Formula DRIFT 2017 Round 3: Road to the Championship

Road Atlanta; Home of the Inaugural Formula DRIFT event 14 years ago, gave us one of the best rounds we’ve ever seen. The weather was pretty crazy with a little bit of rain, lots of sun, humid at times, cold at others… Mother Nature was throwing it all at these drivers and they still pulled off one killer run after another! 

You could see the want for victory in everyone’s driving style on Road Atlanta this year. It was no holds bumper to bumper, tires into doors, ruthless fighting through tandems with plenty of carnage. 

The amount of OMT’s that the Formula DRIFT judges through out was nothing short of understandable. At times, these guys were making flawless runs and when chase and lead drivers swapped it was a vice versa situation again and again. I’m thankful that I’m not up in the judging booth because there were so many situations where these drivers put down mind blowing runs on one of the most advanced tracks in the series. My hat is off to all of these drivers for throwing down such a rad show. Being my first year to Road Atlanta, they set the bar high and have me antsy for the next visit back to this killer track.

It was an all European podium with Latvian driver, Kristaps Bluss in the HGK / Mast / Motul / Wisefab BMW E46 taking 3rd place after failing to repair his vehicle for a One More Time battle against Irishman, Dean Kearney in the Oracle Lighting Dodge Viper in the semi-finals.  The Finals was a battle of the Irish with Kearney and Deane fighting for the win.  The drivers put on a show for the fans with an incredibly tight battle, but Deane was able to inch past his opponent to take the win.  With three events completed, James Deane has now taken two event wins to move back into the top of the standings. 

“We got to have an all-Irish final and that was just mind-blowing,” said James Deane, winner of the Advance Auto Parts Round 3: Road to the Championship.  “The two of us just gave it 110%, no messing around, and that’s how to have a battle.  I’m super happy and thanks to everyone who made this possible.”

The action continues to Round 4: The Gauntlet at Wall Speedway on June 2-3.  For more information visit, and find Formula DRIFT on Instagram @formulad, Facebook, Twitter @FormulaDrift, and Snapchat – formula_drift. Tune into Formula DRIFT on CBS Sports and check your local listings for airtimes.

Photography: @DukeNewport on Instagram

Duke Newport Photography on Facebook


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