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NISMO NEWS - MARCH 27, 2017


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#1 LESmo

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Posted 28 March 2017 - 09:23 AM

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NISMO NEWS - MARCH 27, 2017

  • Countdown to Super GT kick off
  • Strong Supercars runs at Australian Grand Prix
  • Rick Kelly and the Renault-Nissan alliance

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SUPER GT ACES PREPARE FOR 2017 CHAMPIONSHIP

 

FUJI INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY, Japan: Nissan’s assault on the 2017 Super GT Series in Japan will kick off in two weeks when the championship stages its first round at Okayama on April 9.
 
The championship conducted a pre-season test at Fuji International Speedway last weekend with all four Nissan GT-R GT500 machines taking part.
 
Unfortunately, the second day of testing at Fuji was forced to be cancelled due to snow and fog.
 
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Nissan’s four-car line-up for 2017 features Tsugio Matsuda / Ronnie Quintarelli (MOTUL AUTECH GT-R); Hironobu Yasuda / Jann Mardenborough (Calsonic IMPUL GT-R); Daiki Sasaki / João Paulo de Oliveira (Forum Engineering ADVAN GT-R) and Satoshi Motoyama / Katsumasa Chiyo (S Road CRAFTSPORTS GT-R).
 
Teams enter 2017 with new spec cars in GT500 which feature reduced downforce compared to last year.
 
GT500 newcomer and former Nissan GT Academy winner Jann Mardenborough has been enjoying the step up to GT500 after recording race-winning performances in GT300 for Nissan in 2016.
 
“We’ve been busy testing the GT500 car in the lead-up to the new season,” Mardenborough said.
 
“Compared to the GT300 we have a lot more power and downforce and certainly for a GT car with a roof this is the most amount of grip I’ve had except for single seaters.
 
“The car behaves like a big single seater and the power is crazy.
 
“Physically your body takes a bit more of a beating but what surprised me was how cool it is inside the car. I expected it to be super-hot but we do have air conditioning.
 
“However, we haven’t really needed to use it yet because it is already quite cool in there. It will get pretty hot and humid in the summer in Japan so staying cool will be a big focus.
 
“We’ve just had the final test at Fuji and the next time I’ll be in the car will be for round one at Okayama.
 
“I’m really enjoying the car to drive, the power is great and I’m looking forward to fighting it out in Super GT in the top class in 2017.”
 
 
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IMPRESSIVE WEEKEND FOR NISSAN AT AUSTRALIAN F1 GRAND PRIX

 

MELBOURNE, Victoria, Australia: The Nissan Motorsport squad enjoyed a strong weekend at the Australian Grand Prix as the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship headlined the support program for the opening race of the F1 season.

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Michael Caruso scored four top ten finishes over the four races at Albert Park including a third place in the second race on Friday.

Todd Kelly was also strong, finishing fourth in Sunday's final race with Nissan putting two cars in the top five with Michael Caruso chasing his team boss to the checkered flag.

Simona de Silvestro continued her Supercars education by recording her best finish to date of 13th in the first race of the weekend while Rick Kelly unfortunately had a weekend to forget with two punctures hindering his results.

The Nissan Motorsport pit also had a special guest during the weekend with de Silvestro giving FIA President, Jean Todt a tour of the Supercars garage.

The next step for the Supercars squad will be a trip across the water to Tasmania for the second round of the championship at Symmons Plains on April 8-9.

“It’s really pleasing to finish fourth overall for the weekend," Caruso said.

"To only miss the podium by one point shows us that we’re in the right place. We’re challenging for trophies and that’s where we need to continue that work ethic."

“I’m very confident in the technical crew’s ability to get the car to work in Tassie. The team are keen to not just make up the numbers, but to represent Nissan really strongly.”

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RICK KELLY CHECKS OUT THE RENAULT-NISSAN ALLIANCE IN MELBOURNE

 

MELBOURNE, Victoria, Australia: Nissan Supercars ace Rick Kelly took the opportunity to follow "family ties" when he explored the Renault Sport F1 garage moments before the start of Sunday's Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix.

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Both Renault and Nissan are of course part of the Renault-Nissan alliance but Kelly's Supercar also shares a link with lubrications partner Castrol who has entered into a new partnership with the Enstone-based F1 squad.

“I’ve been around Supercars for so many years now that it's refreshing to have a look at the pinnacle of world motorsport," said Kelly.

"Even to just be on the grid and see how many contraptions there are attached, like big coolers with dry ice, and smoke everywhere, they’re definitely a unique beast.

"To stand next to one is a real eye-opener. The roll cab that Castrol uses to analyse the fuel and lubricants in the car is a completely different level."

"That sort of technology eventually makes its way to Supercars, so it’s great to see how much higher we can aspire to in every aspect of our race team."  

 

HIGH RES DOWNLOADS

 

High res imagery from the Australian Supercars battle at the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix at Albert Park.

 

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CALENDAR

 

April 1-2
FIA WEC Prologue, Monza, Italy.

April 8-9
Super GT, Okayama, Japan
IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, Long Beach, California, USA
Virgin Australia Supercars Championship, Symmons Plains, Tasmania, Austrlia

April 15-16
FIA World Endurance Championship, Silverstone, England  

 

VIDEO

 

NISMO TV takes a look at the new-for-2017 Super GT GT500 machines.

 

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