Racing

Lexus Racing Report: April 9th Edition

Lexus RC F GT3 Emil Frey

It was the start of two racing seasons this weekend, with two RC F GT3s taking part in the Blancpain GT Series and six Lexus LC teams racing in Round 1 of the Super GT series.

Blancpain Round 1 at Zolder, Belgium

The first round of the 2018 Blancpain GT Series was broken up into two races, and both proved challenging for the two Emil Frey Racing RC F GT3s.

In the first race, the #14 Lexus was caught up in the starting turmoil and was carried into the gravel, where it suffered severe damage and had to retire on lap five. The #114 Lexus finished in 14th place.

For the second race, it was more of the same, with the #14 was forced to retire shortly before the race ended. The sister car #114 in 13th position.

The second race of the Blancpain GT Series and the first race of the Endurance Cup will take place in two weeks (20 – 22 April 2018) in Monza, Italy.

Super GT Round One at Okayama

Lexus Super GT Round 1

The KeePer TOM’S LC 500 team of Ryo Hirakawa & Nick Cassidy finished third in the inaugural race of 2018 Super GT season in Okayama -— here are the video highlights:

Four of the top ten teams were Lexus LCs — The WAKO’S 4CR team of Kazuya Oshima & Felix Rosenqvist finished fourth, followed by the ZENT CERUMO LC team of Yuji Tachikawa & Hiroaki Ishiura in eighth.

The next race will be May 4th at Fuji Speedway.

Comments
3GT Racing has announced a new driver for the 2018 season -- David Heinemeier Hansson. I don't know if any of you are in the tech/computer industry, but DHH is the creator of Ruby on Rails and co-founder of Basecamp/37 Signals. Super nerdy signing, I like it!

Some coverage:

https://www.imsa.com/press-releases/122017/3gt-racing-announces-2018-driver-david-heinemeier-hansson

http://sportscar365.com/imsa/iwsc/3gt-signs-heinemeier-hansson-for-lexus-gtd-effort/
Another good addition to the site. Thanks!
Scott Pruett is my hero. A true legend in the sport. A fierce competitor who does everything to win while being an extraordinary gentleman to everyone who talks to him. I have seen him in countless LFA videos where he explains everything meticulously and with so much poise (considering he had to do it all day long while giving hot laps). Hope his next chapter in life is just as successful as he was in racing (I am sure it would be his vineyard which was his second passion).
Hey all, new member here. As a huge fan of motor sport, cars, and everything in the automotive industry, I had a question. What do you guys think of Lexus entering Formula 1? We had Toyota (one of my favorite teams) give it a shot (and it failed unfortunately), but what about Lexus?
R
  • R
    RAL
  • January 8, 2018
Welcome new member! @F1 Silver Arrows
Thank you @RAL :)
Faisal Sheikh
Scott Pruett is my hero. A true legend in the sport. A fierce competitor who does everything to win while being an extraordinary gentleman to everyone who talks to him.
Absolutely correct -- I've been lucky enough to spend significant time with Scott over the years, and he's absolutely one of a kind. First time I ever rode in an LFA, he was the driver:

F1 Silver Arrows
Hey all, new member here. As a huge fan of motor sport, cars, and everything in the automotive industry, I had a question. What do you guys think of Lexus entering Formula 1? We had Toyota (one of my favorite teams) give it a shot (and it failed unfortunately), but what about Lexus?
Welcome @F1 Silver Arrows!

I don't know about Lexus entering into F1, as I think their focus now is more grassroots and focused on GT3. Anything's possible, of course, but I don't imagine Lexus will be in F1 any time soon. Would love to be wrong on that, though!
krew
Absolutely correct -- I've been lucky enough to spend significant time with Scott over the years, and he's absolutely one of a kind. First time I ever rode in an LFA, he was the driver:

Krew, I can only imagine the grin on your face as you drove in the LFA with Scott! great video!

Scott Pruett is a fine human being. You can tell from his commentary and the various causes he supports. Thanks Scott!
Thanks @krew ! I believe they should. I do realize it is a enterprise worth easily hundreds of millions of dollars. However, I have reasons why they should!

1. Lexus (Toyota too) have executives and engineers who are huge fans of motor sport.
2. Lexus (Toyota too) have enough cash for R&D, and to compete.
3. Participating in F1 allows Lexus to bask in the world's stage, get more known to people who are not entirely familiar with Lexus and spread their F brand. It will also help for the pursuit of their electric/hybrid program (alongside Toyota with their WEC program), as F1 cars currently use trick electric systems for their cars.
4. F1 management currently would like more teams to participate in their sport and expand the sport even further.
5. I really do think Lexus will be able to do better than many teams like Renault, Williams, Force India, and go toe-to-toe with constructors like Mercedes, Red Bull and Ferrari.
6. Whats also weird was that Toyota pulled out of F1 because of "financial reasons/economic times" and "the lack of a single win in 8 seasons" in 2009. However, with the teaser of the "racy" GR concept released by Toyota, there seems to be hope. In the Press Release Toyota stated that they will pursue motor sport for a long time, and wont be swayed by the economy. This is promising.

It is a stretch to say that they'll make a comeback, but I dont think Super GT/GT3 racing is enough for Lexus. I know they can do more.
YES YES YES! More racing = greater development in road cars and increase in brand image. Win-win!! I'm still waiting for them to enter a certain series though. :^)
F1 Silver Arrows
YES YES YES! More racing = greater development in road cars and increase in brand image. Win-win!! I'm still waiting for them to enter a certain series though. :^)
my thoughts exactly! Emil Frey has a great team as well.

let me guess, F1 of course!
PeterF
my thoughts exactly! Emil Frey has a great team as well.

let me guess, F1 of course!
Hahaha! Yes my good sir! ;) You got me good. F1 it is. It is simply a series that leaves me on the edge of my seat. Now that I am thinking about it, what about IndyCar? Toyota is hugely successful in the WEC and in Nascar, they are wiping the whole series with the other constructors (think of Mercedes-Benz in F1 from 2014 onward at the start of the hybrid era). When they released their new 2018 Camry, drivers said it was a harder car to drive, but it DOMINATED everything. Chevy, Ford and Dodge, their wins combined wouldn't even touch Toyota's wins in Nascar.

I think IndyCar is a good idea for Toyota, and F1 would do wonders for Lexus! Ideas, ideas!
F1 Silver Arrows
Hahaha! Yes my good sir! ;) You got me good. F1 it is. It is simply a series that leaves me on the edge of my seat. Now that I am thinking about it, what about IndyCar? Toyota is hugely successful in the WEC and in Nascar, they are wiping the whole series with the other constructors (think of Mercedes-Benz in F1 from 2014 onward at the start of the hybrid era). When they released their new 2018 Camry, drivers said it was a harder car to drive, but it DOMINATED everything. Chevy, Ford and Dodge, their wins combined wouldn't even touch Toyota's wins in Nascar.

I think IndyCar is a good idea for Toyota, and F1 would do wonders for Lexus! Ideas, ideas!

love your enthusiasm!!! (from a rather enthusiastic person)! Let's see it Lexus!
Haha! I am quite the enthusiastic (and a passionate one while I am at it) person! Glad our love for Lexus and racing is helping us all bond together! Our community needs to be stronger than ever! I honestly cannot wait for Toyota/Lexus to bring the competition to the rest of the world. It is time that we show what our brand values are, and not get ridiculed because of people with their blind views. Like that Autobild article a few days ago! I am so sick of journalists shoving their noses up at us. Hopefully we'll do so well that it will straighten their necks (so they can look straight at us resurging...... and swallow their pride).
L
The official Lexus UK Blog features a pre-Sebring interview with British racer Jack Hawksworth, co-driver of the #15 Lexus RC F GT3:

http://blog.lexus.co.uk/lexus-at-sebring-12-hours-jack-hawksworth-interview/
Final results of 12 Hours of Sebring:

View attachment 2781

Thought this was funny:

seems that they are in the middle of the pack. I'd like to see better, but the AMG GT3 and others are tough competitors, but its nice to see Lexus out there and Emil Frey is a great racing team. Being in the race is critical! Lexus is right on track being in this competition. Last year I attended an IMSA race at Watkins Glen, I will be at least another IMSA event this year to support Lexus Racing.
AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! I AM SO HAPPY THEY ARE IN BLANCPAIN!! A GREAT STEP IN SPORTSCAR RACING. WHO IS CUTTING ONIONS HERE? STOP CUTTING THEM. Anyways I am so proud. :')
F1 Silver Arrows
AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! I AM SO HAPPY THEY ARE IN BLANCPAIN!! A GREAT STEP IN SPORTSCAR RACING. WHO IS CUTTING ONIONS HERE? STOP CUTTING THEM. Anyways I am so proud. :')

oops, i think I took a slice of an onion there! mea culpa.

You are correct that the fact that they are in Blancpain is fantastic!
PeterF
oops, i think I took a slice of an onion there! mea culpa.

You are correct that the fact that they are in Blancpain is fantastic!
Awww you! ;) Ya got me there. All good though!

Anyways, boy am I really proud for these guys, they are having much more presence in racing. They are winning lots of races in different series and have won titles under Lexus too. Smart on them, build a strong foundation in racing divisions smaller than F1, they can make an entrance in time for the 2021 regulations, where they have attracted a lot of potential constructors and suppliers like Aston Martin, Porsche, Cosworth and Ilmor. Hope Lexus joins in too.

For those who don't follow F1 and are not aware of what the 2021 regulations are:

https://www.motorsport.com/f1/news/tech-analysis-behind-f12021-engine-row-974447/
https://www.formula1.com/en/latest/headlines/2018/4/formula-1-tables-its-proposals-for-2021.html

This can really open doors for Lexus. Plenty of reasons why it makes sense. For those who haven't seen my very first few posts here, it was regarding Lexus in F1, flip to the first page to see why I said it makes sense.
So in general bad week
I remembered the previous yead Lexus had all 6 cars in the top ten of super GT

M
Top