Toyota Credits “Kamui Effect” for Pole Gap in Fuji WEC Qualifying

Toyota Credits “Kamui Effect” for Pole Gap in Fuji WEC Qualifying

Renowned Qualifying Pace and Local Knowledge

Vasselon, technical director of Toyota Gazoo Racing Europe, put the Japanese driver’s advantage over team-mate Brendon Hartley down to his renowned qualifying pace and local knowledge of the Fuji Speedway.

“He got everything right: the timing, the tyre preparation and the way he handled the circuit,” explained Vasselon.

The “Kamui Effect”

The exceptional performance displayed by Kamui Kobayashi during the qualifying session in the World Endurance Championship (WEC) event at Fuji Speedway has been attributed to what is now known as the “Kamui Effect”.

Kobayashi’s extensive experience and familiarity with the circuit played a crucial role in securing pole position for the Toyota Gazoo Racing team. His impressive qualifying pace and impeccable timing allowed him to outshine his team-mate Brendon Hartley.

According to Vasselon, technical director of Toyota Gazoo Racing Europe, Kobayashi’s success can be largely attributed to his outstanding ability to prepare the tires and maneuver the intricate twists and turns of the challenging track. This local knowledge gave him a competitive edge over other drivers who may not have been as accustomed to the Fuji Speedway’s unique characteristics.

Throughout the history of motorsport, the importance of track familiarity and experience has been evident. Drivers who have a deep understanding of the circuit and its nuances often have a significant advantage in qualifying. Kobayashi’s exceptional performance demonstrates the extent of the “Kamui Effect” and highlights the importance of local knowledge in gaining an edge over competitors.

The Impact of Local Knowledge

As Vasselon explained, drivers who are used to racing at the Fuji Speedway have consistently demonstrated superior performances. The intimate understanding of the track allows them to optimize their timing, tire preparation, and overall race strategy.

Kobayashi’s years spent competing at the Fuji Speedway has equipped him with an unparalleled understanding of the circuit’s twists, turns, and idiosyncrasies. This familiarity enabled him to execute a flawless qualifying session, securing the coveted pole position.

It is not uncommon for drivers with local knowledge to excel at their home circuits. The deep-rooted connection and extensive experience provide them with a unique advantage, as they are able to exploit every subtle detail of the track to gain crucial milliseconds and maximize their performance.


Kamui Kobayashi’s exceptional performance during the qualifying session at Fuji Speedway has been attributed to his qualifying prowess and deep understanding of the track. This “Kamui Effect” highlights the importance of local knowledge and experience in motorsport.

By capitalizing on his extensive familiarity with the Fuji Speedway, Kobayashi was able to outshine his teammate and secure pole position for Toyota Gazoo Racing. The “Kamui Effect” serves as a reminder of the significant impact that track familiarity can have on a driver’s performance.

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