Most of you will be quite familiar with Sakurai-San as he was a prominent feature in Best Motoring’s â€œAE86 Clubâ€ series as the creator of Keiichi Tsuchiyaâ€™s Street AE86 and the infamous N2 Battle TRD AE86.
Previous to fame via DVD’s worldwide, he enjoyed a long career with the TRD family in both racing and street car development. Sakurai-San was the â€˜hand of god’ at designing and producing winning N2 AE86 designs throughout the 80â€™s and having had much to do overall with almost all of Toyota’s race and sports cars, he was indeed one of the greatest assets to Toyotaâ€™s motorsports programs.
Also, with rumors and ongoing preparation for AE86â€™s successor within a few years, it is unfortunate that he did not see or lead the project for the return of the new iteration of his ‘heart and soul’ car to the Toyota product line.
Today we must mourn of a loss of a great hero, who brought the AE86 to gloryâ€¦
So to you Mr.Sakurai, we honor your dedication to our beloved hachiroku and hope you may forever Rest in Peace.