Eurasia Motorsport’s Aidan Read wrapped up his second season in the Formula Masters China Series (FMCS) with another hat trick of wins, storming to victory in Race 17 and 18 today at the Penbay International Circuit in Chinese Taipei. The Australian finished the 2016 season second in the overall Drivers Classification, eight points behind champion Philip Hamprecht.
It was also a good weekend for Kim Jeong Tae of Cebu Pacific Air by PRT after he finished second in Races 17 and 18, taking podium finishes in all three races of the weekend for the first time in his career. Sean Zheng of Absolute Racing snatched the final podium place in Race 18 to secure the Chinese Drivers title and finish the season third in the overall Drivers Classification.
Stephen Hong of Super License, who took the Best Chinese Driver award in Malaysia last month, took third in Race 17. This time around the highly-prized award went to his teammate, James Yu, who finished fifth and four in Race 17 and 18 respectively.
At the 2016 FMCS prize-giving ceremony, as well as receiving their trophies, the top three in the Drivers Classification were rewarded with substantial opportunities for career advancement courtesy of the Audi R8 LMS Cup and Porsche Carrera Cup Asia.
Newly-crowned FMCS champion Philip Hamprecht will contest the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia 2017 season with sponsorship of USD100,000 from the Porsche China Junior Development Program. Runner-up Aidan Read will be invited to attend the Nurburgring 24 Hours in 2017 by the Audi R8 LMS Cup.
The series has also awarded the top three a test in 2017. The Porsche Carrera Cup Asia will invite all three to visit the FIA WEC round in Shanghai next month.
Read’s fastest lap in Race 16 yesterday saw him start from pole position, and his rivals were not able to challenge him on his charge to the flag. Kim moved up from third to the front row in the grid, after Hamprecht withdrew from today’s races with a back injury, and crossed the line second after an untroubled run.
Zheng was embroiled in a mid-race battle with Hong and Yu when the Safety Car was called out after a car stopped on track. While Hong held on to third, Zheng got past Yu on the last lap, denying him a podium finish.
“I was surprised to find out this morning that Philip [Hamprecht] wasn’t going to be starting,” said Read. “It’s a bit unfortunate. I thought it would have been another good battle as we’ve got the speed to win in all circumstances. It was a great race. That’s five in a row now, so hopefully this afternoon we will have another race like that. We know what to do. I hope we will come back with six from six. This afternoon it is going to be a long race and it is not going to be easy, but we are very comfortable with the car. We will be in a good spot starting from what I believe the pole position, so it should be a good race.’’
Read started from pole position with Zheng, following Hamprecht’s withdrawal, starting alongside. After a good getaway, Read pulled out a convincing gap, and an unchallenged run to the flag saw him achieve his second hat trick of wins in an FMCS weekend.
Kim was determined to fight for a podium finish, mounting a challenge to Zheng who made a small mistake at T5 ion the opening lap. The successful move saw Kim gain a position which he held to the end of the race.
“I started from the 3rd,” explained second place finisher Kim Jeong Tae. “And it was not really a good start. But Zheng made a little mistake at T5 and I overtook him. Aidan took this chance to pull out a gap. I really tried to push hard to finish in 2nd. I am really happy. It’s my first triple podium and good way to finish the season.’’
James Yu, Chinese Best Driver winner was also happy: ‘’It’s been a good weekend for me. Obviously it was the most difficult weekend for me. This is my first time in Taiwan. This track is very difficult to learn with so many turns to learn and relies so much on physical strength. All my team mates are so competitive. It was a great experience to learn from them. Overall this season has been great and everyone did a lot to support me. I gained a lot of experience that will surely help me in future.’’
Race 17 Results
|1||24||Aidan READ/AUS||Eurasia Motorsport||14:21.504|
|2||1||KIM Jeong Tae/KOR||Cebu Pacific Air by PRT||+3.058|
|3||17||HONG Shijie/CHN||Super License||+9.044|
|4||6||ZHENG Shangguan/CHN||Absolute Racing||+9.332|
|5||88||James YU/CHN||Super License||+10.753|
|6||55||Takashi HATA/JPN||Super License||+13.406|
|7||68||Jacques WANG/TPE||DP Motorsport||+1:25.715|
|8||9||HU Nan/CHN||DP Motorsport||+2:15.071|
|–||91||HUANG Chi/TPE||Super License||DNF|
Fastest Lap: Aidan READ / Eurasia Motorsport / 1:39.554 / top speed at 127.541k/h
Race 18 Results
|1||24||Aidan READ/AUS||Eurasia Motorsport||21:34.809|
|2||1||KIM Jeong Tae/KOR||Cebu Pacific Air by PRT||+17.984|
|3||6||ZHENG Shangguan/CHN||Absolute Racing||+23.634|
|4||88||James YU/CHN||Super License||+35.201|
|5||17||HONG Shijie/CHN||Super License||+35.783|
|6||55||Takashi HATA/JPN||Super License||+42.053|
|7||9||HU Nan/CHN||DP Motorsport||–1圈–|
|8||91||HUANG Chi/TPE||Super License||+46.658|
|9||68||Jacques WANG/TPE||DP Motorsport||+48.206|
Fastest Lap: Aidan READ / Eurasia Motorsport / 1:39.315 / top speed at 127.848k/h
Formula Masters China Series Points Classification after Race 16:
2016 Drivers Classification (Top 5)
|1||5||Philip HAMPRECHT/GER||Absolute Racing||226|
|2||24||Aidan READ/AUS||Eurasia Motorsport||218|
|3||6||ZHENG Shangguan/CHN||Absolute Racing||172|
|4||1||KIM Jeong Tae/KOR||Cebu Pacific Air by PRT||159|
|5||88||James YU/CHN||Super License||108|
2016 Best Chinese Driver Trophy
|1||6||ZHENG Shangguan/CHN||Absolute Racing||244|
|2||17||HONG Shijie/CHN||Super License||209|
|3||88||James YU/CHN||Super License||202|
|4||3||Jeffrey YE/CHN||Cebu Pacific Air by PRT||82|
2016 Masters Trophy
|1||55||Takashi HATA/JPN||Super License||238|
|2||9||HU Nan/CHN||DP Motorsport||94|
|3||39||James WONG/HKG||Amateur Cup||48|
2016 Team Classification
|2||Cebu Pacific Air by PRT||224|