27 / 5 / 2019

LEXUS LC 500 SWEEPS PODIUM FOR COMPLETE VICTORY AT SUPER GT ROUND 3

GT500 class

  • au TOM'S LC500 No. 36 with driver Kazuki NAKAJIMA / Yuhi SEKIGUCHI achieved victory for the first time this season at the 2019 AUTOBACS SUPER GT series at Suzuka Circuit.
  • LEXUS LC500 swept the podium for the first time this season, with KeePer TOM'S No. 37 co-piloted by drivers Ryo HIRAKAWA / Nick CASSIDY in second place, followed by WAKO'S 4CR LC500 No. 6 with drivers Kazuya OSHIMA / Kenta YAMASHITA in third place.

GT300 class

  • K-tunes RC F GT3 No. 96 co-piloted by Morio NITTA / Sena SAKAGUCHI won their second victory this season.

Driver comments: 

Kazuki NAKAJIMA (au TOM'S LC500 No. 36)

The car condition was good, so I tried to make some gap in the beginning. The other LC500 cars behind were faster than I expected, but we were able to race as planned. It was unlucky about the safety car, but the pit stop timing was perfect, and there was no time loss at the pit. After changing to Yuhi, there were some brethtaking scenes, but I knew that he wouldn't let anyone to overtake, and he came back in slamming first place. It really was a perfect race.

Yuhi SEKIGUCHI (au TOM'S LC500 No. 36)

The gap that driver Nakajima built disappeared due to the safety car, but the team made a good decision for the pit stop timing, and I was able to do my best in the out lap. To be honest, the pace was not good in the beginning, and we got stuck in the GT300 class cars that were laps behind, so I didn't push here to take care of the tires, and let the cars behind to use their tires. I was able to decide this from my experience at Thailand last year, that if I pushed hard in the back, I wouldn't be able to overtake later. Afterwards there was a timing that the the cars behind me were stuck in the GT300 class cars, so I pushed hard to increase the gap. As there was distance between the competitors, I knew I wouldn't be overtaken, and everything went well as I expected. Personally I am satisfied to achieve this excellent result with the outcome of my previous experience.

Ryo HIRAKAWA (KeePer TOM'S LC500 No. 37)

We did what we could do, so there is no regret. We wanted to win, but in reality our pace was not as good as No. 36 and No. 6. We lost our position at the pit stop, and raced with No. 6, so we thought we will be in third place, but Nick did a good job and got the chance to overtake. We couldn't get much points in the previous two races, so we were able to recover and get into the gear. The next circuit is Thailand, where our team has good match, but we have weight-handicap, so we will try hard to get the points and will also aim for huge points at the FUJI GT 500mile RACE.

Nick CASSIDY (KeePer TOM'S LC500 No. 37)

We did a great job. Thank you very much to the team and LEXUS, I'm glad I was able to contribute to LEXUS 1-2-3, and TOM'S Racing 1-2. I think that my passing of the final stage was a good move. We will keep pushing and we will try our best for the next round. The next race is at Thailand, which is the track I like and have confidence, so I will do my best.

Kazuya OSHIMA (WAKO'S 4CR LC500 No. 6)

The team did a good job at the pit stop. We had the chance to win several times, so we regret that we couldn't achieve this. Our aim is to win, so we are not satisfied with today's result, but it is the first podium this season, and our fans and team are happy, so that is good. We had speed, but there was something that was not enough, so we will keep to roll up our sleeves. The track of the next race at Thailand is my favorite, and we have the chance with less weight-handicap, so we will push hard to get the points.

Kenta YAMASHITA (WAKO'S 4CR LC500 No. 6)

We had the chance to win, so even if we got third place, we are not satisfied. It is too bad that we lost from the same car, and not the other manufactures. I am looking forward to racing in the next Thailand race, as I heard that the team is good match with the track, but I expect our rivals have less weight-handicap and will be very fast. Personally, I got third place last year at Thailand, so it shouldn't be bad, and I have the strong aim to win at least once this season.

This season, Lexus is represented by 6 teams running LC 500 in the GT500 Class of the Super GT championship, and 3 teams running RC F GT3 in the GT300 Class.

For more information please visit: https://supergt.net/news/single/19158

 

Drivers Standings (GT500)

Po

No

Driver

Total

1

38

Yuji Tachikawa / Hiroaki Ishiura

26.5

2

23

Tsugio Matsuda / Ronnie Quintarelli

24.5

3

36

Kazuki Nakajima / Yuhi Sekiguchi

22

5

37

Ryo Hirakawa / Nick Cassidy

19

6

6

Kazuya Oshima / Kenta Yamashita

14

7

39

Heikki Kovalainen/ Yuichi Nakayama

14

11

19

Yuji Kunimoto / Sho Tsuboi

6.5

Team Standings (GT500)

Po

No

Team

Total

1

38

LEXUS TEAM ZENT CERUMO

35.5

2

23

NISMO

28.5

3

8

ARTA

28

4

37

LEXUS TEAM KeePer TOM'S

28

5

36

LEXUS TEAM au TOM'S

27

6

39

LEXUS TEAM SARD

23

7

6

LEXUS TEAM LEMANS WAKO'S

22

10

19

LEXUS TEAM WedsSport BANDOH

13.5