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SuperGT 2010: NISMO Second on Podium for Suzuka 700 Enduro Round 6

August 25th, 2010

Team NISMO were able to recover from a potentially race ending spin to pull off a 2nd place finish for round 6 of the SuperGT Championship series of 2010 last weekend. On the scorching hot Suzuka Circuit, NISMO were able to use pit stops/driver changes effectively and take advantage of the cooling conditions as night came to push the GT-R into second place and keep it there.

Engine and drivetrain issues hampered the HIS ADVAN KONDO Racing and the CALSONIC IMPUL teams race efforts and both teams had to retire early from the race. A dissapointment for both teams, especially team IMPUL who had a good shot at moving up the championship ladder this week.

For the full race report hit up the read more link below…

Images: (C) NISMO

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Super GT 2010: Two GT-Rs Get Points and One Retires in Round 3

May 3rd, 2010

It was fine sunny conditions for racing on Sunday when round three of the 2010 SuperGT Championship kicked off at Fuji Speedway. The three GT-R competing teams this year had managed to secure their spots in the top 10 on the grid in qualifying. The #23 Nismo MOTUL Autech car was best placed of the bunch in 4th.

Come race time however it was the #12 Calsonic IMPUL GT-R which would prove to perform best after driver Ronnie Quintarelli built his 9th place qualifying position into a 6th place finish by the end.

The #24 HIS ADVAN Kondo Racing GT-R was able also to reap some points from the round. They qualified in 8th place on the grid. A position they maintained to the checkered flag.

While hopes were pinned on the #23 NISMO MOTUL Autech entry for a podium finish, it was almost a non-starter with engine trouble. Two laps into the race however they were able to join the action but ultimately to no avail as they were forced to retire early when the car troubles returned.

It’s turning out to be the worst year for NISMO, now at the bottom of the championship ladder with just 6 points – the SC430 Lexus teams hold the top 4 spots. Highest GT-R team on the championship so far is Kondo Racing who’re placed 6th.

Let’s hope the season picks up with a few more GT-R wins toward the middle of the year!

Link: SuperGT Website
Link: Nissan Motorsports

[Race Results] 88 Laps
Pos  No   Car   Drivers Time
1 35 MJ KRAFT SC430 Hiroaki Ishiura/Kazuya Oshima 2:25’00.795
2 1 PETRONAS TOM’S SC430 Juichi Wakisaka/Andre Lotterer +4.741
3 6 ENEOS SC430 Daisuke Ito/Bjorn Wirdheim +22.875
4 38 ZENT CERUMO SC430 Yuji Tachikawa/Richard Lyons +41.899
5 17 KEIHIN HSV-010 Toshihiro Kaneishi/Koudai Tsukakoshi +51.687
6 12 CALSONIC IMPUL GT-R Tsugio Matsuda/Ronnie Quintarelli +1’11.940
7 18 Weider HSV-010 Takashi Kogure/Loic Duval +1’17.697
8 24 HIS ADVAN KONDO GT-R J.P.de Oliveira/Hironobu Yasuda +1Lap
9 32 EPSON HSV-010 Ryo Michigami/Yuhki Nakayama +1Lap
10 100 RAYBRIG HSV-010 Takuya Izawa/Naoki Yamamoto +1Lap
23 MOTUL AUTECH GT-R Satoshi Motoyama/Benoit Treluyer +30Laps

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SuperGT 2010: Nissan Launch GT500 GT-R Teams for 2010 and New Engine

February 9th, 2010

Nissan and Nismo have unveiled their plans for motorsports in 2010 with an announcement today regarding the teams and cars to be featured in 2010 championships. In the Japanese SuperGT championships, Nismo’s field will shrink to just three teams down from four in 2009 which was five in 2008!

The 2010 GT500 specification Nissan GT-R will be raced by:

  • #23 Nismo MOTUL Autech GT-R driven by Satoshi Motoyama and Benoit Treluyer
  • #12 IMPUL Calsonic IMPUL GT-R driven by Tsugio Matsuda and Ronnie Quintarelli
  • #24 KONDO RACING HIS ADVAN KONDO GT-R driven by Joao Paolo de Oliveira and Hironobu Yasuda

In the GT-R this year will be the brand new VRH34A 3.4 litre engine which replaces the outgoing VK45 V8 unit due to an update to the SuperGT rules. We’ll get you some technical details on the VRH34A as soon as we can.

As well as the SuperGT cars, Nismo will also be providing support to teams who will field their 2010 FIA GT1 Nissan GT-Rs abroad for the 2010 FIA GT Championships. Two teams will field two cars each in the series which kicks off mid April in the UAE at the Yas Marina Circuit.

We hope to see great things from the teams SumoPower GT and Swiss Racing Team and we’ll certainly be following their progress throughout the year.

Link: Nissan Motorsports Website
Link: SumoPowerGT Website

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SuperGT 2009: Final Round Official Race Report and High Res Photos

November 16th, 2009

03

The season is over and while the results are not the back to back championships we hoped for it’s still not a horrible result. To think it all came down to one tire not holding up…

Thanks to Nissan who again provide a race report and high res photos. This is the last we’ll see of SuperGT until Nismo Festival, just under one month away where they will all reappear for one last battle.

NISSAN GT-R finishes third in the Championship
— SUPER GT Round 9 Race Report —

November 8th, Twin ring Motegi (Tochigi prefecture)
Sunday, November 8th saw the final round of the 2009 SUPER GT series taken place at Twin Ring Motegi. Aiming at title glory, the MOTUL AUTECH GT-R (#1 – Satoshi Motoyama / Benoit Treuyer) qualified in fifth place and put in a spirited drive in the race until tyre trouble slowed the car’s progress. The results netted third place for Satoshi Motoyama in the Driver’s standings, while NISMO were third in the Team’s title fight.

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SuperGT 2009: Nissan GT-R on Pole for Round 3 at Fuji Speedway

May 3rd, 2009

supergt-round03-2009-010

It’s Golden Week so the final of round three of SuperGT championship 2009 will be held on Monday. That means today was qualifying and what a qualifying it was for the teams fielding GT500 spec Nissan GT-Rs this year. Each team managed a spot in the Super Lap qualifying round with the #1 Nismo MOTUL Autech GT-R scoring pole position with the #12 IMPUL Calsonic Nissan GT-R not far behind in fourth grid position.

Team Hasemi’s #3 TOMICA EBBRO Nissan GT-R will start the race from 7th on the grid and Kondo Racing’s #24 HIS ADVAN Nissan GT-R just behind in 8th spot.

Don’t forget that you can now checkout the full SuperGT races on GTRBlogTV shortly after they run, you can checkout Round 2 from Suzuka Circuit online right now. Beware it’s almost 3 hours of racing at about 1GB of video download though!

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Nismo Festival: The Souvenirs

December 8th, 2008

One of the most popular and fun parts of Nismo Festival is all the limited edition and interesting souvenirs you can pickup. And no … I don’t mean the race queens… Sheesh.

You gotta see the mad rush for this stuff at gate open time. I was a bit late showing up I admit, 8am Sunday morning exactly was when I arrived. Just as we got inside and were parking the car the gates opened and the mass of humanity flooded out of the gates. People had been waiting god knows how many hours to get a good place up front.

Once inside there’s a good reason for the rush, the line for the best items fills up quickly. Nismo Festival merchandise was popular but the most popular place was the Nismo Garage Sale Corner. Here they sell used and/or no longer serviceable parts off the past and even current SuperGT race cars. Everything from carbon hoods, carbon fenders, to entire carbon front ends.

Nismo only permit 8-10 people to browse the stuff at a time and if you’re in you feel free to take as long as you like checking out all the items. By the time I turned up I estimate the wait as long as 3 hours to get in to the stall. Being press has it’s advantages however so I was able to photograph all the items.

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Nismo Festival 2008: Race Queens of Nismo Festival

December 7th, 2008

Everyone loves race queens, especially the Japanese. I shot a few of these girls before the public was allowed to get their mits on them. After the public was allowed on track it was physically impossible to access some of them due to the mobbing crowds 15 or so deep.

These girls are just as big to the fans as the race drivers are. It’s great what holding an umbrella can do for your career.

The rest of the photos are after the jump…

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Nismo Festival 2008: GT-R Special Battle

December 3rd, 2008

One of the biggest highlights of the Nismo Festival for GT-R fans was the GT-R Special Lap battle. This was a 10 lap race between Nissan GT-R race cars from four generations racing together in one race. Quite an amazing site to see the combined history of JGTC/SuperGT racing together on the track going all out at the same time.

The entrants in the GT-R Special Battle were:

  • R32 Group-A Race Cars: STP Taisan #2, Calsonic #12 and the #1 Unisa Jecs GT-Rs
  • R33 GT-R GT500 JGTC Race Car: Pennzoil Nismo #23 GT500 GT-R
  • R34 GT-R GT500 JGTC Race Cars: Pennzoil Nismo #23, Xanavi Nismo #22, Xanavi Nismo #23 and Motul Autech #22 GT500 GT-Rs
  • R35 GT-R GT500 SuperGT Race Cars: #1 Xanavi Nismo, #22 Motul Autech, #3 YMS, #12 Calsonic, #24 Woodone Advan R35 GT500 GT-Rs

Before the race a ceremony was held to officially crown the championship GT-R with it’s prize, the right to wear the #1. The championship of the 2008 SuperGT series, the #23 Xanavi Nismo R35 GT-R was parked on the red carpet and drivers Satoshi Motoyama and Beno�t Tr�luyer were given a warm welcome by the crowd as well as Nissan CEO, Carlos Ghosn.

Mr Ghosn then gave a speech in Japanese to the Nismo Festival attendees and greeted all the other SuperGT drivers as well before departing. I was really surprised to see Carlos at Nismo Festival and think it’s a great thing he came.

The GT-R Special Battle race was then held after a short Z33 race event. The battle itself was great. The R35’s dominated in terms of speed as you’d expect but the Xanavi Nismo #23 R34 GT-R showed real commitment and kept up with them lap after lap falling behind only after half the race was over. Another surprise was that the R33 GT500 car was able to mix it with the R34’s easily keeping pace.

The Group-A R32’s had raw horsepower and the AWD advantage but when it comes to the corners, with no aero really to speak of they lacked the grip to make a difference and quickly fell back while the superior GT500 cars with their slick bodies and giant aero surfaces. The competition between the R32’s was fierce however and many times were braking too late for the 11th corner chicane going straight through it instead.

Overall I think it was amazing they got these cars out of their storage warehouse and got them back on the circuit where they belong for this. Kudos to Nismo for pulling off a very exciting race event here.

Click through the pages below to see the full photo gallery of the race including some of the pre-race ceremony and Carlos Ghosn’s visit…

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Nismo Festival 2008: GT-Rs of Nismo Festival

December 2nd, 2008

Nismo Festival photo galleries ahoy! The first thing I have to say about Nismo Festival is that it’s a huge event staged over an even larger geographical area. My job there was to experience it and photograph it so I could give a report to my readers. I will be writing this but for now I have time to make these photo galleries available right now.

This first one from Sunday’s festival is a wrap up of as many GT-Rs as we could find at the festival that were standing still at the time. There were more I know of but did not capture every single one.

This unfortunately does not include the car park which contained many many more that we didn’t get time to photograph. I saw a amazingly clean Midnight Purple R33 400R GT-R in the car park and kicked myself for not having my camera on me at that time, such is life. If you’re out there 400R owner, send me your photos!

Anything that was moving or on the racetrack makes it into another photo gallery to be posted in the coming few posts.

Click through the pages below to read more, see the rest of the many images in this gallery and get some background on the cars you will see in the posts to come…

Photos: Those watermarked with GTRBlog.com logo are copyright GTRBlog.com
Photos: Those without GTRBlog.com watermark are owned by GTR-World.net and are reproduced here with permission

Hakosuka KPGC10 Skyline GT-Rs

Introduced in 1972 the coupe version of the outstandingly successful PGC10 four door Skyline 2000 GT-R. Together they’d won 1000 racing victories from 1969 until it was discontinued in 1974 to be replaced with the KPGC110.

Nismo Street Cars: Z-Tune and 400R

Some of the toughest street cars to ever make their way out of Nismo’s Omori Factory onto the streets of Japan.

Interesting trivia, the chief engineer of the Nismo 400R was Takeuchi-san. The very same man who took the above Hakosuka GT-R photos.

1995 Nissan R33 Skyline GT-R LM

Built for the 24hrs of LeMans and raced in 1995 and 1996 finishing 15th outright and 10th in class in 1996. This GT-R was eventually retired to be replaced by the Nissan R390. A completely different animal and also found at Nismo Festival. Didn’t see this beast on the track though, would have been good to see how it did against the R390 and GT500 cars.

Photos: GTRBlog and GTR-World.net.

Group-A Nissan Skyline R32 GT-Rs

The very reason the R32 and the legacy of AWD Nissan Skyline GT-R exists at all is these very cars. Nissan wanted to retire the rear wheel drive R31 GTS-R Group A Skylines and had chosen the HCR32 chassis to build on. Per the rules it was required to build and homologate the road going R32 Nissan Skyline GT-R to do it.

These guys were amazing in their day, winning at home and abroad in Group-A competitions such as the Bathurst 1000 in Australia.

These car also joined the GT-R Super Lap battle against racing GT-Rs from more modern eras on Sunday, we’ll have the report on how that did a bit later. Was really awesome to see them racing against the R35 GT500 cars.

1998 Nissan Skyline R33 GT-R GT500 Race Car

This Pennzoil Nismo Nissan Skyline GT-R GT500 car was driven by �rik Comas and Masami Kageyama to victory in the 1998 JGTC Championship. It was retired that year and replaced with the 1999 R34 GT500 car.

Nissan Skyline R34 GT-R GT500 Race Cars

R34 GT-R GT500 had a long career racing in the SuperGT series from 1999 to 2003. The R34 GT-R managed wins in it’s first (1999) and final (2003) series championships and both of these championship winning cars were there on Sunday.

The Pennzoil R34 GT-R GT500 car was driven by �rik Comas in his back to back championship victory in 1999 after winning in 1998 driving an R33 also.

The XANAVI Nismo R34 GT-R GT500 car was driven by, current 2008 SuperGT champion, Satoshi Motoyama in 2003 to victory with Michael Krumm co-driving. Michael now drives the #22 SuperGT car for MOTUL Autech Nismo team.

Official Fuji Speedway Pace Car

Like Sendai Highland Raceway, Fuji Speedway also uses an R35 GT-R as it’s official pace car. This was often seen out on the track over the course of the day.

SuperGT 2008 Nissan R35 GT-R GT500 Cars

In 2008 the Nissan GT-R makes a comeback to SuperGT GT500 class racing again with the R35 GT-R GT500 cars. Making a historic pole to win plus second place victory in the first race for both the Nismo team cars the comeback was truly great for the Japanese motorsport fans. R35 GT500 GT-R’s went on to win the majority of the season’s races despite heavy weight penalties being applied.

Of course the GT-R of the 2008 season champions, the #23 Xanavi Nismo GT-R driven by Satoshi Motoyama was there on Sunday proudly displaying their victory trophies. As well the other 2008 SuperGT GT500 cars were also in attendance.

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Nismo Festival 2008: Saturday Sneak Peak

November 30th, 2008

We’ve been a bit quiet on GTRBlog over the past 48hrs. It’s been a big few days attending the preparation for Nismo Festival. Some connection troubles to the internet from Fuji Speedway’s press room also has caused some delay. Thanks to the help of the guys from GTR-World.net we finally got it sorted.

Nismo Festival is on Today – right now in fact, I’m just taking a quick break from the madness before it really gets started to update you guys from yesterday.

Saturday was, as we said, preparation day and this gave the SuperGT teams time to setup the cars for Fuji Speedway. Nismo were getting in early and had the track for the morning running their #23 and #22 GT500 GT-Rs. I took a stroll around Fuji Speedway to snap a few shots.

Today is the real festival though and we were there at 8am when the gates opened and a torrent of Japanese enthusiasts poured out to snatch up the limited edition Nismo Festival memorabilia.

More on the festival as the day goes on or perhaps tonight when I can reach a stable net connection. When that happens I can get the high-res photos out as well. Until now enjoy photos from Saturday.

Update: Hi-Res version of the photos uploaded now, clicking the thumbnail in this post will now take you to the high resolution version.

Click read more to view the first lot of the photos…

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