Fredric Aasbo and Simen Olsen take P1 and P2, respectively, for Team ENEOS, 2024 Formula DRIFT Road Atlanta

Team ENEOS Takes First and Second at 2024 Formula DRIFT Road Atlanta

Following an exciting season opener in Long Beach, the action intensified in more ways than one for Team ENEOS at the Road Atlanta. Fredric Aasbo, Odi Bakchis and Simen Olsen launched into the second round of PRO competition for some of the most dynamic driving we’ve seen yet from the three drivers. Faruk Kugay embarked on his quest for Championship points as the first round of PROSPEC also kicked off at this fan favorite circuit.


Aasbo — the most winning driver in Formula DRIFT history, has three Championship titles (2015, 2021 and 2022) along with 19 overall victories, and has won Road Atlanta three times — is on the prowl for his fourth Championship with the Rockstar Energy Toyota GR Supra.

Fredric Aasbo at the Opening Ceremony, 2024 Formula DRIFT Road Atlanta
Cloud walking, Rockstar Energy Toyota GR Supra, 2024 Formula DRIFT Road Atlanta

The road to the Final started gently for Aasbo, receiving a bye run to the Top 16 when Joao Barion was classified as DNS. He then advanced past Kazuya Taguchi after a tire debeaded, causing him to leave the track. In the Great 8, Forrest Wang was able to keep pace with the Norwegian Hammer but slid into the Supra after initiating into the first turn, putting him at a disadvantage; on the second run, Aasbo’s signature driving precision allowed him to claim victory to the Final 4.

Fredric Aasbo, pilot of the Rockstar Energy Toyota GR Supra, 2024 Formula DRIFT Road Atlanta

There Aasbo matched against fellow three-time FD PRO Champion James Deane, fresh from his Round 1 victory in Long Beach and completed a ferocious lead run. However, Deane didn’t fill all of Outsize Zone 2, which gave Aasbo room to attack the RTR Mustang, drawing a perfect line around the track on his lead run with his Supra with a pace the Mustang couldn’t keep up with. Because of this, Aasbo advanced to the Final against Team ENEOS teammate Simen Olsen.

It was an epic battle between the two Norwegian drivers, and Olsen’s lead run in the Feal Suspension Nissan S14.9 set the bar as he filled the Outsize Zones and hit the Inside Clips. Aasbo mimicked him in the chase and lead, but the runs were too close to call so the judges requested a One More Time for the first time.

Aasbo versus Team ENEOS teammate, Simen Olsen, 2024 Formula DRIFT Road Atlanta

As both drivers returned to the start line, Olsen’s crew frantically tried to connect an alternator cable that had come astray, and while it appeared to be fixed, Olsen lost power halfway through the third run, giving Aasbo a bye-run to secure the win.

Aasbo’s bye-run for the win went off without a hitch…sort of; 2024 Formula DRIFT Road Atlanta

This was an insane win,” Aasbo said. “We had some challenges thrown our way: suspension bits breaking, a transmission issue…but the motor ran flawlessly all day thanks to ENEOS. We’re back in motion, and going into Orlando swinging.

Olsen’s journey to a Second place finish began with Ryan Literral in the Top 32. During his lead run, Olsen was bumped by Literral coming out of Outsize Zone 2, causing him to shut it down and make repairs. For his chase, Olsen kept it clean for the advance into the Top 16.

Simen Olsen at the Opening Ceremony, 2024 Formula DRIFT Road Atlanta

After taking down Jhonatton Castro in the Top 16, Olsen faced Dan Burkett in the Great 8, who went off-course approaching Outsize Zone 1 and sustained damage that gave Olsen a bye-run to the Final 4. He was supposed to match up against Feal captain Odi Bakchis, but earned a bye-run to the Finals to face Aasbo following a catastrophic issue with Bakchis’ car…but more on that shortly.

Olsen versus Aasbo during the Finals, 2024 Formula DRIFT Road Atlanta

Even though we fixed the cable, the problem started to come back after leaving the burnout box,” explained Olsen. “Suddenly the water temperature was too high at the starting line, so my crew chief told me if it hit a certain limit to shut it down. I was getting close to hitting that limit as I was going uphill into Outside Zone 1, so I pulled off and shut it down so that no further harm would be done than necessary.

Back to Bakchis, who was on an absolute tear from Top 32 down to the Great 8 where he matched up against Rome Charpentier. Following a decent lead lap, Bakchis looked to be on track to advance despite a small collision with Charpentier (that sent him off track), and as Bakchis was about to finish his lap, a loud bang popped off followed by the Feal Suspension / GT Radial Nissan S15 catching on severe fire. He managed to pull off quickly and exited the vehicle without any physical harm, but this took him out for the rest of the competition.

Odi Bakchis at the Opening Ceremony, 2024 Formula DRIFT Road Atlanta
Odi Bakchis, Feal Suspension / GT Radial Nissan S15, 2024 Formula DRIFT Road Atlanta

We were experiencing some odd harmonics throughout the event, which turned out to be a failing crank,” Bakchis explained. “It’s not the one we usually use, and as soon as it split in half, our nitrous-filled engine exploded. However, ENEOS oil gave us the protection we needed, and kept the engine spinning at full tilt until the “bang”! Very thankful I walked away from this.

Aasbo’s P1 finish at Road Atlanta now puts him into third place in the overall PRO standings with 156 points, Olsen remains second with 168 points, and Bakchis drops down to fourth with 140 points.


Road Atlanta kicked off Round 1 of the PROSPEC Championship, where Faruk Kugay represented Team ENEOS with the DEVSPEED / ENEOS Oil Nissan S14. Heavy rain preceded the PROSPEC 32 Seeding Bracket, creating challenging conditions for the early runners until the track dried.

Faruk Kugay at the autograph signing, 2024 Formula DRIFT Road Atlanta
DEVSPEED / ENEOS Oil Nissan S14 in action, 2024 Formula DRIFT Road Atlanta

Seeded 11th in the Top 32, Kugay faced Brandon McDowell and advanced forward to meet Nate Chen in the Top 16. Chasing Chen on the first run, Kugay tapped Chen during initiation, which slowed him down and put him at an early disadvantage. Although Faruk had a strong lead run, Chen managed to stick close to him and the judges awarded Chen the win. Faruk finished the Atlanta round in P12 with 42 points.

Smoke filled action provided by Faruk Kugay in the DEVSPEED / ENEOS Oil Nissan S14, 2024 Formula DRIFT Road Atlanta

Atlanta was the start to the season we were looking for,” said Kugay. “Although the results weren’t in our favor, the car and team were dialed! I can’t wait for New Jersey, as the new engine package we introduced at Road Atlanta makes 1,100hp with the reliability of ENEOS Racing Oil!


Aasbo, Bakchis and Olsen head to Orlando Speed World from May 31-June 1, 2024 for Round 3 of the PRO Championship; Kugay will take on Round 2 of the PROSPEC Championship at Englishtown Raceway from June 20-22, 2024.

Photos: courtesy of Formula DRIFT, Harry Chriest and Daniel Nikkhoo