Fuji Super Formula: Nojiri grabs pole for second race

Defending Super Formula champion Tomoki Nojiri secured pole position for Sunday's second round of the season at Fuji Speedway.

Fuji Super Formula: Nojiri grabs pole for second race
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Nojiri, who finished second behind Ryo Hirakawa in Saturday's opening race, left it until the very end of the session to post the fastest time of the seven-minute Q2 pole shootout of 1m21.522s.

That was enough to beat TOM'S man Ritomo Miyata by 0.195s and secure the eighth pole of his Super Formula career.

Saturday poleman Ukyo Sasahara briefly went fastest with a 1m21.731s, which stood as the time to beat until it was eclipsed by both Miyata and Mugen teammate Nojiri, leaving him third on the grid.

Sasahara is joined on the second row by Team Goh rookie Ren Sato, who lined up alongside Sasahara on Saturday.

Kondo Racing pair Kenta Yamashita and Q1 pacesetter Sacha Fenestraz were fifth- and seventh-fastest, split by Kamui Kobayashi (KCMG), who qualified 14 places better than he managed on Saturday to go sixth.

Early points leader Hirakawa could only manage eighth-fastest in his Impul machine ahead of rookie Atsushi Miyake (Goh), who set two times good enough to top his Q1 group but lost the quicker of these owing to a track limits violation.

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Giuliano Alesi completed the top 10 in the second of the TOM'S machines.

Yuhi Sekiguchi (Impul), fourth on Saturday, was the biggest surprise Q1 dropout and will start Sunday's race from way down in 16th, one place ahead of three-time champion Naoki Yamamoto (Nakajima Racing).

Nobuharu Matsushita (B-Max) had his fastest lap deleted in Q1 for track limits and will start from 21st and last.

Sunday's race begins at 2.30pm local time (GMT +9).

Fuji Super Formula - Q2 results:

Cla # Driver Team Time Gap
1 1 Japan Tomoki Nojiri Team Mugen 1'21.522  
2 37 Japan Ritomo Miyata Kuo VANTELIN TEAM TOM’S 1'21.717 0.195
3 15 Japan Ukyo Sasahara Team Mugen 1'21.731 0.209
4 53 Ren Sato Team Goh 1'21.754 0.232
5 3 Japan Kenta Yamashita Kondo Racing 1'21.763 0.241
6 7 Japan Kamui Kobayashi KCMG 1'21.842 0.320
7 4 France Sacha Fenestraz Kondo Racing 1'21.857 0.335
8 20 Japan Ryo Hirakawa Team Impul 1'21.882 0.360
9 55 Atsushi Miyake Team Goh 1'21.934 0.412
10 36 France Giuliano Alesi Kuo VANTELIN TEAM TOM’S 1'21.948 0.426
11 38 Japan Sho Tsuboi P.MU/CERUMO・INGING 1'22.178 0.656
12 6 Japan Hiroki Otsu Japan Dandelion Racing 1'22.249 0.727

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