Suzuka is a great track – it’s quite technical and very rewarding to drive. It’s one of my favourites in the game with several really challenging corners, especially the high speed 130R. For round 9 we had 16 drivers take the start of the session with quite a lot of spread between the front and back of the grid as the tough circuit really helped the faster and more confident drivers find some pace.
I started the 1st race a disappointing 14th of 16 but after a good start was up to 11th by the 2nd Degner and 10th by the start of lap 2, chasing Jörgen for 9th. Coming into the 1st corner we traded paint as we sailed past Ben and Trevor. I was up into 7th and knew I’d be lucky to finish there.
I was able to keep pace with Jack until I made a mess of 130R, spinning but avoiding the barrier. With my tires over heating I struggled for grip on the grass and rejoined in 15th. With 15 minutes to go I had a 5 second gap to Dan in 14th and was slowly whittling it down. With 5 minutes remaining I caught him and we had a good clean battle for several laps until I made an error at Spoon with 45 seconds remaining. I finished 14th, making up a position during my battle with Dan when Sylvio had to pit.
I had a much better qualifying for Race 2, starting 9th between my team mate Ben and Jörgen. After a good start, I was tagged in the left rear by Jörgen through the Esses and dropped down to 14th. With a bit of damage and cold tires I spun at Spoon and hit the wall. I stopped at the end of the lap to repair the car and from then on lost all interest in the race, eventually retiring with about 11 minutes to go.
By the end of the evening, the only thing I’d really learnt was that I wasn’t enjoying driving at the moment. Time to look at a few things and have a think.