Once again it was time to buckle up and make the trip across the Kansai prefecture from Osaka to Mie-Ken, and check-in at Suzuka Twin Circuit for Round.4 of this year's Honda One Make race series.
As always it was Hayashi-Sama and the crew from Zerofighter that was hosting the event to make sure, as always, that things ran smoothly whilst keeping a relaxed and fun day - despite the various race classes that the drivers would be focused on.
It goes without saying that a few of the cars competing in the event along with their pilots are customers of the very same shop. Hayashi-Sama and team were acting as support shop for some of them between admin/host duties to help record data, and help maintain the vehicles between sessions.
Blessed with a nice crisp sunny day, various regulars from the local and neighboring prefectures had come out to compete.
Among them, the Motion - Idemitsu EF9, a livery that is just eye-catching with it's striking red/black/white colorway combination and graphics.
Yoneda-San was back also in his DA6. This car has an incredible sound, We need to get some video of that later for sure. He'd go on to finish second in the SS class on the day with his best lap a very tidy 1:10.277.
Other teams you know we support here on Roughsmoke were being supported around the paddock at the event..
Yamauchi-Sama and his Car Make Accross ride would of course be one of the heavy favorites to be top of the pile at RD.4..
Not a lot of return on your bet if you placed one and he would lead start to finish in the OP Class with the best time from him and machine of 1:06.115.
His performance maybe not looking as strong when you look at the second place timing of Ikegami-San in his EK4 which ran a best of 1:06.032 and was only 2.2 seconds off his tail when it came to the black and white flag. But by that time the top spot was secured.
At the other end of the spectrum was the Mistbahn PP1 that was the sole entrant in the K class. With a best time - in race - of 1:14.141, don't let the difference fool you. It was clear to see the nimble KEI machine was matching if not excelling against it's bigger VTEC brothers in the back half of the circuit where the small and lightweight model could catch up in the tight corners and slower part of the circuit.
However with Twin circuits main straight running almost the length of the track, all the hard work would be undone by more power and the clear/dirty air depending on which side of the coin you are looking at. But a win is a win and first place takes the trophy.
Yuki in the STEP-UP EK9 wasn't having so much luck on the day and could only manage a best of 1:08.548 and overall 6th place in the N1 class. A combination of little niggles all culminating in the hard task of breaking into the 7.XXX's and keeping with the pacesetters.
Manabu-San in the Whitehawk EG6 wasn't fairing much better either and was tackling faults and running conditions rather than those in front of him, but the determination was there and he continued throughout the day to record a 1:12.109 in the N1 class.
We said it was eye-catching, The Motion EF9 would take place first place in the SS Class with a best lap of 1:09.594, which after 10 laps of the class would see it finish some 9 seconds ahead on Yoneda-San.
A quality, fault-free, performance from the pairing which was obvious from the early morning free run, through qualifying, and the main race. A well-deserved top of the podium.
One of the easiest and favorite spots to catch the action is the hard braking zone into turns one and two. Here is Kazuya-San being chased by Nakajima-San into the braking zone. Some really interesting inside passes made in this area on the day.
There a few more spots to get an angle around the circuit not being so easy to reach which is another challenge itself.
We hope you enjoyed this brief insight into RD.4 and some of the images we captured. We'll have some further content coming up online from the event so look out for that.
Thanks to Hayashi-Sama and everyone that took part and made it a fun day.
Final round to come in December, good luck everyone!