Bio


Daijiro Yoshihara, also known as “Dai,” has been a thrill seeker from even before he can remember. At the age of 11, Dai discovered the excitement of throwing his bicycle around corners at high speeds and skidding along the curbs in tight turns. At age 16, Dai got motorized and took to nearby mountains on his 400cc motorcycle. Finally at age 18, Dai got into his first car, a 1985 Toyota Corolla Levin. He soon fell in love and gained the passion for driving on winding roads in the local mountains of Japan.

Although Dai always loved drifting, there was no real opportunity in the sport that would allow him to make a living. So when Dai turned 21, he turned to more stable pursuits taking on jobs at various companies including a car dealership, a telephone company, and a trucking service. However, in 2003 a friend of Dai offered him an opportunity of a lifetime, to drive in a drift competition in the United States. Having always admired the U.S. and now finally getting an opportunity to create some type of cash flow as a drifter, Dai was thrilled and accepted the offer. Although Dai had never been to the states nor competed in a drift competition, Dai had to trust his instincts and risk the comfortable life he had just barely started.

In early 2003, Dai came to the U.S. to drive a car for Pacific Rim Motorsport Fashion in the upcoming inaugural D1 Grand Prix USA. Having never competed, Dai was an amateur driver with no competition experience. During his first competition among professional drivers, Dai qualified and finished in the top 16 out of 32 competitors. With such a promising finish, he then decided to compete in the Drift Showoff in Irwindale, CA and took a podium spot to finish 2nd overall.

With such strong finishes in 2003, Dai decided to compete full time in the U.S. and signed up to be in the Formula Drift Championship Series for the 2004 season. Dai finished in the top 8 at two rounds and placed 2nd at two of the rounds placing him 2nd overall in the championship run. Not only was Dai finishing at the top, he also earned the title as the man with the fastest entry speed at each event. In 2005 and 2006, he continued to shine in the Formula Drift series standing on the podium numerous times. Throughout 2007 he was continually fighting for the championship, which finally placed him 3rd overall.

In 2008, Dai took the opportunity and challenge to drive a factory backed Pontiac GTO for RMR Racing. With the help from sponsorships and guidance from teammate Rhys Millen, Dai continued to flourish and placed consistently in the top 8. To finish the 2008 season with a bang, Dai took podium again and placed 2nd overall during the Red Bull Drifting World Championship. Throughout the 2008 season, Dai took podium twice and eventually finished 4th overall in the Formula D series.

For the 2009 season, Dai decided to join Falken Tire’s Drift team, one of several companies who helped kick start his Drifting career. Dai will be piloting the Falken Tire / Discount Tire Lexus IS350 powered by a massive V8 motor. As the season starts, Dai has high aspirations and goals to be on podium more than ever.

STATS
Date fo Birth: December 24, 1978
Place of Birth: Hachioji Tokyo, Japan
Residence:  Irvine, California
Height: 5′ 10″
Weight: 140lbs
First Drift Event: 2003 D1GP U.S. Driver’s Search
Hobbies: Surfing, Golfing, Cars, Hanging out with friends
Favorite Track: Irwindale Speedway

CAREER HIGHLIGHTS
2013:
- 11th place overall in Formula Drift Championship
- 1st place in Formula Drift Round 1, Long Beach, CA

2012:
- 7th place overall in Formula Drift Championship
- 2nd place in Formula Drift Round 1, Long Beach, CA
- 3rd place in Formula Drift Round 3, Palm Beach, FL
- 2nd place in Formula Drift Round 4, Wall, NJ

2011:
- 1st place overall in Formula Drift Championship
- 3rd place in Formula Drift Round1, Long Beach, CA
- 1st place in Formula Drift Round2, Atlanta, GA
- 3rd place in Formula Drift Round4, Wall, NJ
- 1st place in Formula Drift Round5, Seattle, WA

2010:
- 4th place overall in Formula Drift Championship
- 1st place in Formula Drift Round2, Atlanta, GA
- 1st place in Formula Drift Round3, Wall, NJ
- 2nd place in Formula Drift Round5, Las Vegas, NV

2009:
- 11th place overall in Formula Drift Championship

2008:
- 4th place overall in Formula Drift Championship
- Finished the 2008 FD season with 1 podium & 2 top 4 finishes
- 2nd place in Formula Drift Round4, Las Vegas, NV
- 2nd place in Red Bull Drifting Championship

2007:
- 3rd place overall in Formula Drift Championship
- 3rd place in Formula Drift Round1, Long Beach, CA
- 1st place in Formula Drift Round4, Seattle, WA
- 1st place in Formula Drift Round6, Wall, NJ
- 3rd place in Formula Drift Round7, Irwindale, CA

2006:
- 5th place overall in Formula Drift Championship
- 3rd place in Formula Drift Round1, Long Beach, CA
- 3rd place in Formula Drift Round2, Atlanta, GA
- 1st place in Formula Drift Round7, Irwindale, CA
- D1 GrandPrix, Las Vegas, NV: TOP 16

2005:
- 5th place overall in Formula Drift Championship
- Finished the 2005 FD Season with podium finish and top qualifier award.
- Scored points at every round of FD
- D1 GrandPrix USA, Irwindale Speedway: Top 16

2004:
- 2nd place overall in Formula Drift Championship
- Finished the 2004 FD Season with two podium finishes
- Scored points at every round of FD

2003:
- D1 GrandPrix USA, Irwindale Speedway: US Qualifier
- D1 GrandPrix USA, Irwindale Speedway: Top 16

Road Racing
MotoIQ Pacific Tuner Car Championship
・ 2011 Champion TU class
・ 2011 – 1st Place at Willow Springs International, California Speedway,
Las Vegas Motor Speedway

Super Lap Battle
・ 2010 – 1st Place
・ 2006 – 1st Place

Gymkhana
Gymkhana Grid Innovational
・ 2010 – 1st Place

DRIFTING JUDGE
Professional Asia Drift Series Judge – 2009 to Present
・ Formula DRIFT Asia: Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand
・ Good Year International Drift Series: Thailand

DRIFTING INSTRUCTOR
International Drifting Academy – 2011
・ Drift Driving Instructor

Magazine, Commercial & TV Stunt
EA Games, “Need For Speed” – 2007
・ Stunt driver for video game commercial

Spike TV, “1000 Ways To Die” – 2009
・ Stunt driver for television series

Falken Tire Corporation – 2009
・ Tire Test Driver

Road & Track Magazine – 2010
・ Vehicle Test Driver

Mitsubishi Motors “Mitsubishi Lancer Evo SE” – 2010 Viral video
・ Stunt Driver

Nissan North America, “Juke Commercial” – 2011
・ Stunt driver for television commercial

Falken Tire Corporation, “Azenis Commercial” – 2011
・ Stunt driver for television commercial

Mini/BMW USA, “Mini Commercial” – 2011
・ Stunt driver for television commercial