Monday, June 25, 2007

Super GT Round 4 in Sepang International Circuit (22nd - 24th June '07)

Allright!!!! The Super GT is here! The event has been in Malaysia since the year 2000 and I've not missed a single race of the Malaysian round of the championship.

That makes it 7 years in a row I was involved in the Super GT (also previously known as the Japan Grand Touring Championship (JGTC) and Japan GT).

What's so great about the Super GT?

Super GT is directly related to the manufacturers of commercially produced cars and the automobile tuning parts market. Japan is currently at the forefront of the tuning parts market, which spans the Asian region and the West Coast of the United States. The Malaysian round of the Super GT saw 37 vehicles coming to Malaysia (16 vehicles in GT500 class and 21 vehicles in GT300 class)

There are two categories in the Super GT; GT500 (approximately 500hp) and GT300 (approximately 300hp). Complying with the technical regulation of the Japan Automobile Federation (JAF), the cars are greatly modified from the originals. To keep the battle close through every lap of every race, technical regulations were established to maintain equilibrium among each car’s capability. With minimum weight and air restrictors that the cars must be fitted with, performance is strictly controlled to keep the field closer together.

Well of course the other attractions of Super GT are the Race Queens. Those kawaii girls are flown in along with the teams all the way from Japan. Representing the team, some of them are even more popular than the race drivers themselves!

WOODONE ADVAN Clarion Z (Ara/Lima De Oliveira) Scores First Victory
Coming up from 14th place on the starting grid to grab the win in the GT500 class was the pair of Joao Paulo Lima De Oliveira and Seiji Ara driving the WOODONE ADVAN Clarion Z. The race started in typical Malaysian tropical heat with an air temperature of 34 Degrees Celcius. As the top qualifying machines suffered mechanical trouble and tire problems, De Olivera drove magnificently to take the lead. After his teammate Seiji Ara took the wheel he continued to run safely in the lead and on to the Kondo Racing team's first Super GT victory in its second year of competition.

In the GT300 class the class pole starters apr MR-S (Kazuya Oshima / Hiroaki Ishiura) won their second round of the season. There were an estimated spectators of 34,15 in Sepang International Circuit on race day.

[Winner Comments]
No. 24 WOODONE ADVAN Clarion Z [GT500]Seiji Ara: "I have won once at the Le Mans 24 Hours, but this victory today with Nissan, Yokohama Tires and Kondo Racing all working together has made me equally excited and happy. It is not easy to win in this fierce heat. The fact that we were able to score the second consecutive victory for a Z machine this season under such conditions is proof of just how strong the Z is. The tires were great too.

Just before the goal both team manager Masahiko Kondo and I were shouting on the intercom at the same time: "We did it!" There was no response after that (laughs). De Olivera: "Yesterday I was hoping that we could have a good race today. Today the tires were so good, and I think it made a big difference that I was able to push hard before our pit stop and open up a lead. In the second half I was just watching but I was still so tense. Ara did a good job. Still, I can't believe that we really won (laughs)."

No. 101 apr MR-S [GT300]Kazuya Oshima: "Because we chose to use softer tires, we had a tough time in the middle stages and got passed by Garaiya and Vemac. So we decided to make an early pit stop. The pit work went very well and we were able to get the lead again. That made Ishiura-san have to run more than usual, but he ran very well." Hiroaki Ishiura: "I didn't know that we had passed the leaders with our pit stop, so I was pushing hard for a while. After that I found out that we were able to run faster than the cars behind us, so I began to focus on being easier on the machine. The tires I was using have a wide temperature range and that turned out to be very helpful today."

GT 500

1. WOODONE ADVAN Clarion Z (J.P.L.De Oliveira/Seiji Ara)
2. RAYBRIG NSX (Dominik Schwager/Shinya Hosokawa)
3. CALSONIC IMPUL Z (Benoit Treluyer/Kazuki Hoshino)
4. ZENT CERUMO SC430 (Yuji Tachikawa/Toranosuke Takagi)
5. ECLIPSE ADVAN SC430 (Takeshi Tsuchiya/Manabu Orido)
6. ARTA NSX (Daisuke Ito/Ralph Firman)
7. YellowHat YMS MobaHO! TOMICA Z (Sebastien Philippe/Masataka Yanagida)
8. houzan TOM'S SC430 (Juichi Wakisaka/Andre Lotterer)
9. Forum Engineering SC430 (Tatsuya Kataoka/Bjorn Wirdheim)
10. MOTUL AUTECH Z (Michael Krumm/Tsugio Matsuda)

1. apr MR-S (Kazuya Oshima/Hiroaki Ishiura)
2. EBBRO 350R (Tetsuya Tanaka/Shinsuke Yamazaki)
3. houzan DUNLOP Z (Kota Sasaki/Naoki Yokomizo)
4. houzan DUNLOP Z (Shigekazu Wakisaka/Shogo Mitsuyama)
5. CUSCO DUNLOP SUBARU IMPREZA (Tetsuya Yamano/Takayuki Aoki)
6. ENDLESS ADVAN SENZAIKAKUMEI Z (Masami Kageyama/Tomonobu Fujii)
7. MARUHON MURCIE RG-1 (Yasutaka Hinoi/Atsushi Yogo)
8. RE AMEMIYA RX-7 (Hiroyuki Iiri/Ryo Orime)
9. WedsSport Celica (Akira Iida/Yuhi Sekiguchi)
10. HANKOOK NSC PORSCHE (Mitsuhiro Kinoshita/Yuya Sakamoto)

I took more than 7,000 pictures on my three days there.

For the full set of pics click HERE.

Below are some of the pics ......

Pic 1: I met Motoharu "Gan-san" Kurosawa!!

Pic 2: My Japan GT 2006 pics appeared in the souvenir programme for this years' Super GT 2007

The cars.......

Pic 3: Calsonic Impul Z

Pic 4: Performance Friction Brakes on the Calsonic Impul Z

Pic 5: Row of Lamborghini Murciélago & Gallardo

Pic 6: I.M. Jihan Co. Ltd•APPLE•Shiden

Pic 7: 2nd corner

Pic 8: Cusco Dunlop Subaru Impreza


Pic 10: RE Amemiya RX-7

Pic 11: Woodone Advan Clarion Z

Pic 12: Raybrig NSX

Pic 13: Takata Dome NSX

Pic 14: Denso Sard SC430

Pic 15: Overtaking on the second corner

Pic 16: Zent Cerumo SC430

Ok ok. I know you all wanna see the pics of the Race Queens. So here it is......
Pic 17: Mai Akiyama of Yunker-Power Taisan Porsche

Pic 18: L-R: SatokoMizuki, Mai Akiyama, Mika Yokobe & Kaname Hatsume

Pic 19: Mari Sano of triple a Gallardo RG-3

Pic 20: Wada Satsuki & Aksuko Oakmoto Forum Engineering Sc430

Pic 21: Kaori Minami of Real NSX

Pic 22: Rina Yamamoto of Houzan TOM'S SC430

Pic 23: Michi Sakamoto of Motul Autech Z

Pic 24: Atsuko Murakawa & Shibata Natsuki of Woodone Clarion Advan Z

Pic 25: Morishita Mayumi of I.M. Jihan Co. Ltd•APPLE•Shiden

Pic 26: The Endless Advan Senzaikakumei Z girls

Pic 27: Mai Masaki of apr MR-S

Pic 28: Rina Ito of Advan Uematsu 320R

Pic 29: Maki Taniguchi, Seiko Jozuka, Haruma Amatsubo & Hitomi Misaki of Rakutem Bomex 320R

Pic 30: Maki Taniguchi

Pic 31: Aki Oguchi & Momoyo Aihara, 2007 GT Babes

Pic 32: Momoyo Aihara

Pic 33: Aki Oguchi

Pic 34: Keiko Inagaki of Xanavi NISMO Z

Pic 35: Midori Yamasaki of Zent Cerumo Sc430

Pic 36: Miho Myasaka of apr MR-S

Pic 37: Miyuki Oode of Kumho Project Mu Mach-Go 320R

Pic 38: Kasei Mayuko of Houzan TOM'S Sc430

Pic 39: Miho Hanai of Willcom Advan Vemac 320R

Pic 40: Who is this? Secret........

Ok. I think I have hogged enough space on the blog. For the full set of pics click HERE.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

ER34 in "Evolusi KL Drift" movie

Hehehehe.....guess what? The ER34 has become a star of some sort. It's used as a background car and also one of the vehicles that will be running away from the cops.

The movie, entitled Evolusi KL Drift is a local production directed by the acclaimed director Yusoff Haslam's son, Shamsul Yusoff.

Amongst the artists in the show are Fasha Sandha, Farid Kamal and the director himself, Syamsul Yusof.

The filming where the ER34 is involved is at the Bukit Tunku flyover bridge in Kuala Lumpur. This giganto of a bridge (5 lanes on each side!) is the setting for a couple of scenes which includes gathering of drifters, illegal drifting, fight scenes and where the cops come after the drifters.

I was there for 2 tiring days. The 1st day, from 8:00pm till 6:00am and the second day from 8:00pm will 5:00am. Damn and I had to get up to work the very next day. Sufferingly tired but what the heck, it's a hell of an experience. :)

Check out the below compilcation video I took during the movie shoot.

Here are some pictures of the movie set.

Pic 1: The movie set

Pic 2: ER34 at the movie set

Pic 3: The villians' cars

Pic 4: In one of the scene

Pic 5: The star of the show, Fasha Sandha

Pic 6: S13 arriving......

Pic 7: S13 of the lead actor

Pic 8: Villians' cars

Pic 9: The movie set

Pic 10: Fasha Sandha

Pic 11: Fasha Sandha and the S13

Pic 12: ER34 looking over the movie set

Pic 13: The villains of the movie

Pic 14: The regular DILYSI fellows (Corrupt & Sakakida)

Pic 15: Baddies ECR33

Pic 16: Baddies FD3S

Pic 17: The villians' car from the rear
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