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LONG BEACH -- Coming off the reveal of the 2011 Monster Energy/Falken Tire Ford Mustang, Vaughn Gittin Jr. took to the streets of Long Beach last weekend for the Formula Drift Round One event. In only his second time behind the wheel of his 2011 Mustang, Gittin Jr. was able to move past the competition to take first place in the first race of the season.
Q. YOU HAD A BIG WEEK LAST WEEK WITH THE ANNOUNCEMENT OF THE NEW MONSTER SPONSORSHIP AND THE WIN AT LONG BEACH.
A. This whole past week has just been incredible. We had a huge party at the Fantasy Factory to announce the new partnership with Monster Energy and then we took the Monster Energy/Falken Tire 2011 Mustang to the streets of Long Beach for Round One of Formula D. Right out of the box the car was simply incredible. We made it happen. We qualified third and went on with the win. To bring a brand new chassis out and win the first event with all of these drivers who have been driving the same car for a while, it’s a huge testament to our team, to Falken, the amazing chassis that the Mustang offers, as well as the awesome horsepower that we get out of that 5.0 liter Ford Racing V8.
Q. DO YOU THINK THE ADDITION OF THE CHASSIS AND THE 5.0 LITER ENGINE MADE A DIFFERENCE IN YOUR PERFORMANCE AT LONG BEACH COMPARED TO LAST SEASON?
A. It’s a step up from last year. I think the big difference was that we took everything that we learned from the 2010 chassis and implemented some new changes into our 2011 chassis and the motor that Ford Racing has supplied us has some more RPM, a decent amount more power and it’s definitely two key parts in our success. Those two things. mixed with Falken brand new RT615-K tires, everything just came together and really couldn’t be anymore perfect.
Q. YOU HAVE ALMOST A MONTH BEFORE THE NEXT EVENT. WHAT DO YOU PLAN TO DO IN THE MEAN TIME?
A. I’m going to take a day or two to relax and once all of this aftermath has calmed down a little bit I’m just going to focus on Atlanta and get my head ready. Hopefully we can do some testing and figure out this car a little more. Most importantly, I’m just going to stay focused on Atlanta and try to have a repeat.