Sunday, August 9, 2009

Formula Drift: Evergreen Speedway, Seattle

Yesterday I went to the last event of the Formula Drift Seattle series and got to see the Top16 drivers "battle" to the top 3 finishes. Chris Forsberg came out on top in his RedBull Racing 350z roadster, Sullivan came in 2nd in the Rockstar WRX, and McQuarrie in the Falken 350z came in 3rd.

An interesting turn of events occured during the final matches, in the final four match of Sullivan vs. Vaughn Gittin Jr., both Sullivan and VGJ did well when VGJ led and that's basically all the chase car needs to do, drift well in tandem with the lead car. However, for whatever reason (maybe VGJ wanted to show off a little or try to get some kind of edge), when it was VGJ's turn to chase, he closed into Sullivan's car and tried to initiate his drift before Sullivan which is a pretty douchey move on his part, this set the gears in motion for a nice crash in which Sullivan initiated his drift but because he lost a little speed doing it VGJ tapped Sullivan's car, causing both cars to lose control and culminating with VGJ t-boning Sullivan's car into the wall.

Then right after he crashes into Sullivan he high-tails it out of there back into the pits assumingly to fix his damage for what I assume he imagines is his next run--another pretty douchey move. Meanwhile, Sullivan's car is basically trashed and done for the day. Thankfully the judges recognized that VGJ effectively screwed over Sullivan hardcore and gave Sullivan the win-berthing him to 2nd place.

This scenario got me thinking about what would happen if a highly-skilled rookie drifter with not much in the way of sponsorship was running against a big-name highly-sponsored drifter. The drifter with more money could basically maliciously "tap" the other drifter into a wall, totalling his car, and everything would be fine in the end for the drifter with more money because the rookie is out of the game for who knows how long and the big-shot is ready to go after his pit crew rebuilds his car in 5 minutes. I'm sure it will only be a matter of time before something dirty like this happens in reality.

Anyway, onto the pics:

Grandstands were decently full. I got a kick out of the announcer saying that Evergreen speedway won the best crowd award last year. In reality, last year everyone was talking about how terrible the crowd was, it was pretty much pure silence with low energy.
RC drifting was present.

The Falken tent(s).
Pit car with trays containing suspension parts laid out for fast replacement. I thought this was a pretty sweet idea.
The Toyo tires tent, lots of tires to burn. Apparently the rear tires only last for 2 competition runs before needing replacement on this track.
Some of Toyo's drivers looking down on the crowds.
Joon Maeng's S14, Joon is one of the low-budget pro drifters I mentioned earlier. He's also probably one of the nicest / friendliest guys there.
Sullivan's WRX before being destroyed (no after pics).
Not a fan of RX7s but really love the paint scheme style.
A pretty clean and vibrant S13.
Chris Forsberg's car.
Gushi's RWD Scion, the crowd went nuts over this guy, probably only because of his name, "the Goosh." (I'll admit his headlighting is pretty sweet) In reality, I don't think anyone in the stands has seen him drifting very much. He didn't even last 1 competition run due to drivetrain problems--the exact same thing happened last year.
Nasty Hyundai drift car.
Tanner Foust after showboating his Nascar V8-powered Scion.
The top 16 drivers lined up.
More of the same.

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