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Nissan Museum: Sapporo


In Sapporo, Hikkaido, I left the Snow Festival in hunt of some gloves to stop my paws from freezing, and stumbled upon this Nissan museum of sorts. It only had a few cars, but what great cars it had

This was a GT car, complete with scrapes, exhaust soot and tyre wear

But it wasn’t all modern cars, this 240Z car looked great

But my favorite was this Skyline.

It’s amazing what you find just walking around!

I’ve been to Hiroshima, am now in Kyoto now and am going to B-projects tomorrow, so I have plenty of interesting things coming up for you.

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Otaru Crab


While in Otaru, Hikkaido, I was having dinner and got chatting to the Japanese guy next to me. He shouted me a beer – then he took me to all the flashest bars in town. He invited me to his shop the next morning, but I had no idea what I was in for. It turned out that he was the owner of a fresh seafood shop and restaurant, and he sat me down and fed me a whole crab, half BBQ and half boiled! Thanks, Sato Ichirou!

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A Beginners Guide to Tsukuba Circuit

Having being told that there was something on at Tsukuba Circuit, about an hour and a half by train from
Tokyo, I headed out not knowing what I would find

To my disappointment it was an Alfa Romeo track day

But there was still some cool cars in the pits

Including this fairly extreme MX-5

As hard as I tried, I couldn’t find the owner of this clean TE27 Corolla


It’s amazing what you’ll find in the carpark, like this NSX behind a Ferrari, sandwiched between two trucks!

I then ventured around the back to the small circuit, where a bit of drifting was taking place – a tad more interesting than the Alfas




This my mate Hiko and his s13, that he took me out drifting for the afternoon in.

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KP61 Starlet


I’m a bit of a fan of the old KP61 Starlet, with its light weight and RWD configuration. There is even one that used to compete in D1! On my way out of the JCCA, with a full CF card and no battery power in my Canon, I nabbed this TS Cup styled Starlet with my phone

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Sapporo Snow Festival


While up in Hikkaido, I couldn’t miss the annual Sapporo Snow Festival, that brings over two million visitors to Japan’s fifth largest city and the home of Sapporo Beer. The photos aren’t amazing because I was freezing and miserable, but the snow statues were incredible – about three stories high!

There are also plenty of smaller, more ‘home-made’ statues, these two being my favorite. I tried really hard to find the obligatory Hello Kitty statues, but with no success!

This drain cover caught my eye, with its decorative squid pattern. Looking around, most drain covers in Japan seem to have some sort of interesting design – cool!

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Ebisu Circuit in Winter

Do you get a bit of a sense of awe when you are up high in the mountains, looking out over an incredible view? I know that when my family and I hiked the Overland track in Tasmania over 5 days, when you stopped for a gander the place would take your breath away. I think this is especially true when you haven’t just come to the place for the view, but rather something you enjoy. My point is, you really can’t describe how amazing Ebisu Circuit is until you have been here, but hopefully this picture will help convey my message. Thanks Andy and Em of powervehicles.com and the German and Swiss guys for making it a fun day!

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The Truenos and Skylines of JCCA

As promised, here is a selection of the Truenos and Skylines I saw at the JCCA event. There’s not too much I can say, really, so enjoy!











I’ll do a third post on the JCCA with some other random cool, but keep an eye on motormavens.com over the weekend as I’ve sent my favorite shots of the day to Antonio.

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Japan’s Third Most Beautiful Place: Matsushima

It was a last minute decision to head out to Matsushima, about a half our train ride from Sendai, but definitely worth the effort

I think the real attraction about this place is it’s seaside setting. It is located in Ishinomaki Bay, but has a view out over the Pacific – well, on a clear day at least

The landowners around here put alot more effort into their houses and shops – even little details like this fence

This bridge lead out to a little temple on a tiny island. What was of more interest to me, however, was the oyster shop just out of sight to the left. The shopkeeper insisted on steaming it against my request, but it was very tasty and warmed me up despite the icy ocean gusts of wind


Even the train station was pretty. I think the lack of visibility (due to snow) put a dampener on things, but it was a very enjoyable outing

If ever you are in Japan, don’t give Sendai a miss. I chose it for it’s proximity to Ebisu Circuit, but it’s wide, tree lined streets were beautiful, especially in the snow

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Tokyo Fish Market

Getting up at 4.45am – especially in Tokyo, a night orientated city – is never fun when you have been out the night before.

But Sarah, a fellow Aussie traveler, and I dragged ourselves out of bead to witness one of the most amazing things I have seen here in Japan

The main thing we had come to see was the tuna auctions, that run from 5.15-6.15am. I assume that’s when the fishing boats come in and deliver their load, ready to be auctioned to all the vendors waiting to supply Tokyo’s restaurants

The tuna are then butchered by the vendors. You would expect it to stink – like fishmarkets in Australia – but there was barely a smell, and even then it was a good one, that made you hungry

Look how much care they put into a slab of meat – I watched this man pick little strands out of this fish for 10 minutes. I guess it’s important when it is going to be eaten raw

That’s not all you’ll see though – the shed is huge and you can walk for half an hour looking at all kinds of sea creatures

This photo demonstrates just how fresh some of the product really is

To prove that I was not put off, here is me hunking down on some deliciously fresh sushi in a nearby restaurant

I’ll post up my visit to Japan’s ‘third most beautiful place’ tonight, then continue with some more JCCA coverage in the morning.

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Sunnys of JCCA

When I arrived in Japan, I emailed Alexi from noriyaro.com/ about some ideas of things to see. You can understand my excitement when he told me about the Japanese Classic Car Association meeting! Here is a quick post about the Sunnys (Datsun 1200s) I found.

Kazumasa Hirota’s TS Cup car was my absolute favorite. I have wanted to see it for a long time, and couldn’t believe my luck.

Beneath the bonnet is a pretty special a12, out to 1300cc and with lots of fruit. I’m visiting his shop later in my trip so I’ll fill you in on the details.


This four door Datsun 1000 is the only B10 I found at the meet. I’m fairly sure it packed an a12.

This KB110 had an a15 with quad Mukunis – bike carbs. I’m was hanging out to hear it start up!

This man couldn’t believe that I owned a sunny, done up similar to his.


However this is without doubt the best street Sunny I have ever seen, owned by Kenji Mihashi. It is for sale for 1.6million yen, I believe.

Hirota built the engine for Kenji, and it is a work of art.


An original GX-5 done right.

I couldn’t leave out this FWD, a-series Cherry!

This Sunny looked menacing, but had a fairly standard drive line.

I’ll leave you with this two door. Read the story about it on beeoneoneoh.wordpress.com/

Would you like to see the Skylines and Truenos of the event, too?

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