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Submitted by Dan Mazzella on Friday, April 29, 2005 - 3:50pm

The first race of the 300km Autobacs Super JGTC of the 2005 season was held March 27th for the first time at Okayama International Circuit. With 59,100 fans looking on, the two hour race was exciting for both the GT500 class and the GT300 class where the #7 3-Rotor RE-Amemiya RX-7 runs. Under cloudy skys, dry track conditions and 17-19 degree C (62-66 degrees Fahrenheit) the #7 Aspara Drink car qualified 5th. The race day saw near perfect sunny weather with light breezes, keeping all the race teams' flags flapping in the wind.

The race started at 2:00pm local time, quickly the RX-7 charged up the field, in the 4th lap it was moved up to 4th, charged to 3rd place in the 18th lap. The next lap, #7 was ranked 2nd in the GT300 class. On the 35th lap, a pit stop with tire exchange took place, oil and gas fill-up, and dropped them back into the 6th place. After a spin by the #19 the RX-7 moved into 1st place. The race was really decided in the last 3 laps however, with the top three cars, the #7 RX-7, the #13 Nissan Z, and defending champ Ebbro NSX battling for the checkered flag. In the end, the champ couldn't maintain the pace of the Z and RX-7. When the checkered flag came out, the Z came out ahead of the RX-7 by 02.144 seconds.

2005 Autobacs JGTC Round 2 "FUJI GT 500km RACE" will be at Fuji Speedway on the 4th of May. Qualifying will take place on the 3rd. Look for our coverage of the race, here on!

(Photos Courtesy of JGTC and RE-Amemiya)

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