The summer endurance race at Suzuka Circuit will change drastically from the final running of the Suzuka 1000km to next year’s inaugural Suzuka 10 Hours. However, one thing that isn’t changing from 2016 to 2017 are the pit stop regulations for Japan’s great race.
As was the case in 2016, each Super GT team in both GT500 and GT300 classes must make at least five pit stops for fuel and driver changes to comply with the race regulations. In the event of a delayed start or a premature red flag, the GT Association does reserve the right to reduce the number of mandatory pit stops through force majeure. There are no regulations on how many tyres a team can exchange during each stop.
Just as last year, each team will receive 12 sets of dry-weather tyres, and 14 sets of wet-weather tyres from their respective suppliers.
Unlike last year, however, GT500 teams in the higher end of the championship tables will be carrying three different stages of fuel flow restrictors – though with five mandatory pit stops required, they won’t be able to use the reduced fuel consumption to their advantage and make longer runs with fewer stops.
Where one tradition ends, another will soon begin.
On Wednesday, the Japan Automobile Federation (JAF) released their first provisional calendar for 2018 motorsports activities, and confirmed that the fifth round of the 2018 Autobacs Super GT Series at Fuji Speedway on August 4-5 will be contested over 500 miles (or 800 miles) as the “Fuji GT 500 Mile Race”.
Continue reading Fuji GT 500 Mile Race confirmed for 2018
Autobacs Racing Team Aguri have won in both classes at the fifth round of the 2017 Autobacs Super GT Series, the Fuji GT 300km Race at Fuji Speedway.
The #8 ARTA Honda NSX-GT (Tomoki Nojiri/Takashi Kobayashi) led nearly every lap from pole position to score ARTA’s first GT500 class win since 2013, as well as Nojiri’s first career Super GT victory – they also broke a nearly two-year winless drought for Honda in GT500, and in doing so, ended Lexus’ five-race winning streak in GT500 dating back to the end of 2016.
At the end of a long, outstanding battle for 2nd, the #23 Motul Autech GT-R (Tsugio Matsuda/Ronnie Quintarelli) held off the #38 ZENT Cerumo LC500 (Yuji Tachikawa/Hiroaki Ishiura), which took the final podium place.
The #55 ARTA BMW M6 GT3 (Shinichi Takagi/Sean Walkinshaw) similarly dominated the race in GT300, winning the Fuji 300km from pole for the third year in a row, ahead of the #4 Goodsmile Hatsune Miku Mercedes-AMG GT3 (Nobuteru Taniguchi/Tatsuya Kataoka) in 2nd, which will move into the GT300 Championship lead.
It is ARTA’s first “Double Victory” since the Sugo GT 300km Race in 2013.
Full recaps to follow on Super GT World and at DailySportsCar.com
On Sunday, before the fifth round of the Autobacs Super GT Series at Fuji Speedway, GT Association (GTA) chairman Masaaki Bandoh gave his customary pre-race press conference to the media.
A few of the subjects covered included, but were not limited to, the potential introduction of a Full Course Yellow system, Mercedes-AMG’s sudden withdrawal from the DTM and its impacts on a potential collaboration with Super GT, and even the future of the Fuji GT 300km Race itself from 2018 and beyond.
Continue reading Super GT chairman Bandoh talks FCY, 2018 Schedule, and Mercedes’ DTM Withdrawal