Matsushita: "No excuse" for race-ending formation lap spin

Nobuharu Matsushita has accepted full responsibility for spinning out on the formation lap of last weekend’s Fuji Super Formula race.

Nobuharu Matsushita, B-Max Racing Team

B-Max Racing driver Matsushita was due to start the race from ninth place, but instead lost control as he was trying to get heat in his wheels on his way to the grid.

The ex-Formula 2 racer’s mistake triggered an extra formation lap, cutting the planned 41-lap distance by one lap.

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Matsushita was initially towed back to the pits and took the start of the race from there, but he was soon ordered in again to retire, as he had received outside assistance to get going after his spin.

“It was my mistake,” Matsushita told’s Japanese edition. “I lost control while spinning up the wheels and the engine stopped. In the end I couldn’t start. 

“There’s no excuse, it’s entirely my fault, so I’m sorry for the team. The car was in good shape this morning [in second practice], so it’s a shame.”


Although Matsushita belatedly took the start and completed two laps before the call came from race control for him to pit and retire, he was officially credited with a DNS. understands the fact that Matsushita was allowed to start from the pits was down to a simple communication error on the part of race control. 

Super Formula rules state that any car that needs external assistance to fire up its engine must be disqualified; the act of towing Matsushita back to the pits, where the car was restarted, was considered to violate this regulation.

“When you get towed you are treated the same way as a car that got stuck in the gravel and had to retire,” explained Matsushita. “From now on I’ll do my best to make up for it.”

Matsushita’s latest non-score leaves him seventh in the championship on 21 points, 20 of which came with his charge to a first victory in the wet at Suzuka in April.

His only other points-paying finish of the season so far came at Autopolis in May, when he recovered to finish 10th after a first-lap off.


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