Lucas Auer

Auer and O’Ward tackle Super Formula in Motegi

#50 Lucas Auer (AUT – B-Max/Motopark Honda/M-TEC HR-417E)
Super Formula Championship position: 9th – 8 points – after 4 of 7 races

#15 Patricio O'Ward (MEX – Mugen Honda/M-TEC HR-417E)
Super Formula Championship position: - made debut in 4th of 7 races

It's a home race for the Honda Formula Dream Project at Motegi this weekend with Red Bull Juniors Patricio O'Ward and Lucas Auer intent on improving their Super Formula Championship positions.

Auer, the 24-year-old Austrian, who made such a great start to the season will reset after a troubled wet weekend in Fuji and 20-year-old Mexican O'Ward has a good debut to build on.

Auer ready to get back on track

"We are feeling well prepared," enthused Auer. "We did a lot of stuff after Fuji, we had to. The team has been working very hard going through the data and coming up with the answers we need to move forward."

"The aero package is pretty much frozen by the rules but I would say we have a new set-up style to try this weekend," explained the B-Max/Motopark driver.

"Another change is the weather, we are right into the Japanese summer now and it is extremely hot and humid so I expect it to be quite a physical race and I am ready for that."

"I've tested here so it's a track that I know and like, I think that with the tyre possibilities it should be good for racing, I think there will be overtaking and all in all it should be a very good weekend," concluded Auer.

O'Ward looking for a dry race

It is only O'Ward's second Super Formula outing but the Mugen Honda team voiced their approval of the way he learnt so quickly in his Fuji debut and he is keen to build on that. "It looks like it is going to be dry, I hope so," stated O'Ward. "At Fuji I got the feeling of the car pretty quickly in the dry and was competitive in just the second session."

"The trouble was that we had so much rain and varying conditions that it kind of eliminated the chance of me improving very much. The conditions were different every time we went out and I was just learning one lesson after another."

It is predicted to be hot for the fifth round of the series and O'Ward is already enjoying it. "It's very beautiful here, it's kind of in the middle of nowhere, it's lovely and green, hills and trees. I did't realise that there was such a fantastic museum here, it is really incredible, so much car and motorcycle racing history."

"The track looks like a great challenge, some fast sections as well as a lot of heavy braking zones, probably not that easy to pass so we need to get qualifying right," he added.

Motegi weekend schedule – all times JST (Japan Standard Time
 CEST +7)
Friday August 16th
13.15 – 14.15 Free Practice

Saturday August 17th
09.40 – 10.40 Free Practice
14.30 – 14.50 (Q1)
15.00 – 15.07 (Q2)
15.17 – 15.24 (Q3)

Sunday August 18th
10.00 – 10.30 Free Practice
14.15 Race – 52 Laps (or 90 minutes)