is clear and I think he got a bad call in his Final Four battle with Dai Yoshihara (and actually won). Watching the battle more and more, it really seems like Alec Hohnadell should of been in the finals. I don’t think he should lose sleep over this at all however. Sometimes calls will go your way and sometimes they won’t go in your favor. I do think across these next six rounds he will score his first event victory. He currently sits 10th in the championship after his fourth place finish this weekend.

FormulaDriftPro2

8. Road Atlanta Highlights Pro 2 Behind the Curve
Pro 2 was ugly and borderline unwatchable this weekend. Drifters couldn’t enter right, couldn’t stop spinning, and also couldn’t manage to tandem. I almost want to pretend the new Pro 2 season didn’t start this weekend. Jeff Jones, Marc Landerville, and Ryan Litteral all had solid performances but that is about where it stopped for me. The event was slow and especially hard to watch as a fan. Perhaps, the need for a perfect line to run Road Atlanta well was just too much for these younger drifters. My vote is to remove Road Atlanta from the 2017 Pro 2 calendar and pretend this event never happened. I am hoping for vast improvements at Orlando Speed World.

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