What comes to mind when you hear the name, Kamui Kobayashi? Me neither, but he is the latest Japanese F1 driver, so it is only fitting to breakdown his life on his way to F1 fame.
Many people, including this writer, saw Kamui following his father’s path down the sushi trade. Others thought basketball would be his calling, since he hailed from a town near Kobe, Japan. I guess we were all wrong though, since young Kamui was addicted to speed. As all these young bucks do, Kamui worked his way up the carting circuits until he graduated to open wheel racing for Toyota’s Driver Academy.
Let’s go back in time to the Japanese Grand Prix in 2009. Young Kamui competed in the first two free practice sessions in place Timo Glock was had a stomach ache. Timo felt better, and competed in the third free practice session and qualifyin
g, but was injured after crashing in the final session and had to miss the race. Toyota asked for permission to put Kobayashi in the race, but was refused as the rules state a driver participate in at least one Saturday session. He finally made his F1 debut at the 2009 Brazilian Grand Prix, eventually finishing in the points in 9th place. Wow. This fan hopes to see him back in the cockpit at some point in the future.