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2011 Super GT Season - Round 4 - Sugo GT 250km

Race Report

With No.46 in the pit, the lap leader became the No.6 ENEOS Sustina SC430, which had moved up to sixth position but was still some 50 seconds behind the No.46 S Road MOLA GT-R at this stage in the race. The No.6 Lexus SC430 continued to run in the lead for about two laps after No.46 returned to the race with Yanagida having taken over the wheel from Quintarelli. But when No.6 made its own routine pit stop at the end of lap 41, Yanagida in the No.46 Nissan GT-R easily assumed the lead again.

During his stint in the second half of the race, Yanagida in car No.46 was also able to widen the gap gradually on the pursuing No.39 Denso SARD SC430 as his teammate had. As Yanagida ran comfortably away in the lead, Iguchi in No.39 had trouble holding a good pace, let alone closing the gap on the No.46 Nissan GT-R. Behind him, the No.32 Epson HSV-010 driven by Michigami was beginning to close in after dispatching a challenge by the No.24 Advan KONDO GT-R of Hironobu Yasuda.

With around 10 laps remaining, Yanagida was racing on comfortably toward the checkered in the No.46 S Road MOLA GT-R with a lead of about 20 sec. Behind him, a close battle had developed between the No.39 Denso SARD SC430 of Iguchi in second place and the No.32 Epson HSV-010 of Michigami in third, but eventually there would be no change in that order before the end of the race.

This perfect pole-to-checkered runaway victory by the No.46 S Road MOLA GT-R in this 68-lap race was the team's first victory in the GT500 class. For Yanagida, who had risen to the GT500 class once before only to return to GT300 again and finally make his GT500 comeback this year after winning the GT300 title last season, this was his long-awaited first win in the GT500 class. This win also puts the No.46 driver pair of Yanagida and Ronnie Quintarelli atop the point ranking.

Finishing second was the No.39 Denso SARD SC430, while the No.32 Epson HSV-010 finished third. The No.24 Advan KONDO GT-R finished fourth for the second round in a row and the No.6 ENEOS Sustina SC430 of Daisuke Ito finished fifth after coming out on top of a duel with the No.100 Raybrig HSV-010 of Naoki Yamamoto.

After showing dominant speed in the rainy qualifying the day before, the teams riding on Michelin tires proved dominant on the dry track of today's race as well with a 1-2 finish.

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