Naoki Yamamoto converts pole position into a victory at Suzuka

  • Naoki Yamamoto, Super Formula, Suzuka
  • Naoki Yamamoto, Super Formula, Suzuka

Team Mugen’s Naoki Yamamoto opened the 2018 Japanese Super Formula Championship with a victory at Suzuka Circuit. For the 2013 Super Formula champion it is his fourth Super Formula victory in a career, he achieved all four at Suzuka.

In Sunday’s race, Yamamoto started from pole in the #16 Honda, converting the best starting position into victory. Team Impul’s Yuhi Sekiguchi in the #19 Toyota made a fantastic progress from P14 on the starting grid to the second place at the end of the race, just 1.720 seconds behind Yamamoto. Docomo Dandelion’s Tomoki Nojiri in the #5 Honda completed a podium. He started from P3 and finished third.

Nirei Fukuzumi, Naoki Yamamoto

Nirei Fukuzimi and Naoki Yamamoto shared the front rowFukuzumi retired, Yamamoto won the race

The biggest surprise in qualifying was a rookie Nirei Fukuzumi. Honda junior and Team Mugen’s driver was the second fastest in the #15 Honda. He was in a podium fight during the race but he was forced to retire shortly after a pit stop.

Defending champion Hiroaki Ishiura finished in the fourth place in the #1 Toyota. Other point-scorers are Takuya Izawa (Nakajima Racing Honda), Koudai Tsukakoshi (Real Racing Honda), Nick Cassidy (Kondo Racing Toyota) and Kazuki Nakajima (Team Tom’s Toyota).

Check the full results of the Super Formula race at Suzuka Circuit

Photos: Super Formula,

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