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HONDA announces racing plans, aiming for Super GT title

Kogure to drive Dome NSX, Dufour in at Kunimitsu

February 26. HONDA MOTOR CO., LTD announced today its motorsport plans for the 2005 season.In Super GT, the company will participate in GT 500 with its 'Honda NSX-GT project', running 4 cars from three teams, receiving the cooperation of M-TEC and Dome.
Managing Director, Mr Takeo Fukui commented: 'We want to put the humiliation of last year behind us, and have a newly-developed NSX with which we will compete this season. To increase the number of our fans, we will put in a great effort at events. We are eager to show everyone exciting racing this year.'
Last year's Dome Racing and ARTA teams will this season run under one banner: Team Honda Racing. Aguri Suzuki, representative of the outfit for this project explains: 'What ran as two separate teams last season, we will operate as one team this year.' The other two cars are run by Nakajima Racing and Team Kunimitsu.
As for the drivers, the ARTA NSX of Team Honda Racing has Daisuke Ito joined by newcomer Jonathan Cochet, while Takeshi Kogure joins Ryo Michigami in the TAKATA Dome NSX. Tsugio Matsuda and Andre Lotterer continue their partnership from last year in the EPSON NSX, while Team Kunimitsu has a completely new line up, featuring the all-French combination of Sebastien Philippe (who competed in the TAKATA Dome NSX last year) and Jeremie Dufour, formerly in the SARD Supra.

Team Honda Racing representative Aguri Suzuki: 'This year, M-TEC, Dome and our laboratory (HONDA) have all made huge efforts in our goal for the 'Revival of a strong NSX' - particularly after such a disappointing result last season. As soon as you see the new car, you will readily understand our enthusiasm for it. The team will also be bolstered by the name, Honda Racing, and it is important for us that real progress is made this year. Our aim is for both the teams' and drivers' titles. As representative for Honda, I will be at all events this year. We are looking forward to your continued support.'
The cars will run the same V6 3-litre twin turbo engines as last season, with major improvements in the areas of chassis and aerodynamics.
Also the team's development driver, Team Honda Racing ace Ryo Michigami said: 'Last year was probably the hardest season we've ever had, though this year already development is going well and we are making progress. I think we're not far off having a winning machine, but we can't relax yet, there'll be more and more to do from here on. Naturally, I'd like our progress to come as quickly as possible. We want fans to again think 'Strong Honda' and to see we're back with a competitive package and are making progress. We should have at least 2 wins this year. Of course, all season long we'll be fighting for every single championship point. Our goal is the title.'





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Excerpt from Honda Motorsports Activities 2005 release

- Super GT
Four cars from three teams will compete in "Honda NSX-GT project" cars in the GT 500 class of this year's Super GT championship. The teams will receive support from M-TEC and Dome.Improvements have been made to the 3-litre Twin turbo V6, as well in the body and the car's cornering characteristics. The car is aiming for the teams' and drivers' titles.


Teams Drivers
Team Honda Racing #8 Daisuke Ito(J) / Jonathan Cochet (France)
#18 Ryo Michigami(J) / Takeshi Kogure(J)
EPSON Nakajima Racing #32 Tsugio Matsuda(J) /Andre Lotterer (Germany)
Team Kunimitsu #100 Sebastien Philippe (France) / Jeremie Dufour (France
 
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