New Season of Asian GT Series Rocks in Malaysia

Source:Asian GT Series   Post:2012-03-25

      Last weekend at Malaysia’s Sepang International Circuit, 8 Asian GT Series drivers joined the Malaysia Super Series (MSS) in the AGT category. The races were conducted under the typical hot Malaysian temperature plus heavy rain at times for the entire weekend. Luckily for the AGT series, all sessions were raced under dry weather.

Qualifying-- Philip Ma took pole in AGT Category

      With only 25 minutes between official practice and qualifying, so most of the teams had just done a few laps in the practice session returning to the pit earlier to prepare for the qualifying.

       During the 20 minute qualifying, Philip Ma was following closely two Ferrari 458 GT3s from another category with his Audi R8LMS. Samson Chan, Frank Yu and Francis Onda were also fast and staying in the front group. Since the qualifying was ran with other slower group, the traffic hurt the GT drivers’ chances of improving their lap time.

       By the end of the session, Philip Ma took third grid position overall for Sunday’s race, followed by Frank Yu, Francis Onda and Samson Chan. Kenneth Ma gained the 14th position and Diana Rosario was 16th.

Round 1—Philip Ma won AGT Category

       After a smooth start using the rolling format, two Ferrari 458 GT3s and a Lamborghini started to pull away from the rest of the field. Philip Ma’s Audi R8LSM had only 0.5 seconds advantage over Frank  Yu’s Ginetta G50Z GT3. The other Ginetta G50Z GT3, driven by Samson Chan was just behind them waiting for a chance to improve his position.

        Eric Lo retired from the race in lap 2 due to electronic problem. Diana Rosario was given a drive-through penalty for jumping the rolling start. She eventually was disqualified for not paying attention to the flag.

        After exchanging the lead several times, Philip Ma overtook Frank Yu at the last corner to become the winner of the AGT Category, followed by Frank Yu and Samson Chan.

Round 2—Frank Yu stood on top of the podium

        Again, the rolling start format was used for round two. An accident occurred immediately after the start when a Lamborghini lost control and collected two Ferrari 458s, on its way to the pit wall. It bounced back to the left side of the track and collected two more cars in the process.

       Philip Ma, Frank Yu and Samson Chan, right behind the melee, managed to avoid the accident to take first and second positions. After 4 laps with the safety car leading the pack, the race could only run for another three laps due to time constraint. Philip Ma crossed the finish line first followed by Frank Yu and Samson Chan. However, Philip received a 20 second penalty for overtaking under yellow and was given a 20 seconds penalty. The final order was: Frank Yu, Samson Chan and Shaun Thong.

It is worth mentioning that Eric Lo, who started from last on the grid but finished 7th overall, overtook no less than 20 cars during the 7 lap race.

      The Asian GT Series will continue at Sepang International Circuit, May 25th—27th.