Matsushita eyes top-five on Super Formula return

Jamie Klein
·1-min read

, who took a shock pole on his series debut last month at Sugo.

It's understood the Brazilian driver was forced to return to Europe earlier than planned ahead of joining the Dragon Formula E team for the 2020/21 season to undertake private testing.

Matsushita concluded his first day of running for B-Max in ninth place overall across two practice sessions, around seven tenths slower than pacesetter Nirei Fukuzumi.

Nobuharu Matsushita(Buzz Racing with B-Max)

Nobuharu Matsushita(Buzz Racing with B-Max)<span class="copyright">Masahide Kamio</span>
Nobuharu Matsushita(Buzz Racing with B-Max)Masahide Kamio

Masahide Kamio

Matsushita's only previous experience of the SF19 was in last year's post-season rookie test at Suzuka, where he drove for the returning Drago Corse team. 

"I absolutely love this car," the 27-year-old continued. "It’s very high-grip compared to F2. It’s also very sensitive to set-up changes. You can feel even small differences in set-up.

"But if you don’t do well in qualifying your weekend is over because it’s so hard to overtake on this track. The Overtake System is not that good, so maybe the race will be a bit boring. In terms of excitement in the race, F2 is better with the DRS and the [high-degradation] tyres."

Matsushita admitted how he fares on Sunday could have a bearing on whether he can keep his seat at B-Max for the remainder of the season and beyond.

"I don’t know anything about the contract," he said. "But if I do a good job it’s good for [my chances of being with] the team for next year. That would be a good opportunity for me."