So today is the pre-big day… yea, not sure where I was headed with that, but today is Qualifying for Formula D Round 6 in Texas at Texas Motor Speedway. New location, new track, new layout, new fun, new videos!
Drivers are reporting entry speeds in the high 90s to the low 100s. Early in the day the highest entry was 101mph by Robbie Nishida in his Achilles Radial 2jz powered Lexus SC300, and by last night we saw posts on Facebook saying that D-MAC, Darren McNamara, had an entry of 104mph in his Falken Tire v8 powered Nissan S14.
Another big thing that is causing a lot of commotion is the insane temperatures on the track. Outside temperatures were in the high 90s to low 100s. One driver, Mats Baribeau, reported that outside temp was 39c(102.2f), pavement temp was 58c(136.4f), and the floor temp under the pedals in his Gold In The Net Drift JZX90 was 80c(176f)! I can’t imagine how these drivers are feeling after a single day of practice at the track, let alone how they will be come Sunday when all is said in done. Some drivers were even posting pictures of there NOS tanks on ice in prep for tomorrow.
Anyway without further a due, here are some of the videos posted yesterday and circling the interwebs.
Chris Forsberg testing the track for Formula D Officials (video via facebook.com/ChrisForsbergRacing)
Let me start out by saying that we met Mats and his team in an unusual way at Round 2 in Atlanta. We found out that we were staying at the same Hotel and started talking to him and the crew about his program and what it took to make it all the way down from Ontario, Canada. Mats is a genuinely nice guy and dedicated driver. He and his team drove 16 hours straight to Road Atlanta, all 5 of them packed into their truck as they hauled the trailer down.
We ran into Mats again at Road 3 in Palm Beach, despite of how small of a site Shift-Therapy is currently, he recognized us walking in the crowd and walked up to me to chat a bit on Friday. I also got a chance to talk with him, his crew and his father more on Saturday morning before Top 32 practice and even after qualifying 5th (the highest qualifying rookie thus far in the 2013 season) and needing to get ready for practice and Top 32 they were all very nice and welcoming and they exuded love and dedicated for what they were doing. Mats and his team show so much commitment and passion we are definitely keeping an eye on him to see how the season goes for such a great team.
About a week ago I saw Mats posted on Facebook and it wasn’t updates from the road on the way to Seattle. So I reached out to Mats to see if he was going to make round 5 as I know he is in 3rd place for rookie of the year and could use the points, still being within striking distance. It was then that Mats shared some upsetting news that Round 5, and maybe the rest of his rookie season, was at this point out of his budget. They are doing everything they can to try and make rounds 6 and 7 to finish the season strong but could use any help they could get. If you would like to help out Mats try and make Rounds 6 and/or 7 head over to his website www.matsbaribeau.com and pick up a shirt or stickers (I already did!) and let’s give Mats a chance to land Rookie of the Year.
You can also follow Mats on Facebook (fb.com/MatsBaribeauDrift), Twitter (@matsbaribeau), Instagram (@matsbaribeau), or YouTube (Mats Baribeau).
Official Team Shirts are $20, Stickers are 1 for $5 or 3 for $10, or you can grab a shirt + 3 stickers + an autographed driver card for $30. (Shipping & Handling note included) by e-mailing Mats at firstname.lastname@example.org