Holley EFI Powers Drift Driver Odi Bakchis to Career-Best Season in 2017

By: Todd Veney10/24/2017 < Back to Blog Home
Odi Bakchis enjoyed the finest season of his drift career in 2017, finishing third overall in the Formula Drift Championship standings at the wheel of his Falken Tires/Drifz Wheels/Ark Performance S14. Bakchis, 34, of Wrightwood, Calif., earned three podium finishes, highlighted by a victory in New Jersey, and picked up three special awards at year's end: Comeback of the Year, Spotter of the Year (presented to his, wife Amy), and One More Time. The hard-earned Comeback of the Year Award was for his team's Herculean effort in the New Jersey win, which came after Bakchis qualified just 15th and had to change engines. The One More Time award was for his seven "one more times" – is when drivers have to head back out on the track because the judges deemed their first go-round too close to call. "That one meant a lot," Bakchis said, "because it shows that we never give up. The best part was that we usually won that second one."

For power, Bakchis runs a supercharged CBM Motorsports-built LS-style engine with an aluminum block, Pro X cylinder heads, Holley EFI, Holley fuel rails, a Holley throttle body, and NOS nitrous. "Holley EFI is great because I don't need to hire a full-time tuner to run it," he said. "When you need to pull a data log, it's something even an amateur tuner like me can do, and there were a couple of times it really saved me, like in Florida, where I had to adjust the amount of self-learning to keep up with conditions. With Holley EFI, if something goes wrong, like an air filter caving in, the ECU stays on top of the air-fuel ratio and everything else and really saves your engine."

Bakchis, the 2011 Rookie of the Year, earned three podium finishes during the season, at Texas Motor Speedway, Evergreen Speedway just outside Seattle, and at Wall Speedway in Wall, N.J. He was third at Texas and Evergreen and, in perhaps the best drive of his seven-year career, won it all at Wall. "I was able to focus really well that weekend and drive harder than I probably ever have," he said. "I had some of the best tandem battles of the season, and maybe the best chase runs I've ever done in my career. We got a lot of tough calls this year, a lot of calls that, for whatever reason, didn't seem to go our way, but everything just fell together for us there. Everything just worked. To get third overall with the bad luck we had this year was really rewarding, and we have big plans for next year. We'll have a new aero body panel design package, a slight weight-distribution shift, and we're always working on ongoing improvements to the electrical, engine, and drivetrain systems to gain efficiency and improve serviceability."