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Mad Mike takes the win at Formula Drift Japan

“Mad” Mike Whiddett’s bid for the 2018 Formula Drift Japan World Championship started with a successful Round 1 at Suzuka in the Haltech-powered Mazda RX-7FD “HUMBUL”.

Suzuka is rumoured to be Mike’s favourite track and it showed during the practice and qualifying sessions.  The fast, flowing course seemed perfectly suited to both Mike’s driving style and the car’s handling characteristics.

In the 3rd spot after qualifying, Mike was in a good position for the Top 32 Round.

“My favourite part of drifting is chasing people down and getting on their door, that’s what counts, that’s where the big points are.”

Mike progressed quickly to Top 16 after his first opponent, Kamiya, destroyed his gearbox in the first pass. In Top 16 Mike faced Nian in his grey JZX100 and walked away victorious after a tough battle.

An old foe – Andy Gray was Mike’s opponent in the Top 8 round.

Semi-final round saw Whiddett and HUMBUL battling Yamashita and his JZX100.

The final battle did not disappoint with Mad Mike taking on Minowa also in his yellow JZX100.

“We lead first and put down a real solid lead run. This weekend our advantage over everyone was our speed. Minowa gapped it off the start line before the tree was even halfway down, but he gave me my room, and I went in harder and faster than ever.”

“We knew from yesterday’s qualifying that the harder we throw the car in, the more grip it will have. I’m sure for the fans that would have been a sick battle to watch. I think what gave us the advantage though was pulling the gap a little towards the end, that and the proximity in our chase. I felt like we had some flawless chases today that made all the difference!”

“To win here at Suzuka is just a true testament to how much effort everyone in the team puts in. To be a Champion, it’s not just the driver, it’s a real team effort.”

Built in Japan by Taisuke Kawato and his company Total Car Produce Magic, HUMBUL RX-7FD is powered by a twin turbo, quad rotor ‘R26B’ producing 1200hp. The screaming quad rotor is controlled by Haltech’s Elite 2500 ECU.

Photos: David Ishikawa/Red Bull Content Pool