Over the past decade, there have been a ton of new faces in the traveling Formula D circus - new drivers, new photographers, new teams and sponsors, new models, and new fans. When the very first Formula Drift event was held at Road Atlanta back in 2004, drifting was very much new to the United States. Most people didn't even know what it was. Most of the drivers and teams were very grassroots in appearance; we certainly didn't see the big corporate event activations and sponsor logos that you find at Formula Drift events nowadays.
Many of the original drivers, models, and teams from the inaugural Formula Drift event in 2004 have moved on to pursue other things. However, there are still a few OG Formula Drift heads (like me) still around. Man, we're getting old! Read more...
According to BFG, their new Comp2 tire promises drivers the ability to accelerate faster, corner harder, and brake in a shorter distance than their competitors. When asked exactly who they consider to be their competition for this class of tire, BFG pointed to Dunlop Direzza DZ101, Yokohama S-Drive, Kumho Ecsta SPT KU31, Cooper and Hankook Ventus V12 tires. Read more...
I called this last video ”A Couple Days On Planet Jupiter.” Weird title, right? I picked it because really, it felt like we were on another planet for a weekend. Everything was completely different from any of our previous racing experiences, right down to the sand-floored pit area. Combine that with the hot weather, the hot ladies (of which there were many), and the otherworldly atmosphere of Formula Drift, and you’ve got yourself the recipe for a very foreign place to a bunch of Canadian drift junkies. (more…)
Just like the gypsy camps in the days of old, this year's Las Vegas round of Formula Drift brought thieves out of the woodwork. I was really surprised to find out that former Formula D judge (and current Tanaka Racing Corvette driver) Alex Pfeiffer's helmet was stolen. I suppose someone was a fan of Alex's Hawaiian print helmet, which had the traditional Hawaiian plumeria flowers painted on one side. The only question I have about that is... Okay, thieves. Now that you have Alex's helmet, what the hell are you going to do with it? Read more...
That's why this story by Jonathan McWhorter was so compelling to me. It's not about the money or the fame. It's not about your company budget or your connections. It's not even how long you've been in the industry. Those are not the things that make this industry so awesome. I could tell you but Jon did such a great job - I'll leave it in his capable hands. After all, he reminded me. So, without further ado... Read more...
Thanks to our friends at YoParts and Belle 1 Communications, we were able to watch Formula D live; the DriftStream live feed was really fun and entertaining! It was like an old school AOL chat room with tons of drifting fans blurting out information and opinions; I was impressed at how many people got involved in the live chat, cheering for (and sometimes clowning) drivers and teams! All in all, it was super fun - and I quite honestly was pretty disappointed that I had to shut down my computer in the middle of the Top 16 so that I could drive to my friend's house for a party/bbq (it was my fault - I should have just driven over there early so I could watch the entire thing at his house).
Wall Speedway is a pretty interesting track. It was originally built for circle track cars, but somehow was able to re-purpose itself for drifting, thanks to a lot of phone calls, legwork, and planning by the Formula Drift staff. Wall Speedway is also the most extreme banking that Formula Drift competition cars run on, with the most extreme sections of the track being 30 degrees - a really big difference in comparison to Irwindale Speedway's 18 degrees of incline. Read more...
For those who don't know, Universal Technical Institute is a mechanic's training school, located out in the IE (Inland Empire), right across the street from the old Falken Tire headquarters, and right next to Kumho on Sixth Street and Haven. I've had an increasingly extremely full personal calendar, filled with things I need to do and places I need to be... and this weekend was no different. As much as I wanted to, I couldn't even make it out to the tech day myself, so I am super appreciative that new MotorMavens contributors Horacio Flores and Mike Kim (no, not the Mike Kim from UrbanRacer) offered to go to UTI and see what was going on. Thanks a lot guys! Enough about these details though - let's have a look at the cars! Read more...
I’ve been holding this info back for a couple days, and trust me – it’s pretty hard not to say anything when you have news like this! This is a pretty interesting piece of news here – Samuel Hubinette is currently in Japan, and plans to drive at the D1 Grand Prix event at Odaiba this coming weekend!
I received an email from Samuel, asking my opinion on which car I thought he should borrow for this weekend’s D1GP event – Daigo Saito‘s D1 Championship car, the FNATZ JZX100 Chaser, Takahiro Ueno‘s widebody JZZ30 Vertex Soarer, or Takahiro Ueno’s normal fendered JZZZ30 Vertex Soarer.
My vote was for Daigo’s super sick Chaser – first of all, it’s a D1GP Championship winning car for crying out loud; second of all, I thought the long wheel base and the big pendulum swinging characteristics of such a long drift car would be perfect for Samuel’s driving style. However, since I heard reports that Samuel was currently in Yokohama at Ueno-san’s car shop, Sui Vax, I’m guessing he opted for one of the Soarers. Either way, S.Hubinette is one hell of a driver, and I’m confident that he can drive anything with four wheels – probably even an Ikea Expedit bookcase or a Malm dresser. LOL
Speaking of Ikea, I can’t believe that Samuel has been drifting professionally this long, and Ikea still hasn’t sponsored him. They’re both Swedish after all; now that Mopar is no longer his title sponsor, I think Ikea needs to step up and sponsor the crazy Swede. Samuel has told me before that he loves going to Ikea in Irvine, because it reminds him of Sweden. He can chill out there and drink all the lingonberry juice he wants!
Could you just imagine Samuel’s pit area if Ikea were to sponsor him? Instead of an EZ-up with folding chairs, he’ll be rocking a bright red Ikea couch that folds into a bed; a furry white carpet on the ground; a difficult to assemble cabinet, and a million cheap tealight candles scattered all over the place.
Oh, umm… but back to the topic at hand, I’m sure Samuel will be putting on quite a show for the Japanese D1 audience. I just hope we don’t see Option Videos of Keiichi Tsuchiya and Manabu Suzuki saying “DRIFT YA RATER!!!”
:: Antonio Alvendia
While 2009 may have come and gone, Joshua Herron dug through hours upon hours of footage to give us one last glimpse at what the ’09 Formula Drift season held in store for us. This video is amazing on so many different levels. The cinematography is top-notch, it is jam-packed with unreleased footage, transitions through three songs – each with a unique vibe, and it does it all seamlessly. The last segment definitely feels like a throwback to the old skate videos I grew up with.
Amazing work on this video, Mr. Herron! I’m going to go watch it again (and again, and again)!!!
:: Andy Sapp
One of the many things I love about the AE86 is its nimble handling. Look at the tight area in which this driver pulls off this maneuver and you’ll understand exactly what I mean – short, sweet, and to the point. Hachi lovers I hope you are watching and paying close attention to the in-car footage – there will be a pop quiz when you least expect it. Samuel Hubinette may have borrowed this as his signature move, but this Hachi turns it out!
:: Travis Hodges