Vortech Supercharged Team Falken drivers Matt Field and Aurimas "Odi Bakchis came into the Long Beach with high spirits, after both scoring 1st place podium finishes last season in Rounds 6, 7, and 8. Both drivers sporting new appearances, as Odi has gone back to piloting his previous S14 competition car with an all new Vortech V-7 YSi Supercharged LS engine configuration under the hood, and both his and Field's S14 sporting new Team Falken livery for the new season.
Both drivers successfully made it to Top 16, with Matt Field eliminating Nate Hamilton, and Odi Bakchis taking out Cameron Moore in the 1st Round.
In Top 16, Bakchis came up against Piotr Wiecek, and it was a battle of the Matts on the opposite side of the bracket, with Matt Field vs. Matt Coffman.
Battling an engine misfire all day, Field could not get the angle to compete against Coffman, who was having a spectacular day (one might say he was having a "field day"). Field & crew will be back for Round 2 with a renewed sense of purpose and a hunger for the podium.
Bakchis went up against Wiecek and his Worthouse S15. A miscalculation by Wiecek on Bakchis' lead run ensured Odi and his Vortech V-7 YSi Supercharged Nissan would move on to the next round to face Dean Kearney in the Top 8 bracket.
In the battle against Kearney, both drivers perform well and the judges call for "One More Time". A sizable difference in proximity between the cars on Bakchis' lead lap (coupled with Kearney taking out the final peninsula clipping point with the front of his bumper), and Bakchis pushes hard against Kearney on Bakchis' following lap made for Bakchis successfully moving on to the Final 4.
Odi meets Alex Heilbrunn in the Semi-Finals, and after stellar lead and chase laps by both drivers, the judges call for a "One More Time" that proves to be a nail biter. Bakchis taps the wall on his leap lap and drops his bumper, effectively ending his weekend just missing the podium in 4th place.
Look for more exciting drifting action later this month, when Formula Drift Round 2 hits Orlando, Florida!