September 30, 2018 Rd. 9 Sportsland Sugo

Tsuboi sweeps 4 races at Sugo, Miyata 2nd and Sasahara 3rd again

Sho Tsuboi(Collora Chukyo Kuo TOM'S F317)

Start of Japanese F3 Round.9

Japanese Formula 3 Championship Rd 9 race finally took place as Race 4 of this Sugo race weekend on Sunday September 30 after two cancellations at Okayama in July and September with a grid determined by the finishing order of Rd 16.

Sho Tsuboi in Corolla Chukyo Kuo TOM’S F317 had taken pole position with his victory in Rd 16 with Ritomo Miyata (in in Corolla Chukyo Kuo TOM’S F317) in second and Ukyo Sasahara (THREEBOND) in third, the same lineup as in Rd 17.

Toshiki Oyu (TODA FIGHTEX) was supposed to start from fourth but due to significant damage from the crash in Rd 17 he was unable to line up.
A Jake Parsons’ challenge for consecutive race finishing streak ended when an engine issue forced him to return to the pits from the grid and retire.

■Tsuboi gets away strongly off the line

Ritomo Miyata(Collora Chukyo Kuo TOM'S F317)

Tsuboi got away strongly off the line in the race that was started earlier at 3:05 pm due to poor visibility with misty rain, followed by Miyata and Sasahara keeping the grid order.

Having gone side-by-side with Sena Sakaguchi (TODA FIGHTEX) through the first turns Yoshiaki Katayama (YTB F318) got ahead into the S-shaped curve for fourth.

With Tsuboi pulling out a six-second lead over Miyata as soon as on lap five the gap between Miyata and Sasahara in third remained at a second in the early stages.

A battle for fourth spot initially saw Katayama, Sakaguchi and Yu Kanamaru (B-MAX RACING F3) running nose-to-tail with Kazuto Kotaka (Planex SmaCame F3), Shunsuke Kohno (HubAuto F318) and Kiyoto Fujinami (B-MAX RACING F3) spatting a little further back, and then Sakaguchi move up to fourth after Katayama ran off at the hairpin on lap five, turning the other trio into a contention for the final point.

Ukyo Sasahara(THREEBOND)

■Tsuboi unchallenged with wet conditions throughout

While the slippery conditions that saw Motoyoshi Yoshida (B-MAX ENGINEERING F3) crash at the final corner on lap 10 continued throughout the race Tsuboi was never unchallenged to lead Miyata home, wrapping up the Sugo event with almost perfect results as he set the fastest lap with 1m27.750 and notching up his 10th straight and 15th win of the season.

The podium had the same top three as in Rd 15 and 16 as Sasahara finished third.

Sakaguchi settled for fourth ahead of Kanamaru. Having defended the spot firmly Kotaka scored his first Japanese F3 point in sixth.