Posts Tagged ‘Dax Rodriguez’

NEWSWORTHY> D1GP Champ Daigo Saito Joins FD!

Daigo Saito JZX100 Toyota Chaser D1GP Champion Formula Drift Bridges Racing

Oh whaaaaat!!! The rumors are true! Just released today – it seems that D1 Grand Prix Champion driver Daigo Saito will be joining good friend Robbie Nishida at Bridges Racing to campaign a two-car team in the Formula Drift Championship. I suppose the question everyone has on their minds NOW is which car will Daigo be driving? (more…)


VIDEO> Arizona’s Tribute To The Unknowns

Trial By Fire – Phoenix International Raceway, Arizona from Dax Rodriguez on Vimeo.

This is a video about unknowns. It stars a race track that is nestled deep in the desert of Tolleson, Arizona; it also stars a collection of individuals who are infamous outside the state of Arizona. However, the track that we know as PIR (Phoenix International Raceway) is on par with most of the premier drifting tracks in the country. It features a high speed entry, technical transitions, and risky moves in every turn.

The group of people that meet at this track are passionate about drifting and the spirit of the sport. The carefree and reckless nature of drifting brings them together, and their track days here are about more than just cars. Days filled with drifting on this Arizona race track hold a special sentiment in the community’s hearts. (more…)


CARSPOTTING> Purple People Eater RPS13

I can hear the theme song to Welcome Back, Kotter playing in the background as I type this. I'd like to apologize for my absence to all the people that actually like my work... Mom and Dad, I'm looking at you. To everyone that only comes to Motor Mavens for the photos, this one is for you guys from someone you don't know, never met and probably won't ever meet. Thank God it's Friday!

Don't be confused, this just isn't a "welcome back to the site" for me. Oh no, this is a huge welcome back to fresh cars built by cool people on real world budgets. Welcome back to grassroots drifting and sick street cars, which is what this site was built upon and the whole reason why we keep pushing forward. Like a skilled surgeon, Mike Burns and company have suited up in their drifting scrubs to save the all important life of grassroots drifting; but instead a sharpened scalpel, his finely tuned instrument is this super rad RPS13 Nissan 240SX.   Read more...

VIDEO> Risky Devil Puts the "Fun" in Funyuns

Fresh off the press! Here’s the newest video from Tim Tulov of T2 Films and AJ G. of the infamous Chicago drift gang Risky Devil. The two collaborated on this video to bring you what is probably the funnest Sunday ever! From hanging out with bums, to smashing into stuff, to paying off security guards…this video delivers.  Definitely give this video a gander, but I have to warn you this video contains some explicit language and it’s probably best to say its not work safe. Enjoy!

::Dax Rodriguez


CENTERSTAGE> EVOMS Porsche 911 GT750

Evolution Motorsports, or EVOMS as they are also known by, is one of the most highly respected and successful Porsche tuners in the country. This white 996 initially caught our eye when we toured their facilities and scouted a fire-breathing, 230+mph capable, record-breaking 996 of a similar variety. Although that car has garnered a plethora of media attention within the Porsche community, this 2002 Porsche 996TT is certainly no slouch and is a fine example of the initial developments within EVOMS to reliably achieve 700+ hp in a complete package initially dubbed the GT750.

Since they worked on the development of this particular 996, EVOMS has also launched a standardized package for the 997, dubbed the EVT700, that can be seen here in addition to their own intelligent tuning services. However, for 996 fans around the world, it is easy to see why the earlier variant of the 911 Turbo remains so popular.   Read more...

CARSPOTTING> Josh Herron's S14

I can't remember the last time I was in Las Vegas when I wasn't covering an event or taking photos for work. It seems like an reoccurring thing when it comes to traveling for me, I never have time to hang with friends or just kick back. However my recent trip to Vegas was non-work related and I basically had the whole weekend to do whatever and go wherever my heart desired! After receiving a phone call from my dad asking if I would like to accompany him on his business trip to Vegas for the weekend, it didn't take me long to respond with an enthusiastic "Yes!". Once I arrived in Vegas I wasted no time getting in touch with people, while making sure I contacted a certain Internet celebrity!

Enter Josh Herron. This young and talented videographer has made some of the most creative drift videos I've ever seen, while also averaging 200,000 views on each video, and reaching the acclaimed Internet celebrity status all before the age of 21. And I thought I was a media prodigy. :D   Read more...

ARCHAEOLOGY> The Good Old Days of D1GP

“Evvvvverybody’s talking bout the good old days, the good old days…” With the next round of the D1 Grand Prix USA series coming up this weekend in New Jersey, I can’t help but think back to “the good old days” of D1 events in the USA. It was just so exciting back then. It was so exciting to watch the D1 drivers from Japan drifting with their high end competition cars; and you got to hear the awesome mixture of turbo sounds and screeching tires. D1 was not plagued with the V8 blaaaaap blaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaap blap blaaaaaap that is now becoming the norm in American drifting events.

Even though Formula D was still strong even back then, what the D1 events brought to its American fans was a taste of Japanese drifting culture… it was so exciting. I really hope the new people who throw D1 events in the USA can build the series back to its former glory. It just used to be so epic.

Just look at this photo of Atsushi Kuroi from Osaka based drift team Tinker… his car is so bad ass! As is he! I miss the old days.

:: Motor Mavens


COVERAGE> All Star Bash Weekend Pt.4

It has been over one week since the epic All Star Bash drifting festival took over the Mojave Desert, but that isn't stopping Motor Mavens from continuing the coverage. We had to take a very brief hiatus from updates this weekend, as some of our crew roadtripped to Chicago for D1 while others had to divert our concentration for a moment to finish other client projects that help us pay our monthly bills. This being said, we'd just like to make sure you know that even though it happened a little over a week ago, All Star Bash is not old to us.

All Star Bash is still very vivid and exciting in our minds, and we don't plan on pushing off our grassroots drifting photos to publish coverage from other big events that took place this week. We know other sites have already moved on, but we don't care. We're still all about the ASB. Drifting is where we live. It's in our hearts and on our minds, and it doesn't just stop when events are over. Even though the MotorMavens site is new, the members of our crew have been down with drifting since day one. It's like that... and that's the way it is. We show love to grassroots drifters, and grassroots drifters show love to us. This being said, we are proud to continue our coverage of the Ziptied/JustDrift All Star Bash, as we bring you the long overdue, eagerly anticipated... Part FOUR!   Read more...

COVERAGE> All Star Bash Weekend Pt.3

More All Star Bash!!! We love it, so Motor Mavens keeps it coming! Most of the people in the MotorMavens crew live in different states... but yesterday after everyone got off work, we were able to put our photos together and organize them!

So here you go... enjoy the photos!   Read more...

CENTER STAGE> Z One and Only

As one of the more prolific tuning platforms on the market today, the Z33 even in stock form provides for an excellent combination of power, handling, looks, and relative value. The RWD sports coupe can be found in nearly all forms of motorsports and has particularly excelled at drifting, capturing back to back championships for Tanner Foust in 2007 and 2008.

The long awaited introduction of the 370Z has many 350Z fans scratching their heads, however, as Nissan took away the flowing lines and sleek styling in lieu of an overly edgy and incoherent design. For many of us here at Motor Mavens, the 07-08 Z still stands as arguably the best looking Z of the past generation and for fellow Maven Mike Maez, he unequivocally agrees.

Mike's take on the Z33 is one that caught our eye for a number of reasons. For one, it isn't too over the top with a flashy body kit or a wild graphics scheme. There is attention to detail with the fitment and the wheel selection, which is always a plus, but furthermore it represents a very specific paint and wheel combo that we've never seen before on the 350Z. Combined with a solid ride height, an Akebono brake setup borrowed from the aforementioned 370, and just the right amount of bolt-ons, we were convinced that this was one Z that easily takes Center Stage.   Read more...

VIDEO> Battle of the Beards, Vegas Edition

Okay, you’ve seen Josh’s video already; now Will Roegge adds yet another classic to his collection with this Formula Drift Las Vegas video. This video really delivers a smooth feel which is very different from his friend Joshua Herron’s Las Vegas video. It’s cool to see how two people can capture the same event and come up with two different renditions of it! Keep up the good work guys!

P.s If you pay attention you can see me in the video! Lol

:: Dax Rodriguez

More MotorMavens coverage from Formula D Las Vegas

Drifting at the Vegas Pro-Am


VIDEO> Touge Heroes. The Remix!

Just in case you haven’t seen this video yet…you really need to sit down and watch. This new remixed version of Touge Heroes Volume One takes footage from Formula Drift Red Bull Championship and other parts of the DVD and remixes it with a fresh new soundtrack and editing. Even though this video is approximately an hour shorter then the DVD, it still manages to bring a lot of excitement.  If you haven’t picked up the full length DVD, you can do so at Touge Heroes website.

:: Dax Rodriguez


VIDEO> Team Falken Rolls Dice in Vegas

Check out the latest Falken Tire video that my homie Skylar Smith produced at Formula Drift Vegas. High production value, awesome cars and lots of smoke…what more can you ask for? This video speaks for itself, so take a look and let us know what you think!

CLICK HERE to watch the video on Streetfire.net in HD if you don’t want to deal with the slow YouTube buffering issues.

PS: How many of you can spot the Motor Mavens sticker in the video? Better watch it carefully!

:: Dax Rodriguez


COVERAGE> Formula D Brings Heat to Vegas, Part 2

Continuing our Motor Mavens Coverage on Formula D Las Vegas... many of the fans and media members seem to have been focused on only the Top 32 tandem competition, but those who braved the Vegas heat earlier in the day were treated to some pretty exciting tsuisou action from the Formula D Pro Am drivers. Props go out to all the Pro Am drivers for coming up through the ranks and doin it big!   Read more...

COVERAGE> Formula D Brings Heat to Vegas, Pt 1

The latest round of the Formula Drift Championship took place this past weekend in Las Vegas, Nevada. It was sooooo incredibly hot in Las Vegas this past weekend; the Formula D teams had to work hard to make sure the drivers remained hydrated enough to perform at peak levels (last year, I remember seeing one of the drivers pass out because of the intense heat inside the car).

As a member of the media with a trackside photo pass, I remember being extremely uncomfortable because of Formula D safety rules requiring us to wear long pants instead of shorts at the track. However, just think about what the drivers must be feeling like - wearing full fire suits and Nomex underwear and HELMETS, sitting inside hot cars without air conditioning; with hot metal roofs working like a broiler due to the lack of headliners and insulation in a professional drift car.

Nevertheless, the crowd at Formula D remained upbeat and excited, due to the level of driving prowess they were treated to. Vegas drift fans are hardcore! Regardless of the heat, these fans were down to sit outside in the stands, sweating and cheering as their favorite professional drifters slid past them, dousing the grandstands in a bath of tire dust.   Read more...

WEBMINING> Risky Devil IS300 is Back!

Being a web junkie I search the outer boundaries of the web looking for cool content and most importantly cool cars. With the internet train making a regular stop at Risky Devil’s blog I was greeted with some new imagery from AJ of ILL Photography. After ending the hiatus of one of my favorite Risky Devil cars and sporting a new front lip got me really wanting to make a trip to Chicago and meet up with these guys. Who wants to see me do a photoshoot of the Risky Devil cars? I sure do!

:: Dax Rodriguez


CARSPOTTING> 714hp Evo 8 on Tempe Streets

What does it mean to have power? Is power the ability to do whatever you want? Or, maybe it is having the power to control people and the things they do... Better yet, maybe power is all about having the ability to mash your right foot to the floor board and leave everyone and everything in your rear view mirror!

As I was driving around Tempe AZ one day, I saw this white Evo VIII take off from a traffic light, literally leaving all the other cars (including mine) in the dust, as it turned into a big blur of white 'get up and go!' I just had to follow this car! This Evo is owned by a guy named Jake Blackman; and for Jake, the feeling of power is assigned a numerical value - 714. That's the exact number of horses in Jake's Mitsubishi Evolution VIII that actually get their hooves on the ground! With that kind of power you're sure to leave some worries (and problems) in the dust.   Read more...

VIDEO> Ken Block x Top Gear

In a world filled with viral videos, one man stands alone; his name is Ken Block.  With Ken’s recent Gymkhana 2 video success it was only appropriate that the UK’s greatest show Top Gear brought its cameras to US soil to capture the next chapter of Ken’s Gymkhana legacy. In this episode of Top Gear we see Ken dodge aircraft, fire trucks, cacti, and dangerously maneuver his ’09 Subaru STi Rally car through an airplane graveyard.  All of mayhem occurs as James May hangs on for dear life while riding shotgun. Enjoy!

:: Dax Rodriguez


CENTER STAGE> Vorsteiner E92 M3 vs Ventross IS-F

The BMW E92 M3 and the Lexus IS-F are both shining examples of sports-minded luxury cars. They both project an image of luxury and refinement, combined with engine response and handling suitable for the racetrack. Not too long ago, I did a shoot with an E92 M3 and an IS-F that were both outfitted with a plethora of aftermarket parts from a luxury sports brand called Vorsteiner. When I was first introduced to the team over at Vorsteiner, it was to photograph their Porsche V-GT project for Modified Luxury and Exotics Magazine back in 2007.   Read more...

NEWSWORTHY> From Modified Mag to Motor Mavens

Arizona native Mike Maez could easily be called a veteran in the game, as the former West Coast Editor for Modified Magazine, shooting over 40 magazine covers (and counting) for Modified and it’s Luxury and Exotics title.

Mike got his start in the photography game just as drifting first hit the United States… And, like our fellow Motor Maven Antonio Alvendia, drifting changed his life. Drifting was the force that pushed Mike over the edge, inspiring him to upgrade both his gear and his skills to more accurately capture its unparalleled excitement and emotion. As the scene grew and Mike honed his skills, he found himself called upon by various companies and media outlets to shoot feature cars and events from coast to coast.

Despite his years as a professional photographer and editor for Modified, Mike is still eager as ever to contribute to the Motor Mavens Movement; sharing insight on past and present projects, shooting exclusive feature cars, and giving his own slant on industry events and trends. Even though Mike still remains busy with his current editorial and advertising responsibilities, we understand that even as a part-time contributor, the quality of Motor Mavens content can only increase with Mike on board. We are glad to welcome Mike to the Motor Mavens team and cannot wait to see what he has in store!

Trust us, you need to stay tuned to Motor Mavens!

:: Dax Rodriguez


WEBMINING> Wald International Lexus IS-F

Apparently, Wald International has done it again with the release of their new aero kit for the Lexus IS-F sedan! For those that aren't familiar, Wald is one of the premier luxury aero companies in Japan. They make high end aero kits for cars ranging from Nissan Skylines to Chevrolet Astro Vans.   Read more...

COVERAGE> AZ Drag & Drift at Firebird Raceway

Arizona drifting - two words that aren't put together very often by people. However, the drifting scene is strong in AZ, and it's about time we MotorMavens shine a little much-deserved light on the grassroots drifters out in the land of desert and cactus. Firebird Raceway is the backdrop for Arizona's monthly AZ DRIFT Drag and Drift event, with all types of drivers from amateur to professional coming out to practice and showoff their skills. With it being summer in Arizona, we're very reluctant to make a trip outside into the 109 degree heat. 109 degrees! However being blessed with beautiful weekend weather it was a perfect day to take photos and it seemed like everyone was out at track either driving or spectating.   Read more...

COVERAGE> D1 Grand Prix USA, Anaheim

As the anticipation for the return of the original drifting series that started it all built to nearly a fevered pitch, fans in Anaheim were anxiously chomping at the bite to fill the stands and catch a glimpse of some of Japan's finest drifters. There were some familiar names in attendance, such as Nobushige Kumakubo, Ken Nomura, Takahiro Ueno, Kazuhiro Tanaka, Toshiki Yoshioka, as well as numerous hopefuls from the US and around the world.   Read more...

CENTER STAGE> Domino’s Deep Dish Kouki S14

Not too long ago, I scheduled a rendezvous with Mike Paganik, who is the owner of this pristine 1996 240sx. Mike, who happens to be a friend who I have known since the 9th grade, tells me he's getting a new car, and I'm thinking "Great... Another one?" This guy has more vehicles then a dealership's used car lot, so out of curiosity, I ask him what the car is and the obvious question of "Can I drive it?" He answered "It's an S14" and the obvious answer of "You definitely can not drive it."   Read more...