It’s hard to find the words to explain what an amazing experience it was racing in front of 55,000 people at Fuji during the last Super GT race. Such a fantastic atmosphere to race in! The support and passion of our fans is just incredible, and something I’m proud to be part of. We hit some bad luck during the race, but once again we showed our strong overall pace and made good, positive progress too. Moving to Super GT has been a big transition for me, especially from the US based formula cars I was driving last year, but I’m feeling much more comfortable with the car, and fully cemented in the series now, so roll on round three in Autopolis!
Fuji was definitely a spectacular event for me, and it was even more special having my family over from Australia. It was great having them cheering me on at the track, and being able to show them around Tokyo too. I don’t think I’ll be adding ‘tour-guide’ to my resume/CV any time soon though, as it’s absolutely exhausting!
We did find a really cool, enjoyable way to explore the city before they left though, finishing off our race week perfectly by doing a Mario Kart city tour! First, we dressed up in outfits to represent characters from the Mario Kart computer game, then took to the streets in a go-kart for a tour around the iconic Tokyo sights! It was so much fun, a super quirky way of seeing this amazing city. Though I must admit the sight of my Dad dressed as a giant Pinkachu is an image I could have lived without!
All in all, it was a fantastic way to end a challenging, but inspiring race week with the people I owe so much of my career to. An athlete is nothing without their family and the team around them, and I am so grateful to mine for all their support and more.
As part of team Taisan SARD, over the weekend my teammate Shinnosuke Yamada and I took part in the 2017 Kamiyamada Historica GP. This historical Japanese road rally and hill-climb takes place around three hours out of Tokyo, in the world-famous skiing regions near Nagano. The scenery is stunning to drive through, if a little scary at times with sheer cliffs at the edge of the road!
The team took five of its road cars to the event, which we drove along the rally course, through many different suburbs. It was great fun with people standing on the side of the roads watching us go by and taking pictures. We also did a hill-climb practice, which was a fascinating and unique experience for me. I had no idea what to expect beforehand, but it was a very cool, friendly event to be involved in, and a big honor too, having only been in the country for a brief time.
I’m thoroughly enjoying living here in Japan and rising to the new challenges Super GT is presenting me with. I am growing and developing as a driver each time I get in the car, and feel very positive about the rest of the season ahead. We’re back in action this coming weekend at Autopolis, and I can’t wait to get back out on the track. I hope you’ll come and join us, but be sure to follow us online for all the latest updates if you can’t be there.
Here’s to driving the future!
P.S. Make sure you’re first in the queue at our Autopolis autograph sessions to claim your limited-edition hero cards and fun giveaways!