Home Formula 3Formula Regional Japanese Championship Sena Sakaguchi sweeps Formula Regional Japan round at Fuji

Sena Sakaguchi sweeps Formula Regional Japan round at Fuji

by Tim Lumb

Photo: Formula Regional Japanese Championship

Sena Sakaguchi dominated Formula Regional Japanese Championship’s third round at Fuji Speedway, winning both races from pole position and achieving the fastest lap.

The Sutekina Racing Team driver missed the second round at Sportsland SUGO two weeks ago, after winning all three races at Fuji in the opening round in August.

Picking up where he left off he dominated the two-race round. He held the lead of race one going into the first corner and through the race managed his pace so Tomoki Takahashi couldn’t mount a challenge from second.

Sakaguchi had to hold off Takahashi again, who had gotten a slightly better start off the line, to keep the lead at the start of race two. Unlike the opening race of the weekend, Sakaguchi created a 7.2s gap between himself and second at the halfway point.

Takahashi was forced into a battle for second position at the pack behind started to catch up. Two laps from the end both TOM’S driver Yuga Furutani and Riki Okusa for Zap Speed were able to pass Takahashi for second and third respectively.

Despite the clean sweep of wins Sakaguchi is 14 points off the championship-leading Takahashi after missing the three races at Sugo.

Furutani added a third place finish in race one to his second place to solidify third position in the championship.

B-MAX Racing boss DRAGON took the Masters class victory with sixth and seventh in race one and two respectively, moving himself up into fifth in the overall standings.

Okusa had the best debut round of the five drivers to not compete in the earlier rounds, getting fifth in race one alongside his podium finish.

Daichi Okamoto achieved fourth and sixth place finishes while former W Series racer Miki Koyama claimed a seventh and a fifth on her return to racing.

Results round-up
Race 1 (15 laps)
1 Sena Sakaguchi Sutekina Racing Team 24m28.497s
2 Tomoki Takahashi Super License +4.097s
3 Yuga Furutani TOM’S +11.652s
4 Daichi Okamoto Saccess Racing +15.381s
5 Riki Okusa Zap Speed +16.499s
6 DRAGON B-MAX Racing +22.986s
7 Miki Koyama Zap Speed +23.031s
8 Nobuhiro Imada Eagle Sports +28.332s
9 Masayuki Ueda Rn-sports +35.578s
10 Miku Ikejima Sutekina Racing Team +40.448s
Pole: Sakaguchi, 1m36.835s
Fastest lap: Sakaguchi, 1m36.528s

Race 2 (15 laps)
1 Sakaguchi 24m30.775s
2 Furutani +17.522s
3 Okusa +18.185s
4 Takahashi +19.862s
5 Koyama +20.088s
6 Okamoto +20.942s
7 DRAGON +34.799s
8 Ueda +44.379s
9 Ikejima +47.625s
10 Syuji B-MAX Racing +1m01.257s
P: Sakaguchi, 1m36.525s
FL: Sakaguchi, 1m37.674s

Championship standings
1 Takahashi 139   2 Sakaguchi 125   3 Furutani 115   4 Yuki Nemoto 58   5 DRAGON 52   6 Imada 49   7 Yu Kanamaru 45   8 Ueda 44   9 Takuro Shinohara 43   10 Ryohei Sakaguchi 26