Ex-F1 Star Kamui Kobayashi Breaks Tsukuba Lap Record

Photo Credit: Gazoo Racing via YouTube Screenshot
Photo Credit: Gazoo Racing via YouTube Screenshot /

Former F1 ace Kamui Kobayashi just set the lap record at Tsukuba Circuit setting a time of 44.008. 

If you’re serious about Time Attack, Tsukuba is the birthplace of time attack and is the lap record you’d want to aim for if you want to be taken seriously. Earlier last week, Toyota Gazoo uploaded a video of Kamui Kobayashi’s record-setting run in his Super Formula race car with a lap time of 44.008, a new course record. The old record was 46.935 seconds set by Juuichi Wakisaka in a Formula Nippon car. Although this particular lap record was set earlier in December, only now are do we get to enjoy the literal heart-pounding effort that is this record setting time attack. Take a look at this epic feat below.

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At only 1.271 miles in length, Tsukuba isn’t all that long as far as tracks go. That means whatever car you bring to contest some records, it had better have dialed in suspension, the right aerodynamics, and enough power to exploit your chassis but not go past the limits of your tires.

Super Formula cars, although not the most powerful of racecars, have enough power to prepare these Japanese drivers for the rigors of F1. This particular F1 car is a Formula Dallara chassis equipped with a 2.0 liter turbocharged four cylinder that pumps out an astonishing 550 HP with a potential 600 HP thanks to over-boost. Compare that power to the current F1 cars that benefit from a larger overall chassis and about 150 more HP.

It’s interesting to see Toyota Gazoo putting Kamui’s heart rate alongside his record attempt. His resting heart rate while he’s in the pits starts out at a modest 82 BPM. By the time he’s at full clip for the start of his run, his heart rate has more than doubled to 170 BPM and pretty much stays there before peaking at 178 BPM at the end of the run. It’s like engine and driver are one.

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Kamui pretty much had to run the perfect lap. Only under slow-mo replay could we possibly analyze spots for improvement. Other than that, it looks like this particular ex-F1 star still has what it takes to pull off a fast lap.