Ukyo Sasahara: Giti Tire Supports Young Generation of Car Racing

3 years ago 0 Comments

Giti Tire is proud to be a partner with the annual F3 Asian Racing Championship and supports the next generation of young racers. Before this year’s championship, Giti Tire promoted the development of these future driving stars through activities, videos, interviews, and photos across platforms. At the last F3 Asia Championship, 23-year old Japanese racer Ukyo Sasahara took first place with 256 points overall, closely followed by Jack Doohan (England) in second and Jordan Dempsey (Ireland) in third. The F3 was Sasahara’s first major win after he came in second during the 2017 F4 Japanese Championship. 

Born in Numata located in Gunma Prefecture, Japan in 1996, Sasahara showed a passion for racing from a young age. He first began kart racing at the young age of 7 and has won numerous domestic titles, including becoming the JAF All Japan Junior Champion in 2009 at the age of 13. During that same year, he beat Matt Perry in the Rotax Max Challenge Junior Grand Final and went on to win the title a second time in 2011 at the age of 15. 

Sasahara also competed in both the Rotax Max Euro Challenge and Central Eastern European Rotax Max Challenge, winning both titles in 2011 and 2012, and closing out his final year of karting. 

Sasahara graduated to single-seat racing in 2013 and competed in the Formula Renault 2.0 Alps championship as his first series. In his first single-seat competition, he took the best race result of sixth at Misano to finish 13th in the championship. During the same season, he also competed in the Spa-Francorchamps and Barcelona segments of the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 season as a guest driver. 

In 2014, Sasahara switched to the Formula Renault 2.0 NEC championship in which he took second after Swiss racer Louis Deletraz in the opening race at Monza and finished in the points in all the remaining races except one and finished 6th overall. Sasahara also took part in the opening round of the Italian F4 championship, replacing Italian driver Andrea Fontana, who was absent due to illness. He finished 5th in the opening race and won the reversed-grid second race, coming ahead of now-Racing Point F1 driver Lance Stroll. 

In 2015, Sasahara joined the ART Junior Team and competed in both the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 and Formula Renault 2.0 NEC championships. He failed to score points in the opening round of the Eurocup at Motorland but took the first race victory in the next round of the Spa-Francorchamps. He is only the second Japanese driver to win a Eurocup race, after Kamui Kobayashi in early 2005. In 2015’s NEC championship, Sasahara came in first in the opening race ahead of Ignazio D’Agosto.

In 2016, Sasahara competed in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship but unfortunately did not place. In 2017, Sasahara competed in the F4 Japanese Championship in which he came second overall, just behind Ritomi Miyata. 

Sasahara competed in both the Japanese Formula 3 Championship and Formula 3 Macau Grand Prix in 2018. He placed 3rd overall in the Japanese Formula 3 series behind Shou Tsuboi and Ritomo Miyata but was unable to complete the Macau Grand Prix.

This past year, Sasahara competed in both the Japanese Formula 3 Championship and the F3 Asian Championship in which he placed 12th in the former and 1st overall in the latter, coming in second in the final race in Shanghai. Sasahara’s Hitec GP teammate Jack Doohan took second alongside him in the front row, as home hero Daniel Cao dominated the final race of the series. Sasahara placed first in the overall series with a total point score of 301. 

Giti Tire is set to return as the sole tire provider and sponsor in 2020’s F3 Asian Championship, which has already drawn a great reception from drivers and fans alike. This past year has taken Giti and future champions to famous F1 tracks in Japan, China, Thailand, and Malaysia. In 202, Giti Tire is set to participate in series throughout Asia and make its debut in the Middle East with winter races in Dubai and Abu Dhabi this coming January. 

During the past year, Giti Tire has also demonstrated its success through its Audi R8 duo’s 1st and 2nd place finish in the 24 Hours Nürburgring SP8 class, the first all-female team in the history of Nurburgring. Giti Tire is also participating as a pioneer of electric vehicle racing in the Electric Touring Car Challenge. Giti Tire plans to promote the development of the future stars in these races with the theme of “Powering up Tomorrow’s Racing Leaders.” The purpose of this program is to showcase the passion, energy, and excitement of the drivers and crews that will be at the head of the racing future.

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