During the seventh round of the 2023 season, Liam Lawson, the 21-year-old New Zealand native was engaged in a wheel-to-wheel battle with his teammate, Tomoki Nojiri, in pursuit of Kakunoshin Ota in first.
Heading into Turn 2, Lawson was forced out wide by Noijiri and over the bumpers, losing control of his car as he spun out back onto the track.
Lawson collided with Tadasuke Makino and Yuhi Sekiguchi in a cluster on the track that sent the two cars flying; Sekiguchi’s car finishing completely upside down.
“I have the feeling that I went right to the limit,” Tomoki Nojiri said after the race. “I’m sure Liam felt that I should have given him more space, but it was my intention to fight to the limit.
“Maybe I put him in a tough position, but I didn’t want to make it easy for him, and not leave any more space than necessary. I think I went right to the limit.”
WATCH The moment Liam Lawson spins out causing a multi-car crash in Japan below.
Restarting via the pits, Lawson was able to re-enter the race following the collision but a P13 finish in Japan could have serious consequences for his Super Formula title ambitions.
Speaking to his 159k followers, Lawson said: “I saw an opportunity and I went for it. I’m glad everyone is ok from the crash, and I’m so proud of the team for the work they put in repairing the car”
The Dandelion driver Tadasuke Makino needed help exiting his car and was quickly airlifted to hospital following the crash. Reports suggest he hasn’t suffered any major injuries but he will likely miss next week’s SUPER GT race at Suzuka.
The result puts Lawson eight points adrift from Ritomo Myata in first, with two races to go.