Coming off a dominating 2010 season in which Team Falken driver Vaughn Gittin, Jr.¸ competing in the Monster Energy/Falken Tire 2011 Ford Mustang, became the Formula Drift Champion, the high performance tire manufacturer will be gunning for a repeat performance of last year. Falken's ultimate goal is to have one of its five factory drivers again claiming the top rung of the Formula D ladder, and each team member will have the horsepower to do it. All drivers plan on fielding a new or improved vehicle with more power, which the sport has demanded. The cars will be unveiled this weekend on the streets of Long Beach for the opening event of the 2011 Formula Drift season.
Gittin, Jr., will be aboard a Ford Mustang 5.4-liter, its motor built by Ford Racing and Huffaker Engineering, while Daijiro ("Dai") Yoshihara, who placed fourth in the standings last year, returns in his re-engineered Nissan 240SX (Silvia S13). Finishing fifth in 2010, Darren McNamara also returns this year, running a new Saturn Sky built by Autosport Dynamics in Charlotte, NC, losing the convertible for a hardtop which adds an aggressive stance to the car.
Tyler McQuarrie also recognized the value of a fully enclosed coupe, choosing a new hardtop Nissan 350Z, which allows for a significant change in weight distribution, making the Z a far more competitive vehicle. Finally, Justin Pawlak, returning for his second year with Falken, will again field a Ford Mustang, with an engine built by Ford Racing/Roush-Yates of NASCAR fame.
"Our team has worked hard to develop their new cars and we're pumped and ready," declared Jonathan Bradford, Team Falken's Formula Drift manager.
All members of Team Falken will be using the company's Azenis RT615K, which is DOT-approved and designed with the track competitor in mind. The RT615K is a tire with maximum grip and concentrated contact patch, which increases the driver's ability to fully exploit the capabilities of the engine, brakes and suspension, precisely what each drift competitor needs. Naturally, the RT615K performs equally well on the street during everyday driving.
"Each year, Formula Drift gets bigger, with more participants and more companies who want to be a part of this vital motorsports effort," stated Nick Fousekis, Director of Motorsports and Consumer Marketing for Falken. "We know what it takes to be competitive in this race series and we realize all the other teams will be aiming for us, but we have every intention of repeating our dominance, and continue running at the top. It's great to be back!"
To kick off Falken's comprehensive Formula Drift marketing program, special prizes will be given away at the team's display and activation area inside the paddock. Additional promotional items will be handed out by Falken's new group of Spokesmodels who will be in attendance throughout the two-day event. Guests of Falken will also enjoy the company's highly anticipated hospitality area.
The full complement of Team Falken, including its five factory drivers, along with Falken's display, hospitality rig and the company's factory support, will travel to all seven rounds of the 2010 Formula D Pro Championship.
2010 Formula Drift Round 1 - Falken Tire Takes Long Beach
LONG BEACH, CA The inaugural event in the 2010 Formula Drift season began
with a big win for Team Falken where factory driver Vaughn Gittin, Jr.,
debuting his new 2011 Monster Energy Falken Tire 2011 Ford Mustang on the famed street course of
Long Beach. Gittin, Jr., and Team Falken faced a very competitive field of
entrants, totaling 53, one of the highest entry counts in the history of
Team Falken had a full complement of drivers at the popular track, the
fifth year Formula D has visited Long Beach. In addition to Vaughn,
rounding out the companys paddock and marketing activation areas were
returning team members Daijiro Yoshihara in his rebuilt Discount Tire
Nissan 240SX (S13); Tyler McQuarrie with his Nissan 350Z Convertible; and
Darren McNamara, with his Saturn Sky in new Falken livery. Adding to the
excitement of the weekend was the addition of several new faces to Falken
including Justin Pawlak in his 2010 Ford Mustang and Formula D rookie James
Deane who shocked the crowd with his aggressive driving in Falken's Nissan
S15. Independent drivers on Falken Tires included Ross Petty, John
Russakoff, Dean Kearney and Fredric Aasbo.
2010 will certainly be a busy year for Team Falken. Next stop, Road
2011 Falken Porsche GT3 RSR Testing - Sebring, FL
Falken Tire tests their 2010 Porsche 911 GT3 RSR at the 2011 American Le
Mans Series Winter Test in Sebring, FL at the historic Sebring Raceway. In
a few short weeks this course will host the season opener of the 2011
American Le Mans Series with a grueling 12 hour endurance race.
Team Falken Tire, along with team manager Derrick Walker and drivers Bryan
Sellers and Wolf Henzler hope to improve on their performance from last
year with new slick compounds and a newly managed team.
Derrick Walker's background includes open-wheel racing such as Formula One
and Indy Car.
2011 12 Hours of Sebring - Falken Tire
The 12 Hours of Sebring is an annual motorsport endurance race held at
Sebring International Raceway, a former Army Air Force base in Sebring,
This year, Falken Tire returns with the 2010 Porsche 911 GT3 RSR and a new
team for the American Le Mans Series. Walker Racing is a racing team
founded by Derrick Walker in 1991 racing originally in the CART
Championship Car series.
With Walker's direction, and the driving abilities of Bryan Sellers, Wolf
Henzler and Martin Ragginger, Falken hopes to build on the results of their
2010 season at the first race of the 2011 American Le Mans Series.
Falken's First 2011 ALMS Porsche Win
Team Falken Tire survived the storm that hit Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course 30
minutes before the finish and took top honors in GT class for the first
time in the performance tire manufacturer's three-year ALMS career.
Derrick Walker, Falken's ALMS Team Manager, made the comment after
previously expressing confidence in Falken's capability at Mid-Ohio, a
track he knows very well from years of competing as a manager and owner of
Credit also went to Falken's two team drivers, Porsche works driver Wolf
Henzler, and his partner, Bryan Sellers, who persevered through the race on
a track notoriously tough on tires. Sellers qualified 9th and expressed
disappointment with the position, considering Falken has finished in fifth
place the last two races. However, Sellers started the race and started
moving forward until he was hit from behind by the #04 Ford GT, which
dropped the Porsche to 12th. The veteran driver fought hard and turned the
car over to his teammate in 10th. Henzler entered the race and gradually
moved to 7th place in GT, remaining there for a good portion of the race.
Behind the Smoke Ep 12: Defeat in the Heat - Dai Yoshihara Formula Drift 2011 Season
Formula D Round 3 Palm Beach wasn't exactly what the team was expecting
coming off from that huge victory in Atlanta. On Friday the team qualified
a low 12th place. This Saturday they face, Kyle "The Menace" Mohan...
Behind the Smoke gives a look into the real life of professional Formula
Drift driver, Daijiro Yoshihara. GTChannel's cameras will follow Dai
throughout the 2011 FD season both on and off the track giving current and
new drifting fans an exclusive look into what it's really like to compete
in the top drifting series of N.America.
Paul Walker Visits Famous Nissan Skyline GT-R Tuner Mine's in Japan
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Paul Walker's family appreciates the outpouring of love and goodwill from
his many fans and friends. They have asked, in lieu of flowers or other
gifts, that donations please be made to Paul's charity Reach Out Worldwide
(ROWW). Donations can easily be made through their website at
GTChannel was there when actor Paul Walker of Fast and Furious 6 visited
Mine's Motorsports in Japan. Tarzan Yamada was there to give ride alongs in
the GT-R but ended up...
Formula Drift - Abu Dhabi 2011 - Yas Marina Curcuit - Urban Skillz
Formula Drift - Abu Dhabi 2011
Yas Marina Curcuit
Pure Drift Race Sounds
Tanner Foust - Golden Child
Chris Forsberg - The Force
Dai Yoshihara - Child Of The Drift
Fredric Aasbo - On The Way Up
Ryan Tuerck - Hampsha
Michael Essa - The BMW Freak
Mike Whiddett - Mad Mike
Ken Gushi - I am... The Future
Tony Brakohiapa - The Wise One
Shpongle - Once Upon the Sea of Blissful Awareness
The Prodigy - Omen
MONSTER DRIFT: Road America
Vaughn Gittin Jr's Traveling Smoke Show makes a stop in Elkhart Lake ,
Wisconsin. Jr spins some rubber and makes new fans during a vintage racing
weekend at Road America's 4 mile road course.
Formula Drift 2011
The closest battle for the Formula Drift championship in history, the final
round could not have been more exciting. Top drivers fought through hours
of tension against season rivals and even their own teammates. Falken
Driver Tyler McQuarrie took home first place in the final round but Dijiro
Yoshihara finished strong just beating out Justin Pawlak to take home the
2011 Formula D championship! I had a great time covering a few rounds of
the 2011 season, and look forward to covering more next year!
Song: Adele vs. Skrillex - Set Fire To Everybody