For his third marketing campaign in SUPER GT’s premier GT500 class, Mardenborough left the Bridgestone-shod Impul crew to hitch Kondo Racing, the one Nissan outfit to run on Yokohama tyres.
The 27-year-old and teammate Mitsunori Takaboshi completed fifth within the season opener at Okayama, which was lower brief earlier than half-distance resulting from heavy storms.
Since then they’ve solely added one factors end – an eighth place end result at Suzuka – in two races, leaving the duo 12th within the championship with six factors.
Mardenborough says crew’s struggles in the beginning of the season are right down to not discovering a tyre that fits the distinctive wants of the Nissan GT-R.
“The problem we have currently is not team-based, it’s just finding, working with Yokohama to find a tyre that has performance but also the durability,” Mardenborough defined to Motorsport.com.
“Now we have not a lot drawback actually getting one lap anyway, one lap tempo of the automobile. Yokohama [is] enhancing quite a bit, the blokes have improved since each spherical thus far, from Okayama to Fuji to Suzuka and [the next round in] Thailand, now we have a distinction in building tyre. They’re pushing arduous.
“The issue is simply looking for a related tyre, aggressive tyre that additionally has the sturdiness as effectively.
“For instance the #19 automobile [Bandoh Lexus, which also runs on Yokohamas], they’ve an issue. Our format of the automobile is identical, however now we have completely different issues. We require various things from Yokohama although generally the deg is sort of related.
“We simply want to grasp what the GT-R wants and what Yokohama wants to enhance in all areas.”
Mardenborough, nevertheless, stays upbeat about the remainder of the season, notably the upcoming spherical in Thailand later this month.
Mugen, which additionally runs on Yokohamas, took pole place at Buriram final yr, whereas the Bandoh Lexus squad completed on the rostrum in the identical race.
“Yokohama is very strong in Thailand, very strong in Malaysia [which is used for pre-season testing],” he stated. “And tyre appears to match their methodology and their method to design tyres. They’ve fairly a stiff sidewall, I believe the corners in Thailand appears to swimsuit Yokohama quite a bit.
“All three automobiles final yr have been sturdy. So I’m anticipating good issues, now we have made some completely different approaches as effectively with the automobile. Which ought to enhance issues. I’m actually excited.
“[There will be] higher days forward. Now we have a number of tracks the place the expertise and the suggestions from different drivers who’ve pushed on Yokohama, and simply outcomes itself.
“There are few races which are arising [where we] hope for stronger outcomes. We simply want to attain constant factors, be the highest Yokohama automobile, that’s my goal. And I believe we could be high Nissan as effectively. I don’t need to end under anybody else, so at all times flat-out.”
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Mardenborough got here near profitable his maiden SUPER GT race twice in 2018, solely to be denied on each events resulting from elements outdoors his management.
A unfastened wheel within the ultimate hour price him a sure-shot victory within the Fuji 500-mile spherical, whereas a sluggish pitstop put him behind eventual winners Jenson Button and Naoki Yamamoto at Sugo.
Ask if he may finish his dropping streak this season, Mardenborough stated: “Effectively yeah, I desire a win. It’s my third yr in GT500 and final yr there have been actually good alternatives to win, Fuji and Sugo.
“However yeah the entire thing has to come back collectively, the crew has to complete the highest, the mechanics should be excellent within the pitstop, there’s much more issues that want to come back collectively.
“I hope this yr all the things comes collectively, I can get, Kondo can get a victory. And yeah, it must occur.”
Jann Mardenborough, Nissan e.Dams, Nissan IMO1
Photograph by: Joe Portlock / LAT Photos
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