B-Quik Racing’s first ever visit to Fuji Speedway for the penultimate round of Audi’s ‘R8 Cup’ turned out to be a very challenging weekend, but we never stopped battling back into the picture and in the end Daniel Bilski made a trip to the podium in Race 2 while he retains the championship lead with just one more round to come.
Arriving in Japan in the lead of the championship and with strong momentum building behind our push to win the hotly contested Amateur Cup (AM) driver and team had expected more from the weekend.
But sometimes the blows land heavily in motorsport and both Daniel and the B-Quik mechanics were forced to dig deep almost from the start of the weekend as technical problems wiped out our qualifying session and left the #59 B-Quik Racing Audi R8 LMS Cup not only lodged at the back end of the grid and our championship rivals much better placed to claw back points but also in need major repairs to have it ready to join the grid for Race 1.
The first of the weekend’s two races didn’t see our problems easing up as the Australian was forced to run off the track on several occasions in an attempt to avoid incidents playing out in front of him and then later in the race mechanical issues slowed the car down. However Daniel drove tenaciously and clung on to pick up valuable points after finishing in fifth place.
“It sure was a tough weekend and qualifying was a nightmare as after my two warm up laps my power steering started to fail on my fast lap,” said Daniel Bilski. “A cracked hose meant steering oil was leaking and spraying onto the rear tyre and the car was sliding around a lot. With the steering progressively failing the car was nearly impossible to drive. Once the steering pump completely failed towards the end of my first proper lap, I could not do another lap. As I came into pit the car caught fire due to steering fluid igniting in the engine bay. Putting the fire out meant a big mess to clean up in the engine bay as well as the repairs needed so it would be a long night for the team.”
In the second race matters however improved as Daniel quickly battled up the order all the way to the AM class lead and after an action packed race with more incidents that he had to avoid he came home in third place to make the podium and, even more crucially, collect a further helping of championship points.
Despite a tough weekend Daniel really dug in, he never gave up the chase and in the end he scored a decent tally of championship points in both races. That means, while the second placed driver in the AM championship has narrowed the deficit to 19-points, Daniel still retains the classification lead to take into the season’s double-header closer at Shanghai Circuit in just under three weeks time.
“A big thank you to the B-Quik team for their hard work over the weekend. It was a tough one so a podium was a good reward for the team and that also gave us some very valuable points after the disappointment of Race 1. With a reduced points lead, Shanghai will be a very intense finale to the season but we will do whatever it takes to keep our lead and be on the top step at the end. It has been a fantastic season so far with B-Quik Racing and I’m looking forward to the next race.”
Daniel has 159 points while his closest rival, Alex Au, has 140 points with the third placed driver, Johnson Huang, on 124 points. While the latter driver mathematically still remains in the title chase, Alex is the only serious rival left for the Australian. Daniel still has a decent margin, but it’s less than we would have liked and there is simply no margin for any errors.
B-Quik Racing will have to be right on top of our game if we are to bring home a major title in our first season of international competition, an achievement that wasn’t even being considered when the ‘R8 Cup’ year kicked off at Zhuhai Circuit in China back in March.
But B-Quik Racing is built on the desire to fight, to challenge against the odds and to beat the best and so we can’t wait to get back out on track in Shanghai at the end of the month.