SuperGT rookie, Jake Parsons, once again showed his impressive pace, skill and maturity in the final round of the ultra-competitive Japanese series at Twin Ring Motegi on Sunday. “This was definitely one of our strongest weekends of the year,” explained the young Australian.
“We felt Motegi would be good for us, so it’s really positive that we were able to get that performance from the car. We hoped for a little more from qualifying, but we improved the car during each run and had it in a good place by the start of the race, showing consistent top ten pace right to the flag.”
On his first visit to the 14 turn, 4.8 km/2.983m circuit, Parsons overcame an unfortunate early drive through penalty, that dropped him back to 30th, to deliver a strong, mature drive back through the field. Showing typical tenacity, speed and race craft, the 22-year-old made up nine positions in his 23-lap opening stint of the race, before handing over to his teammate who brought the Taisan SARD Audi R8 home in 14th place.
“The Motegi track has a lot of variety but it doesn’t really allow for much overtaking, which was quite challenging at times. I had to make some big moves to get through the field, which was fun but also a fantastic way to show how much I’ve grown as a driver this year too.”
That development as a driver was on full display with Parsons’ feedback helping the team make an informed decision about tyre strategy. Choosing to change only the rear tyres, the team made up valuable time in the pit stop, greatly aiding the #26 car’s fight back.
Parsons admits that this year has been a big learning curve, adapting to a new style of car, a new series and of course a new country and language, but it’s a challenge that the Melbourne born racer has risen too impressively. “Being able to establish myself in SuperGT was the main goal this season, and I’m proud of how I’ve done. I’ve been able to absorb it all and perform well at each circuit, most of them new to me. It’s been a good year of experience and I think I’ve gained the necessary skills to start next year on a high note, pushing further and being more competitive.”
“I’ve loved being part of the SuperGT series. We always race on such great, interesting circuits, the cars are all excellent quality and the professionalism of the events is awesome. Japan is an amazing place to race too, offering such variety of climates, arriving at tracks to anything from baking heat to deep snow!"
Parsons has also been overwhelmed by the support he’s received from the extremely knowledgeable and passionate fans this year. “The fan support here has been amazing, and this race especially it was incredible. It’s been great to see that grow throughout the year, actually. Giving away our caps and shirts, it’s lovely to see people’s faces light up when you show them you appreciate their support. Overall, it’s been a very welcoming year and I feel very humbled by that. I look forward to bringing more good results for myself and the fans in the future.”
To continue the close connection with his global fanbase, Parsons has also launched a Japanese version of his English based website, with JP merchandise available across both platforms. Stay posted on the website for all the latest updates on new merchandise ranges for next season.
Going into the off-season, the young Aussie is looking forward to relaxing a little, but the effort never truly stops in motorsport. “The off-season isn’t as intense as the racing of course, but there’s still a lot of work to do too. The physical and mental training/preparation continues, and we’re always working with our partners to build for the future. I’m looking forward to the break, but the momentum for next season starts as soon as this season ends. And we’re all fully focused on making next year another big step forward in my career.”
Jake Parsons would like to thank everyone in the Taisan SARD team for their hard work and persistence this year, with special thanks to both Hideki Noda and Ricky Chiba.