November 12, 2013


Super Taikyu Series Round 7 (final round) Race Report

November 9-10, Autopolis (Oita prefecture) - The 7th and final round of the Super Taikyu Series was held at Autopolis and in the GT3 class, the #555 MACH GoGoGo SYAKEN GT-R (Tetsuji Tamanaka/Naoya Yamano) took a victory. The #81 GTNET ADVAN NISSAN GT-R (Takayuki Aoki/Kazuyuki Hoshino/Naofumi Omoto) finished in 2nd, for a NISSAN GT-R NISMO GT3 one-two finish.

The race was a three-hour endurance event. Official qualifying, held on the 9th, ended with the #81 GT-R in pole position. The #555 GT-R was second, for a front row dominated by GT-Rs.

After rain early on the morning of the 10th, the track was surrounded in thick fog, causing the cancellation of the planned morning practice session, and there were worries that the race itself would be cancelled. The cars went out on track at 13:40, with the race was decided to be held as a two-hour event starting at 14:00, the rules requiring at least 5 laps with the Safety Car leading the pack, but still two of driver changes are mandatory. In the midst of the rain and fog, there was no telling when the race might be cut short, so many teams performed the two requisite driver changes in the first two laps, leading to heavy congestion in the pits.

The driver relay for the #555 GT-R was Yamano to Tamanaka, then back to Yamano. For the #81 GT-R it was Omoto to Aoki, then to Hoshino. Due to the foul weather and work to remove a vehicle stranded on track, the Safety Car had entered the fray a total of three times by lap 20, at which time, the #555 GT-R was running out in front, with the #81 GT-R in 4th place. The Safety Car left the track at the end of lap 23, and the battle resumed. Hoshino in the #81 GT-R overtook two cars by lap 25 to rise to 2nd place, and pursued Yamano in the #555 GT-R. The 4 second gap between the two machines was closed to 2.5 seconds, the pair subsequently held up by backmarkers, widening it to three seconds. The rain lifted, leaving puddles on track, and it became a competition between Hoshino and Yamano to set the faster lap. Near the end of the race, the two machines were less than two seconds apart, but Yamano maintained his distance from Hoshino, and crossed the finish line first. It was the first victory in a year for the team, and for the GT-R, it was a one-two finish in their first Super Taikyu Series win this season.

In the ST-3 class, the #14 Okabe Jidosha KYOSHIN Keisoku Z33 (Kazuomi Komatsu/Kenichi Sugibayashi/Yoshinobu Masuda) overtook their teammates in the #15 Okabe Jidosha DIXCEL Team Tetsuya Z34 (Masaaki Nagashima/Tetsu Tanaka/Tetsuya Tanaka) at the first corner of the final lap to finish in 2nd.

Naoya Yamano (#555 MACH GoGoGo SYAKEN GT-R, final round winner)
“Since the weather was bad, and the race might have been decided during 5 laps of the Safety Car running, I pitted on the first lap and handed over to Tamanaka, who came back in on the next lap, and switched with me again. We got the pit work over with, and I was able to get back on track in a good position. In a wet race, there is an advantage to being in front where the visibility is good, and this track is hard to overtake on. However, when passing other cars, I was very careful not to go off or crash. The jockeying with Hoshino was difficult, but thankfully, I won.”

Click images above to see larger versions.


[ Race Results ] Super Taikyu Series Round 7 GT3 class
Pos No Machine Driver Time / Behind
1 555 MACH GoGoGo SYAKEN GT-R T.Tamanaka / N.Yamano 2:01'44.114
2 81 GTNET ADVAN NISSAN GT-R T.Aoki / K.Hoshino / N.Omoto 1.775
3 28 PETRONAS SYNTIUM SLS AMG GT3 T.Kataoka / J.Lester / F.Hairuman 48.955
[ Race Results] Super Taikyu Series Round 7 ST-3 class
Pos No Machine Driver Time / Behind
1 80 PETRONAS TWS GS350 S.Sato / H.Yoshimoto / S.Wakisaka 2:02'06.422
2 14 Okabe Jidosha
my road Kyoshin-Keisoku Z33
K.Komatsu / K.Sugibayashi / Y.Masuda 4.824
3 15 Okabe Jidosha DIXCEL Team Tetsuya Z M.Nagashima / T.Tanaka / T.Tanaka 5.053
4 34 asset techno Z34 M.Sasaki / K.Mineo / K.Shimogaki 6.249
5 5 Okabe Jidosha Makers Z34 D.Imamura / M.Atake / T.Shirai 45.213
7 35 asset techno Z34 K.Koizumi / S.Maejima / S.Hasegawa 1Lap

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