Kobayashi went into the 2020 campaign harbouring ambitions of a first Super Formula race win, but ended up with just one points finish in five starts and his worst championship placing in his four seasons with the KCMG team.
Despite making it to Q3 three times in five attempts, the 34-year-old didn't score points before he took fourth place in the first race of the Suzuka double-header.
Kamui Kobayashi, KCMG
KCMG ran a second car for the first time this season, with 2016 series champion Yuji Kunimoto being brought on board and ending up ninth in the standings with a best finish of third in the first Suzuka race - his first podium finish in two years.
"It’s been a good help," said Kobayashi of having Kunimoto as a teammate. "Without having one driver consistently in the other car it would have been a lot more difficult."
As well as skipping two Super Formula races this year, Kobayashi has also missed the first two tests for Toyota's 2021 Le Mans Hypercar contender to be able to race in Japan.
, Kobayashi believes that trying to combine the two series will remain problematic in 2021.
Still we are in discussions. I think the travel restrictions will be there, this is the biggest problem. With this, I need to miss races.
"Maybe you can manage for a few races, but to compete in such a tight field, it’s not easy."