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It was a weekend full of firsts for the RTR Team! Vaughn Gittin Jr. was back behind the driver seat of the 2024 Mustang RTR Spec 5-FD, James Deane got his first podium since joining the RTR Team and Chelsea DeNofa fought one more time after one more time for the first-place finish at Formula Drift Seattle!

Team RTR stands on the Formula Drift Seattle podium

Chelsea DeNofa now leads all drivers in wins this season following his second of the year and third in a row at FDSEA! Chelsea leaves Seattle with the lead in Championship points with only two rounds remaining in the season.

The double podium was also a 2023 first for RTR. Unfortunately, Vaughn would fall short of joining his RTR teammates on the podium following a Top 32 exit to fourth place finisher Ryan Tuerck.

Vaughn, Chelsea and James will next compete in Round 7 of the Formula Drift season from Grantsville, Utah September 14-16.

Chelsea DeNofa and James Deane stand in front of their Mustang RTR Spec 5 FD's

With a new round of Formula Drift on the horizon, that meant fresh new designs for the guys aero discs. Check out each driver’s latest design. Which one was your favorite?

Chelsea DeNofa's Back to the future inspired Aerodisc design
Vaughn Gittin Jr's zombie inspired Aerodisc design
James Deane's

Formula Drift Seattle Top 32 Battles

Chelsea DeNofa would battle Ola Jaeger in his Top 32 battle. DeNofa had an excellent lead run and on the chase run Ola hit the wall advancing DeNofa to the Top 16.

Chelsea DeNofa's Back to the future inspired Aerodisc design

Vaughn Gittin Jr. would face Ryan Tuerk in his Top 32 battle. Vaughn was keeping close proximity on his chase run and keeping Tuerk at arm’s length. During Vaughn’s lead run he would throw too much angle into the last zone that would ultimately cause Ryan Tuerk to advance to Top 16. 

Vaughn Gittin Jr leads in his Top 32 run against Ryan Tuerk

James Deane battled Alec Robbins for his Top 32 battle. In James’ lead run he would throw some aggressive angle in the outside zone and cause him to go off track for an incomplete run. Alec Robbins also had an incomplete run due to independent straightening. James’ chase run would ultimately decide the outcome of the battle where he would advance to the Top 16.

James Deane chases down Alec Robbins in FD Seattle Top 32 battle

Formula Drift Seattle Top 16 Battles

After the Top 16 introductions it’s time to burn some Nitto Tire rubber! Chelsea faced Chris Forsberg where the judges decided on a one more time run. Chelsea ran door to door for his chase run and drove like a mad man for his lead run to advance him to the Great 8.

Chelsea DeNofa leads in his Top 16 run against Chris Forsberg

In James’ Top 16 battle he faced off with Diego Higa. On his lead run, Higa has a run slightly off course on the final zone. James just needed to have a solid chase run to advance to the Great 8, in which he did.

James Deane leads in his Top 16 run against Diego Higa

Formula Drift Seattle Great 8 Battles

DeNofa is set to go up against Rome Charpentier in the Great 8. DeNofa’s lead run was solid and his chase run sealed the deal to advance to the Final 4.

Chelsea DeNofa leads in his Great 8 run against Rome Charpentier.

James Deane chased Odi Bakchis for his Great 8 battle where Odi would over shoot it and give him an incomplete run. James’ lead run was door to door with Odi but with Odi’s incomplete run, James advanced to the Final Four.

James Deane leads in his Great 8 run against Odi Bakchis.

Formula Drift Seattle Final 4 Battles

Jarod DeAnda said it best during this battle, DeNofa took a lickin’ and kept on tickin’! DeNofa had a late transition into outside zone 3 where he was deemed at fault for causing Tuerk to bump into him. On the chase run it was another insane run from both drivers but Tuerk over cooked it in the last outer zone and gets an incomplete run resulting in an automatic one more time.

Chelsea DeNofa leads in his Final 4 run against Ryan Tuerk

On the chase run, Deane ran a fairly safe line with Hughes in the lead. Deane’s lead run had the bumper grazing the wall the entire ride on the bank with Dylan Hughes close in proximity but didn’t follow Deane’s line very well. The judges voted unanimously for Hughes to advance. The deciding factor was Deane’s chase run where he wasn’t riding outer zone 1 as high as Hughes did. Since James qualified higher, he solidified his spot on the podium for a 3rd place finish!

James Deane leads in his Final 4 run against Dylan Hughes

DeNofa and Tuerk both made small mistakes on their one more time run that caused the judges to call for another one more time run!

Lets get into this one more, one more time! DeNofa leads with a solid run where Tuerk independently went off track with 3 wheels resulting in an incomplete chase run for him. DeNofa kept his composure on his chase run which advanced him to the Finals!

Chelsea DeNofa leads in his second one more time Final 4 run against Ryan Tuerk

Formula Drift Seattle-The Final Battle

Chelsea DeNofa and Dylan Hughes go head to head for the final battle for the podium at FDSEA! Hughes gets the first lead run where he almost runs 3 tires off course but DeNofa stays the course and finishes off his chase run. DeNofa launches right out of the gate with a substantial gap to Hughes as they come off of the long bank, Hughes makes contact with him and goes off course which solidified DeNofa’s 1st place victory!

Chelsea DeNofa celebrates as he is announced as the winner of Formula Drift Seattle
Chelsea DeNofa stands atop the Formula Drift podium in first place with James Deane next to him after finishing in third place

Thank you all to everyone who comes out to the events to show their support and all of you online that tune in religiously. We can’t wait for the last 2 rounds of the 2023 Formula Drift Season to take place.

Watch Formula Drift Seattle from the Driver's Seat!

Vaughn Gittin Jr 
Formula Drift Seattle VLOG

Chelsea DeNofa
Formula Drift Seattle VLOG

James Deane
Formula Drift Seattle VLOG

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