Kazuki Hoshino is a Japanese racing driver who achieved the most in the GT racing, winning two championship titles in the Japanese Super GT Series in 2008 and 2010, both with Nissan. He was a winner four times at Suzuka 1000, the greatest Japanese GT race, once in the GT500 class and three times in the GT300 class.
Son of Japanese racing legend Kazuyoshi Hoshino
Kazuki is a son of Kazuyoshi Hoshino, one of the greatest Japanese racing drivers ever, so it's was natural for him to choose racing as his occupation. Kazuki made a debut in 2000 when his father was still active in the Japanese Grand Touring Car Championship.
Kazuki's first competition was the Avon Junior Zetec Challenge in Great Britain. He stayed for one more season in GB, finishing seventh in the British Formula 3 Championship with Carlin, before returning to Japan in 2002. In his rookie season in the Japanese Formula 3 Championship, Hoshino scored two podiums to finish 11th in the points.
Grand Touring debut in 2003
In 2003, Kazuki made a debut in the Japanese Grand Touring Car Championship, a year after his father retired from racing in the same series. Kazuki was driving the #81 Nissan Silvia S15 in the GT300 class, sharing a car with Tadao Uematsu. Scoring one podium, they finished sixth in the points.
In 2004, Hoshino joined Team Daishin to drive the #80 Nissan Fairlady Z, together with teammate Mitsuhiro Kinoshita. Without wins or podiums, they were 7th in the points.
Maiden victory in 2005, Suzuka 1000 victory in 2006
In 2005, the championship was renamed to Super GT. Driving the #46 Nissan Fairlady Z for Mola team, Hoshino scored his maiden GT300 victory at Twin Ring Motegi, sharing a car with Takayuki Aoki. They finished fifth in the final standings.
In 2006, Hoshino was driving for the fourth different team in his fourth season. This time, his car was the GT500 class #12 Nissan Fairlady Z of Calsonic Team Impul. His co-driver was Frenchman Benoit Treluyer. They were the overall winners of the Suzuka 1000 km race, with Jeremie Dufour as the third driver. At the end of the season, Hoshino and Treluyer were 8th in the GT500 class standings.
One season in the Formula Nippon
In 2006, Hoshino also returned to single-seater racing, for the first time since 2002, participating in the Formula Nippon with Arting Racing/Team Impul. He was driving the #2 Lola FN06-Toyota alongside defending champion Satoshi Motoyama as his teammate in the #1 car.
Not scoring points, Hoshino finished last in the drivers' standings. It's interesting that the Formula Nippon champion was Benoit Treluyer, his teammate from Super GT Series, who was driving the #19 Lola-Toyota for Team Impul.
24h Nürburgring debut in 2007
In 2007, Hoshino competed in Super GT only, continuing to drive Team Impul's #12 Nissan Fairlady Z in the GT500 class, sharing a car with Benoit Treluyer. With just one podium, Hoshino finished 11th in the points.
In 2007, Hoshino participated for the first time in the Nürburgring 24 Hours, driving a Nissan Z33 for Falken Motorsports. He finished 11th in the SP7 class, sharing a car with Peter Dumbreck, Dirk Schoysman and Tetsuya Tanaka.
Super GT Series GT300 champion in 2008
In 2008, Hoshino returned to the GT300 class of the Super GT Series, driving the #46 Nissan Fairlady Z for Mola team. His co-driver was Hironobu Yasuda. They won Suzuka 1000 race and added two more podiums, winning the GT300 title with just one point more than closest rivals.
Hoshino returned to Nürburgring in 2008, sharing a car with the same teammates in the Falken Motorsports' Nissan Z33. They were 13th in the SP7 class.
Second consecutive GT300 win at Suzuka 1000
For the 2009 Super GT season, Hoshino stayed in the #46 Mola Nissan Fairlady Z, sharing a car with new teammate Masataka Yanagida. Hoshino defended a GT300 class victory at Suzuka 1000 and added one more podium, to finish 7th in the final classification.
In his third attempt at Nürburgring 24 Hours, Hoshino finished fourth in the SP7 class, driving again Falken Motorsports' Nissan Z33.
Second championship title in 2010
For the 2010 Super GT Series season, both Hoshino and Yanagida moved to the #3 Nissan Fairlady Z of the Hasemi Motorsport. Their only victory was in season's finale at Twin Ring Motegi and they won the GT300 championship title.
In 2010, Hoshino finally reached a podium at Nürburgring Nordschleife, finishing third in the SP7 class in the 24-hour race. His co-drivers in Falken Motorsports' Nissan Z33 were Peter Dumbreck, Dirk Schoysman and Tetsuya Tanaka.
Two Super GT seasons with Aston Martin
Ahead of the 2011 Super GT season, Hasemi Motorsport announced a withdrawal from the championship. Hoshino joined A Speed team to drive the #66 Aston Martin Vantage GT2. He and Hiroki Yoshimoto were the GT300 class winners at Okayama, finishing 8th in the points at the end of the season.
Hoshino and Yoshimoto stayed in the #66 Aston Martin in 2012, scoring two wins and finishing third in the GT300 classification. In August, Hoshino scored his third GT300 victory at Suzuka 1000. A month later, he won at Autopolis.
Return to Nissan in 2013
In 2013, Hoshino returned to Nissan, driving the #3 Nissan GT-R Nismo GT3 for NDDP Racing in the GT300 class. His co-driver was Daiki Sasaki. Lucas Ordonez joined them at Suzuka 1000, where they finished ninth. Without wins or podiums, they were 17th in the final standings.
In September 2013, Hoshino returned to Nürburgring, participating in the Blancpain Endurance Series race with British JRM team. He, Peter Dumbreck and Steven Kane finished sixth in the #23 Nissan GT-R Nismo GT3.
Four wins in four seasons in the #3 Nissan
In 2014, Hoshino stayed in the #3 Nissan in the Super GT Series, with Lucas Ordonez as his new full-time teammate. Wolfgang Reip was the third driver at Suzuka 1000. Hoshino and Ordonez won the race at Chang International Circuit in Thailand, finishing fourth in the final points. In 2014, Hoshino returned to Nürburgring 24 Hours, not finishing the race.
In 2015, his third year in the #3 Nissan of NDDP Racing, Hoshino had third different co-driver. Mitsunori Takaboshi was his partner in all races, winning two times, in Thailand and at Autopolis. At the end of the season, they were fourth in the points. Hoshino finished 9th at 24h Nürburgring in 2015, sharing a Nissan GT-R Nismo GT3 with Michael Krumm, Lucas Ordonez and Alex Buncombe.
Another new co-driver joined Hoshino in 2016. He was sharing the #3 Nissan with Jann Mardenborough. They won a race at Fuji Speedway and finished fourth in the final standings. At 2016 Nürburgring 24 Hours, he was 11th with same teammates as the year before.
For the 2017 Super GT Series, Mitsunori Takaboshi returned to the #3 Nissan to share a car with Kazuki Hoshino.