Growing up with his father, Akira, Yusaku Shibata was embraced with motor sport from the moment he arrived in this world. His life would see him behind the wheel of numerous race cars throughout a number of series, and eventually coming full circle to own and operate the tuning shop his father founded in 1985; ARVOU Motor Sports Service.
Finding originality among the masses these days seems almost like a lost cause; difficult to say the least. It seems we’ve fallen into an echo-chamber, driven by internet popularity, that promotes the trendy favorable over imagination. Very few choose to forge their own path of innovation and ingenuity, and it’s left us with more ‘inspired by’ designs than one should have to endure. This sheep-like quality is absent in Mr. Jun Tanaka, however, and the S15 that he’s created is unlike any other.
Among the various Super GT cars on display, APR was one to unveil their 2016 GT300 take on the new Prius. We got a close look at the previous model a few years back at Fuji Speedway; however, since Toyota has released a newly remodeled production version of the hybrid chassis, it was time for it’s older counterpart to be retired. Unlike the previous model, which utilized a mid-engine setup (as it was built to the somewhat controversial JAF GT300 rulebook), the 2016 will be using the now mandated front-engine setup, as this is the factory engine layout of the Prius.
With the 2013 season of Super GT wrapping up this weekend with the Pokka/Sappora Special 1,000KM race at Suzuka, it’s about that time we look forward to next year. I’ve seen a lot of […]
On the afternoon of June 16, the SUPER GT INTERNATIONAL SERIES MALAYSIA race, Round 3 of the 2013 AUTOBACS SUPER GT, was run at the Sepang International Circuit (Malaysia). The GT500 class race was […]
Round 1 Okayama : Race Review On the afternoon of April 7, the OKAYAMA GT 300km RACE, Round 1 of the 2013 AUTOBACS SUPER GT, took place at the Okayama International Circuit in Okayama […]
…and as the rain began to fall ever harder, the Super GT cars charged on; fueled by the calm determination only those behind the wheel know. We pick up on the continuing coverage mid […]
After my well deserved break after the Super GT practice session, it wasn’t long before the final race of the season got underway. In typical Japanese fashion, as soon as the flag dropped, so did […]
So, it was 5am and the only thing I could think about was getting caffeine into my system; not if my friend was going to be late, not if it was going to rain […]
This past Sunday marked the end of the 2012 Super GT season with the final race at Twin Ring Motegi; and despite the cold, rainy weather, the action was as hot as ever. […]
A few weeks ago Super GT held the final official test day for the 2012 season. The venue; Twin Ring Motegi. While the majority of the teams set out to gather data for the upcoming […]
On September 17th, Super GT held it’s final Official Test Day of the season at Twin Ring Motegi. Our friends at JDM Clips were there to catch all the action as both the GT300 and […]
Aside from the KERS outfit on a Formula 1 car, it would be a safe bet that the last thing that goes through peoples minds when discussing motor sports is the term ‘hybrid’. So when Toyota, along with APR Racing, and Super GT announced their intentions to develop a Prius GT300 car the buzz was quite large. Japan has always been a leader in hybrid technology and promotion of its use, so to me, it didn’t come as much of a surprise. It was really only a matter of time until hybrids made their way into the racing scene, and Super GT seems like a great place to start. The Super GT series is the flagship of Japanese motor sport, and with the increase of various chassis comes an increase in fan base. Everyone who drives a Prius will now have a reason to come watch the races and cheer on their own team; which in the end is great for the sport and probably Prius sales. Although the consumers might be a little disappointed when they can’t get the car up to 220 km/h dropping their kids off at school. I should point out not to get me wrong when I start throwing the term ‘hybrid’ around so loosely, because this is not your average grocery getter. I think we would all agree that it would be a little naive of us to assume that this is a stock Prius. While it does retain the stock hybrid system, it gets a little extra help from something special mounted in the rear. Click past the break to learn more about the first hybrid in Super GT.
A few weeks ago my friend over at JDM Clips made a visit to the Honda Headquarters where they had on display the new Mugen designed GT300 CR-Z that is currently competing in the Super GT series. If the Toyota Prius GT300 car wasn’t ironic enough for you, Honda is here to fulfill your hybrid race car cliches with the new CR-Z contender. It’s difficult to think that any hybrid car you see on the street would be holding it’s own against the likes of the BRZ, BMW Z4’s, Nismo GTR GT3’s, Porsches, Aston Martin’s, Lambos and Corvettes, but make no mistake; this is one fast hybrid. In fact, in only it’s second outing it managed to capture pole position and continues to impress on the grid. Granted it’s 300hp 2.8 liter twin-turbo V6, with electric motor, isn’t offered as an option from Honda to you and I (unfortunately), but it’s still a CR-Z chassis; a capable one at that. Click past the break to see the CR-Z up close, compliments of JDM Clips.
. So, I actually have a lot of cool stuff to post up and write about; new features, Super GT news, shop visits – the only snag is, I can’t access it! Earlier to day […]
. Whenever I think of the J-Loc Super GT team I imagine a group of young, millionaire-esque drivers who spend their weekdays parlaying cash at ritzy clubs and restaurants, picking up beautiful women in lounges, […]
. Playing in the rain Super GT Gainer DIXCEL GT300 R8 LMS – Tetsuya Tanaka | Katsuyuki Hiranaka – Fuji Speedway .
. Super GT Round 2 | Fuji Speedway – Oyama, Japan | Subaru BRZ GT300 .
In two weeks the Super GT teams will make their way over to Malaysia for the third Round of the series that takes place at Sepang International Circuit. So, that means I have two more weeks to show you coverage of the Fuji race! Just kidding; I have a few more shots of the race left, so I’ll throw them into this post. I also have some cool shots from qualifying that I’ll sprinkle around throughout the rest of the week. Judging by the traffic, it seems like you guys are enjoying this series. It’s really a unique race with some awesome cars – for me it was really enjoyable to watch, photograph, and now share. Hope you are enjoying it – click past the break for more .
We continue the coverage of Super GT Round 2 from about the middle of the race. By now I had wandered myself around the better half of the track and started making my way back to the paddock area to get something to eat. While doing so, I managed to miss the massive crash of the Art Taste Porsche driven by Tim Bergmeister that ended up sending him to the hospital. I’m not sure if he had a puncture in one of his tires that threw him off, or if it was a driver error, but the accident was pretty horrific. This delayed the race for a good 30 minutes while they cleaned up and got the car off-track. It didn’t take long though for the GT cars to start up at full throttle again. Click past the break to check out more racing action from Fuji Speedway.
Nothing can short change the excitement of a good road race. Rapidly changing weather conditions, split second decisions, class differences, mental fatigue, and constant overtaking all combine to create an environment that only motor sport can provide. Super GT, Japan’s premier racing series, brings this to the table round after round. Mixing GT300 and GT500 contenders make for a packed grid and the opportunity to see some great driving. This particular race held many challenges for the teams to overcome; challenges that would leave the unprepared teams either on the back of the grid or, worse yet, off the track and retired. It’s my pleasure to bring you coverage from Round 2 of Super GT held at Fuji Speedway in the Shizuoka prefecture. Click past the break for a look at the action.
. I gotta say, I’ve been having one hell of a week. With that out of the way, let me apologize for not updating the blog as promised. I’ve been giving you crappy teasers on […]
Ahhh, Nismo Festival. A celebration of all things Nissan. Oh, wait. I already introduced this coverage with some mediocre commencement. Let’s dive right in to the second part of the Nismo Festival coverage with these RC cars. No, not radio controlled. RC stands for Racing Competition in this case; a series of cars built by the NISMO factory specifically for competition. When I say specifically for competition I mean just that – you cannot drive these on the street; and yes, they are expensive. But if the car isn’t enough, and you’re looking to spend even more money, you can also buy NISMO’s technical support upon delivery. Think of it as a warranty on steroids. Let’s check out some more past the break. You guys are in for a treat with this post…
I figured that with all the hype surrounding the Toyota 86 and the Subaru BRZ, that people would get tired of hearing about it pretty quickly. Turns out I was right. When Subaru announced its intentions to compete in the GT300 class of Super GT next year with the BRZ chassis, the hype exploded all over again. For good reason; it’s a work of art. Not only is it aesthetically pleasing to look at, but every piece of aerodynamics on this car serves a function. That’s the beauty of Super GT. I waited for a few weeks to post our coverage to see what kind of response I’d get after the buzz subsided. Click past the break for JDM Clips take on the BRZ GT300.
. . Subaru released this insanely awesome video yesterday in regards to it’s intentions on using the BRZ as a GT300 competitor in Super GT. This will quite possibly be the most bad ass contender […]
Race day – it truly is special. As the purpose built machines line the grid, the quiet idling of their hungry engines a deceiving tone. Just minutes before the red lights go out; the exhaust notes scream held back only by the bouncing rev limiter of the launch control. The paddock thick with anxiety. The rivalry, the tension, the noise and drama. As the green flags drop the machinery comes to life, and a torrent of power is unleashed across the asphalt. Exciting right!? But there is a lot that goes into getting everyone into position on time. Our friends at JDM Clips got some great behind the scene shots in and around the Pit area of the first Super GT round at Fuji Speedway. Click past the break to check it out!
. At the beginning of the month the delayed opening round of Super GT took place at Fuji Speedway and saw the first victory of the season go to the Autech GTR of the GT500 […]
Ah, Monday. Hope you all had a good race weekend; congrats to Sebastian Vettel for his second 2011 season win! As promised, I’m posting up some shots of a Super GT Test Day at the Twin Ring Motegi circuit. While these shots may be dated a bit, they are still awesome. This post will be followed up with some race day shots as well. Unfortunately, the Super GT series has been delayed due to the tragic events in Japan. I know we’ve heard it a lot, but let’s hope Japan can bounce back and things can return to normal soon. Thanks again to JDM Clips. Check out the NSX GT-R FR – looks so mean.