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Robbie Nishida Set to Miss Formula Drift Atlanta

RobbieNishida

The news was broken that Robbie Nishida will be missing Formula Drift Atlanta this weekend for a personal matter. I cannot even remember the last time I was at a pro drift event without Robbie Nishida present! His new looking Infiniti G37 will be put away this weekend but he has confirmed he will be back for Round 3 at Orlando Speed World.

Ryan Litteral – – Formula Drift Pro 2 Driver [INTERVIEW]

RyanLitteral

Wrecked Magazine: Who are you and how did you get your Pro 2 license (please mention Pro Am and/or former drift experience)?

Ryan Litteral: I’m from Southern California. I have been drifting since 2006 and have done numerous pro-am and professional events internationally in that time frame. I acquired my pro 2 license in 2013 while competing at Just Drift Official’s Top Drift Series.

WM:Can you give us a break down of your car and what sponsors you have on board?
Ryan Litteral: My car is a 98 kouki s14. It has an extensively built RB25 that I’ve been running going on 3 years now. I am sponsored by GT Radial, Megan Racing, NRG innovations, Borg Warner, Clutchmasters, Wisefab, Full- Race Motorsports, Animal Auto, US Versus THEM, HPS, driftmotion, seven apple, Gonzales Garage, G&J aircraft, and Andy’s Tire

WM: What track are you most excited about and most nervous to tackle this season?
Ryan Litteral:Road Atlanta FOR SURE

WM: Can you name one drifter you really want to see in a battle in Pro 2 this year?
Ryan Litteral:Whoever’s door is in front of me. With a few guys stepping down from pro1 and some up and comers coming out its definitely hard to pin point one exact driver. I’m just excited to put on a good show for everyone this year and to even be fortunate enough to be able to compete.

WM: Who is your favorite drifter in the world and who to you derive driving inspiration from? Of all time?
Ryan Litteral: I’d say Kazama and Naoki Nakamura as far as pure driver inspiration. Smooth and precise but VERY aggressive. Stateside and personally goes? I’d say Forrest and Justin. Both of those guys have helped me a bunch in my career with advice that not only pertains to on the track but off of it as well. Those are two hammer down drivers that definitely have their head and their hearts in their right place and it absolutely shines through.

WM: Who do you think will win the Formula Drift Pro Championship this season?
Ryan Litteral:I gotta root for my GT Teammate Chelsea. If he can keep that car together and keep the throttle down (he doesn’t have a problem with that whatsoever. I think he may install lead into his driving shoes) he will do just fine.

WM: What is one hurdle or headache you ran into during the off-season gearing up for Pro 2?
Ryan Litteral:One of my major crew members was involved in a serious motorcycle accident and has been bed ridden during most of the off season which was definitely a speed bump for me and this program. Danny Anguiano has been a huge part of my growth over the past couple years and he’s always helped me tremendously with getting the car ready with stuff that is out of my expertise. So I’ve had to man up a lot and with the help of my close friends at and outside of Megan Racing we have been able to make it happen. We will miss you out there Danny!

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WM: What advise can you give to the upcoming Pro 2 drivers who are currently in Pro Am?
Ryan Litteral:It’s hard to show a good ROI for companies to drivers just strictly running pro 2 or pro am and that’s understandable. It’s not that we aren’t marketable or talented enough it’s just that we aren’t in the major spotlight to make the justified expense. Which is why you have to take matters into your own hands and get yourself known. Prove that you are a valuable asset and not just a mooch looking for free shit. Build solid foundations and take care of those that take care of you. Ensure that you take the proper time to build a good team of guys and make sure you have realistic goals and expectations going into something like this. It is a huge emotional, physical and financial commitment that is not for the faint of heart.

Austin Meeks – Formula Drift Pro 2 Driver [INTERVIEW]

AustinMeeks.Pro2
Wrecked Magazine: Who are you and how did you get your Pro 2 license?
Austin Meeks: My Name is Austin Meeks, I have been involved in drifting since 2007 and I earned my Pro 2 license by placing second overall in the best Pro-am series around, US Drift

WM. Can you give us a break down of your car and what sponsors you have on board?

AM: I have a 1995 nissan s14.5 with a magnuson supercharged Chevrolet ls. This year I am partnered up with Committed Service Brand, Achilles tire, Fortune Auto, Cinema Animal Talent, Revolution Brakes, Root’d design, Lucas Oil, and Wisefab.

WM. What track are you most excited about and most nervous to tackle this season?
AM: This year I am most excited about Road Atlanta, It will be the first round of my Formula Drift journey and it’s really close to home so hopefully I’ll have a lot of friends and support there. As far as nerves go, I feel like Texas Motor Speedway would have to take the cake, We were out there last year, and it just appeared to be the most difficult tracks for even some of the more experienced drivers to grasp. So I’d have to say I’m a little nervous, but at the same time stoked to see how I can tackle it.

WM: Can you name one drifter you really want to see in a battle in Pro 2 this year?
AM: This is a tough one for me, Honestly I’m just excited to be out there. Its a completely new field of drivers for me so anyone should be interesting in battle! But just because of where we finished in US Drift last year, I’d love to go head to head with Jonathan Nerren.

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WM: Who is your favorite drifter in the world and who to you derive driving inspiration from?
AM: Chris Forsberg was the first professional drifter I ever saw, he was at a demo in NC in his convertible 350z many years ago. When I saw him drive it literally blew my mind and I knew thats what I wanted to do. The drifting community is a great bunch, but i would have to say he’s my favorite solely because he started my addiction. When it comes to inspiration I would have to say Rapper Dan Savage. WE met in 2011 and have become great friends, achieved awesome goals and are still working together now. He always has a smile on his face and a positive attitude to back it up. He has pushed me to points where I didn’t even imagine. So I would have to thank him for inspiring me and helping me achieve what i have in the past couple of years.

WM: Who do you think will win the Formula Drift Pro Championship this season?
AM: Chelsea Denofa, he is a mad man on track! If his car holds up this year, I definitely think he will be the one everyone is going to have to watch out for, especially coming off of his win at Long Beach. He has tasted victory, and I’m sure he only wants more.

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WM: What is one hurdle or headache you ran into during the off-season gearing up for Pro 2? I can only choose one?
AM: Luckily we didn’t have to make any major changes to the car or start from scratch like many other teams have been doing during the off season. So thanks to Committed Service Brand there haven’t really been any issues that I would consider hurdles.

WM: What advice can you give to the upcoming Pro 2 drivers who are currently in Pro Am?
AM: Seat time, enter as many events as you possibly can, and compete with as many drivers as you possibly can. There are so many driving styles right now, and when you get thrown into a new group of drivers it will be super beneficial if you have already taken the time to adapt to a broad range of techniques that can help you overcome anything placed in front of you.

2016 Southwest Drift ProAm: Round 1 Las Vegas [RESULTS]

SouthwestDriftRound1

Southwest Drift, operated by Vegas Drift, kicked off their 2016 Pro Am season with an event at their home track of Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Several Formula Drift alumni were on hand, including Danny George and Forrest Wang in the judges tower. The competition grid included a handful of drivers who either currently hold or have previously held Formula Drift Pro 2 licenses, which meant some insanely good tandem battles! At the end of the day, Andy Hately’s supercharged LS3-powered BMW E30 held together long enough to take the top step of the podium.

Here’s a look at the full results from Round 1:

1st – Andy Hateley – BMW E30
2nd – Blake Olsen – Nissan S13
3rd – George Kiriakopoulos – Nissan S13

2016 Golden Gate Drift ProAm: Round 2 Thunderhill [RESULTS]

GoldenGateDrift-Round2

Golden Gate Drift held their second round of Formula Drift ProAm over the weekend at Thunderhill Raceway. Judging was handled by experienced Formula D veterans in Matt Field, Matt Coffman, and Matt Pat Mordaunt. Unfortunately, 14-year-old phenom Dominic Martinez wasn’t allowed to compete due to the track insurance policy, but the rest of the competition was quite fierce. Here’s how the final results shook out:

1st – Nathan von Tuchlinski
2nd – Justin Usuray
3rd – Tyler Knudsen

Matt Madrigali – Formula Drift Pro 2 Driver [INTERVIEW]

MattMadrigaliRacing

Wrecked Magazine: Who are you and how did you get your Pro 2 license?

Matt Madrigali: My name is Matt Madrigali and I’ve been drifting in Northern California for about 12 years. I have been competing in the Golden Gate Drift ProAm series where I won the championship in 2015 and earned my 2016 Formula Drift Pro2 License.

WM. Can you give us a break down of your car and what sponsors you have on board?

Matt Madrigali: My car is the same car I’ve been driving for 9 years now with a host of upgrades to make it safer and more competitive for Formula D. It’s your standard S13 240sx with a Chevy LS3 which I pulled out of Rapper Dan Savage’s Sikky truck back in 2013. I’ve switched to Wisefab front and rear suspension this year as well. Transmission and diff have been upgraded to a GSR 4 speed and a Winters quick change unit for 2016. The car is underpowered for professional drifting, but reliable. I currently have a fantastic group of sponsors who have helped me rebuild the car for 2016. Car N Bike Moto is a body shop based in Vallejo California. Alfred and his team did a complete color change to my car with exceptional quality under a very tight schedule. I have always had my car painted there and their quality and attention to detail is second to none. Exedy Clutch has been another huge supporter of my program. Their products are simply the best and I’m happy to have them be a part of my team as reliability is the main focus of my build. Cosmis Racing Wheels bring style and performance to the car. I currently run their MR2 and SR5 wheels with a 17/18 stagger. D-Magic was the brains behind the new look for 2016. The time Michael spent making my ideas reality really shows in the detail and style that the car has. I couldn’t be happier with the new look. It brings something a little different, a Japanese style to Formula D. Nitto Tire has stepped up and helped me with tires for this season as well. Very excited to be running such a high end tire, and I’ve very excited to be a part of the Nitto team. Sikky Manufacturing has been a big part of my program even before taking an interest in my team. I have their full engine swap mount kit, heads and Winters quick change subframe setup in my car currently. The quality of their parts is unsurpassed in the industry and I’m happy to be working with them for the 2016 season. Finally, Fineline tuning has been a big help with dyno time and build advice for my program. Miles and his crew are based out of Santa Rosa, California and focus mainly on Subaru performance, though they do have a big hand in the drifting community. They work with some local friends from Drift Team Animal Style, keeping their cars all running perfectly.

WM. What track are you most excited about and most nervous to tackle this season?

Matt Madrigali: Road Atlanta. Road Atlanta. ROAD ATLANTA! Easily my favorite track on the calendar.

WM: Can you name one drifter you really want to see in a battle in Pro 2 this year?

I always love driving with the local guys. I would have to say that I’m most excited to drive with Joe Tardiff. We have been driving together in ProAm for a few years now. We would go back in fourth on qualifying 1-2 and finishing 1-2 all year last year. I relished our battles and I look forward to throwing down on the biggest stage with one of the best!

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WM: Who is your favorite drifter in the world and who to you derive driving inspiration from?

Matt Madrigali: Favorite drifter has to be Vaughn. He’s consistent and aggressive at the same time. I remember watching during his championship year and knowing that he was on another level that year. I just see him as someone I would like to emulate on and off the track.

WM: Who do you think will win the Formula Drift Pro Championship this season?

Matt Madrigali: It’s going to be tight. I think Odi could put a good championship run together. From a car build standpoint Odi is my spirit animal. With my car being underpowered compared to some of the vehicles coming to the championship, I look to examples like Odi for inspiration. Chassis setup and grip are just as important as raw numbers and I think he has all the tools and talent necessary to take home the biggest prize in drifting.

MattMadrigali.Winner

WM: What is one hurdle or headache you ran into during the off-season gearing up for Pro 2? I can only choose one?

Matt Madrigali: It’s basically been everything, the whole process. Getting the car ready in my garage with limited funding, and also working full time builds a lot of pressure. I can’t forget to thank Golden Gate Drift’s organizer Luke Crowell and Red Baron Racing’s Donovan Brockway for all their help. Without them this wouldn’t be possible.

WM: What advice can you give to the upcoming Pro 2 drivers who are currently in Pro Am?

Matt Madrigali: Regardless of budget be ready to dedicate everything to this. Professional motorsports take dedication.

Ng Sheng Nian – Formula Drift Pro 2 Driver [INTERVIEW]

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Wrecked Magazine: Who are you and how did you get your Pro 2 license?

Ng Sheng Nian:
Hello! I’m Nian from Singapore, I was granted my Pro 2 license through a petition. I’ve been competing for about 3 years and last year I competed in the full Formula Drift Japan series.

WM: Can you give us a break down of your car and what sponsors you have on board?

Ng Sheng Nian: I’m driving a JZX100 Chaser built by Jono & Andy(Andrew grey) of Powervehicles! Trust me , Andy is a JZX wizard hahaha! It has a 3.4 2J with a GTX42 Turbocharger. Achilles is helping me out with tires ! Tonnka from Malaysia makes the sexiest intakes for me.

NgShengNian

WM: What track are you most excited about and most nervous to tackle this season?

Nian:Atlanta actually! It is my first time competing in the States and i’m really excited to check out the atmosphere and the competitors .

WM: Who is your favorite drifter in the world and who to you derive driving inspiration from?

Nian: ANDREW GREY (ANDY) He is not only my teammate but he is also the guy i really want to drive like! He has got a really good style, big flicks, full smoke and is a really composed driver! I wanna drive like Andy ! and I’m really glad that he is so willing to share his driving with me! haha

WM: Who do you think will win the Formula Drift Pro Championship this season?

Nian: Andy!! When he gets his groove he is going to annihilate !

SingaporetoAtlanta

WM: What is one hurdle or headache you ran into during the off-season gearing up for Pro 2?

Logistics? I’m from Singapore . So it will take me about 30 hours to get to the states just for a weekend of drifting!

WM: What advise can you give to the upcoming Pro 2 drivers who are currently in Pro Am?

Nian: I can’t really advise as I’m still a shitty driver myself! haha

Taylor Hull – Formula Drift Pro 2 Driver [INTERVIEW]

TaylorHull

Wrecked Magazine: Who are you and how did you get your Pro 2 license (please mention Pro Am and/or former drift experience)?

Taylor Hull: My name is Taylor Hull, I’m 27 and I live just south of Atlanta, Georgia. I started racing on oval tracks when I was 13 and competed in various series with that until 2012 when I took up drifting just because it always looked fun, and I wanted something to just “have fun” driving. I didn’t take into account how competitive I am so it wasn’t long before I started going to grassroots competitions and realizing how much I really had to learn. I won my first grassroots competition in 2012 and decided to do Pro Am with Streetwise Drift in 2013 where I ran the first event, then blew my motor and was out for the rest of the season. I came back strong in 2014 with SWD and made all the events, had some great runs and ended up 3rd in points after going into the last event in 7th. All the stars aligned and I had a great event which gave me my Pro 2 license. I had no idea what I was in for.

WM: Can you give us a break down of your car?

Taylor Hull: We have some great new partners onboard this year as well as several returning from years past.

Aloha Green Tea Hawaii is a power based additive for water that tastes great and is very good for you, it helps with energy during the long days at the track as well. Affirm Consulting is a partner that helps business recognize and resolve deficiencies and be more productive, putting more to the bottom line. I know Dennis that runs the company very well and he has an amazing mind for business, anyone that gives him a chance won’t be disappointed.
Next, my wrap designer, installer, crew chief and friend, Sticker Shark is back and making my car look great again. I took the reins off him this year and let him be more creative on the design, I think people will really like the result. Rovos Wheels is back providing a great 18×9 up front and a 18×10.5 rear in their Durban style. I will be back on Falken Tire 615k Azenis again this year for max grip. Magnuson Superchargers provided a tvs2300 supercharger to go on the Daffron Race innovations built 408 LS engine. Driven Race Group is back for the fourth year providing all our safety equipment. Weir Performance got our back with their race spool for the Q45 rear end as well as the conversion to make it work with the stub shafts needed, it’s a very nice piece for higher powered cars if you aren’t going with a quick change. We are back on Feal Suspension coilovers and I look forward to working with Odi Bakchis on setup, especially now that he is also on Falken this year. Our fuel injection is powered by Donkey Power Injection for the 2nd year with 1000cc injectors. ATI dampers provide a 8 rib pulley setup to keep belts on the car. We have a twin disc ACT clutch to put the power to the ground, they are a new sponsor this season. Wiring Specialties is back on board this year as we are running a beautiful race harness that cleans up the engine bay significantly. Sikky Mfg is a great partner that we traveled with last season that we look forward to continuing to work with in the future. Finally, Enjuku racing is our official aftermarket parts supplier. Their team provides a wealth of knowledge and a vast range of parts that we have used on our build at great pricing.

RoadAtlanta

WM: What track are you most excited about and most nervous to tackle this season?

Taylor Hull- I am stoked to be able to run at Road Atlanta. Since I live about an hour away, this is the first event that many of my friends and family will be able to come to, plus with the fastest initiations of the season should be a great time. I wouldn’t say I am nervous about going anywhere but I feel that Texas was a challenge last year. I have to get more consistent in my runs there and I was born there so I want to have a good showing for my family still there also.

WM: Can you name one drifter you really want to see in a battle in Pro 2 this year?

Taylor Hull: I look forward to all my battles, that’s what makes drifting fun to me. My battle with Brandon Wicknick at Seattle last season was the most fun I’ve ever had in a car I think. I hope to get to battle with some of my friends in the southeast though like Kevin Lawerence, Ricky Adams, and several of the others around here.

JustinPawlak
WM: Who is your favorite drifter in the world and who to you derive driving inspiration from?

Justin Pawlak.
Last year in Texas Justin took a few minutes to find me and give me some pointers that really helped me with my driving that day and it really meant a lot to me. Having a seasoned pro take the time to do something like that was really cool, so I try to help as many people with quick tips like that as well. We ended up making the same mistake in the competition that weekend so we were able to laugh about it on Saturday. He is a fierce competitor and you can tell how much he wants to win and how hard he works for it. Those qualities coupled with the fact that he’s such a nice guy gives me someone to try to model a career after.

WM: Who do you think will win the Formula Drift Pro Championship this season?

Taylor Hull: I think this may be the year that Odi Bakchis finishes the way he started last year. Again, he is someone I admire who builds his cars and does so much r&d.

WM: What is one hurdle or headache you ran into during the off-season gearing up for Pro 2?

Taylor Hull: We had to build a new motor and drivetrain setup this year, but the car is all mine now which is what I wanted. It’s a lot of work to make sure what you’re building and buying is compatible with what you have and falls within all the rules. We had a few struggles but have most of it worked out now. I build my car mostly myself so if I don’t know how to do something I have to learn.

WM: What advise can you give to the upcoming Pro 2 drivers who are currently in Pro Am?

Taylor Hull: Haha! Expect to spend WAY more money than you budget for each year. The sport is expensive and the competition is greater than you expect. Everyone is good at this level, there are no gimme battles and everyone has earned their right to be here. Also, expect a professionally run series that will top most anything you’ve ever been a part of, being involved with Formula D and interacting with the fans is really the experience of a lifetime.

2016 D1 Grand Prix – Round 2 Fuji [RESULTS]

DaigoSaito-D1GP-Round2

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

2016 Irish Drift Championships – Round 1 Mondello [RESULTS]

2016-IDC-Round1-Mondello

The incredible unbeaten streak on Irish soil continued this weekend at Mondello despite some tough competition. Duane McKeever took out fellow Irishman Shane O’Sullivan in the final, while Forrest Wang won his podium battle with Nigel Colfer when Colfer’s clutch gave out in their battle. Wang was driving Darren McNamara’s LHD S13 with a 2JZ engine, a setup that Wang looked quite comfortable in.

Here’s a look at the final results from Round 1:

1st – Duane McKeever
2nd – Shane O’Sullivan
3rd – Forrest Wang
4th – Nigel Colfer