Federal Looks Back on Spectacular Drift Australia
The 2008 Toyo Tires Drift Australia Series may only have finished in September with its fifth and final round at Oran Park Speedway on 20-21, but Federal Tires – which supplies some of the participants’ rubber and sponsorship – is already looking forward to “an even bigger year in 2009.” The Federal brand is heavily represented by the rides of Khudar Elhaouli, Tom Monkhouse, Eugene Arendsen and Nathan Weissel. The latter two drivers have also represented Team Federal alongside Trent Whyte in the Team Drift competition, which the Taiwanese manufacturer singles out as a particular highlight of the series.
Federal has been pleased with its progress in the competition and with the brand development opportunities it has had through participation in the series. The brand is particularly keen to raise awareness of its products in the high and ultra-high performance sectors, and the audience of Drift events – which involve throwing cars into spectacular slides to gain points for style rather than just speed – is typically made up of willing consumers of products in this sector. In terms of results, Elhaouli’s overall series fourth place, alongside the eighth, ninth and tenth placements of Monkhouse, Arendsen and Weissel, reflects the relative success Federal-shod competitors have experienced, allowing them to finish the year, in the company’s words, “at the pointed end of the field.”
Oran Park Speedway in Sydney saw competition heat up in the final five championship rounds. As Federal states, “Elhaouli blasted on to the road canvas with his bright Orange Chev V8 powered Nissan Silvia, his brilliant skill and control along with copious amounts of smoke making him a crowd favourite. The tough guy made it through to the Top 4 elimination in style, disposing of all who stood in his way.” In the end, he was awarded the Spirit of Drifty Trophy, “for his unshakable upbeat and positive attitude all year round.” In addition, Monkhouse managed to put down a near perfect run earning him a well deserved third spot. He rounded out the series in eighth spot in the final table.
Federal was also pleased to unearth new drifting talent this year: Trent Whyte and Luke Jacob. The duo were honoured with 2008 Rookie of the Year nominations.
The final highlight of the 2008 season for Federal Tyres was the Team Drift competition, with Weissel, Whyte and Arendsen together “demonstrating high-speed performance within inches of each other.” Federal states that it has been “proud to acknowledge everyone in Team Federal Tyres with their efforts and accomplishment, which said everything about how well our product really performed. But we will not be complacent as we fully understand our ultimate objective is a passion to create a better tyre that clearly pays off to breed more champs.”