Yoshida wasn't just born into a motor-racing family, he was born at a race track, specifically Sportsland Sugo. His parents were keen motor-racing enthusiasts and would attend whatever race was going on in Japan, and it was during a endurance race at Sugo when Itsuki's mother unexpectedly went into labour five weeks early. Although there was a nearby ambulance, the labour proved quick and Itsuki was born while Nissan Skylines and Mazda RX-7s were thundering around the Sugo racetrack.
Naturally as Yoshida was brought up in a motor-racing environment, he was keen to pursue motor-racing as a career, and starting driving go-karts from as young as four years old. He then moved onto single seaters and raced in the 2011 FFMazdaM Championship, where he scored three wins including one at the circuit where he was born. Yoshida says Sugo is one of his favourite circuits to drive on, whereas he described the renovated Fuji Raceway as "atrocious."
Yoshida competed in the 2012 FF4M SEA championship and finished 3rd in the championship behind Cooper Lee and Genjo Tse having taken a win at the opening race in Melbourne. He also secured three fastest laps in the opening three races.
Although he wasn't signed to an FF1M team's driver academy, Yoshida took part in the 2013 FF3M season where he partnered fellow FF4M rival Genjo Tse at the Typhoon Racecraft team. Both drivers got off to a dream start as they took one win apiece at the opening meeting in Rio, and both formed a strong working relationship within the team. Ultimately, Yoshida was no match for his teammate and finished 5th in the constructors championship, tied on points with Benjamin Pryor, but ahead on countback by virtue of having one more 4th place than the Welshman.
Yoshida took part in the 2014 FF2M season with the Ajay Motorsports team, where he was once again partnered by Tse. In the first race at the Nurburgring, Yoshida took full advantage of Tomas Gonzalez's mid-race incident with Max Verstappen to lead home an Ajay 1-2. This time around, Yoshida had the measure of Tse as he comfortably outscored the Chinese driver by 33 points, which included a second win during the Monaco sprint race. Despite a few difficult races, particularly during the sprint races, Yoshida finished 5th in the drivers championship.
Yoshida was signed by Shake 'n' Bake as one of the two test drivers for 2014. He took part in the young drivers test at Interlagos following the conclusion of the 2013 season. He was 3rd in the morning session followed by 5th in the afternoon having set almost identical laptimes with the two different engine configurations.
In preparation for the 2014 season, Yoshida took part in all eight sessions of pre-season testing, and proved himself to be an efficient test driver, setting some quick laptimes including 2nd fastest during day two of Barcelona, despite an engine failure near the end of the session.
|2014||FF1M||Shake 'n' Bake||TD|
|2015||FF1M||Shake 'n' Bake|