**** GUEST BLOG – BY TRAVIS REEDER****
This is a special recap for us. Not just because, as you will read, Travis Reeder took home a victory at Formula Drift Atlanta in the Pro 2 series. It’s special because that win comes at the start of a great relationship between Konig and Travis Reeder.
Travis is brand new to the Konig team! Reeder, hails from Vancouver, WA where he was the 2016 Evergreen Drift Pro-am Champion. That victory was what earned Travis his Formula Drift Pro 2 license. We came across Travis through a good friend of ours; Caleb Quanbeck. Caleb is also a friend of Travis and at Formula Drift Orlando Travis was having an issue with his other brand wheels breaking. Caleb stepped in and let Travis barrow his Konig Hypergrams to finish out the event. That finish resulted in a second place, podium finish. Having a podium finish at any point in the season or your career is amazing. Doing it in your first event EVER as a professional is unimaginable!
That night we received an email from Caleb and a message from Travis on Instagram. He was in need of some wheels and after only a few minutes we knew Travis was that hardcore, drift-loving enthusiast that was putting everything he had into his program. That’s the exact type of person we love to support, and we did. We reached out to Travis and with little time before the next Formula Drift event, we shipped some Konig Ultraforms in Gold right to Road Atlanta awaiting his arrival!
Keep in mind that Formula Drift Atlanta would be Travis’s second event as a professional Formula Drift Driver (the first event he placed 2nd in). Just like something written for a movie, Travis took first place in Atlanta and is currently the Formula Drift Pro 2 series points leader!
Check out what travis had to say about his experience…
Our weekend started off like any other event weekend. The team unloaded the car, tools and spare parts into the pit and got everything organized. I went through my normal routine of checking over fluids and nuts and bolts on the car. After orlando i knew the car was going to need an alignment due to the aggressive nature of the track, so we threw the strings on the car and got all our alignment setting dialed in. We were feeling good as well as optimistic going into Thursday’s practice and later qualifying sessions.
Coming into practice the car was feeling super solid so all i had to do was learn the track and find my line for qualifying. With this being my first time driving Road Atlanta i quickly realized that the track was extremely fast and super difficult to put the car into the zones needed for a solid scoring run. After a few sets of tires and a whole lot of fun jamming with the other guys in the field, i felt like i had a pretty good handle on the car and track layout.
The qualifying session snuck up pretty quick after practice but i was anxious to really stretch the car’s legs and throw down some solid runs. On my first qualifying run i had a solid entry and kept the car pretty far into the first outer zone on the rumble strips. Once in started making my way through the key hole i noticed i came off the first outer zone too quickly and struggled to get super deep into the second outer zone, which is a large chunk of points for the run. I was then able to dive into the inner clip with angle and power through the rest of the course. On my second qualifying run i came up the hill into the key hole with too much speed and ended up making a large mistake and almost spinning the car so i decided to shut the run down after that. Luckily my first run landed me in the 11th spot with a 71 so we were in the big show.
Fridays practice started late in the evening. I made a few conservative runs while noticing a vibration and what seemed to be a loss of power in the car. With only a short 45 minute session my team had to act fast to diagnose our issue. After a quick look over we noticed we had a burnt plug wire and had been running on 7 cylinders the past couple days. It didn’t take long however to source a new wire and get the car back to 100%, thanks Gale Hohnadell! We moved into top 16 intros and were feeling awesome and ready for some good battles.
My first battle in the top 16 was against Andy Hately. He qualified higher in the 6th position so he would lead first. I chased him down the hill after jumping the tree, knowing his car was pretty quick. I initiated right with him but ended up going a little wide around the first clip. Once transitioned i was able to make up ground up the hill and close the door entering the key hole, then proceeded to keep decent proximity throughout the rest of the course with minimal mistakes. On my lead run i was able to pull a gap of a couple car lengths while keeping the car on a good qualifying line with good angle. We were given the win and advanced into the top 8.
Entering the top 8, i was paired up against Hooman Rahimi. I qualified higher so i was set to lead first. I put down a pretty solid lead run with minimal mistakes and was able to pull a few car lengths in the process. On my chase run i initiated as close as i could to Hooman and was able to keep and maintain pretty tight proximity through the key hole and most of the course. It was enough to get the job done and i was awarded the win and advanced into the final 4.
The final 4 battle was set to put me up against Randall Waters. Randall’s car was extremely fast all night so i knew i really had to be aggressive and apply as much pressure as i could as i was going to be in the chase position for run 1. Unfortunately in my chase run i made a large amount of mistakes and in one judges eyes scored an incomplete due to mis-shifting and straightening the car out while exiting the key hole. During my lead run, Waters got a little too aggressive and made contact with my door on entry, which forced him to straighten and drive off track. This made a very difficult decision for the judges and by a stroke of luck i ended up advancing into the final battle.
Unfortunately the final battle against Matt Vankirk was un eventful after Matt broke off the start line. I was really looking forward to competing against Matt considering we had quite a bit of seat time together last year during pro am up at Evergreen Drift. Under the circumstances all i had to do was complete my by run and was crowned winner at rd 2 Road Atlanta!
I’d like to thank Konig Wheels for their massive support of my program this year as well as all my crew, family and other sponsors. See everyone in Seattle!
We WELCOME TRAVIS REEDER TO THE TEAM! If you don’t follow him, now is the time to go check him out! This is one talented guy and we have a feeling there is a lot more in Travis’s future!
Travis Reeder is a Konig Sponsored driver that runs 17×9 front/18×9 rear et23mm Konig Ultraform wheels in Gold. The Ultraform are flow formed and perfect for the harsh environment that drifting provides. Make sure to follow Travis Reeder and Instagram and Facebook: