- Double win for Absolute Racing serviced teams
- Big score for race winner Picariello
- Cheng heads team’s first 1-2-3
Suzuka, June 11th, 2017 – The seven Absolute Racing serviced teams stole the show in the Audi R8 LMS Cup’s first visit to the Suzuka International Circuit, winning both races and leaving Japan on the top of the championship standings.
Against the best Audi teams in the business, the weekend started on right foot for the Absolute racing boys. Despite carrying 35kg of ballast from the previous event in Sepang, MGT by Absolute’s Alessio Picariello conquered his third pole-position in a row in the first qualifying session. The ever-improving FAW-VW Audi Racing Team’s Franky Cheng CongFu was the quickest in the second qualifying. The Absolute Racing serviced cars monopolized the front row of the grids with OD Racing‘s Mitch Gilbert taking the second place for both races.
Series newcomer Anthony Liu celebrated his first AM+ class pole position.
On Saturday’s race one, Picariello scored his second win this season in the Audi R8 LMS Cup, edging ahead of OD Racing‘s Gilbert. It was an unflustered flag to flag victory for the Belgian driver, who increased his championship advantage.
Extending his healthy lead in the championship, Picariello said, “I can say I am the winner of Suzuka race, that sounds really good for the cv”.
Following a strong qualifying effort, Liu took a dominant victory in the AM+ Class. Joining him on the category podium was Team Audi Volkswagen Taiwan’s Jeffrey Lee in third place.
Singha PlanB Motorsport‘s Bhurit Bhirombhakdi claimed the AM Cup trophy ahead of China’s Sun Jingzu of Milestone Racing.
Twenty years since his first international race in Suzuka, Franky Cheng Congfu claimed his first Cup win this season. Starting from the pole position for the race two, the Chinese racer had a faultless performance, finishing ahead of his teammates Picariello, who carried 50kg of success ballast once again, and Gilbert, who carried 35kg extra.
“The team has done a great job for all three of us. It’s been a long time since I didn’t have any cars in front of me, so I had to regroup and focus on keeping my head down and not making any mistakes. The weekend has been great for me and I hope to bring this performance to Korea”, commented Cheng.
Equally satisfied, Gilbert said of the podiums, “Second and third, I can’t really ask for a better weekend.”
With two victories and two second places, Picariello maintains his grip at the top of the overall standings (89 points), but Cheng’s superb Round 4 result propels him into second on the leaderboard (58 points). 22-year-old Gilbert is now third in the championship standings (48 points).
A second place finish in the AM+ Class in the second race allowed Jeffrey Lee to head home in the lead in the category’s championship standings.
Singha PlanB Motorsport‘s Bhurit Bhirombhakdi had a smooth sailing to victory in the AM Cup trophy. The Thai driver is the new leader of the category.
Team Director, Ingo Matter, said: “Most of all, I want to say congratulations to the whole team, who put a massive effort to run successfully seven cars. It was a perfect weekend for Absolute Racing serviced teams in terms of the end results in one of the most competitive one-make series in the world. Our drivers were superb this weekend and we are very proud to leave Suzuka leading the all three categories in the Audi R8 LMS Cup.”
The Audi R8 LMS Cup is back in action next month at the Korea International Circuit for Rounds 5 and 6 on July 15/16.
ABSOLUTE RACING CHINA CO.LTD.
Absolute Racing Workshop, Shanghai International Circuit, 2000 Yining Road Jiading Shanghai China 200051
Phone: +86 21 3887 9551E-Mail: [email protected]