Formula D Palm Beach is the ying and yang round for me. It’s whole yet half of it is really unenjoyable, try 90′ degree heat plus 90% humidity and random thunderstorms. At the same time creating epic skies and beautiful colors as background. The track is wide open yet the cones that guide the drivers around the track make it awful to shoot in-between them. With little media photo/video spots I tried to get as much variety but it was extremely difficult to push hard as both days my shirt was sweaty it had salt lines in them by the time I dried off. Hopefully it was worth the photos I was able to capture.
Walker Wilkerson getting ready for the driver meeting and practice. Tried the groom getting ready approach and I thought it was pretty good, now only if his best man will zip up his suit.
Jim, Ceso, and company paying attention during the drivers meeting. Sometimes I think I should pay attention too to see how the track is laid out and what the judges expect, but the lure of shooting focus personel and drivers is much funner. I never paid attention in class anyways.
You can see that the drivers start getting focus and each person does something to show their anxiety. It’s like an episode of “Lie to Me” probably a bad reference as most of you probably don’t watch it.
As mentioned above, random shower would happen throughout the weekend. This shot above shows how sunny and gorgeous it is and at the same all the rain that’s coming down.
The Palm Beach track is reversed from last year as this time they brought in fences to catch any debris if crashes occur. I thought it was nice that they extended the middle section part as it creates more difficulty and the lines are more technical. Also allows the judges to evaluate the drivers better in overall execution in my opinion.
However, with all the additional items on the course, you end shooting with tons of objects along with the car, clipping points cones, fences, and barriers are apart of the equation now.
Not often do you see both Camaro’s battling each other. Was a nice little treat during practice.
The track had some high speed areas which the drivers made good smoke and if they didn’t smoke, well just use dirt.
The feeling around the track was pretty intense. The teams that are in play for a Championship this year is gearing up for the run and since Formula Drift only has seven rounds, there isn’t any room for mistakes.
Over at the Falken rig, it’s very quiet when it comes down to getting ready and prepping the cars. Those cars work in very efficient manner with little to no directions. Vaughn having a quick word with Justin Pawlak. Justin is currently sitting in first place and would love to take home his first Formula Drift Championship.
Walker Wilkerson’s car always looks nice in the Palm Beach scenery. The purple has a nice pop to it.
As Friday night practice started Matt Fields got really tight with Fredric Aasbo which was a very nice start to the practice session
Legendary Rhys Millen battling Yoshioko
Digging Robbie Nishida’s Lexus SC300, always wanted one of those with a 2JZ swap.
Some of the rookies this year came out in full force and did was necessary including tearing off the bumpers.
The crew over KMR trying to get Kyle Mohan’s motor back into the car.
Even with all the seriousness there were plenty of fun still. Chelsea says it’s all good, I believe you man.
The KDF peeps are the best at keeping everything fun. Even when they are a little down, they know how to turn that frown upside down. Thank you Thao!
Matt Powers also having tons of fun, his job don’t suck and I have photos to prove it =P
Still there was plenty of work to do. Here is Randyl Dawn at the Falken booth working it in the 90′ heat.
The girls over at Hankook are trying to keep cool as well. Danielle Lo, Megan Belet, and Vivian Nguyen signing autographs for the dedicated fans of Florida.
Kenny Chieu working hard mounting tires at the Hankook pits. I can’t imagine replacing all the tires in this heat.
Last minute interview before Walker takes the track. Epic flare in background, damn I love Florida and hate it all at the same time.
Daigo Saito took on Conrad for three long battles. This is the reason why the kept going one more time, both cars were sticking to each other.
Beautiful skies before Top 16 ceremony.
Battle of the Nissan orange Z’s. Which orange is better? Feels like they need bigger body kits though.
Daigo rolls through Darren McNamara in the top 16
Vaughn was doing pretty well before he got knocked out by teammate Justin Pawlak. Vaughn and Justin’s battles were pretty tight which cause a one more time, but Vaughn spun his car after the first entry turn leading to an easy victory for Justin Pawlak.
There were tons of one more time including this Ryan Tuerck battle against Daijiro, Dai beats Ryan and goes on to get 3rd place.
At the end of the night Daigo Saito beats Chris Forsberg to win his first first place.
Congrats to Daigo Saito, Chris Forsberg, and Daijiro Yoshihara
You can keep your heat, humidity, and bugs Florida. Till next time.