For those with a special interest in Nissan, the first weekend of December is the best month of the year because it means it’s time for NISMO Festival! In Japan, Nissan fanatics flock from every corner of the country to Fuji Speedway. The day is a celebration of all things Nissan with so much going on you really have to rush from one side of the track to the other to make sure you don’t miss anything. The festival started in the late nineties and since then it’s been growing every year with 32,000 people attending the ‘11 show.
No matter how early you arrive, most of the parking lots are already brimming with modified Nissans of every year from your classic Skylines and Fairladys to modern machinery like the R35 and 370Z. But the real reason everyone gets there early is because of the auction, where tons of parts are up for grabs including priceless goodies from Super GT and Super Taikyu race cars.
The pits are where racecars from all eras are displayed. Some of the machinery lined up is enough to make any car crazy guy weak at the knees, for example the JGTC GT500 line-up of R33 and R34s, the legendary Group A racers, plus the Zexel and Calsonic/Impul R32 GT-Rs.
Throughout the day, the track is always busy with racing action. The Nissan Z-car Challenge was great to watch as privately tuned cars went head-to-head. There was also a special treat with the JRZ GT1 R35. Championship driver Michael Krumm took the car out and gave a show to the thousands of fans.
The day concluded with a session dedicated to GT300 and GT500 racers from the last 15 years of the JGTC and Super GT series. It was incredible seeing these cars battle it out and even more unbelievable how much faster the new R35s were compared to the race cars from five years ago!
To much disappointment, NISMO President Shoichi Miyatani announced that there will not be an event next year as the company will be moving its operations over to the new facilities in Tsurumi, Yokohama. So we will have to wait until 2013 for the next one. Needless to say this is one event any Nissan enthusiast should see at least once in his or her life. Start planning for ’13!