Posted by Anthony CarboneAugust 6, 2009 at 12:53 pm
I don’t know very many people who own a Ferrari F40, let alone have their race winning Ferrari F40 hanging upside down on the ceiling (with working headlights) in the bar of their home. This past January 2009 I made my first trip to Japan to photograph the 2009 Tokyo Auto Salon Review & 2009 Tokyo Auto Salon Pictures. While in Japan I was presented with the opportunity to house visit Ricky Chiba of Team Taisan!
I stayed in Tokyo for 10 days with one of my best friends Adrian Grey, who I grew up with for the first 15 years of my life YET haven’t seen in the last 15 years due to geography. Adrian has been in Japan for 8 years is and successfully co-founded the creative agency SET which specializes in unique marketing solutions SET Japan. Adrian and Sato San were responsible for hooking me up with this home visit and interview with Tokyo Businessman Yasutsume Chiba also know as Ricky Chiba of Team Taisan.
SIDE NOTE about Adrian and his company SET in JAPAN
For those of you unfamiliar with QR Codes (Quick Response Codes), they are small 1 inch x inch dot matrix (two-dimensional bar code) being used extensively in AsiaEurope as a way to connect consumers with mobile websites. They were initially used for tracking parts in vehicle manufacturing. These codes are read by your mobile phone’s camera (when you take a picture of it) which direct you to a specific mobile website for information on a product, service.
SET was asked by Louis Vuitton (See Details HERE) to provide them with a creative QR code in line with a new animation created for them by renowned artist, Takeshi Murakami. The one above was chosen from a final shortlist of options!
SET recently released a new designer QR code produced for MARC BY MARC JACOBS (See Details HERE). Their latest ground-breaking code was hand-drawn to match the feel of the campaign featuring the brand’s mascot Miss Marc and will be used to generate traffic to the soon-to-be-released MARC BY MARC JACOBS mobile website.
Ricky’s custom built house includes a subterranean garage (Batcave) which house many of his Porsche racing cars which include a 956, 962C, GT2, RSR, GT3R, an Indy car, a pristine Bentley Azure, Vipers, Skylines, Jaguars and more. Ricky Chiba’s passion for cars and motor sports started at a young age, and he has some of his first pictures drawn by him on display in his house. His bar area also includes his Porsche 911 996 GT3R winning cup car, the engine from the Ferrari F40 on the ceiling is a center piece under a glass table and race tires converted into coffee tables!
Taisan Kogyi KK is a group of family owned Engineering companies founded by Ricky Chiba’s father. The company is internationally known for its range of specialized pumps used in industry & manufacturing, AND naturally for it’s own motor racing team – Team Taisan!
Team Taisan was formed in 1984 and unlike most first ranked motor racing teams, Team Taisan did not have unlimited financial or major motor manufacturer backing. This is what blows me away and provides further testament to Ricky’s personal motto “keep the dream alive”. To Ricky, racing is a symbol of life’s endless challenges – of the need to always strive to do better, to shoulder disappointments, to sustain an ambition to WIN! AND WIN HE HAS.
Shortly after forming, Team Taisan was quick to enter the lime light by winning the Japanese Sports Car Championship for 3 consecutive years 1985-1987, as well as the Japan Touring Car Championship in 1989. They went on to win the Japanese Grand Touring Championship (JGTC) in 1995, 1996 & 1998. They have also placed 8th in the INDY 500!
With more than 58 Wins in 25 years of racing (again without major motor backing), it was Ricky Chiba’s relentless pursuit of his childhood dream coupled with his passion of motor sports which have led to his amazing success to date!
Many thanks once again to Adrian and Sato San for giving me this amazing opportunity to visit with Ricky Chiba: a passionate entrepreneur, and above all a legend!!