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Nojiri puts Honda on top in final Super Formula test

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Nojiri puts Honda on top in final Super Formula test
By:
Mar 29, 2018, 8:18 AM

Tomoki Nojiri topped the final day of Super Formula pre-season testing at Fuji Speedway on Thursday, giving Honda the upper hand over Toyota.

Most of the day’s quickest laps were set in the final 15 minutes of the morning session, with times falling by over half a second in the afternoon.

Nick Cassidy was the first driver to go on top, dispatching longtime leader and former Blancpain Endurance champion Katsumasa Chiyo with a time of 1m21.940s.

Hiroaki Ishiura improved on Cassidy’s time by three tenths to move atop the leaderboard, only for Nojiri to spoil the party with a 1m21.621s lap.

Nojiri’s time was only 0.009s quicker than the defending Super Formula champion, but two tenths clear of what Yuhi Sekiguchi managed on the first day of Fuji test yesterday.

The Dandelion driver's day came to a premature end when he spun in the dying minutes of the afternoon session, but his earlier benchmark was enough to keep him on top of the timesheets.

Ishiura, who set the fastest time in the afternoon, finished second courtesy of his morning lap, while Cassidy’s time was also good enough to retain third.

Chiyo finished fourth in what was a strong outing for the new-for-2017 B-Max team, while the top five was completed by multiple ELMS race winner Ryo Hirakawa.

The two Nakajima Racing drivers occupied sixth and seventh positions on the leaderboard, with former F1 driver Narain Karthikeyan beating teammate Takuya Izawa by two tenths of a second.

Meanwhile, Pietro Fittipaldi enjoyed his best Super Formula test outing so far, finishing as the top Team LeMans driver in eighth.

Mugen’s Naoki Yamamoto ended ninth, while the top 10 was completed by 2016 Super Formula champion Yuji Kunimoto, who was among the few drivers who made an improvement in the afternoon session.

 

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