After a long off season of preparation, that also included moving continents twice, rising star Jake Parsons is more than ready to get racing again as the prestigious Super GT championship returns to action this weekend at Okayama.
The young Australian, who won the 2014 AsiaCup championship, joins teammate Shinnosuke Yamada at team Taisan SARD for the new season, driving the #26 Audi R8 V10. Speaking about his move to Japan’s premier racing series, Parsons said, “I am super-excited to be joining Super GT, especially with such a successful team. This is somewhere I have wanted to race for a long time, as it’s such a professional, fast paced, and competitive series.”
Following two successful test sessions at Okayama and Fuji, the 22-year-old, who raced in the 2016 US Pro Mazda series, is eagerly looking forward to getting back into race mode now. “It’s been cool adapting to the subtle differences from the formula cars I drove last year and building up our performance, but I can’t wait to experience a full race weekend now. It’s going to be a huge event as the Super GT fans are amazing, extremely dedicated, passionate and knowledgeable. It’s such an honour to be part of, so I will be fully focused on the track and putting on a great show for them!”
Having won last year’s 500-class championship with former F1 driver, Heikki Kovalainen and Kohei Hirate, team SARD are now keen to clinch the 300-class in collaboration with Taisan. Team boss of Taisan SARD, Ricky Chiba explained, “It is my dream to work together with a young driver who has the desire to be a champion. We welcome Jake to the family to make our dream come true.”
The opening round of the Super GT series takes place on 8-9 April at the Okayama International Circuit, a 13-turn, 3.703km (2.300mi) track in Mimasaka, western Japan.