Tag Archives: ARTA

2019-20 Super GT Stove League: First Strike

It’s that time of year again in the Japanese auto racing season. The cars themselves are silent, but the discussion of the 2020 Autobacs Super GT Series to come is anything but. Welcome to another round of the domestic racing Stove League, the “Silly Season” by another name, the winter period where the pieces of the puzzle that is the 2020 Super GT field start to take shape.

Baseball’s own Stove League is already at full burn, where teams negotiate trades and attempt to sign high-dollar free agents. After battling for Major League Baseball’s World Series, ace pitcher Stephen Strasburg just signed a record-breaking deal to remain with the championship-winning Washington Nationals. Days later, his rival from the Houston Astros, Gerrit Cole, eclipsed Strasbourg’s deal with his own record-setting contract upon joining the New York Yankees.

In Super GT, the money is never a talking point, rather the arrangement of the teams and drivers representing the big three manufacturers in GT500: Toyota, Honda, and Nissan. Drivers changing teams, young drivers stepping up from GT300 or stepping in from elsewhere, and old veterans fighting to keep their places in the most competitive class in sports car racing.

Using the information from the latest issue of auto sport Magazine (Volume 1521: “Solving the Mystery of 51 Seats”), as well as the reporting from Motorsport.com contributors such as Jamie Klein, here is Super GT World’s guide to how the GT500 field might look in 2020 – and it starts with the biggest story of the off-season to date.

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Takuya Izawa rejoins ARTA for 2018

At this weekend’s Tokyo Auto Salon, Autobacs Racing Team Aguri (ARTA) revealed their 2018 activities in the Autobacs Super GT Series in both GT500 and GT300 categories.

Former Team Kunimitsu driver Takuya Izawa was introduced as the new driver of the #8 ARTA Honda NSX-GT during Honda’s Super GT activities announcement, then joined the rest of his ARTA team during their own TAS panel.

Izawa and Tomoki Nojiri will drive the fabled ARTA NSX, while the #55 ARTA BMW M6 GT3 will be driven by former champion Shinichi Takagi and second-generation sophomore Sean Walkinshaw.

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2017 Super GT World Awards: Shinichi Yamaji Memorial Award

Every year, Super GT World honours the most outstanding performers in the Autobacs Super GT Series with the Super GT World Awards.

In recognition of the individuals whose contributions to the series best exemplify the positive values of sportsmanship, competition, and humanity, Super GT World presents the Shinichi Yamaji Memorial Award. It is named after veteran competitor Shinichi Yamaji (1964-2014), who defined himself and his legacy long after his passing, through a single act of courage in the 1998 All Japan GT Championship.

Last year, there was a unanimous victor, this year, there were seven finalists – but only one could win the award. First, some honourable mentions…

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2017 Motegi GT Grand Final Preview: GT300 – History and Destiny Clash

Thirty teams were entered into the GT300 class in the 2017 Autobacs Super GT Series, a field boasting unprecedented star power and competition for the second-tier category. At the start of the season, the 2017 GT300 class made a case for being the strongest of all time.

On the eve of the final race of the season, it certainly has lived up to the billing. Amidst a collection of all-pro and pro-am teams, there have been six different winning teams through seven races. Thirteen different teams have put their drivers on the podium. And finally, out of this amazing thirty-car field, we are down to four teams who can still win the GT300 championship, at the 2017 Motegi GT Grand Final at Twin Ring Motegi.

And for the top two challengers, separated by just nine points, it really is a case where one team can fulfill their promise, while another team can cement themselves as immortal legends of the sport.

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