NISMO NEWS - September 24, 2018
- Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 takes Super Taikyu title
- Injured Ordonez to miss Barcelona - Mardenborough to fill in
- Olivier Bedard wins third Micra Cup title
- Struan Moore crowded British GT Silver Cup champion
- Latest ELMS, Le Mans Cup and Blancpain GT Series Asia news.
NISSAN GT-R NISMO GT3 WINS JAPANESE SUPER TAIKYU TITLE
Twin Ring Motegi, Japan – Nissan has claimed both the race win and the championship title in the latest round of the Pirelli Super Taikyu Series in Japan at Twin Ring Motegi.
Aboard the Endless GT-R (Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3), Tsuyoshi Tajima, Hideki Yamauchi and Tsubasa Mekaru took the victory in the five-hour race – the team’s first Super Taikyu victory of the season.
However, Teruhiko Hamano, Kazuki Hoshino, Kiyoto Fujinami and Sun Zheng clinched the title for the No. 99 Y’s Distraction GTNET GT-R with a third-place finish.
The No. 99 Nissan entry previously won the opening round of the championship at Suzuka and the third round at Fuji Speedway.
Their championship victory was confirmed with one final round of the series remaining at Okayama on November 4.
"I’m delighted to win the championship – three years since I last won in 2014,” said Kazuki Hoshino who also finished on the podium in the most recent Super GT GT300 round.
“It has been a little frustrating at times over the past three years but we’ve made no mistakes this year, and it has been a great team effort to take the title.”
A total of three Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 entries contested the race with the ThreeBond Nissan Technical College GT-R taking pole position for the event.
Nissan has won four of the five Super Taikyu rounds staged so far in 2018 with the Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3.
INJURED ORDONEZ REPLACED BY MARDENBOROUGH FOR BLANCPAIN SERIES FINALE
Spaniard Ordonez suffered a broken shoulder and will miss his home race at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. Nissan Super GT GT500 racer and fellow GT Academy alumni Jann Mardenborough will fill in.
The accident occurred during training exercises in Majorca. After consulting renowned sports injury specialist Dr. Xavier Mir – who has treated MotoGP riders Dani Pedrosa and Marc Marquez – it has been confirmed the Spaniard will not be fit to drive in the Barcelona event.
“I just cannot believe it,” said Ordonez.
“I was going slowly, and suddenly I was in agony on the ground. To miss this race, my home race is such bad luck. I’m not sure what hurts more – missing the race or the pain from my shoulder.
“It will be great to have Jann back with the team, but I wish I were able to share a car with him. Being on the sidelines will be tough, but hopefully, I can help the team off-track in whatever way I can.”
Mardenborough will return to Europe to drive alongside Alex Buncombe and Matt Parry this week. This will be his first Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup race since finishing third at Silverstone in the Pro-Am class in 2015.
“I’m very excited to do another race with Bob Neville and the RJN guys, but I wish it were under better circumstances,” Mardenborough said.
“I feel bad for Lucas. I know he is shattered. It is bad enough to miss out on a race through injury but is even worse when it is in your home country, and you miss out on the chance to race in front of your fans, family, and friends.”
GT Sport Motul Team RJN’s second car will also welcome a new face in Barcelona with young Scottish racer Colin Noble joining Ricardo Sanchez and Struan Moore aboard the No. 22 entry.
OLIVIER BEDARD WINS NISSAN MICRA CUP CHAMPIONSHIP
Circuit Mont-Tremblant, Quebec, Canada – For the third time in the four-year history of Canada's Nissan Micra Cup series, Olivier Bedard has taken the championship title at the year's end.
Bedard claimed the crown in dominant fashion, winning the first race of the Fall Classic weekend at Circuit Mont-Tremblant from pole position to put him in untouchable territory come Sunday's season finale.
The Montreal-born driver finished the season with 472 points and seven overall victories during the season, adding the 2018 title to his previous championship wins in 2015 and 2017.
Following Bedard in the standings was Kevin King (350), Jake Exton (316) and Valérie Limoges (307).
Limoges and King also rounded out the podium when Bédard took victory in the first race of the weekend.
Third place in the championship standings, Briton Jake Exton, won from pole in the final Micra Cup race of the 2018 season ahead of Jesse Lazare and Bédard.
Normand Boyer won the Senior Class champion title, and Fadi Mourad took rookie of the year honors.
The Nissan Micra Cup series will be back in action for another six-weekend season in the spring of 2019.
SILVER CUP CROWN FOR MOORE IN GT3 AND BAD LUCK STRIKES IN GT4
Donington Park, UK – Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 racer Struan Moore has been crowned as the British GT Championship Silver Cup winner after the final round of the championship at Donington Park.
Moore’s RJN Motorsport team had its sights set on a championship double with Kelvin Fletcher and Martin Plowman in contention for the GT4 Pro-Am Championship but bad luck struck the duo aboard their Nissan 370z GT4.
Fletcher and Plowman’s championship looked secure when their rivals went off on the first lap, but the Nissan suffered an oil leak after hitting debris on a dramatic opening lap. A long visit to the pits for repairs sadly forced the Ultratek Racing entry out of contention.
Teamed with Chris Buncombe - brother of Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 regular Alex Buncombe – Moore had looked set to claim a top-five finish before a late-race penalty.
The Brit was one of three cars to earn a late-race track limits penalty, pushing the No. 24 GT-R down to ninth, erasing Moore and Buncombe’s hard work to move through the field after a competitor spun their Nissan machine.
Nissan power was also in action at the latest round of the European Le Mans Series at Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium. In a rain-shortened event, United Autosports took the LMP3 victory aboard their Nissan-powered Ligier with American John Falb and Australian Scott Andrews at the wheel.
In the Michelin Le Mans Cup, Colin Noble took the win with Alasdair McCaig with Nissan-power in LMP3 – a perfect way lead into his debut for GT Sport Motul Team RJN this week in Barcelona in the Blancpain GT Sport Endurance Cup.
The penultimate round of the Blancpain GT Series Asia also took place in Shanghai with the KCMG Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 squad scoring a pair of top ten results in the second race on Sunday with Edoardo Liberati and Florian Strauss finishing sixth and Alex Imperatori and Yukinori Taniguchi crossing the line in ninth.
HIGH RES DOWNLOADS
Download high res images from last weekends Super Taikyu, Micra Cup and European Le Mans Series events plus preview images for this weekend's Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup.
Sebastien Buemi was announced as one of the Nissan drivers for our ABB FIA Formula E debut in season five. He will join Alex Albon as the team's drivers.
- Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup, Barcelona, Spain
- Supercars Bathurst 1000, Mount Panorama, Bathurst, NSW, Australia