With three official days of testing, the five Absolute Racing serviced teams continued their preparations for the 2018 Porsche Carrera Cup Asia season at the Shanghai International Circuit.
Absolute Racing heads to the new season with two new drivers among its six-car team. Team StarChase’s Philip Hamprecht and est Cola PTT’s Tanart Sathienthirakul continue this year, while Yuan Bo returns to the Carrera Cup Asia fold representing the new team dealer Porsche Shanghai Waigaoqiao & Pudong. Porsche China Junior’s Daniel Lu and Zheng Tong Auto Bao Jing Long joined the team this year. The driver of the no. 66 car will be announced later.
The official testing was useful for the team. Conditions were good in Shanghai, with mostly sunny weather and mild temperatures. The five Absolute Racing serviced teams got a first impression of the new Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car (Type 991 II), and the drivers have gained an understanding of how it behaves on track. In addition important data was collected with drivers input being crucial in making the final preparations for the first race of the season in April.
Outright fast lap times were not the priority during this first testing however. Nevertheless, Hamprecht topped the timesheet in the second of five sessions and Bao Jing Long was the second overall in the Pro-Am class.
The season begins on April 14/15 at the Shanghai International Circuit.
#15 est Cola PTT – Tanart Sathienthirakul: “I feel more comfortable with the new car. It is a bit different from last year’s car like the power and the front but overall I liked it. We still a bit off of P1 and P2 but if we manage to fix our small issues we should be there. I am excited to be back again in the Cup. I’m looking forward to start the new season”.
#55 Zheng Tong Auto – Bao Jing Long: “Overall the testing was good. Everything has been pretty good from the first run, which is very important as we have a new car this season and, at the same time, I am joining to a new team. The team is very professional and I am feeling a lot of progress. This year I switched from the Pro Class to the Pro-Am Class, and I’m aiming to win the category trophy.”
#59 Porsche China Junior Team – Daniel Lu: “Driving a Cup car is totally different world compared to the Formula cars. In the Formula cars you’ve all the aerodynamics that you can rely on. You can carry more speed in the corners. In the Cup car you don’t have that aerodynamics, and definitely you can’t carry that speed in the corners. The Cup car is very heavy so you have to play a lot with the weight from the front to the rear to keep the car stable. I think the new season will be an exciting first season for me in GT cars and there is a lot of good drivers in here. Even though I am a young and new driver I still feel the pressure of older and more experienced drivers. It will be an exciting new season and I am pushing for the best.”
#88 Porsche Shanghai Waigaoqiao & Pudong – Yuan Bo: “I haven’t driven for a long time. I feel that I still need time to get back to a good form. I don’t have big expectations but I hope we can do well this season. I will try to get back my pace in the first two races, and then I shall see what kind of pace we can deliver from that point onwards.”
#99 Team StarChase – Philip Hamprecht: “The test was good. I struggled a bit in the first two days but improved in the last day. It looks promising. The season will be good. I learnt a lot from the last season about the car. I think we can fight for the championship. In the end of the day I hope I can win it.”
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