Formula Drift New Jersey 2021 Results: Matt Field Wins First Ever Englishtown Stadium Drift Course Event with Fredric Aasbo in 3rd
Formula Drift made a grand return to Englishtown Raceway Park in Englishtown, New Jersey over this past the weekend. The event was more special than most as it marked the first ever drift event held stadium style on a purpose-built drift course. Englishtown Raceway made a bold move and closed down the drag strip to build a purpose-built figure 8 drift course over its old drag strip location and this was its great debut to pro drifting.
Chelsea DeNofa dominated qualifying again at Englishtown again putting some crazy numbers and consistency on a brand-new course with no new data. He wound up with a tough Top 32 battle against Adam LZ who struggled during qualifying and limped his S15 Siliva to a 32nd place qualifying spot.
A Thundering Top 32
Right as the Top 32 fired up at Englishtown, the rain came and never really stopped over the Formula Drift main event. The first tandem battle was a great one, but Chelsea DeNofa edged out and beat Adam LZ knocking him out of competition for the night. Dean Kearney earned the biggest upset of the weekend with some perfect wet weather drifting against Vaughn Gittin Jr. in the best battle of Top 32. The judges selected Dean Kearney and his Dodge Viper to advance into the Top 16 sending home the defending Formula Drift Champion Vaughn Gittin Jr. far too early for his liking.
Chris Forsberg and Justin Pawlak had a big battle where Justin Pawlak ended up spinning and gave Forsberg an advance into the Top 16. Justin Pawlak was third in the Formula Drift Championship going into Englishtown but ended up finishing the night sitting in eighth place. Ryan Tuerck made easy work of the up and coming driver Taylor Hull showing his great car control and drift tandem abilities in the wet weather conditions.
Soaking Wet Top 16
Top 16 seemed to have the worst weather of the race weekend and also the most standing water on course during this segment of the race. The Frenemies saw another rematch in the 2021 season and this time Matt Field defeated Odi Bakchis. This early defeat ends up making him fall down into second place in the Formula Drift Championship standings after this early exit. Chris Forsberg met Michael Essa in a Battle of the Champions. Essa was being aggressive on his chase but ended up spinning out as a result and allowing Forsberg to make a run into the Great 8.
Fredric Aasbo really had to count on his equipment in these terrible weather conditions and his Nitto NT555 G2 tires were up to the task! Aasbo had a hard-fought battle with Dylan Hughes that the judges deemed a One More Time. On the rematch, Fredric Aasbo managed to edge out Dylan Hughes for a victory after really planting his Toyota Supra to the door of Dylan’s E46 BMW chassis.
Then There Was 8
The Great 8 kicked off with an all Nitto Tire battle facing Chelsea DeNofa versus Ryan Tuerck. DeNofa made an error in his lead run opening the door for Tuerck to advance into the Final Four. On the chase run, DeNofa ended up pushing too hard into Tuerck and spun again to close out his great weekend early.
Fredric Aasbo put on a world class tandem performance as he pushed Travis Reeder around the course in his Toyota Supra. This overly aggressive chase run left no doubt it was time to eliminate Travis and his BMW from this round of Formula Drift at Englishtown.
A Fantastic Final Four
The track finally started to dry out as we entered into the Final Four battles and for the first time that night, the fans and viewers got to see smoke coming from the tires of cars. Matt Field and Ryan Tuerck had an incredible tandem battle under the best weather conditions of the weekend. Both drivers had great sections in their chase but also made a few mistakes, so all three judges forced them into a One More Time battle.
On the One More Time Battle, Ryan Tuerck looked to be in perfect form until he went too deep into a turn chasing Matt Field. That allowed Matt Field to squeak into the Finals. Due to Ryan Tuerck’s qualifying position, he finished at Englishtown in fourth place.
Chris Forsberg displayed a great chase run and Fredric Aasbo ran really hard and they had a three-way split call from the judges. One picked Aasbo, one picked Forsberg, and one picked One More Time. The One More Time Battle really had Chris Forsberg showing he was able to find a line with more traction and left Aasbo way behind in his lead run and the judges felt it was enough to grant him a victory. Fredric Aasbo finished the event in 3rd place.
Fumbling in the Finals
Chris Forsberg’s Nissan 370z fumbled in the final battle in a bad way. During his chase run, he had a throttle body issue and they couldn’t get it fixed in time for him to complete another lap. This gave Matt Field an easy victory to add to his amazing 2021 season so far. Matt Field now finds himself first in the Formula Drift Championship points with Odi Bakchis and Fredric Aasbo just behind him. This was also Matt Field’s third career victory in Formula Drift to wrap up a wild night at the Drift Stadium inside Englishtown Raceway Park.