Ahoy Blasterfans! I don’t even know why I am writing this article since the world is going to end due to a massive zombie apocalypse in the near future. I feel lucky just to have left Florida with my face.
My crew and I weighed anchor out of California on an airborne vessel to meet our drift frigate at port in Florida. We had left it there to chill with the black widows that infest the public storage units in West Palm Beach. Our plan was to harvest the poison from their fangs and use it against hostile vessels en route to Palm Beach International Raceway for round three of the Formula Drift series. Our goal for the weekend was to successfully invade the Lylat system and take over Corneria.
Unlike our previous voyages, we did not do anything über-cool when we arrived in the region we were to compete in. However, we did enjoy the best pizza in West Palm, and possibly the world, at the hole in the wall next to the laundromat known Romana’s Pizza. I’m not going to lie, I just looked on Yelp for awesome pizza and found this joint, but it was superb. With our stomachs full of pizza, wings, and bruschetta, we ventured outside to challenge the humidity and gauge how eager the crew was to engage in team building activities such as firing automatic cannons and climbing coral shelfs. Because of said humidity, we were instantly becalmed and came about to the rental quarters where I promptly passed out for the night.
Upon my arrival at the battleground on Thursday I was pleased to find that I would dock under the Nexen Tire tent for the duration of the event with my beloved ally Kyle Mohan. Just being under my sponsors tent made me feel way more legit than I actually am. I do not think Nexen anticipated that I would cause all of the other drivers to go on account, but what could they do? We’re all pirates at heart.
I am seriously blessed to have Matt, Eric, and Ry traveling with me to every event this year with the sole duty of keeping my car on the track. While other drivers were busy learning the course during morning practice, we were busy destroying two alternators and completely changing the car’s suspension and alignment setup. Even with the extensive mechanical work we did on the car, I still managed to get enough practice to feel comfortable with the course. My crew seriously has the most heart of anybody in the field. You guys are simply amazing.
After practice, we received word that the Fomula Drift crew was having a shindig at the Burger Bar in Jupiter Florida not far from the track. Being the party animals that we are, the whole team decided to attend. Joe “Dead Guy” Ayala and Justin “I’m Gay” Shreeve were greeted by 18 dollar beers while I sipped my iced tea and waited for my burger. It’s a good thing we went out though, or I would not have had the opportunity to accept a 5:00 ante-meridian interview at the track for the local news station the next morning. Three hours of sleep, and back to the track we went.
I don’t remember Friday too well because I was running purely on NOS Energy drink. All I remember is doing the news bit, going to sleep, waking up to Jarod DeAnda for an ACT commercial, going back to sleep, then qualifying 24th in the rain. Earlier in the week Captain Matt and I had dubbed Florida our “lucky” track since it was the only event that my car made it through last year without suffering a catastrophic mechanical failure. Little did we know we would have to survive a keelhaul before any form of luck would reveal itself.
Our tandem match-up for Saturday was none other than the current points leader and all around hard charger Justin “Gameface” Pawlak. I like to convince myself before every battle that everyone is human, everyone gets nervous, and everyone can be beaten. Our game plan against JTP was to give him no quarter, run our Forged Racing PoweredbyMAX Nexen Tire 350z to the ragged edge, and possibly do a barrell roll. It looked like this. (Cue the clever Life Blasters staff pasting my Top 32 run here).
From the Editor: Ryan is too modest to mention it, but the LB staff and I agree that the initiation on his follow run was one of the boldest most exciting moves we’ve ever seen. As his lookout, I had to call for my brown-pants. -Pitts
I had hoped for a parlay at best, but we were plundered by the ever dominant JTP. At this point, I concluded that drifting sucks and decided to change careers and become an announcer for the Formula Drift livestream. I had a blast chatting alongside professional commentator Jacob “Sweet Lips” Leveton, but nowhere near as much fun as I had concocting shameless sponsor plugs. Seriously, if everyone ran Parts Shop MAX suspension arms, mechanics would be out of a job. For those of you who were listening in on the driftstream, thanks for not forcing me to walk the plank. You are all too kind.
I’m really tired now. Thanks to Life Blasters for shooting rad photos/videos of me, and for giving me this super awesome driver blog. I wouldn’t be here without the support of my dedicated team, friends, family, and sponsors Forged Racing, Nexen Tires, Parts Shop MAX, SR Motorcars, ACT Clutch, Extreme Dimensions, EBC Brakes, Ultra Racing, DNA Motoring, MP Tuning, Replay XD, NOS Energy Drink, Recovered Carriers, and TNT Autobody.