Formula Drift Round 5 – Evergreen Drifting


Jeff Jones drove his heart out and was rewarded by almost taking out eventual winner Dai Yoshihara.  A serious starting mistake by Jones where he launched but let off the throttle halfway to the first turn resulted in his elimination. 

Dai Yoshihara in the Discount Tire Nissan 240SX Coupe went up against Jeff Jones and his CX Racing Nissan 240SX Hatchback. Jeff had a great follow run against Dai, but Dai’s follow run was just as great and a One More Time was called. On that OMT, Dai pulled a huge gap because Jeff Jones did not start and made it seem like as if Dai had jumped the start. Upon further review, it was shown that Dai did not jump and Jeff just didn’t take off. With that huge mistake and a good run by Dai on his follow run, Yoshihara took the win. The Nitto Tire battle of the Need for Speed Nissan 240SX of Matt Powers and the Evasive Tuning Mazda RX-7 of Charles Ng was next and after their great battle, the victor was Matt Powers.

Dai Yoshihara and Jeff Jones
While looking like he jumped the start, Dai was legal and moved on against Jeff Jones!

One of the disappointments of the weekend was the Battle of Odi Bachkis in the Forged Motorsport Nissan 240SX and fan favorite Robbie “Bushido Blade” Nishida in the Briggs Racing Nissan 240SX. As Robbie was going through his follow run his car began to backfire when he stood on the throttle. With him not being able to continue through, Odi was awarded the win.

Robbie Nishsida suffered from mechanical problems which took him out against Odi Batchkis.  Odi ran strong all weekend long.

Vaughn Gittin, Jr. on his Come Back Tour of 2011 in the Falken Tire/Monster Energy Ford Mustang faced Matt Field in the Highlighter Yellow Fatlace Nissan 240SX. Matt had a great follow run, but on his lead run, Matt spun and Vaughn barely missed him, giving Vaughn the win!

Jr beat Matt Field to advance.
Matt Powers and Charles Ng
Matt Powers moves on!

Dennis Mertzanis in the Kenda Tire/Konig Wheels Nissan 240SX faced Justin Pawlak in the Falken Tire Ford Mustang in what most would assume would be a walk away win for JTP. What no one could foresee was JTP having clutch issues. JTP was able to initiate on the bank but could not keep the car going in a drift. With these major issues, Mertzanis was able to move on and JTP failed to make it out of the Top 32 and began his points slide in a very similar fashion as Dai saw in Florida!

A broken clutch took out JTP’s Mustang allowing Dennis Mertzanis to advance.  This mechanical issue might play out huge in the results of the 2011 championship.

Afterwards, Chris Forsberg in the NOS Energy Nissan 370Z faced Otto Graven in his Monster Mob Nissan 350Z. Graven was now packing a Corvette C6.R V8, which made as much power as his turbocharged VQ, but with lighter weight. It wasn’t enough, though, as Forsberg was able to move on to the Top 16 after Otto had a bad lead run in the One More Time battle. Otto, though, does show a ton of promise in the car and will only get better as time moves on!

Dennis Mertzanis and JTP
In the Z vs Z battle, Forsberg took out Otto Graven to advance.

 Joon Maeng in the Nitto Tire Mazda RX-8 and Ken Gushi in the Scion Racing Scion tC faced each other next. Joon had a great lead run and with Ken hitting the wall before going into the transition and throwing him off of his line, Joon Maeng moved on.

Joon Maneg defeated Ken Gushi to advance.

Ryan Tuerck in the Red Bull/Mobil One Chevy Camaro faced Toshiki Yoshioka in the RETAKS Nissan 240SX. With a tap against the wall and straightening out on his lead run, Yoshioka knocked himself out and gave the win to Ryan Tuerck.

Yoshioka hit the wall giving the win to Tuerck.

Heartache loss happened with Ryan Kado in his Nissan 350Z as he faced Rhys Millen in the Hyundai/Red Bull Hyundai Genesis Coupe. On both of Kado’s runs, his fuel cut out and would stop him from initiating on the bank and would also cut out his power-steering. Rhys Millen successfully avoided him each time and advanced to the Top 16.


Rhys Millen and Ryan Kado
Ryan Kado’s fueling problems allowed Rhys Millen to move on.


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