Japan's Kuniomi Nagamatsu led an international field all they way to win the 1971 Japan Grand Prix at the Fuji Speedway, about 65 miles (100 kilometres) west of Tokyo, on Monday (3 May).
Japan's Kuniomi Nagamatsu led an international field all they way to win the 1971 Japan Grand Prix at the Fuji Speedway, about 65 miles (100 kilometres) west of Tokyo, on Monday (3 May). He was driving a Colt 2000. So too was the driver in second place, Osamu Masuko. The third man home was another Japanese, Tetsu Ikuzawa, in a Lotus 69, giving the first three places to local drives. It was a good day for Japan altogether - the first three cars were all built in Japan too.
SYNOPSIS: In Fuji last Monday, about 100 kilometres west of Tokyo, the 1971 Japanese Grand Prix was held.
More than 75,000 holiday-makers came on a hot day to see an international collection of racing drivers set off on the 35 lap circuit, totalling 210 kilometres. It turned out to be a good day for the local Japanese drivers, and manufacturers. They had twelve drivers in the race, five came from Australia and one from New Zealand, But the Japanese were to make a clean sweep of it. The race began, and almost immediately, Kuniomi Nagamatsu, in a Colt 2000, swept into the lead.
Hot behind Nagamatsu an exciting battle was taking place, through he seemed to be adrift on his own. But at different times during the race, three Australian drivers ran into mechanical trouble and were forced to retire. But the battle for second place was also dominated by Japanese drivers.
First across the line was the Japanese who led all the way, Kuniomi Nagamatsu. Nagamatsu's time for the 210 kilometres was 1 hour 4 minutes and 31 seconds. In second place - another Japanese, Osamu Masuko, also in a Colt 2000, and in a third place, also a local boy, Tetsu Ikuzawa. It was a good day for the locals all round - the first three cars were all made in Japan.
In fourth place was New Zealand's Graeme Lawrence, in a Brabham Lepco 1800. And nearly a minute behind him, Australia's Leo Geoghegan.