K-Tunes Lexus team reunites SUPER GT title-winning duo

K-Tunes Racing has signed SUPER GT veteran Shinichi Takagi for the 2022 SUPER GT season, reforming one of the GT300 class’s most famous pairings.

K-Tunes Lexus team reunites SUPER GT title-winning duo
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Takagi, 51, will partner incumbent Morio Nitta, with whom he won the GT300 title in what was then known as the All-Japan GT Championship (JGTC) all the way back in 2002, in K-Tunes’ solo Lexus RC F GT3.

Long-time ARTA driver Takagi replaces Sena Sakaguchi, who has stepped up to the GT500 class with the Racing Project Bandoh Toyota team.

Two-time JGTC champion Masahiko Kageyama stays on board as team manager, while Dunlop remains the team’s tyre supplier.

Takagi and Nitta first raced together in 1999 for A’PEX Racing (now apr), with Nitta claiming that year’s title alone, and continued together until the end of the 2010 season following their 2002 triumph.

Nitta, who turns 55 this month, joined K-Tunes in 2018 and finished as GT300 runner-up in 2019 sharing driving duties with Sakaguchi.

The Okayama Toyopet-run team however has struggled for form since switching from Bridgestone to Dunlop tyres in 2020, and last season Nitta could only manage 12th in the standings with a sole podium at Autopolis.


That race was Sakaguchi’s first outing of the season for K-Tunes as he had been replacing the absent Sacha Fenestraz in the TOM’S Toyota GT500 line-up. Fellow Toyota juniors Hibiki Taira and Kazuto Kotaka took turns partnering Nitta for the first five races of the season.

Takagi was conspicuously absent from Honda’s GT300 line-up announcement earlier this month, with Hideki Mutoh taking his place aboard the ARTA NSX GT3.

As well as driving for K-Tunes in SUPER GT, Takagi will act as team manager for the B-Max Racing Super Formula Lights team this year.

In that role, he will oversee Honda youngster Iori Kimura, who will incidentally partner Mutoh in the ARTA GT300 entry this season.


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