Mad Mike’s Return To Formula Drift
The BADBUL

I was very excited when Mike told me at this year’s Tokyo Auto Salon that he was making a return to Formula Drift, because not only is he a fan favorite, he brings a sense of style unlike anyone else on the grid.

I had a moment to catch up with Mike as soon as he was finished with Thursday practice ahead of this weekend’s FD Atlanta round.

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Larry: You just finished open practice – how is your return to Formula Drift going so far?

Mike: It’s insane – seeing the speed of all the cars especially!

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Just watching from the outside, you can definitely see the progression. I’ve been away from Formula Drift USA for five years, and the difference in speed from back then until now is ridiculous.

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Today is our first time running on a new Nitto Tire NT05 compound, and it feels amazing.

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Scott from SPD, who used to be Daijiro Yoshihara’s crew chief, has done a lot with setting up our KW coilovers and the rest of the suspension, so we’re really comfortable with the car now.

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It helped that we took a lot of grip out of the car this morning, but since then we’ve just been fine tuning the setup and I’ve been getting used to the track with this layout, as I haven’t driven it before.

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As for the speed of RADBUL, it’s pretty scary. I just need to learn the car and get my confidence up – mainly for the initiation and staying on the gas. It’s just that much faster than what we’re used to.

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Larry: I noticed that when you are going back up the hill, your car is just pouring out smoke like I have never seen before. It’s so cool.

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Mike: Yeah, it’s actually been a bit of a problem and we’ve had to put wind deflectors in to try and blow the smoke out. Because the cabin of the Miata is kind of like the back of a pickup truck, the tire smoke just gathers inside and swirls around.

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The deflectors are really working too, because now when I’m on it, it feels like I’m not making any smoke at all. But when I pull back into the pits, my crew is telling me, ‘Man – that’s smokey as!’

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I’m just really pumped to be back though. The camaraderie between the teams is amazing – it’s like a big family!

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Nothing comes close to Formula Drift, and I’m just really stoked to be back.

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I’m not here to break any records on this first season back – we just want to mix it up again, have some fun with the guys out here, and try and learn as much as we can.

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As I said, the pace is the biggest thing that I need to get used to. I’m just trying to keep up with these guys because the cars have developed so much in the past five years.

Larry Chen and Mad Mike Whiddett
Instagram: larry_chen_foto
larry@speedhunters.com

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30 comments

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1
JeremieSunico

I dig the duck tail more than the big wing

2

I like the change on the front to nc3 althought nc2 would have worked with oem lip then splitter.

3

I like the extreme offset in his setup!

4

How to tell if someone drives hard: Scorch marks on the over-fenders.

5

Mad rotary noise on FD! Finally!

6

this puts danny george in shame with his V8 miata HAH!

7

This post needs more Radbul video!

8

I wish the rear fender flares matched. It looks tacky since one has the hole for a gas tank lid that isn't there on the miata.

9
irovedrifting

Nice pictures Larry! Always killing it!

10

Does anyone know why formula d cars have like 3 inches of poke?

Car looks great without that strange wing.

11

earmenau wider track up front gives improved steering geometry and balance.

12

Looks so much better with out the huuuge wing

13

the last bonus picture "dat @$$"

14

good luck mike huge respect for you
Badass car aswell just put the wing on so you have something to break

15
Pete the perfect pilot

Go mad mike. Keep the faith. Rotary rules. Cmon Mazda, bring another rotary to market! You have the best ambassador in mad mike, a true rotary man, not just a pro driver doing a job. It's time! Bring on a rx..... And as you're the central sculpture feature at goodwood fos, there couldn't be a better time to anounce a new rotary..... Even if it's only as an option in the mx 5! Kudos to Mazda and mad Mike, keep it rotary, go Mazda, go mad Mike!

16

I'm diggin' the wheels as they look at home on this NC.

18

The return of the KING.

Go for it MIKE!!

19

this car's speed on track just made every other car look like 5 years ago....GEEZ n AGES!!!

20

I know that, I mean why does every car not have big enough fenders to contain the tires. It looks so bad having the tires come out past the fenders so much.

21

Mike_Holst I agree about the petrol flap hole, but I'm surprised how well the flares and sideskirts line up on this car, considering they were designed for an FD RX-7. Some equally cool flares on the front would finish this car nicely.

22

where are there videos of this car in action?

23
bluestreaksti

This isn't radbul but still amazing vid https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=il986P_ooEE

24

This has to be the happiest car on the track. (See photo #9)

25

Pete the perfect pilot I'll keep trying with Mazda for another rotary Pete!

26

Jason Hardy But then how will it fly into overdrift?

27

bluestreaksti Love the flames that car makes http://i.imgur.com/Gypg2Gj.gifv

28

What's mindblowing to me about Formula D machines (especially this MX-5) is that they have the output of pure drag cars yet they toss them around like little go carts. Seriously can't imagine what it's like to pilot one of these things.

29

look at radbul face. he's happy as fuck.

30

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