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Gary Thompson – Irish Racing Driver in Japan

Gary speaks about his ambitions in Japan…



Mr. Gary Thompson, Professional Race Driver

  August 2010  

Racing in Japan

All things going well, I would hope to move on to Formula Nippon, and then F1. Eddie Irvine, Richard Lyons, Ralph Firman have all done very well here and I hope to follow their success. Japan is well respected all over the world for Racing, but actually a lot of those people that respect it, don't really know what's happening here. It would be great if it got more coverage, as there is so much going on here.
The teams and races here are organised with the same professionalism as anywhere else in the world, so I have fitted in quite comfortably.

Coming out to Japan

Initially it was difficult to adjust, and was very confusing. But pretty quickly I got used to it, still working on the language. Everyone here is really helpful, which is great and it's a really enjoyable place to be. I am only here when Races are on, so there is no problem of being homesick. I get home when there is a decent gap between races. Enjoy the lifestyle out here hanging out in the usual spots in Tokyo and the great food, especially yakiniku!


For me, Suzuka is the best track in the world, and is my favorite. I would also really love to drive in Macau F3 street circuit race held in November. I drove it in Formula BMW last year, and it was such a great track that I hope to get back there again.


Quite happy with the team I am in at the moment. I always would look to drive the best car that is out there. So if I made F1 one day, I would just want to join the best team at the time. This year, it would be Red Bull, but next year it could be different.
When at home I drive a Suzuki, but have my eyes on a Nissan GTR.

Inspirational Driver?

For Japanese drivers Takuma Sato impressed me a lot, he was very fast and did well in F1. He would have been popular too back home too of course because he drove for Jordan.
But really Michael Schumacher changed the face of motor racing when in came on the Scene. Everything about him, his commitment, attitude to fitness etc. Everyone else had to step up a level to compete.
My Dad was also a Racer back in his day, and he has encouraged me ever since I could fit into a Kart. Without him I wouldn't be here today.


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