Home Formula 4 Makino beats Tsuboi to win inaugural FIA F4 race in Japan

Makino beats Tsuboi to win inaugural FIA F4 race in Japan

by Valentin Khorounzhiy
Photo: FIA F4 Japanese Championship

Photo: FIA F4 Japanese Championship

Tadasuke Makino became the first winner in FIA F4 Japanese Championship’s history, triumphing at Okayama.

Makino was sixth in the mixed conditions qualifying session, but was up to the front early in the race and eventually beat poleman Shou Tsuboi to victory.

The first period of green flag race running in Japanese F4’s history was over just after a lap when a mid-pack crash took out several drivers, including KCMG’s James Munro, who couldn’t avoid the wreckage.

The clean-up took several laps and Makino, having made it up to second before the safety car, then came close to assuming the lead after the restart, albeit Tsuboi held on.

But, after several laps of fighting, with Shinnosuke Yamada and Shintaro Kawabata also getting involved, Makino finally pulled off the move for good and brought the car home to claim a historic win.

Tsuboi finished as runner-up, two seconds adrift, while Yamada and Kawabata collided, leaving the former out the race. Kawabata crossed the line in third, but was penalized post-race.

As such, Yuya Hiraki inherited the podium spot, right ahead of former Formula Abarth champion Nicolas Costa and Yuichi Mikasa.

Formula Challenge Japan veteran Tsubasa Mekaru took sixth, ahead of 2011 Asian Formula Renault runner-up Yuki Shiraishi.

Amidst mass penalties, Ryo Yamada, Hiroki Ohtsu and Shunsuke Kouno completed the top ten.

Race results
Pos. Driver Team Time/Gap
1 Tadasuke Makino RN-S 15 laps in 30:48.782
2 Shou Tsuboi TOM’S Spirit +2.188
3 Yuya Hiraki RS Fine +7.106
4 Nicolas Costa VSR Lamborghini +7.591
5 Yuichi Mikasa B-MAX Racing +8.016
6 Tsubasa Mekaru Media Do Kageyama +11.481
7 Yuki Shiraishi Team A-One +13.155
8 Ryo Yamada Garage Chabatake +14.182
9 Hiroki Ohtsu Honda FDP +21.828
10 Shunsuke Kouno RS Fine +22.888
11 Riku Hashimoto Skill Speed +24.350
12 Masanori Yonekura Yonekura +27.601
13 Junpei Kato ma with SARD +29.554
14 Katsuaki Kubota Hanashima Racing +31.819
15 Shintaro Kawabata Succeed Sports +51.089*
16 Yugo Tabe N Speed / S2R +54.219
17 Takuro Shinohara VSR Lamborghini +1:06.705**
18 Takahiro Ban Sutekina Racing Team +1:07.496*
19 Katsuhide Kaneishi Honda FDP +1:08.790**
20 Noa Satomi Le Beausset Motorsports +1:10.427**
21 Yoshiaki Katayama ma with SARD +1:11.057**
22 Yuya Tezuka Field Motorsport +1:21.437**
Not classified
Shinnosuke Yamada B-MAX Racing +4 laps
Takashi Hata Field Motorsport +7 laps
James Munro KCMG +10 laps
Yuta Kamimura Honda FDP +14 laps
Yuki Nemoto KCMG +14 laps
DNS Mizuki Ishizaka Honda FDP

* 45-second penalty for on-track incidents
** 55-second penalty for overtaking under safety car