The land of the rising sun is the next stop for Andy Priaulx, Ford Chip Ganassi Racing and the FIA World Endurance Championship when they visit Fuji Speedway next weekend. The seventh round of the championship is important for Andy and team mate Harry Tincknell, as they are hoping to increase their championship lead.
The duo have every reason to be optimistic ahead of the Japanese race, as last year they started from second on the grid and won the race in what was a Ford one-two. Before leaving for the race Andy said: “I am really looking forward to this race as I know how well the Ford GT can go there. We have just three races left in the championship and a slim six point lead in the GT FIA Endurance Drivers’ Championship, so from now on every point counts and we need strong finishes as we are now the hunted and a bit of an underdog. I just loved Fuji last year and this was translated into a strong result, which was the first win for the team in its debut year in the series.” Looking back at the recent races and also forward to these final three he added: “We have had some difficult races recently and lost some valuable points, but the three coming up should suit us a lot better and I foresee it all going down to the wire in Bahrain.”
Fuji Speedway stands at the foothills of Mount Fuji in Oyama, which is about 70 miles south west of Tokyo and over the years has hosted some very wet events. The race has hosted the Japanese Grand Prix three times, the last being in 2007 after an absence of 30 years. The first time Andy and Harry will be out on the 2.835 mile (4.563 kilometre) circuit in their number 67 Ford GT will be on Friday (13 October) from 11.00 to 12.30 for FP1. This is followed by FP2 from 15.30 to 17.00. On Saturday FP3 is from 10.30 to 11.30 and qualifying for the LMGTE Pro class is from 14.00 to 14.20. The six hour race will start at 11.00 on Sunday. All these times are local and eight hours ahead of BST.