There was a great deal of anticipation in the air on Friday morning at the historic Hockenheimring in Baden-Württemberg, Germany, as the cars of the Autobacs Super GT Series completed a successful first test at race speed in the lead up to opening practice for this weekend’s Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters (DTM) season finale.
Four-time GT500 Drivers’ Champion Ronnie Quintarelli, aboard the 2016 #1 Motul Autech NISMO GT-R, joined reigning GT500 champion Heikki Kovalainen, in the 2016 #093 TRD Lexus LC500 Test Car, for the first of two thirty-minute demonstration runs of the weekend.
In the session, Super GT’s challenge to the DTM was laid down – as Kovalainen recorded an unofficial lap time of 1:29.8, nearly two seconds faster than the best time set in the subsequent DTM free practice session.
Continue reading Super GT lays the gauntlet down in Germany
Ryo Hirakawa and Nick Cassidy, both just 23 years of age, are two of the brightest young stars in the Autobacs Super GT Series – and in all of global motorsport. On Sunday, they took a defining step towards becoming the youngest GT500 champions in series history, by driving the #37 KeePer TOM’s Lexus LC500 to victory in the 66-lap Chang Super GT Race, held at the Chang International Circuit in Buriram, Thailand.
In a race that began under treacherous conditions, Hirakawa and Cassidy overturned an 11-point deficit into a 6-point lead in the standings on the eve of the Motegi GT Grand Final at Twin Ring Motegi on November 12.
They led home a Lexus 1-2 finish, ahead of the #6 Wako’s 4CR LC500 of Kazuya Oshima & Andrea Caldarelli, who moved into second in the standings, ahead of the #23 Motul Autech Nissan GT-R of Tsugio Matsuda & Ronnie Quintarelli, who fell to third in the championship tables after a ninth-place finish.
Continue reading Lexus Team KeePer TOM’s seize championship lead with Buriram victory
Defending GT500 Drivers’ Champion Heikki Kovalainen and four-time GT500 champion Ronnie Quintarelli have been selected to run for their respective manufacturers, as the Autobacs Super GT Series brings their machines to the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters (DTM) season finale at the Hockenheimring circuit in Germany this weekend.
F1 hero Kovalainen will drive the 2016-spec Lexus LC500 Super GT test vehicle, while four-time champ Quintarelli will drive the Motul Autech NISMO GT-R that he raced last season to third in the championship.
Continue reading Kovalainen and Quintarelli to demo Super GT cars at DTM finale
Through six races of the 2017 Autobacs Super GT Series, the #23 Motul Autech Nissan GT-R of the NISMO team now have an eleven-point lead in the GT500 Drivers’ Championship despite Nissan arguably having the least-effective car on the grid.
Drivers Tsugio Matsuda and Ronnie Quintarelli have five straight top-five finishes and have yet to finish worse than seventh all season, with a 100 percent scoring rate through six races. As a result, there exists the possibility that NISMO can win their ninth GT500 championship – the third for Matsuda, and a record-extending fifth for Quintarelli – at the Chang Super GT Race in Buriram, Thailand. It would also make them the first driver combination to ever win three GT500 titles together.
We’ve lined out all the possibilities that can clinch the title with a round in hand for NISMO, a feat which has only been pulled off twice before in the history of GT500.
Continue reading Podium finish can clinch 9th title for NISMO