Vaughn Gittin Jr. Ford Mustang RTR

Earlier this week we highlighted Justin Pawlak’s Falken Tire Ford Mustang built for Formula Drift, and now it’s time to feature the other pony car in contention for the series’ title. After finishing a close second in the championship last year, Vaughn Gittin Jr. is back for 2013 with a newly formed team, a new sponsor and an all-new car. Venturing away from the Falken Tire team that he’s been so successful with the past few years, Gittin has formed the RTR Drift Team and partnered with Nitto Tire with high hopes for once again becoming the Formula Drift champion. Being in charge of his own team comes with a new array of challenges, but Gittin, who we talked to shortly after he qualified 6th for Saturday’s competition, says that he enjoys the new responsibilities and everything that comes with it.

Gittin isn’t completely starting fresh, though, as the same company that built his previous Mustangs, ASD Motorsports in Charlotte, NC, was responsible for the construction of his new car. The Mustang you see here isn’t just a new version of last year’s version, either, as Gittin says it was built from the ground up. Many improvements were implemented, and even lighter materials were used. “Just when I thought they couldn’t make the Mustang any better, they went and built this car,” he told us. The engine is the same as last year, however – a 6.7L naturally aspirated V8 specially constructed by Roush Yates.

Gittin hopes to kick off the Formula Drift season in winning fashion this weekend in Long Beach, although he seems to have an up-and-down relationship with the course. After winning the event in 2010, he failed to qualify in 2011 and was knocked out in the Round of 32 in 2012. We’ll let you know how he fares after the competition, but until then you can check out his new Monster Energy /Nitto Tire Ford Mustang in the gallery below.

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Photos © 2013

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