The old adage goes that in Florida, when you just start getting used to the weather, it will change. That was no exception for the first round of the Formula Drift Pro 2 Championship at Orlando Speedworld June 5-6, 2015. While the second tier drivers qualified in the dry, Mother Nature had other plans and would test the skills of newcomers and veterans alike. It would also be the first test of a brand new track for the Formula Drift Championships. While you’d like to think those with years of experience would end up on top, turns out the rookies would have something for them, and a driver that earned his license in a series that never experienced rain would take the win.
We knew a couple of our drift buddies would be unveiling some new looks at the 2015 Formula Drift “Tech Day”, and even some new cars, so we took a ride down to the Source Interlink/Super Street Magazine headquarters in Irvine, CA to check them out. We aren’t the type of outlet that digs cars shows, but the turnout was massive, and there were some awesome cars in attendance in addition to the drift cars we were looking for.
In the first 2 articles of “What It Takes”, we visited the subjects of the cars and also the behind the scenes work. So, at the FD finale, I went around and basically asked some questions that I could use to bring this series of articles to a soft landing. I feel we’ve learned a lot in the first 2 articles, and I hope that by reading these, any driver looking to enter Formula Drift can say that it helped them prepare for the big stage.
Drifting is about making your mark. You have to find a way to set yourself apart from all the other drivers and cars. 2 guys that manage to do just that, are Rapper Dan Savage and James Evans from the Sikky Manufacturing camp, who both came into Formula Drift this year with 2 cars that you definitely cannot miss. These guys saw success in the Pro 2 series with James taking a podium in Texas, and Dan taking home the Pro 2 overall championship. Besides the setup, which would obviously be tailored to either Dan or James, the cars are extremely similar.
As we learned in the last article, a beast of a machine under your foot is required to run Formula Drift. Formula D isn’t a place where your 500whp car can make it, unless you have some serious skill or a beefy setup with enough grip that allows you to change the Earth’s rotation at any given time. But, it’s not just the car that makes you successful in Formula D, you have to know everything behind the scenes. It’s more than just hopping in the car and driving. As a follow up to the first “What It Takes” article, I decided to go deeper with the drivers and show a little more behind the scenes, and how dedicated you have to be in order to run a season of Formula Drift.
Texas Motor Speedway was the 3rd stop on the Formula Drift Pro 2 schedule this past weekend. With one more round to go in the Formula Drift season after Texas, the results of Pro 2 Round 3 were bound to mix up the points just enough to make for an exciting race for the championship. Geoff Stoneback is currently on top of the points, with 6 drivers nipping at his heels for the title.