It is only here
Super Formula’s one of interesting point is unique pit stop regulation.
Please check here for a detailed explanation.
Last year, interesting new item introduce for pit stop.
That’s a ”Auto jack up system”.
ITOCHU ENEX Team IMPUL first time introduce last year.
This system is so simple and effective.
Front and rear jack man only push the button and jack up.
Although it is a slight difference, but reduced mistake and work also improves efficiency.
Check the video
In 2017 only IMPUL use this jack, but in the latest Rd.4 Fuji, More than half of the teams introduced.
However, interesting things is winning Kondo Racing and point leading Team Mugen weren’t introduce this auto jack system.
2018 Super Formula Rd.4 held at Fuji Speedway.
Tom Dillman and Dan Tictum who 2 replacement driver continue to ride.
Qualifying was so chaos wether condition.
In this situation, Nick Cassidy (Kondo Racing) takes 2nd career pole position.
After the wet qualifying, turns dry condition for race day.
Top 4 driver sets soft tyre, 5th start Koudai Tsukakoshi (Real Racing) sets medium.
In start, pole sitter Nick Cassidy makes great start and hold P1.
But champion ship rival Naoki Yamamoto (Team Mugen) lost position and down P5 from P2 grid.
Hiroaki Ishiura (JMS P.MU Cermo/Inging) up to 2nd.
In the early part of race, medium tyre user struggle the pace and drop position.
On the other hand, soft tyre user catch the over car and overtaking.
So after lap 10, it means over fuel window many driver into the pit and change medium to soft.
Finished 12 lap, all medium tyre user change to soft tyre.
On the top spot, Cassidy and Ishiura were pull out the other drivers.
But finished pit duty drivers were covered up just before lapdown.
In this timing, Yuji Kunimoto (JMS P.MU Cermo/Inging) and Ryo Hirakawa (ITOCHU ENEX Team IMPUL) were attracted attention.
Because both driver already changes the tyre, and shows great pace with new soft tyre. Therefore, the gap between Cassidy (P1) to Kunimoto (finished pit).
Lap 24, P3 Yuhi Sekiguchi (ITOCHU ENEX Team IMPUL) was first man of soft tyre driver into the pit.
Sekiguchi back to the track passed by Kunimoto and Hirakawa.
Lap 35, race leader Nick Cassidy feels tyre drop and into the pit.
Quick pit work and back to track.
Look the Cassdy’s pit work. Ishiura continue running and push hard. And 5 laps after Ishiura into the pit and finish full service.
But Cassidy keep his position.
In the final phase, Cassidy and Ishiura still hard to tail to nose battle.
But even so Cassidy shows great pace and grown the gap.
Finally Nick Cassidy (Kondo Racing) cross the line and takes first career win!
And memorable win for Kondo Racing. Because for the first time in 10 years win.
Last win was 2008 Fuji with J.P.Oliveira.
2nd is 2017 champion Hiroaki Ishiura (JMS P.MU Cermo/Inging), his team mate Yuji Kunimoto is 3rd.
4th is Ryo Hirakawa (ITOCHU ENEX Team IMPUL). LeMans 24h winner Kazuki Nakajima (VANTELIN TEAM TOM’s) is 5th.
Shows many overtakes for Kazuya Oshima (UOMO SUNOCO Team LeMans) is up 13th to 6th.
Champion ship leader Naoki Yamamoto (Team Mugen) struggle the pace and finish 8th.After the Rd.4, Yamamoto keep point leader, but Cassidy catch up 1 point difference.
Looking good new weapon
Super Formula 2019 new machine SF19 takes Japan debut at Fuji.
Dallara and Honda bring one SF19 for Japanese debut.
DOCOMO TEAM DANDELION driver Tomoki Nojiri drives SF19-Honda test car for this testing. In this week, so bad weather condition in Japan.
For that reason wet testing for SF19 shakedown.
But SF19 and Tomoki Nojiri done success full non-trouble shakedown.
And Dallara and JRP held a press conference about SF19
Dallara’s SF19 project leader Fabio Grippa and JRP president Akira Kurashita appeared.
Summary of press conference
・SF19 carry over many component from SF14
・Adapt 2016 safety regulations
・More aggressive aero design than SF14
・8kg lighter than SF14 and 80kg lighter than F1
・Same downforce level as F1
・LMP car style high mount LED wet light
・SF19 is designed to be able to mount Halo
・Focus on the ease of overtaking
・Wider front tyre
After the shakedown, JRP plans 4 manufacturer test for SF19.
And Toyota’s SF19 debut next Fuji testing. In addition, Halo test is also scheduled.
Test 1: Fuji July 31~Augst 1
Test 2: Motegi Augst 30~1
Test 3: SUGO September 20~21
Test 4: Suzuka October 28~30
New car debut for next season
Italian biggest racing constructor Dallara has roll out of 2019 Super Formula machine ”SF19” last week.
And first shakedown testing at Varano circuit Italia.
This time Honda bringing their NRE engine for one SF19, and DOCOMO TEAM DANDELION driver Tomoki Nojri gets to first run for SF19.
SF19 sets circuit record 57 sec. It is faster than lastest LMP1-L machine’s 59 sec.
SF19 looks more sharp and refine than lastest SF14.
And we can be confirmed that there is LMP car style tail lamp in rear wing end plate.
After the shakedown, SF19 sent to Japan and first run in Japan in Fuji Spweedway July 4th,5th.
The same as this time only Honda test car and Tomoki Nojiri drives.
French man goes another big chance.
UOMO SUNOCO Team LeMans announces to continue appoint Tom Dillman for #7 cars.
Dillman to sub for Pietro Fittipaldi due to huge crash at WEC Spa.
Fittipaldi still working hard on rehabilitation.
WEC and Formula E tester has debut for Super Formula at Rd.2 Autopolis.
But race was cancel due to bad weather.
His 2nd time Super Formula at SUGO.
After hit by a mechanical problem, Dillman survive tough race and good strategy,
Super Formula Rd.2 Autopolis this weekend.
Team Mugen’s #15 Nirei Fukuzumi contests FIA F2 Spain.
Honda young Japanese F3 driver Sena Sakaguchi makes Super Formula debut replace to Fukuzumi.
UOMO SUNOCO Team LeMans #7 Pietro Fittipaldi plans to contests Indycar. But Fittipaldi pain his leg at WEC Spa, so lost both Indycar and Super Formula duty this weekend.
So Formula V8 3.5 champion and WEC driver Tom Dillman gets 2 Super Formula race chance.
Warm and good condition at Autopolis.
All driver must to set medium tyre for Q1.
Surprise debut for Sena Sakaguchi (Team Mugen). Honda young man sets fastest lap in first half of session.
Finally Takuya Izawa (TCS Nakajima Racing) score top time.
Disappointment knock out Q1 for 2016 champion Yuji Kunimoto (P.MU Cermo/Inging) is 15th. And both UOMO SUNOCO Team LeMans guys Kazuya Oshima and Tom Dillman were struggled medium tyre.
In Q2 they change to soft compound tyre.
They try to only one lap attack. But different of tyre warming.
Finally Kamui Kobayashi (KCMG) sets brilliant new citcuit record 1:25.799.
Big gap 0.3sec from 2nd Nick Cassidy (Kondo Racing).
Mistake for WEC ace Kazuki Nakajima (VANTELIN Team TOM’s). Nakajima spun and cannot score the time.
And Tomoki Nojiri (DOCOMO Team DANDELION) and Hiroaki Ishiura (P.MU Cermo/Inging) sets completely same lap time.
But Nojiri is recorded before Ishiura. So Nojiri through the Q2.
Shows great performance in Q1, sport outing rookie Sena Sakaguchi drop out from Q2.
But impressive debut.
Last 4min, drivers into the racing course.
Both DOCOMO DANDELION guys lines one-two position.
But Ryo Hirakawa (ITOCHU ENEX Team IMPUL) goes 2 lap tyre warm.
This attack is good effort.
Finnaly Ryo Hirakawa sets fastest lap and gets first time pole position in his top formula career.
2017 Super GT GT500 champion return to top formula field and great results 2nd race for his return.
But Hirakawa down to 4th position for race grid due to penalty of Rd.1 accident.
So 2nd position Tomoki Nojiri (DOCOMO Team DANDELION) gets top of grid for race.
and his team mate Nobuharu Matsushita (DOCOMO Team DANDELION) is 3rd.
Top Toyota engine user is Nick Cassidy (Kondo Racing) 4th.
Rd.1 winner Naoki Yamamoto (Team Mugen) is 7th, Disappointment and mysterious tyre feeling for new circuit record holder Kamui Kobayashi (KCMG) is 8th.
New Red Bull man coming
Team Mugen announce to Red Bull Junior driver Dan Ticktum replacement to Nirei Fukuzumi at Super Formula Rd.3 and 4.
Honda young protege Nirei Fukuzumi contests FIA F2 and Super Formula this season.
So 3 race schedule crash between F2 and SF.
In Rd.2 Autopolis, Honda’s F3 runner Sena Sakaguchi stand by Fukuzumi.
18 years old Dan Ticktum is F3 Macau GP 2017 winner and now compete to FIA F3 this year. His first time to drive big Formula and next Red Bull hope qualities are tried.
Because Mugen’s #15 is last years Pierre Gasly driven and finish 2nd overall in the championship.
In addition, Fukuzumi gets front row start his Super Formula debut.
Team release (Japanese)
Comeback Honda power
2018 Super Formula season has kick off at Suzuka Circuit.
NGK spark plug 2&4 race is season opener.
[Check point Rd.1]
・2 spec tyre
This season has big change. 2 spec soft and medium Yokohama tyre introduce every race.
Former GP3 race winner and current FIA F2 runner Nirei Fukuzumi joins Team Mugen. And Fukuzumi ride former Pierre Gasly’s car.
Former FIA F2 runner Nobuharu Matsushita joins DOCOMO TEAM DANDELION.
2017 FV8 3.5 champion Pietro Fittipaldi combined 3 category (Indycar, WEC, Super Formula) this season.
Nissan Super GT pilot Katsumasa Chiyo gets wishful top formula seat with B-MAX Racing.
This year’s Q1 all driver must use to medium tyre.
Today is so hot condition compared usual year. So many driver and team struggle the setting and driving.
In this session, Honda protege Nobuharu Matsushita (DOCOMO TEAM DANDELION) sets fastest lap and hold P1.
5 driver knock out from this session, Oshima, Nissan ace Chiyo, returner Rositter, Fittipaldi.
Every driver sets soft compound tyre for this session.
New Yokohama tyre is so difficult to warm up. So laps of warm-up is different depending on the driver.
2016 champion Yuji Kunimoto (P.MU Cermo/Inging) is first man to set the pace.
And some driver goes to attack, in this timing 2017 Super GT champion Ryo Hirakawa (ITOCHU ENEX IMPUL) off at degner-1.
Red flag shows this accident. Due to this red flag, slow warm up drivers could not record the time.
And restart last 3min. They use tyre for 1st attack, so almost driver change the new sets soft tyre. But Q1 top time setter Matsushita was still set used tyre.
Finally Tomoki Nojiri (DOCOMO TEAM DANDELION) was top man at Q2. His team mate Nobuharu Matsushita drop out from Q2 in spite of the Q1 fastest.
2016 champion Kunimoto, WEC star Kobayashi, Karthikeyan, Yamashita, Sekiguchi were out from Q2.
Cause of Q2’s red flag Ryo Hirakawa could not run because engine stop.
So 7 driver attempt final stage.
Transferee Takuya Izawa (Nakajima Racing) first man to attack lap.
4 driver (Izawa, Nojiri, Yamamoto, Fukuzumi) has new sets soft tyre. So Tsukakoshi, Ishiura, Nakajima forced to use old tyre.
Tomoki Nojiri (DOCOMO TEAM DANDELION) goes top, but immediately Honda young hope Nirei Fukuzumi (Team Mugen) sets fastest lap.
But finally Honda ace man Naoki Yamamoto (Team Mugen) beat his young team mate and grabs pole position!
His 9th pole position since 2016 Rd.1 for Yamamoto. Good return from disappointment last year mach up with Pierre Gasly.
And super debut 2nd grid for Nirei Fukuzumi (Team Mugen). So Team Mugen gets first time one-two qualifying results in Super Formula since Mugen enter the Japanese top formula series 2010.
3rd is Tomoki Nojiri (DOCOMO TEAM DANDELION), 4th Takuya Izawa (Nakajima Racing), 5th Koudai Tsukakoshi (Real Racing).
And Honda engine user dominate top 5 qualifying results. Honda shows fantastic performance 2018 spec NRE.
2017 champion Hiroaki Ishiura (P.MU Cermo/Inging) is top of Toyota engine user 6th.
TOM’s ace Kazuki Nakajima (VANTELIN Team TOM’s) is 7th.
Tomorrows race is first time 300km race for SF14 and NRE 2 spec tyre package.
So It will be an unpredictable and fun race.
Live streaming at motorsport tv
2017 Super Formula driver and team champion P.MU CERUMO/INGING revelas 2018 lively.
CERUMO/INGING gets new sponsor ”JMS” and big logo put on shark fin and front flap.
JMS is Japanese auto part shop.
And brake pad maker P.MU continue main partner.
2015 and 2017 champion Hiroaki Ishiura and 2016 champion Yuji Kunimoto are remain for P.MU CERUMO/INGING.
New French coming
UOMO SUNOCO Team LeMans announced former Formula V8 3.5 champion Tom Dillmann to substitute Pietro Fittipaldi for 2 Super Formula race.
Both FV8 3.5 champ share #7 Team LeMans car.
This year for Pietro Fittipaldi fulfilling busy schedule due to enter 3 category include, Indycar, WEC, Super Formula.
Tom Dillmann is former Formula V8 3.5 champion.
And many experience single-seater career, for example, F3, GP3, GP2, FR3.5, FV8, Formula E. Now main contender for By Kolles WEC driver.
His first time Japanese racing this year.