On Monday and Tuesday, the Japanese Super Formula Championship ran two days of pre-season testing at Suzuka Circuit, in preparation for the 2018 season which starts at the same venue on April 21-22.
Kamui Kobayashi, driving for carrozeria Team KCMG/Toyota, recorded the fastest lap of the two-day test before departing for France to test in the FIA World Endurance Championship for Toyota Gazoo Racing. Rookie Nobuharu Matsushita led the second day of testing for DoCoMo Team Dandelion Racing/Honda.
During the test, one of the last two seats on the grid were filled, as B-Max Racing Team selected Katsumasa Chiyo to drive the #50 car, under the guidance of new team principal, and four-time Japanese Top Formula champion, Satoshi Motoyama.
Continue reading Kobayashi fastest in Super Formula tests; Chiyo lands B-Max Honda drive
Catching up with the Japanese Super Formula Championship, as part of Toyota Gazoo Racing’s 2018 motorsport activities announcement, Toyota confirmed 10 of their 11 drivers for the upcoming Super Formula campaign.
Two-time and defending Super Formula champion Hiroaki Ishiura will lead the charge for Toyota in 2018, with Ryo Hirakawa returning to the series after a two-year absence for Itochu Enex Team Impul, and James Rossiter returning full-time to replace the retired André Lotterer at Vantelin Team TOM’s.
Continue reading Hirakawa, Rossiter return to Super Formula with Toyota
It wasn’t the dominant performance that he put on this time a year ago, but Yuhi Sekiguchi did hang on to win the sixth round of the 2017 Japanese Super Formula Championship at Sportsland SUGO on Sunday, keeping his hopes of winning the 2017 championship alive going into next month’s JAF Grand Prix weekend at Suzuka Circuit.
Sekiguchi denied Red Bull Team Mugen’s Pierre Gasly a third consecutive victory by just 0.243 seconds, the closest finish of the season. However, the French rookie closed to within half a point of championship leader Hiroaki Ishiura, who finished sixth – leaving eight drivers still mathematically eligible for the championship in October’s season finale.
Continue reading Sekiguchi wins again in Sugo, Gasly closes in on championship lead
Pierre Gasly took a major step towards becoming only the second rookie champion in Japanese Top Formula Championship history, by taking back-to-back victories in the 2017 Super Formula Championship with his win this past weekend at Autopolis circuit on the island of Kyushu.
In the second of two races to feature the prime/option tyre selection this season, the Red Bull Team Mugen driver Gasly went from fifth on the grid to second with a great start, then powered past pole winner Tomoki Nojiri to claim his second win of the season – leading an all-rookie 1-2 finish ahead of Felix Rosenqvist of Sunoco Team LeMans, who along with Gasly has asserted himself as a major championship threat to points leader Hiroaki Ishiura.
Continue reading Gasly does the double at Autopolis