West Chester, PA (PRWEB) – April 13th 2011, As spring time activities start to file into the northern hemisphere so does Formula Drift. The series kicked off in Long Beach, CA on April 8th and 9th and Matt Waldin was there to welcome in his teams first full season of Formula Drift. Long Beach is the kickoff spot on the tour but also has the least amount of practice time. Teams were given an hour and a half to master the course and setup drift cars to navigate the tight and wall lined streets of Long Beach, Ca.
Waldin and crew had the Helix Energy Drink 350z dialed in long before the car even got to the Pacific time zone. With only a few runs of practice the venue turned up the heat and went into qualifications. The stands were sold out and the fans were ready for some action. On the first run Waldin laid down a killer line slightly dragging the bumper on the first clipping zone. The Federal 595RS-R tires were working at their peak of grip and landed the team an 80.5 for the first run. This would be exactly what the team needed to secure a #13 qualifying spot.
The field of drivers had been whittled down to 32 spots for the big show and Matt was paired up with Charles Ng in the V8 powered Mazda. For the first lap Waldin led the pair into the course and put down a solid lean run. Switching things up, Charles led and the BC Racing suspension kept the car glued to Ng’s quarter panels. At the end of the run Ng parked it around the last clipping point and handed what was a close run to Waldin. The Waldin team rejoiced and prepped the car for the top 16 battle.
The top 16 battle ended up being dubbed “The battle of the Matts”. Waldin was paired up with Long Beach local Matt Powers. Powers was sporting a new engine that seemed to be working good for him all weekend. Powers ran a slightly shallow line for his lead run while Waldin followed close behind. When it was time for Waldin to lead he ran the qualifying line against the walls and needed a slight correction on the 2nd outer clipping zone which after deliberation, the judges handed Mr. Powers the win.
The next stop on the Formula D circuit is Atlanta, GA on May 6th and 7th. This venue boasts a 100+ MPH entry and separates the men from the boys. Atlanta is the birthplace of a lot of R&D for the Mishimoto product line that is found in the Helix Energy Drink 350z. Waldin states ” Keeping the car cool at this track used to be a daunting task, last year we made great improvements in the placement of the Mishimoto products to make sure we can keep the temps under control. Overheating is the last thing we have to worry about this year.”