Home Formula 1 Special Formula 4 event to support 2019 Japanese Grand Prix

Special Formula 4 event to support 2019 Japanese Grand Prix

by Ida Wood

A ‘FIA Formula 4 Dream Cup Race’ will be included on the undercard of the Japanese Grand Prix this year.

In recent years there have been races for Super FJ, the category immediately below Japan’s FIA F4 championship, at the grand prix. It will be a non-points scoring round as per the NACAM F4 event that supported the 2015 Mexican GP.

The drivers entering the provisionally named F4 Dream Cup Race will have a 30-minute qualifying session on the Friday of the grand prix, with an eight lap race on both the Saturday and Sunday.

It’s unclear whether the event will follow the format of the FIA Formula World Cup-awarding Macau Grand Prix, where the first race result sets the grid for the trophy-giving second race, or if it will follow a heat format used by many Formula 2 and 3 events in the 20th century where the times were combined from two races to decide an overall winner.

Japan has had a FIA-backed Formula 4 championship since 2015, with champions Sho Tsuboi, Ritomo Miyata and Yuki Tsunoda all graduating to F3. After dominating the 2018 Japanese F3 championship, Tsuboi is now in Super Formula, with Miyata hoping to follow up his achievements at the TOM’S team.

Tsunoda, who unlike Tsuboi and Miyata is backed by Honda, is now a member of the Red Bull Junior Team and is competing in the FIA F3 Championship and Euroformula Open this year.

There is also the the JAF Japan F4 championship in the country, that has run since 1993, which can count the likes of SF race-winners Koudai Tsukakoshi, Yuki Sekiguchi, 2018 F2 stars Tadasuke Makino and Nirei Fukuzumi, and Tsunoda as champions.