Cameron Moore from Battle Field, Washington was another driver that decided that just doing one Formula Drift Pro Am wasn’t enough as he drove in both Vegas Drift and Evergreen Drift. He earned his license in the latter but also placed high enough that he could have earned it in Vegas as well! His SC300 is powered by a 2JZ engine built by VIP Performance in Portland. In Vegas Drift he was a consistent threat to win an event and took home the Evergreen Drift Pro Am championship with a win in the final round. His bright green SC300 won’t be hard to miss on the Pro2 field in 2015 but we expect his performance to be his actual highlight.
I love the Nissan 240sx as much as the next guy in the drifting industry. We just fired up our second S13 project car for the magazine with Vapure and love how easy it is you can get a 240sx drift worthy. However, 240sx inflation or drift tax has grown rapidly out of control over recent time. I won’t even post some of the insane prices I have seen for the S13/S14 chassis models here in Southern California over recent months. At the Wrecked Magazine office all we really want to see is more people drifting and coming into the sport, so we have found that drift tax on the Nissan 240sx is not helping newcomers enter the scene. With that we found some cars that you should consider buying before taking out a loan just to own a S13 coupe.
This car has already become super popular in Europe and other nations as a great turn key drift car. They are so cheap in price and have great aftermarket support. Added bonus with the E36 chassis is they look pretty good for a car so old. These are readily available in any major market for cheap. A quick eBay search found several set for a Buy It Now of under $1,500 for running cars. If you are lucky you can get some tips and tricks from a Formula Drift driver like Chelsea DeNofa who has these BMW chassis all figured out.
Another great option is the Ford Mustang for a beginner drift build/car. You have multiple body style options and years that are priced well below a few thousand dollars. Vaughn Gittin Jr. has been seen in his Foxbody missile showing even that chassis can drift with ease. The Mustang market has seen a huge growth in drift specific parts and the TalkDrift.com forum even has an active Mustang owners section. Just wait until you find out how cheap you can swap differentials and gear ratios compared to the 240sx chassis as well.
Have you been to a junkyard in the last 2 years? If so, you have probably laid your eyes on about 1,0000 Lexus SC300 bodies. These things seem to be everywhere and they just get cheaper and cheaper. Parts are plentiful and even Tony Angelo has assembled one as a missile car these days (seen above). This car isn’t the easiest to setup for drifting of the group but it looks good and will easily take a 2JZ swap.
This option is a little more expensive but if you can find a cheaper Nissan 350z beater you should pick one up. You will get taxed a little extra on parts but the Nissan 350z is a Formula Drift championship winning chassis via Chris Forsberg 2009. Companies are developing more and more suspension products in recent time and many people will tell you the VQ35 platform is a solid engine base for a drift car.
This is a chassis you can purchase for cheap that many people in the drift community tend to overlook or forget about. The car has some loyal fans, a core community, and some solid aftermarket support. Out of our group they probably aren’t the best looking vehicle you can choose but they seem to be fun drift projects.
Okay, this is the most expensive option I am going to throw in your face but hear me out. The Mazda RX-8 is an awesome car that nobody wants in the world it seems due to it’s terrible engine. So, buy one that is blown up, purchase an awesome LS crate engine, and then call Sikky to make the new swap kit from this car super simple. Mazda RX-8 cars can be found without engines or blown up motors for about the same price as a S14. If you were going to do a V8 swap into a S13/S14 then I suggest considering going this route instead.
Jonathan Guitard is seen here showing off his Lexus SC300 for the 2014 DMCC season. Jonathan showed up on our radar last year when he took home first place at Round 8 of DMCC in Sanair! With help from Budweiser, Standard Suspension, and Lacroix Tuning he is ready to run the 2014 Drift Mania season. His SC300 has a 2JZ engine making 850hp and makes 725 torq.
We have gone from one coast to the other learning about some of the up and coming Pro-Am drivers. Now let’s take it down South to the Lone Star State—Tim “Big Sticks” Koenning is 24 years old and was recently declared the overall champion of the 2013 Lone Star Drift Pro-Am Series in Texas. Koenning’s 500 HP 1JZ-GTE sc300 sitting on BC Racing Coilovers earned him a spot in the top four every round of competition this year, ultimately leading him to earn his professional Formula Drift (FD) license for the upcoming season.
Koenning started off by learning how to drift in his friend’s 240sx s13 at a Gymkhana event. With only a few years of drifting experience, he began winning events in his friend’s car, who eventually urged him to build a vehicle for himself. After building a 240sx (s13 coupe) for himself, Koenning eventually stumbled upon his sc300 and has not looked back since. If you want to get to know Koenning a little more, keep on reading to for an interview I had with him.
Q: You are the 2013 Lone Star Drift Series Champion. What was your recipe for success this season?
A: Consistency and reliability are no doubt the biggest factors aside from just the amazing crew of that has helped me all year, along with my sponsors. We never qualified out of the top 10 and never finish out of the top 4 all season, and we could not have done that without just a dead reliable car and just simple basic consistency. I like to [always] preach building a car reliable [be]cause without that it will not be consistent.
Q: Should we expect to see you in FD next season? If so, what changes will you be making to your car and/or strategy? A: Yes FD is in the works after we get all the new sponsors lined up after SEMA, as for last years car it will stay the same as a back up if need be, we are building a new SC for FD with the same formula of reliability for consistency just with A LOT more power and grip.
Q: What advice do you have to offer to other Pro-Am drivers looking to earn their FD license in the upcoming years? A: Don’t over think and complicate a build keep it simple and reliable I cant stress that enough but do spend the money where it counts, because all the crazy high end parts and such will never add up to what just having seat time can do for you.
Q: I know that many people call you “Big Sticks”. Tell us about that, keeping it kosher of course.
A: HAHA, that name came about in a completely kosher way lol. The first shop to ever sponsor me started calling me that back before I got into drifting. Because me and a local from where I’m from would drive over a hour and a half from what they affectionately called “The Sticks” to get work done, well being 6’7 I quickly gained the name Big Sticks from them and it has just stuck ever since.
Q: What do you do when you’re not working on your car or at the track drifting? A: Well I am actually a parts manager at a John Deere Dealership here in the sticks, it helps keep a sanity break with all the drifting and cars and such. Aside from that I just really tend to tinker around with cars with friends, and loiter at SHP and D3 lol
Q: As the winner of the Lone Star Drift series, you have received a fully paid trip to SEMA to meet with potential sponsors. Who were you planning to meet with and what have you done to prepare? A: Yes I did and am super stoked and jazzed about it all, I am looking forward to meet face to face the new sponsors for next year like BC Racing, Turbo by Garrett, Spec clutch, Status Racing Seats, along a chance to sit down and talk to other potential sponsors like Kenda Tire, Brian Crower, Nitrous Express, and Fuel Injector Clinic, just to name a few I have my hopes set on along with a couple different wheel companies because this whole stock wheel game isn’t cutting it any more lol. As for prepping just trying to remember to come into it with the humble level head people said I have always had and talk to as many potential sponsors as I can
Q: If you had a million dollars, how would you use it in respects to drifting? A: As much as I’d like to just buy all kinds of cars and such I wouldn’t, and I have actually thought about this idea just not with a mill to play with… But I’d actually like to help grow the local scene of drifting out a lot, build a hand[ful] of just simple basic stock Sr powered 240s to use as rentals at local events and just help teach people getting into the sport and such, I think that would be a big step to helping really get things going drifting wise again here locally.
Koenning’s Sponsors: Dopelife Clothing, SHP (Serious HP), D3 Performance Engineering, Status Racing Seats, Kayden’s Tire Shop, BC Racing, Turbo By Garrett, Spec Clutch
Tony Angelo went to R/T Tuning to hoon around in his Lexus missile for Hoonigan burnout Friday and we just caught wind to this video he released a few weeks earlier. Can anyone really top this burnout thrown down by Tony Angelo? In other Tony news his Scion FR-S is coming along just fine, here is where it stands now below.
Dan Jenkins once again took on the New Jersey traffic and weather for an amazing weekend at Englishtown featuring Formula Drift pros, Pro-Ams, and just flat out Ams of all kinds tearing up the amazing racetrack. Check out over 20+ pages of action from the weekend of events and enjoy more missile car madness from the Drift Alliance like Vaughn Gittin Jr. above seen in his Foxbody 5.0L Ford Mustang missile.
This mystery tire company that is sponsoring Bridges Racing turns out to be Achilles Tire. The Bridges Racing program is jumping up into a three car program with Daigo Saito, Robbie Nishida, and Armando “Dio.” We have already reported that Robbie Nishida is building a Lexus SC300 and we have word that Daigo Saito is currently building a Lexus SC430 in Japan for his 2012 ride. This is a change from an earlier report that he was driving the APEX’i Lexus SC430. We imagine that Dio will be in the 2009 Championship Chassis Nissan 350z he ran for a few events last year.
A quick verification of the latest 2012 rulebook shows that the Achille ATR Sport and 123S tires are both approved tires under Appendix C in Section 2. It sounds like they will be the only three on this tire for 2012 but they are making quite a big push for the new season so no telling how things wind up!
Robbie Nishida is currently working on this Lexus SC300 for the 2012 Formula Drift season! His new teammate Daigo Saito will also be in a Lexus next season making them the Lexus brothers in the new season. Both cars we can only imagine will come with 2JZ engine power plants and be presented at Streets of Long Beach. Former Urbanracer editor Bob Hernandez is working on a story for some other website and we will make sure the data/news comes to our readers as soon as its made public or we figure it out.
The big rumor and question still remains about the newfound funding/sponsor this team has received in 2012. We keep hearing about a tire company who has stepped on board for them but the 2012 Formula Drift rulebook shows no new approved tires to date for the series.