Morning showers made for a wet 30-minute final practice session before today’s Sugo GT 300km Race, with Honda NSXes taking the top three places on the time sheets.
Koudai Tsukakoshi was the fastest driver aboard the #17 Keihin Real Racing NSX, posting a best time of 1:20.951. The #8 ARTA NSX (Kosuke Matsuura/Tomoki Nojiri) was second-quickest, and Bertrand Baguette brought the #64 Epson NSX to third place – not surprising, given the strength of the car’s Dunlop tyres in wet conditions.
The #38 ZENT Cerumo Lexus RC-F (Yuji Tachikawa/Hiroaki Ishiura) went fourth-quickest to lead the Lexus brigade. The #100 Raybrig NSX (Naoki Yamamoto/Takuya Izawa) was fifth, putting four Hondas in the top five.
The pole-winning #6 Wako’s RC-F (Kazuya Oshima/Andrea Caldarelli) was sixth, then came the top two Nissan runners, the #46 S Road MOLA GT-R (Satoshi Motoyama/Katsumasa Chiyo) in seventh, and the #1 Motul NISMO GT-R (Tsugio Matsuda/Ronnie Quintarelli) in eighth, both on Michelins. The #39 Denso SARD RC-F (Kovalainen/Hirate) and the #12 Calsonic Impul GT-R (Oliveira/Yasuda) rounded out the top ten.
The top Yokohama-clad car, the #24 Forum Engineering GT-R (Masataka Yanagida/Daiki Sasaki), could do no better than twelfth.
One brief stoppage was had for the other Yokohama runner in GT300, as the #19 WedsSport RC-F (Yuhi Sekiguchi/Yuji Kunimoto) hit the sponge barriers, necessitating repairs to the stricken sponges.
In GT300, Yuichi Nakayama posted the quickest time in his Bridgestone-clad #31 apr Toyota Prius GT (with Koki Saga), a 1:28.089.
Following that time was three top Dunlop-clad teams, led by the #21 Hitotsuyama Audi R8 (Lyons/Fujii) in second, the #11 Gainer Tanax Mercedes-AMG (Hiranaka/Wirdheim) in third, and the #61 Subaru BRZ (Iguchi/Yamauchi) in fourth – the latter consistently near the top of the time sheets in each session so far.
The #25 VivaC 86 MC (Tsuchiya/Matsui) was fifth-fastest, first on Yokohama tyres. Then two Nissan GT-Rs: The #3 B-Max GT-R (Hoshino/Mardenborough) in sixth, and a surprisingly stout seventh for the #48 Dijon GT-R (Takamori/Aoki).
The #9 Gulf NAC Porsche (Sakaguchi/Yoshida), #7 Studie BMW M6 (Ara/Müller), and the #65 Leon Cvstos AMG (Kurosawa/Gamou) completed the top ten.