Honda should purpose for title in first yr with Civic, says Nojiri

Earlier this yr, Honda introduced it retire the NSX-GT in favour of a radical new GT500 mannequin based mostly on the Civic Sort R highway automotive, which made its first on-track look at Okayama in July (pictured high).

The automotive made an additional outing at Motegi in September, and was then pushed by Nojiri in an illustration run throughout final weekend’s season finale on the identical monitor.

Talking to, Nojiri stated that Nissan’s instantaneous success with the Z final yr means the strain is on Honda to do related in 2024 when the Civic arrives.

Requested if he felt the Civic would permit Honda to combat for the title subsequent yr, Nojiri replied: “For the time being I wouldn’t say I’ve this sense.

“We’re simply working to try to absolutely perceive the character of the automotive, and as soon as we do this it will likely be a case of refining the set-up to try to enhance its potential.

“However the Z was robust from its first yr, so I believe we additionally need to win the title within the first yr with the Civic. I believe the followers have excessive expectations, and I wish to work onerous to fulfill these.

“After all there are all the time challenges within the first yr once you introduce a brand new automotive, and we’ll need to make the mandatory preparations to have the ability to combat even in these circumstances.”

The Civic was once more in motion this week at Sugo, with Takuya Izawa giving the brand new automotive its first run on Dunlop tyres. The earlier exams have been undertaken utilizing Bridgestone rubber.

Fifth at Motegi reveals “present potential” of ARTA

Nojiri concluded a irritating last season with the NSX-GT eighth within the standings, as he and team-mate Toshiki Oyu skilled an up-and-down yr sharing the #8 ARTA automotive.

The pair got here away with a single victory at Sugo, inherited when the Actual Racing Honda was disqualified, however in any other case managed just one different podium end in a moist Okayama season opener.

Nojiri described the ultimate race at Motegi as “fairly good” as he and Oyu had a easy run to fifth place, however admitted the consequence was an correct reflection of the place the Crew Mugen-run ARTA squad stands versus the competitors.

“In contrast to Tremendous Method, the place you have got only one driver, SUPER GT requires two drivers to cooperate, however in that sense it was a season of trial and error,” mirrored Nojiri.

“By way of uncooked velocity, ours is a workforce that positively has the potential to combat on the high among the many 15 [GT500] groups, however generally in SUPER GT it doesn’t work that approach. 

“The ultimate spherical is a race with no success weight, so I believe the result’s a mirrored image of our present potential. It was a last race the place our present potential turned clear.

“I don’t assume there are a lot of areas the place we’re robust sufficient, and conversely there are a lot of areas the place we’re missing, therefore this consequence, so I’d wish to analyse the trigger for that.”

Nojiri appears prone to have a brand new team-mate at ARTA subsequent season, as there are critical query marks concerning Oyu’s standing inside the Honda camp for 2024.

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