Porsche Carrera Cup Asia 2015 – Preview Rounds 5&6
Shanghai, 3 June 2015 —— The Porsche Carrera Cup Asia will be in action this weekend at Japan’s picturesque and challenging Fuji International Speedway for Rounds 5&6 of the 14-race 2015 season. The 28-strong field of international driver joins their Porsche Carrera Cup Japan counterparts on the race programme, further strengthening the Porsche motorsport ties in the region following a successful debut there in 2014.
Returning to the series in Japan is Martin Ragginger of Team Porsche Holding, absent from Korea last month while on duty at the legendary Nürburgring 24 Hours where he and his team mates, amongst them 2012 Porsche Carrera Cup Asia champion Alexandre Imperatori, took a podium finish in their class in a Porsche 997 GT3 R. Having missed out on two opportunities to add to his points tally, Ragginger now lies joint sixth on the leaderboard along with Budweiser Team Absolute Racing’s Tung Ho-Pin and Team Porsche Korea guest driver for Rounds 3&4, Myung Gil Choi.
Also back with the series for the Japan rounds are Christian Chia, who joins brother Francis Tjia, fourth in Class B, and Michael S. on the OpenRoad Racing team. Racing for the first time this season will be American Henri Richard of Silicon Tech Racing LLP, while standing in for Kenneth Lau for the second time this year will be popular driver Samson Chan with Arrows Racing.
On the podium in three of the four last races, memorably opening the season with an outright victory, Clearwater Racing’s Craig Baird leads the charge to Japan with an 11-point advantage over fellow New Zealander and series newcomer, Chris van der Drift. van der Drift, a former International Formula Masters Champion and GP2, A1GP and Superleague Formula driver, races with Kamlung Racing, a Porsche dealer team entered by the KLM Group. A long-time supporter of the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia, the Hong Kong-based KLM Group has automotive brand operations in China, Hong Kong, Macau and the Middle East, and includes in its impressive portfolio the Porsche Centre Shenzhen Nanshan.
Following the phenomenal success of Baird and van der Drift’s fellow countryman Earl Bamber, who in just two years was propelled from the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia ranks to a full Porsche Motorsport LMP1 factory driver, both Baird and van der Drift are showing once again the extraordinary wealth of motorsport talent a country with a population of approximately 4.5 million produces.
Third in the chase for the overall championship title is Team Yonda’s Ro Charlz Skyangel. The 25-year-old Singapore driver made his Porsche Carrera Cup Asia debut last season and continues to impress with his increasing pace and consistency amongst the highly-experienced field. Skyangel leads series newcomer, 17-year-old Nico Menzel of PICC Team StarChase, by three points, while Team Jebsen’s Rodolfo Avila of Macau lies fifth on the leaderboard.
The points situation is even tighter in the highly-competitive Class B category for non-professional drivers, where 2012 champion Wayne Shen of Modena Motorsports leads Avila’s Team Jebsen team mate, Yuey Tan of Singapore, by a single point. Just 17 points covers the top six drivers, and fans can expect impressive comebacks from the likes of 100 PLUS Racing Team’s Vutthikorn Inthraphuvasak of Thailand, who with two DNFs so far this season has had more than his share of bad luck, and Michael S., fifth in class in Round 2 but with a DNF in the last round dropping him down the leaderboard.
The 4.5km Fuji International Speedway, host to a round of the FIA WEC, is a firm favourite with all the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia drivers who have raced there. Its location in the foothills of the stunning Mount Fuji and its taxing combination of a lightning-quick 1.5km straight on one side, and tight corners on the other, requires both brains and courage to conquer. In addition to the challenges the track layout presents, changeable weather conditions can see grip change quickly and radically.
While Bamber took both overall victories in Fuji last year, his protégé Alif Hamdan of Malaysia became only the second Class B driver to stand on the overall Porsche Carrera Cup Asia podium in the series’ history after a stunning second place finish behind his mentor. Hamdan, this year contesting the overall title having clinched the Class B championship in 2014, currently lies ninth on the leaderboard but will be relishing the opportunity to return to the track he mastered so impressively on his debut.
Porsche Carrera Cup Asia 2015
Supporting the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia are two of the most recognised names in international motorsport, Mobil1 and Michelin. Mobil and Porsche have been partners since 1996. Close co-operation in research and development has led to every new Porsche engine being filled with Mobil1 high-performance lubricant. Porsche Carrera Cup Asia drivers also have the advantage of racing on cutting-edge tyres supplied by series partner Michelin. The consistent performance and leading technology of Michelin tyres constantly improve the performance of many teams in international motorsport. The partnership between Michelin and the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia has emerged from a worldwide agreement signed between Porsche AG and the Michelin group. The Porsche Carrera Cup Asia is organised and promoted by Malaysian based Motorsport Asia Ltd.
Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (Type 991)
The Porsche 911 GT3 Cup is the motorsport version of the new 911 GT3 (Type 991). The near-standard race car, based on the seventh generation of the 911, made its debut in Asia in 2014, having previously run exclusively in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup.
The Porsche 911 GT3 Cup is powered by a 3.8-litre, six cylinder boxer engine which, due to the weight optimized modular race exhaust system, generates 460hp (338 KW) at 7,500 revs per minute, ten horsepower more than its predecessor. Power is delivered to the rear axle via a race clutch and a Porsche Motorsport designed six-speed dog-type gearbox with a mechanical limited slip differential. For the first time in a Porsche makes cup race car, gear shifting is activated with paddle shifts on the steering wheel. The single piece race wheels with centre mount were also newly designed by Porsche Motorsport. The width of the Michelin race slicks was increased by two centimetres to 27 centimetres at the front and by ten millimetres at the rear axle to now measure 31 centimetres.
Compared to its predecessor, the wheelbase has grown by 100 millimetres, improving handling at the limit, while Porsche Motorsport newly designed the forged single-piece 18 inch race rims with central locking.
The new racing brake system improves the endurance qualities of the 911 GT3 Cup, and the internally vented and slotted steel brake discs are operated by aluminium six-piston racing calipers in the front, and four-piston units at the rear.
Safety features have also been further enhanced, and drivers are protected by a newly calculated safety cage and newly designed race seat, while a rescue hatch in the roof enables easy access and extrication.
Like the road going version, the body of the new 911 GT3 Cup combines maximum rigidity with low weight thanks to its aluminium-steel construction, and weighs in at just 1,175 kilograms.
About Porsche Carrera Cup Asia
Preparing for its 13th season in 2015, the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia blasted off the starting grid in 2003 and has never looked back. Joining the family of hugely successful Porsche “one make” series, it is now firmly established as the Number One racing series in Asia.
The Porsche Carrera Cup Asia offers sporting competition at the highest level across the region and is truly international, with competitors from all over Asia as well as Europe and the Pacific. The field is made up of a combination of professional racing drivers and ambitious and talented gentlemen drivers.
About Porsche China
Porsche was founded by Prof. Ferdinand Porsche in Stuttgart, Germany in 1931 and was then transformed into a sports car manufacturer by Ferry Porsche in 1948. Porsche has been known as one of the most prestigious automobile brands in the world for decades. Under the guiding credo of “Intelligent Performance”, Porsche leads the way in providing a new generation of sports cars that prove performance and efficiency can be perfectly combined.
Since entering the Chinese market in 2001, Porsche China has been dedicated to bringing the sporty genes and innovative spirit of the marque to Porsche enthusiasts in this dynamic market. In Porsche’s network in China, customers can experience the unlimited appeal of Porsche’s iconic sports cars: the legendary 911 series, the renowned Boxster and Cayman mid-engine sports cars, the luxurious Cayenne premium SUV, the dynamic and pioneering Macan SUV, the sleek four-door Panamera Gran Turismo and the futuristic 918 Spyder super sports car. Each demonstrates excellence in performance, exquisite design, and consistent commitment to perfect quality that Porsche embodies. Across Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau, there are now 80 Porsche Centres in operation, ensuring that Porsche customers across the country receive the hallmark personalised care that sets Porsche apart around the world.
In 2014, Porsche has delivered a spectacular sales record of 46,931 deliveries across Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau. In 2015, Porsche China expects to continue another year of outstanding performance in the Chinese market.
[Source : Porsche Carrera Cup Asia]