DamianLow_97

A Vocaloid fan from Singapore since 2015, Damian joined MikuFan.com in 2019 as a writer. You can follow him on Twitter at @DamianLow_97.

Sep 092019
 

Goodsmile Racing finishes in 4th place after a chaotic dry and wet race at Autopolis with the #4 Hatsune Miku AMG GT3 qualifying in 6th place the day before, only to climb up one more position as the #33 EVA Nissan GT-R GT3 got a grid penalty forcing them to start in 7th.

The race started off with the #4 Miku AMG overtaking the #7 D’Station Aston Martin at the at the start of the race. With just 3 laps into the race the safety car was deployed due to the #1 Raybrig NSX-GT crashing into the barriers forcing them to retire and possibly ending their chances for a second championship for the team in GT500 which saw 2009 Formula One champion Jenson Button and his teammate Naoki Yamamoto take the championship last year.

The race would restart with the #61 Subaru BRZ returning to the garage due to gearbox problems making way for the #4 Miku AMG to fight for the lead with the #25 Hoppy 86 MC and the #52 Toyota Mark X MC, which would end up with Hoppy losing the battle and placing the Mark X and Miku AMG in first and second respectively.

The lead of the race in the GT300 category would change with the #4 Miku AMG overtaking the #52 Mark X and gradually widening the gap giving the team a slight advantage for the time being.

That gap would then be gone for nothing as Fuji 500 miles’ GT300 winner the #87 T-Dash Lamborghini Huracan GT3 stops in the middle of the track. Fearing that a safety car would be deployed because the pitlane closes during the safety car, several teams opted to pit in to change to wet weather tyres as rain started approaching towards the circuit. This also caused havoc in the pitlane with cars not being able to stop parallel with the pitlane and even un-safe releases causing collisions with cars leaving the pitlane.

While the chaos was happening at the pitlane, meanwhile on the track the #22 RQ’s AMG spins out crashing into the barriers as it struggled for grip on the wet track with their dry slick tyres putting them out of the race. Sooner or later the race would restart only to be deployed shortly after a few laps later as the #9 Pacific Mirai Akari Porsche spins out into the gravel but was able to recover in the end. The #360 RunUp GT-R also spun during the safety car taking out one of the cameras with it.

Eventually the race would restart with teams either racing with dry slick tyres or wet weather tyres. Mixing up the field as parts of the track were both wet and dry. As the race was reaching its closing stages, the lead of the GT300 category was still up for grabs with the #720 McLaren 720 GT3 taking the lead from the #88 Manepa Lamborghini. But suddenly from out of no where was the #60 Syntium Lexus RC F GT3 charging in snatching the lead as the one of the only teams to stay on the dry slick tyres throughout the whole race which would see them take victory in the GT300 category. Meanwhile further behind the #4 Miku AMG was still fighting for position overtaking the #96 K-Tunes Lexus on the final lap placing the team in 4th place until the checkered flag. That gave Nobuteru Taniguchi a cheeky expression.

Congratulations to the #39 Denso Lexus LC500 and the #60 Syntium Lexus for winning at Autopolis. Goodsmile Racing now stands 7th in the championship. With only two rounds to go and 15 points behind the leading team, the #55 ARTA NSX GT3. Goodsmile can still fight for the championship but the chances are very slim.

The next race will be on the 21st and 22nd of September at Sportsland Sugo. Until then. Fight, GSR!

Aug 282019
 

The 48th edition of the of the Summer Endurance Race concluded last weekend with Audi Sport Team WRT taking victory at the 10 Hours of Suzuka. Just a lap behind them was Mercedes-AMG Team GOODSMILE finishing in 10th place.

The #00 Hatsune Miku Mercedes-AMG GT3 would qualify in 6th for the start of the race which started off well overtaking the #777 CarGuy Ferrari 488 GT3 on the first lap. The first hour of the race would be calm with some overtakes and minor spins until the first big incident would happen when the #88 JLOC Lamborghini Huracan GT3 made contact with the #5 GTNET Nissan GT-R GT3 to overtake spinning both cars and getting the #34 Walkenhorst BMW M6 GT3 that was in 2nd place involved forcing them to pit for repairs.

Things start to heat up after 2 hours into the race when the #27 HubAuto Ferrari 488 GT3 and the #98 Arrows Honda NSX GT3 started banging wheels until the Honda went off track followed by a ‘T-bone’ collision with the Ferrari bringing out the first long Full Course Yellow meaning all cars should slow down and no overtaking is allowed.

After the race restarted the #999 GruppeM Mercedes-AMG GT3 makes a move on the #00 Miku AMG late braking into the final chicane causing both cars to go off track. This also helped the #018 KCMG Nissan GT-R GT3 (Not to be confused with the #18 UpGarage NSX GT3) overtake the Miku AMG down the main straight as she was recovering from the earlier contact. The incident gave the #999 GruppeM a 5 second penalty for cutting the chicane.

As the race enters the second half, the #27 HubAuto Ferrari loses control at the fast-left turn of 130R crashing into the foam barriers, bringing out the Full Course Yellow once again. Fortunately, Nick Cassidy who was driving the Ferrari escaped un-injured and surprisingly the car wasn’t badly damaged that he managed to drive it back into the pits for repairs.

As night falls at the track, the lights go on giving teams an extra challenge racing in the darkness. As the race was reaching it’s closing stages, Super GT’s GT500 driver Tsugio Matsuda in the #35 KCMG GT-R makes a move on the #107 Bentley Team M-Sport late braking into the final chicane and still fighting for 6th place side-by-side along the main straight until the GT-R successfully overtook the Bentley.

At last after a long 10 hours of non-stop racing the checkered flag was waved with the #25 Audi Sport Team WRT taking victory with the #00 Miku AMG just behind them a lap behind to finish in 10th position. Although Mercedes-AMG Team GOODSMILE may not have won the race overall. The team has been awarded the “Team of the Day” as voted by race fans during the race. They were also awarded the winner of the Super GT award and runner up of the Asia Award for being the first Super GT team to finish and a team with at least 2 or more Asian drivers respectively.

Congratulations to all the winners and the teams that finished on the podium. Until then, Super GT is next on the 7th and 8th of September at Autopolis.

Aug 072019
 

Before we begin, we would like to congratulate Black Falcon for finishing 3rd place overall with the #4 Promare car and 3rd place in the Silver Class (24th overall) with the #6 Miku car at the 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps back in July. Unfortunately for Goodsmile Racing and TYPE-MOON, the #00 Fate car retired halfway into the race when they collided at the high-speed turn of Blanchimont.

Now back to Super GT. The #4 Hatsune Miku Mercedes-AMG GT3 qualified in 9th position for the start of the race which would start off fine for the first hour until the pit stop strategies came into play with teams using different tyre strategies with some teams opting not to change tyres on their first pit stop. The team managed to climb up to 3rd position overtaking the #7 D’Station Aston Martin Vantage GT3 in the process before their second pit stop.

The Safety Car came out on Lap 69 when the #38 ZENT Lexus LC500 crashed due to a loose wheel nut shortly after their pit stop forcing them to retire from the race. Things would calm down as the race restarted until the Safety Car was pulled out once again on the 104th lap, this time for the #24 Realize GT-R GT500 pulling over at the pit entry due to an engine failure which would then catch on fire. The #4 Miku AMG were lucky enough to pit before they closed the pit lane when the Safety Car came out.

Once again, the race restarts and teams would stop for their fourth and final mandatory pit stop mixing up the field for the last time until more drama unfolds with the #25 Hoppy 86 MC colliding with the #22 R’Qs AMG forcing Hoppy to retire from the race. As the race was at it’s closing stages a timer appeared finishing the race earlier rather than racing the full length of 177 laps. With less than 2 minutes until the end of the race, the #4 Miku AMG overtook the #61 Subaru BRZ placing them in 8th position until the end of the race.

The race would finish on the 175th lap with the #6 WAKO’S LC500 winning in GT500 and the #87 T-Dash Lamborghini Huracan GT3 in GT300. We would like to congratulate both teams on their victory in Super GT’s endurance round of the season.

Goodsmile Racing still stands 11th in the championship standing despite the pace they had during the race, only the timing of the pit stops, and safety cars compromised their position.

The next race will take place at Autopolis on the 7th and 8th of September. But before that is the 10 Hours of Suzuka happening from the 23rd to the 25th of August with Kamui Kobayashi returning as the team’s third driver for the race. Once again, we wish the team good luck for the upcoming endurance race. Fight, GSR!

Jul 212019
 

Back in April, Goodsmile Racing announced that they would return to the 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps. But rather than having the usual Racing Miku for their car livery, the team will collaborate with TYPE-MOON RACING to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the Fate series!

The #00 Goodsmile Racing & TYPE-MOON RACING Mercedes-AMG GT3 will be driven by the two Super GT drivers of Nobuteru Taniguchi (JPN) and Tatsuya Kataoka (JPN) with their third driver being Adam Christodoulou (GBR), known for winning the 24 Hours of Dubai and 24 Hours of Nürburgring.

The other two cars with itasha liveries recently announced for the race are the #04 and #06 Mercedes-AMG Black Falcon cars. The #04 car is wrapped up with visuals of the anime Promare by Studio Trigger and is driven by Maro Engel (GER), Luca Stolz (GER) and Yelmer Buurman (NLD). The #06 car is wrapped up with Hatsune Miku using the V4X main visual by iXima and is driven by Abdulaziz Al Faisal (KSA), Hubert Haupt (GER), Patrick Assenheimer (GER) and Gabriele Piana (ITA).

The race will take place from July 26th to July 28th, and we wish both teams good luck for the upcoming endurance race!

Via GSR

Jul 032019
 

Last weekend was Round 4 of SUPER GT, which took place at the Chang International circuit at Buriram in Thailand. Goodsmile Racing finished 8th in qualifying for the start of the race the following day.

The race started off clean with all the cars making it through without colliding into each other. Things were calm until teams started to do their pit stops. The #4 Hatsune Miku AMG would stay out as other teams pitted. But suddenly the #16 Motul Mugen NSX-GT, #8 ARTA NSX-GT and #1 Raybrig NSX-GT in the GT500 category all collided bringing the Safety Car out which would compromise the #4 Miku AMG, as they have yet to make their mandatory pit stop. And by the rules, the pit lane is closed during the Safety Car.

As the race restarted, the team would eventually pit for a driver change and refuel but kept the same tires. The #4 Miku AMG would leave the pit lane in 14th place. In the end the team would cross the finish line in 13th, overtaking the #7 D’station Aston Martin Vantage as they suffered a blown tire during the closing stages of the race. The team went up to 12th as the #21 Hitotsuyama Audi dropped position, possibly for failing post-race inspections.

Goodsmile Racing now stands 11th in the championship standing. We may only be halfway through the season, but the team still has a chance in fighting for the championship. The next race will be at Fuji International Speedway on the 3rd and 4th of August for the endurance round of the season. Fight, GSR!