The 46th International Suzuka 1000km: The Final is already receiving a boost from some high-profile ex-Formula 1 drivers running this race – headlined by Jenson Button, the 2009 Formula 1 World Drivers’ Champion, and Kamui Kobayashi, one of only three Japanese drivers to stand on a Grand Prix podium, both making their Autobacs Super GT Series debuts.
Add one more ex-Formula 1 talent to the list for Suzuka: Christian Klien, ex-Jaguar and Red Bull driver, will join Team Taisan SARD as their third driver alongside Shinnosuke Yamada and Jake Parsons in the #26 Taisan SARD Audi R8 LMS Fukushima, for the sixth round of the 2017 Super GT series.
Continue reading Christian Klien joins Team Taisan SARD for Suzuka 1000km
The first round of testing in the lead up to the 46th International Suzuka 1000km: The Final commenced with two days and four sessions of tyre manufacturer tests at Suzuka Circuit on Tuesday June 6 and Wednesday June 7.
Though the star attraction of the tests was the debuting 2009 Formula 1 World Champion, Jenson Button, it was the NISMO team and the #23 Motul Autech Nissan GT-R which set the fastest time of both days of testing, and the fastest time in all three dry-weather test sessions on Tuesday and on Wednesday morning.
Regular NISMO drivers Tsugio Matsuda and Ronnie Quintarelli joined Satoshi Motoyama and Katsumasa Chiyo of the #46 S Road Craftsports GT-R crew, and it was Quintarelli who set the fastest time of the session – a 1:47.501 on Day 2 – getting to within 0.045 seconds of the GT500 lap record at Suzuka.
Continue reading NISMO fastest, Button upbeat after Suzuka tyre tests
One of the highest-profile debuts in the history of the Autobacs Super GT Series has finally been made official: 2009 Formula One World Champion, Jenson Button, will make his Super GT race debut at this year’s 46th International Suzuka 1000km: The Final.
Button, a veteran of over seventeen seasons in Formula 1, will drive for Team Mugen in the #16 Motul Mugen Honda NSX-GT, alongside 2016 Suzuka 1000km pole winner Hideki Mutoh and Daisuke Nakajima.
Button’s Super GT journey will begin with a mid-week tyre test at Suzuka Circuit on June 6-7, but the excitement of this announcement – a deal that is nine months in the making – will carry on through the 46th and final running of the Suzuka 1000km on August 27th.
Continue reading Jenson Button confirms Suzuka 1000km drive with Team Mugen
On Sunday morning, GT Association (GTA) chairman Masaaki Bandoh delivered his customary pre-race press conference before the Super GT in Kyushu 300km at Autopolis.
Many subjects were addressed during Bandoh’s press conference, as it pertains to Balance of Performance – and in particular, the recent 15 kilogram weight deduction for the Honda NSX-GTs going into this third round of the championship, as well as an update on the agreement between Super GT and the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters (DTM), the 2018 Super GT race at Suzuka Circuit, and of course, Super GT’s return to Autopolis.
Special thanks to our friend Geinou of RacingBlog.de who provided translations of Bandoh’s remarks.
Continue reading GTA chairman Bandoh weighs in on Honda weight reduction, update on DTM alliance