- BBT’s Liu and Cheng winning debut
- Two pole-positions, one second place and one win
- Hard Memory Continental GT3 showed strong pace on return
Shanghai, September 10th, 2017 – Absolute Racing-run Audi R8 LMS of BBT’s Anthony Liu and Franky Cheng secured a superb lights-to-flag maiden China GT Championship victory in the Round 8 at the Shanghai International Circuit.
After skipping the second Zhuhai event of the championship, the famous singer-actor Han Geng and Swiss sportscar driver Alexandre Imperatori returned to the cockpit of the #9 Hard Memory Bentley Continental GT3 at Shanghai, showing moments of very strong pace.
The Paragon Water sponsored Audi R8 LMS duo got their weekend started off on the right foot. On Friday, Liu and Cheng took the pole position for the Round 7, beating the next quickest car by 0.87 seconds.
The #9 Hard Memory Bentley Continental GT3 didn’t make a single lap in the qualifying session due to a technical glitch beyond team’s control and had to start from the back of the grid on Saturday.
The first 60-min race weekend didn’t start well for the #37 BBT Audi R8 LMS. Liu lost the first position at the start but he soon took it back. The Chinese driver led for the first-half of the race but a longer pit-stop bumped the best Audi car in the grid back to second place.
Cheng tried to make up the lost time. Although closing he was unable to catch the race winner and would have to settle for second overall.
Further down the field, Imperatori in another of the Absolute Racing-run cars was intent on making up spaces that saw him starting from 17th – the Bentley gaining 10 places over the course of the opening lap! The Swiss racer battles continued throughout the field as the race edged towards the mandatory pit-stop window. He managed to pass the car to his famed team-mate in the second position (!).
Motor racing rookie Han Geng couldn’t keep the same astonishing pace of his team-mate but managed to do a flawless stint, crossing the finish line in twelfth.
Later in the day, the BBT duo snatched the pole-position for Sunday’s race as Imperatori posted the best lap time of the qualifying session.
On Sunday’s race Liu and Cheng had their sweet revenge on home soil, taking a lights-to-flag victory and surviving a late-race restart.
Putting in their best effort, after starting from 18th, fan-favorite Hang Geng and Imperatori wrapped up the top-ten of the GT3 class.
Commenting about the race weekend, Team Director Fabien Fior said, “We’re delighted with today’s BBT Audi result. What a fantastic result from a weekend where we looked very strong from the start. We are also happy with the overall performance of the Hard Memory Bentley. Alex proved how fast this car really his and Han Geng showed improvements over the weekend. We have to look forward now and keep this momentum going.”