Hello and welcome to yet another installment of Better Know A Driver. This week we’re featuring the inaugural MDU champion, former Formula D driver and all around rotary wiz Mike Feiock.
SMASHED: How did you get into drifting?
Feiock: Well I got into drifting the wrong way, I played a lot on the street. Anytime there was rain or snow I was sliding around. Probably learned that from my dad, he always goofed off in the snow. I had the pleasure of working tech for NASA, so I got to spend a lot of time at or on the track from ’06-’08 and learned car control on many tracks around the Midwest. My first drift event was Drift Indy, I was using a friend’s turbo Miata. I basically jumped right into it and was sort of a “natural.”
SMASHED: We see a lot of guys out there in FCs and FDs, but the RX-8 seems to still be a fairly rare platform in this sport. You took the first MDU championship in an FC, so what prompted the switch to the RX-8?
Feiock: The main reason I switched from the FC to the RX-8 is because of my size. I’m 6’4″-ish, so head room is very limited. The RX8 is a bigger car than the RX-7, so it was a natural choice. I also got a hell of a deal buying the RX-8 as a race car already, and it came with all kinds of spares. My car ran in the Speed World Challenge in 2011 with my good friend Eric Meyer driving it.
SMASHED: And on the subject of uncommon platforms, you’re also still rocking a rotary setup when so many others end up with V8s. Why do you continue to run the rotary?
Feiock: Well the best answer is I’m dumb. I have always owned an RX-something. My first car was a GSL-SE RX-7. I know the engines pretty well, so for me, it’s way cheaper than some of these V8 swaps. I have a fairly simple setup and it’s worked well for many years. Then engine I have in the car now is the same engine I ran in my FC from 2009-2011. That’s including the Formula Drift events I ran. I also have always enjoyed a challenge, I really don’t think I would have as much fun in a cookie cutter store bought drift car. I don’t think you will ever see me build a V8 car. I would like to drive one, though. To this day I have not driven a V8 drift car.
SMASHED: Speaking of that inaugural championship back in 2010 (when the above photo was taken), you also competed in Formula Drift for a time. What was your experience like, and what prompted your exit from the series?
Feiock: Formula Drift was a ton of fun. I loved being at those events. I would love to drive FD again. I learned a lot from that experience. The reason for me not running FD is funding. I just don’t make enough money to support that series. My car isn’t up to par either. My car is pretty decent but FD is a whole different level.
SMASHED: What’s your current goal in the sport?
Feiock: To have fun. Most people might think that’s strange because I basically do only competition events. I love competing, I always have. I raced BMX for years when I was younger, even won the NBL Grand Nationals in ’01 I think.
SMASHED: How did you earn your “T2” nickname?
Feiock: I got the name “T2 Mike” from my friend Clinton. He always called me T2 Mike because when I met him I had a 1987 T2 RX-7. It just stuck with me.
SMASHED: What advice do you have for those just starting out in the sport?
Feiock: Drive with people that are better than you. This sport has grown so much since I got into it, the cars and drivers are so much better. I have helped grow a few pretty good drivers around Indy. I always tell them I’m jealous of them. A lot of them are progressing much faster than I did. I freely share info and setup advice with basically everyone. I just want all my friends to come play.
SMASHED: Anything else we should know about you?
Feiock: Well I’m a family man, my beautiful wife and I have some great kids. Cassidi my 7 year old daughter, and Ethan my 2 year old boy. I’ve turned into a bit of a fab guy by necessity. I’ve made basically everything on my car that’s not stock.
Hometown: Avon, IN
Current city: Indianapolis, IN
Current car: 2004 Mazda RX-8
Suspension: Koni 2812 coilovers
Wheels: XXR 530
Tires: Falken RT615K fronts, Kenda 265/35R18 rear
Sponsors: MFdrift (Mike Feiock)
Years drifting: 9
Day job: Ford technician
First drift car: FC RX-7
Favorite track: Road Atlanta