Following the team's 4th place finish in Formula Drift Rd.4 FDNJ, the 870whp GReddy Racing Nexen Tires SR by Toyota 86 was rushed across the country to Sonoma Raceway, for a special NASCAR demo arranged by Toyota. Wrapped in a special TRD Livery, the pro-drift 86 and Ken Gushi gave NASCAR's Michael Waltrip a special full course ride. The demo was a featured segment on the June 26th episode of NASCAR on Fox Sports 1.
Shortly after this, the 86 was returned to it's 2016 Formula D livery and shipped back east across the border into Montreal, Canada for the very first international pro championship round.
Round 5 at the Autodrome Saint Eustache was a totally new circuit for both Ken Gushi and the GReddy Racing Team. With little data to work with and rain on our first practice session, the team was learning the track with every run. Although the course layout looks similar to that of Irwindale Speedway, it's main turn 1 outer wall is not in fact a perfect oval or banked.
By Friday's qualifying day, the weather was looking good and team was making good progress on tuning for the new track. In Qualifying run one, Ken laid down another smooth run, landing him a score of 80. In his qualifying run two, Ken seemed to have an overall better run with a better line, but still scored an80, placing him mid-pack.
But, with the aid of Ben our team spotter, Ken and the rest of the team fine tuned the 86 in the Top32 practice session to be a very competitive car for tandem battles. This was shown in Gushi's first bracket battle against Kyle Mohn's 3rotor ND Miata. Ken was able to keep close proximity on his chase run and a build a gap on his lead run, for the win. (top 32 video clip)
The GReddy Racing Nexen Tire SR by Toyota 86 is now undergoing more updates and upgrades, to have an even stronger vehicle for Ken Gushi to close out the last 3 events of the season. Ken still holds the 4th position in the Formula Drift Pro Championships as we move onto Rd.6 Evergreen Speedway, WA