Hideki Noda

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For the Japanese playwright, see Hideki Noda (playwright).
Hideki Noda
Hideki Noda 2009 1000km of Okayama.jpg
Born (1969-03-07) 7 March 1969 (age 45)
Osaka, Japan
Formula One World Championship career
Nationality Japan Japanese
Active years 1994
Teams Larrousse
Races 3
Championships 0
Wins 0
Podiums 0
Career points 0
Pole positions 0
Fastest laps 0
First race 1994 European Grand Prix
Last race 1994 Australian Grand Prix
24 Hours of Le Mans career
Participating years 20082010
Teams Kruse Schiller Motorsport (KSM)
Best finish 26th (2010)
Class wins 0

Hideki Noda (野田 英樹 Noda Hideki?, born 7 March 1969 in Osaka, Japan[1]) is a racing driver from Japan. He participated in three Formula One Grands Prix, debuting in the 1994 European Grand Prix, but did not score any championship points. He replaced Yannick Dalmas in the Larrousse car for the last three Grands Prix of the season, but failed to finish in any of the three races. In 1995, he joined Simtek as a test driver, hoping to get some races in. However, the Kobe earthquake and the folding of the Simtek team ended his brief career.

A year later, Noda went to America and raced in the Indy Lights and became the only Japanese driver to win a CART-sanctioned event. After a few years in America, Noda moved back to Japan, where he drove a Team Cerumo Toyota Supra with Hironori Takeuchi. In the annual non-championship All-Star event at Aida, Noda and Takeuchi were forced out with mechanical problems. In 1999, he joined the Esso Tiger Team Le Mans under Koichiro Mori, again to drive a Toyota Supra, ex-Australian V8 Supercar driver Wayne Gardner. The highlight of their season was a win at Fuji. With 33 points they were equal 17th in the series.

In 2002, Noda returned to the United States and drove in six Indy Racing League IndyCar Series races for Convergent Racing and Indy Regency Racing with a best finish of 10th at Phoenix International Raceway while with Convergent. He also competed in a round of the inaugural A1 Grand Prix season with Japan at Lausitz, where he scored three points for the Japanese team. He has also been seen in the Zytek sports-prototype in 2006.[citation needed]

Career[edit]

Before Formula One[edit]

Noda began his motor racing career through karting. In 1982 he competed in the Kansai Kart Land J-class category, where he was champion.[2] He then took out the Japanese National A-1 class championship the next year, and won the Japanese National A-1 West Division series in 1985.[2] Moving up to the A-2 class for 1986, Noda was Japanese champion again, before going to Japanese Formula Junior 1600 for 1987, where he won four times and was the top rookie.[2]

He moved up into the highly competitive world of Japanese Formula Three in 1988. Driving for the JAX Racing Team in a Reynard 873 with a Toyota engine,[3] he came fifth as a 19-year-old in his very first race at Suzuka, and repeated the feat in round four, also at Suzuka. Those were his only two points-scoring finishes; a tally of four points; finishing equal 10th in the series.[3]

After then competing in the prestigious Macau Formula Three event at the end of 1988, and harbouring ambitions of Formula One, in 1989 Noda moved to Europe.[3] He raced in both the British Vauxhall Lotus championship (where he came fifth overall with a win at Donnington plus two third places, at Donington and Mondello Park in Ireland), and in the GM Opel Lotus Euroseries, where he was ninth in the standings with second place finishes at Paul Ricard and Zandvoort.[3]

These exploits were impressive enough to land him a ride in British Formula Three for 1990 with Alan Docking Racing in a Ralt RT34 Mugen.[4] He scored eight points that season, placing 12th in a year dominated by Mika Häkkinen and Mika Salo, but he stayed with the same team for 1991.[4] Upgrading to a Ralt RT35, Noda moved up to seventh overall, scoring 36 points, including a win at Silverstone.[4] This was the first time that a Japanese driver had won an Formula Three race outside of his homeland.[4]

By 1992 he was racing in Formula 3000 for the Mike Earle's 3001 International team in a Reynard 92D Mugen, but here he found the going much harder.[4] In ten rounds he failed to qualify once, at Hockenheim, but when he did make it onto the grid he never reached higher than 21st.[4] His first season was also marred by two accidents at Barcelona and Enna, although he became more reliable towards the end of the year, climaxing in an eighth place finish at Magny-Cours.[4]

In 1993 Noda joined the TOM'S team in a Reynard 93D Cosworth, and although like in 1992 he failed to score any points, he managed to qualify in the top 20 a few times.[5] He also did a good job of bringing the car home, a highlight being ninth at Pau.[5] In Noda's third season in F3000, he switched to the Forti Corse team to drive a Reynard 94D Cosworth as team-mate to Pedro Diniz.[5]

The pair did well at the Silverstone opener, Noda qualified fourth and Diniz started sixth, with Noda eventually finishing fifth and scoring his first Formula 3000 points.[5] He then had a mid-season trot in which he qualified fifth, sixth and fifth respectively at Barcelona, Enna and Hockenheim, scoring a podium finish with third place at Enna.[5] He ended the year in equal ninth spot with six points.[5]

Formula One[edit]

By the end of 1994, though, Noda had landed a Formula One seat. Although his results had not been unimpressive, it was more by virtue of the sponsorship money he brought that he got himself into the financially troubled Larrousse team towards the end of the season. Still a relative unknown on the world stage, though, Noda himself was well aware of the fact that expectations of him were low. As he said himself: "People think I'm useless."[6]

Despite the limitations of the Larrousse LH94 Ford HB V8 package.[6] As team-mate to Érik Comas, at the 1994 European Grand Prix at Jerez, there were fears that both he and fellow newcomer Domenico Schiattarella would be so far off the pace that they would not beat Bertrand Gachot's horrible Pacific to the last grid spot.[6]

Such fears proved unfounded, as Noda qualified within a second of Comas' time, and was the 25th fastest.[7] But when David Brabham's best time in the Simtek was disallowed, Noda was bumped up to 24th on the grid, alongside Comas in 23rd.[7] But in another department, he had comprehensively thrashed his more experienced team-mate.[7] Under braking, he was pulling 4.1g, a Larrousse record, whereas Comas often pulled less than 3g. It showed how quickly he had got the hang of powerful Formula One brakes.[7]

In the race, he stalled on the grid, the same as his countryman, Ukyo Katayama.[7] Both were push-started on their way, but while Katayama proceeded to storm back through the field to finish in seventh, Noda could do no more than tour at the back.[7] That he only did for 10 laps, before he suffered a terminal gearbox problem and began limping back to the pits.[7]

Yet as he did so, the front-running pair of Rubens Barrichello's Jordan and Nigel Mansell's Williams came up to lap him. Noda was a touch too slow in getting out of the way, and both Barrichello and Mansell had to guess which side to pass. Rubens pulled to the right and safely negotiated his way around the Larrousse, but all Nigel could do was lock his brakes and ram the back of the Japanese driver.[8]

Noda pulled in to retire, and Mansell eventually had to come in for a new nosecone, ruining his race and denting his reputation.[8] Noda's luck would then get no better at his home race in Japan, where he qualified 23rd, once again only one spot off Comas, although this time he was only 0.013s behind the Frenchman. His experience at Suzuka was obviously paying rich dividends, but when torrential rain drenched the circuit on race day, it would suddenly be a whole new ball game.[8]

The opening laps saw cars slide off the circuit, but he would never get the choice to join the chaos, as his fuel injection system failed on the very first lap.[9] In fact the entire Japanese contingent suffered a dreadful race, especially when both Katayama and rookie Taki Inoue then aquaplaned into the pit wall at the end of lap three in separate incidents. Within the first few minutes all the local heroes were out of the race.

The last race in Adelaide was little better.[9] By now Comas had gone, replaced by Swiss pay driver Jean-Denis Délétraz.[9] Noda outqualified his team-mate by two grid positions and almost 2.3 seconds. From 23rd on the grid, he was passed off the line by the Simteks of Brabham and Schiattarella, and he trailed around in second-last spot for 18 laps before an oil leak brought his race to a premature end once again.[9]

Still, in his three outings he had done a respectable enough job, and he was thought to have been in the frame for a few Formula One seats come 1995. As it turned out, Larrousse folded, and the only deal that came his way was to drive the Simtek in the second half of 1995 as Jos Verstappen's team-mate, with Schiattarella racing in the first half of the year. Even so, the deposit Noda paid for the seat and the money he was going to bring to the team was of massive importance to the cash-strapped operation.

However, things quickly turned sour. Although he watched the first few races of the 1995 season with envy as Jos Verstappen and Schiattarella demonstrated the promise of the new car, the truth was that his funds had taken a battering after the devastating Kobe earthquake.[10] It contributed to Simtek's mounting financial problems, resulting in the team's closure after Monaco. Noda never even got to drive the car; he was forced to forfeit his deposit and the rest of his 1995 went up in smoke.[10] The Forti team attempted to enter him in the 1995 Pacific Grand Prix in place of Roberto Moreno, but he was denied an FIA Super Licence despite his previous experience.[11] He was also considered for a drive at the team in 1996, but the seat went to Luca Badoer instead.[12]

After Formula One[edit]

American Open Wheelers (1996–1997)[edit]

With that, Noda was out of the picture as far as Formula One was concerned, so for 1996 he went across the Atlantic to try his luck in Indy Lights in America.[13] Adapting quickly,[13] he finished third on the streets of Toronto in his first year, and in 1997 continued in the same category, driving a Lola T97/20 for the Indy Regency Racing as team-mate to Mexican driver Rodolfo Lavin.[13]

1997 was actually a very competitive year in Indy Lights,[13] with future CART drivers: Cristiano da Matta; Tony Kanaan and Helio Castroneves all racing for leading teams. Noda was also not the only Japanese driver in the entry lists, with ex-Formula One driver, Naoki Hattori and the unrelated Shigeaki Hattori also in the field. In the end Castroneves and da Matta took three wins each, but despite only taking one victory Kanaan's consistency won him the series. Noda was ninth with 51 points.

Though he was usually a midfield runner, he did qualify second and finish third on the streets of Vancouver, but it was at Portland where he had his fifteen minutes of fame. There he also started from second on the grid, but come race day it rained and Noda could put his European experience to good use. After dicing with Castroneves for most of the race, he passed the Brazilian on lap 22 for the lead, and when the race was stopped after 29 laps, Noda was declared the winner.

It was the first, and to this point, only time a Japanese driver has won a CART-sanctioned event.[14] In fact it may arguably be the best victory by a Japanese driver in open wheelers on the international stage yet,[citation needed] although it is a result which is largely forgotten. Those seven laps in front were the only ones Noda led all year. Despite his winning performance, he was never on the Champ Car shopping lists, and by 1998 the American adventure was looking a bit like a dead end.

Back To Japan (1998–2001)[edit]

In 1998 he returned to Japan, and in the four seasons since has had parallel careers in Formula Nippon and the Japanese GT Championship. In the latter he drove a Team Cerumo Toyota Supra in 1998 with Hironori Takeuchi, finishing fifth at Motegi and third at Sugo, scoring 22 points for equal 21st overall. The season was marred, though, by the abandonment of the Fuji round due to fog, and in the annual non-championship All-Star event at Aida, Noda and Takeuchi were forced out with mechanical problems.

In 1999 he joined the Esso Tiger Team Le Mans under Koichiro Mori, again to drive a Toyota Supra, this time alongside ex-500 cc motorcycle World Champion and Australian V8 Supercar driver Wayne Gardner. In truth it was an inconsistent season, with several rather average results offset by fastest lap at Sugo (despite a retirement), fifth at both Mine and the non-championship Fuji 1000 km, and, in the highlight of their season, a fine win plus fastest lap for Noda at Fuji.[15] With 33 points they were equal 17th in the series.

The combination of Noda, Gardner and the Esso Le Mans am remained the same for 2000, and this time consistency was their key, finishing six of the seven races in the top 10, with an eighth at Motegi, seventh places at Sugo and Aida, sixth at Suzuka, fifth at Mine and fourth at Fuji. However, they were unable to make it onto the podium, and with 35 points they could only rank equal 14th overall. Also, at the All-Star event held at Sepang, Noda and Gardner took ninth place, albeit a lap down.[16]

Noda also competed in the Formula Nippon series from 1998 to 2001. In 1998 he drove for the Cosmo Oil Racing Team in the standard Lola T98/51 chassis with the obligatory Mugen engine, but apart from a third at Sugo and a smattering of fifths and sixths, there were also three spin-outs at Mine and Suzuka, the first of which Noda crashed twice. With nine points he could only manage 10th overall.[17]

In 1999 he switched to the Be Brides Impul team. Starting the season in a Lola B99/51 Mugen, he could not break into the top ten in either qualifying or races, and in midstream the team changed to a Reynard 99L chassis. This brought about an upturn in fortunes, and towards the end of the year Noda recorded a sixth at Suzuka, second at Mine and ninth at Motegi, and with seven points ended up in 11th position.[17]

A full season in a Reynard 99L Mugen for the Le Mans team in 2000 saw Noda jump up to fifth place with 15 points, with a sixth at Fuji, fifths at Suzuka and Motegi, third at Mine and second at Suzuka. But this was very little compared to another ex-Formula One driver, Toranosuke Takagi, who won eight of the ten rounds for the Nakajima team, scoring a mammoth 86 points to second-placed Michael Krumm's 34.[16]

Noda driving the Lola B05/40-Mazda of Kruse Schiller Motorsports in the 2008 Le Mans Series season

After the improvement of 2000, though, in 2001 Noda joined the DoCoMo Dandelion Racing team, piloting a Reynard 2KL Mugen. In an ambitious operation, the team also ran an older Reynard 99L for one-time Benetton test driver Hidetoshi Mitsusada and Polish racer Jaroslav Wierczuk. It was probably too much for the outfit, and it showed as Noda failed to score any points at all, retiring from six of the 10 rounds, despite a best qualifying effort of 3rd at Motegi.[16]

Noda returned to the United States in 2002 and drove in six Indy Racing League races for Convergent Racing and Indy Regency Racing (whom Noda drove for in Indy Lights) with a best finish of 10th at Phoenix International Raceway while with Convergent.

A1 Grand Prix (2005–2009)[edit]

In 2005, Noda was announced as the second driver for the Japan entry for the 2005-06 A1 Grand Prix season, second to Ryo Fukuda. His first race for the team came at the second round at Lausitz, where he qualified in 21st place. In sprint race, Noda managed to move up 11 places to finish 10th and score one point for Japan. The feature race saw Noda finish one place higher in ninth place, scoring a further two points for the Japanese A1 GP team. Japan finished 21st at the end of the season, with eight points.

Racing record[edit]

Complete International Formula 3000 results[edit]

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Entrant 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 DC Points
1992 3001 International SIL
Ret
PAU
DNQ
CAT
Ret
PER
Ret
HOC
DNS
NÜR
14
SPA
17
ALB
12
NOG
Ret
MAG
8
NC 0
1993 TOM's DON
Ret
SIL
11
PAU
9
PER
HOC
Ret
NÜR
19
SPA
15
MAG
Ret
NOG
11
NC 0
1994 Forti Corse SIL
5
PAU
Ret
CAT
Ret
PER
3
HOC
Ret
SPA
7
EST
16†
MAG
11
10th 6

Complete Japanese Formula 3000/Formula Nippon results[edit]

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Entrant 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 DC Points
1993 TOM'S SUZ
FUJ
MIN
SUZ
AUT
SUG
FUJ
FUJ
SUZ
FUJ
19
SUZ
Ret
- 0
1998 Team Cerumo SUZ
5
MIN
Ret
FUJ
5
MOT
6
SUZ
Ret
SUG
3
FUJ
C
MIN
Ret
FUJ
9
SUZ
Ret
10th 9
1999 Impul SUZ
Ret
MOT
16
MIN
13
FUJ
14
SUZ
6
SUG
Ret
FUJ
Ret
MIN
2
MOT
9
SUZ
11
11th 7
2000 Team LeMans SUZ
Ret
MOT
10
MIN
3
FUJ
15
SUZ
2
SUG
Ret
MOT
5
FUJ
6
MIN
17
SUZ
5
5th 15
2001 DoCoMo Team Dandelion SUZ
Ret
MOT
Ret
MIN
Ret
FUJ
13
SUZ
12
SUG
Ret
FUJ
13
MIN
Ret
MOT
Ret
SUZ
11
NC 0
2003 Team MOHN SUZ
6
FUJ
10
MIN
8
MOT
Ret
SUZ
12
SUG
Ret
FUJ
Ret
MIN
10
MOT
Ret
SUZ
10
13th 1
2004 Team MOHN SUZ
9
SUG
8
MOT
11
SUZ
Ret
SUG
12
MIN
Ret
SEP
Ret
MOT
11
SUZ
14
NC 0
2005 Team MOHN MOT
Ret
SUZ
Ret
SUG
10
FUJ
Ret
SUZ
9
MIN
Ret
FUJ
10
MOT
8
SUZ
13
NC 0

Complete Formula One results[edit]

(key)

Year Entrant Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 WDC Points
1994 Tourtel Larrousse F1 Larrousse LH94 Ford V8 BRA
PAC
SMR
MON
ESP
CAN
FRA
GBR
GER
HUN
BEL
ITA
POR
EUR
Ret
JPN
Ret
AUS
Ret
NC 0

American open–wheel racing results[edit]

(key) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Indy Lights[edit]

Year Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 Rank Points
1996 Indy Regency Racing MIA
11
LBH
16
NAZ
7
MIS
13
MIL
12
DET
16
POR
20
CLE
5
TOR
3
TRO
12
VAN
13
LS
15
14th 34
1997 Indy Regency Racing MIA
18
LBH
19
NAZ
16
SAV
6
STL
16
MIL
14
DET
14
POR
1
TOR
15
TRO
6
VAN
3
LS
12
FON 9th 51

Complete JGTC/Super GT results[edit]

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Team Car Class 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 DC Pts
1998 Team Cerumo Toyota Supra GT500 SUZ
9
FUJ
C
SEN
Ret
FUJ
Ret
MOT
5
MIN
12
SUG
3
11th 22
1999 Team LeMans Toyota Supra GT500 SUZ
FUJ
8
SUG
16
MIN
5
FUJ
1
TAI
9
MOT
13
12th 33
2000 Team LeMans Toyota Supra GT500 MOT
8
FUJ
4
SUG
7
FUJ
15
TAI
7
MIN
5
SUZ
6
9th 35
2001 Team LeMans Toyota Supra GT500 TAI
Ret
FUJ
1
SUG
5
FUJ
3
MOT
13
SUZ
Ret
MIN
14
7th 40
2002 TOM'S Toyota Supra GT500 TAI
FUJ
SUG
SEP
FUJ
MOT
MIN
SUZ
16
NC 0
2003 Team Tsuchiya Toyota Supra GT500 TAI
FUJ
Ret
SUG
FUJ
FUJ
MOT
AUT
SUZ
NC 0
2005 Team Tsuchiya Toyota Supra GT500 OKA
FUJ
SEP
SUG
MOT
FUJ
Ret
AUT
SUZ
20th 1
2006 Team Tsuchiya Toyota Supra GT500 SUZ
OKA
FUJ
SEP
SUG
SUZ
Ret
MOT
AUT
FUJ
28th 5
2012 Hitotsuyama Racing Audi R8 LMS GT300 OKA
18
FUJ
16
SEP
SUG
SUZ
FUJ
AUT
MOT
NC 0

Indy Racing League[edit]

Year Team Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 Rank Points
2002 Convergent Racing G-Force Chevrolet HMS
23
PHX
10
FON
25
NZR INDY TXS PPI RIR KAN NSH MIS KTY       32nd 54
Indy Regency Racing                         STL
17
CHI
24
TX2
27

Complete A1 Grand Prix results[edit]

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Entrant 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 DC Points
2005–06 Japan GBR
SPR

GBR
FEA

GER
SPR

10
GER
FEA

9
POR
SPR

POR
FEA

AUS
SPR

AUS
FEA

MYS
SPR

MYS
FEA

UAE
SPR

UAE
FEA

RSA
SPR

RSA
FEA

IDN
SPR

IDN
FEA

MEX
SPR

MEX
FEA

USA
SPR

USA
FEA

CHN
SPR

CHN
FEA

21st 8

24 Hours of Le Mans results[edit]

Year Team Co-Drivers Car Class Laps Pos. Class
Pos.
2008 Germany Kruse Schiller Motorsport France Jean de Pourtales
Denmark Allan Simonsen
Lola B05/40-Mazda LMP2 147 DNF DNF
2009 France Jean de Pourtales
Hong Kong Matthew Marsh
Lola B07/46-Mazda 261
2010 France Jean de Pourtales
United Kingdom Jonathan Kennard
Lola B07/40-Judd 291 26th 10th

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Jenkins, Richard. "The World Championship drivers - Where are they now?". OldRacingCars.com. Retrieved 2007-07-29. 
  2. ^ a b c Hideki Noda Biography (1982-1987) F1Rejects.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006
  3. ^ a b c d Hideki Noda Biography (1988-1989) F1Rejects.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Hideki Noda Biography (1990-1992) F1Rejects.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006
  5. ^ a b c d e f Hideki Noda Biography (1993-1994) F1Rejects.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006
  6. ^ a b c Hideki Noda Biography (1994-Larrousse) F1Rejects.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006
  7. ^ a b c d e f g Hideki Noda Biography (1994) (Hideki comes to grips...) F1Rejects.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006
  8. ^ a b c Hideki Noda Biography (1994 Clashes with Mansell...) F1Rejects.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006
  9. ^ a b c d Hideki Noda Biography (1994 Can't join the apuaplane party...) F1Rejects. Retrieved 7 July 2006
  10. ^ a b Hideki Noda Biography (1995 Simtek) F1Reject.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006
  11. ^ Dodgins, Tony (1995-10-26). "Pacific GP: F1 team by team". Autosport 141 (4): 41, 43. 
  12. ^ "Noda close to Forti". Grandprix.com. 1996-01-15. Retrieved 2006-11-24. 
  13. ^ a b c d Hideki Noda Biography (1996-1997) F1Rejects.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006
  14. ^ Hikeki Noda Biography (1997) F1Rejects.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006
  15. ^ Hideki Noda Biography (1998-1999) F1Reject.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006
  16. ^ a b c Hideki Noda Biography (2000-2001) F1Rejects.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006
  17. ^ a b Hideki Noda Biography (1998-99 Noda down in midfield with Impul...) F1Rejects.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006

References[edit]

All Formula One race and championship results are taken from:

  • Official Formula 1 Website. Archive: Results for 1994 season www.formula1.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006

All IRL race and championship results are taken from:

  • Official IRL Website. Archive: Results for 2002 season IndyCar.com. Retrieved 7 July 2006

External links[edit]