The RTR Vehicles drift team seems to be holding up quite well after their captain Vaughn Gittin Jr stepped down from competing in Formula Drift. While Chelsea DeNofa has been positioned to compete full time, he was currently ranked sixth overall going into stop six. However, DeNofa turned up the gas and put on a smoke show for all in attendance at the Monroe, Washington event and snagged first place in the process. DeNofa made it look easy, but the battles were far from a walk in the park, as every competitor was vying for top position.
Top 32 paired east coast driver Mike Power with DeNofa. The two would battle it out for east coast supremacy as DeNofa is from Philadelphia. Power’s runs would fall apart after a hard hit into the side of DeNofa. Top 16 had Travis Reeder in his V8-powered BMW competing against the S550 of DeNofa. After one round the judges declared One More Time (OMT) which required the two to run it back. This time around Denofa was nudged, but kept pace and was able to pull off the victory.
Moving onto top 8 positioned the legendary driver Ryan Tuerck against DeNofa. While Tuerck was applying as much close-proximity pressure as he could, the back end let go and spun him off track. This would send DeNofa into the top 4 against Chris Forsberg. A few errors on Forsberg’s part would result in DeNofa advancing to the finals.
In the finals, it was Matt Field in his Chevrolet Corvette facing off against DeNofa. The main event provided one of the most action packed battles of the day. Unfortunately the high pressure being applied by Field would result in the Corvette bumping the Mustang. This would allow DeNofa a causal chase to end the day.
My goal here was to have fun. And while everybody else was competing and doing the best they can, for me it was about having fun and enjoying drifting again. I didn’t want to be so competitive and worry about every aspect of the weekend. I’ve been doing it for 20 years, so I just trusted my gut on every run and drove as hard as I could, and it worked out. I ended up on top! Chelsea DeNofa
DeNofa seems to be handling his drift Ford Mustang RTR Spec 5-D with great diligence and even moved up in overall rank from sixth place to fifth. With only two more stops in the 2022 schedule we’ll see if DeNofa can move up the ranks a few more times.