Rhys Millen Hooks Another One for Hyundai in West Palm

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Rhys Millen is a professional racecar driver that exhibits a wide range of talents; he jumps a 500 HP Hyundai Veloster in Rallycross competition, skillfully slides up steep mountainsides in a Genesis powered Pikes Peak prototype, and leverages his experience as a World Drifting Champion in a Coupe. All when he’s not driving for TV commercials and Films. Unlike the majority of Formula Drift’s front runners, who came to organized competition as a way to shred rubber without worrying about Johnny Law, this FD Champion comes from a long line of record setting racers.

Recently we had a chance to speak with the New Zealander at the first ever round of Formula D competition to be held on the asphalt of the Palm Beach International Raceway, in Florida. Rhys had set both the fastest entry and exit speeds of the qualifying session, so it could easily be said that Mr. Millen was happy with the RMR Hyundai Genesis Coupe.

Back in 2008 Rhys got his foot in the door with the Korean automaker when his outfit, Rhys Millen Racing, prepared a then unheard of Hyundai Genesis Coupe for the mother of all aftermarket car shows, SEMA. The relationship continued when the show car underwent the full race treatment; and then Rhys was off to the races. Competing to this day in the Redline Time Attack Series as well as Formula Drift, two very distinct forms of motor sport with the same chassis. Then in 2009 the RMR Genesis Coupe managed to set the 2009 2WD record at Pikes Peak, summiting the treacherous switchbacks in just over 12 minutes with Rhys behind the wheel. And now he’s taking a second crack at climbing the hill in a turbocharged V8 powered single seat prototype; all thanks to Hyundai and a few other helpful sponsors like Red Bull and Hankook Tires.

So it was no surprise when Millen referred to RMR’s efforts as a Marketing Program; which lets you know that Rhys is there to help sell Hyundais.

Unlike other forms of motor sport, where as a member of the media can personally attest to being chased out of pit garages by angry torque wrench wielding Indycar mechanics, in Formula Drift there are virtually no barriers between enthusiasts and racers inside the paddock; giving America’s premier professional drifting championship a very grassroots feel.

This left the door open for one very fortunate blonde female to experience the tour of a lifetime. That is because after Rhys found out that she herself was a Genesis Coupe owner, he didn’t hesitate to show her around his office. Now it was either when Ms. Speedracer realized how much further back you sit in a racecar than you do a daily drive, or when she fired up the bored and boosted 4.1 Liter V6 and the Korean based power plant roared to life; but you could see that Rhys had just earned one more Hyundai owner for life.

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