It’s all or nothing for Malaysia’s Alex Yoong who will be aiming for wins as the curtain comes down for the inaugural Audi R8 LMS Cup.
The 35-year-old powered himself from pole to win Round 7 Race 1 at the Zhuhai International Circuit today.
Audi GQ driver, Yoong took pole position in the qualifying session as championship leader Marchy Lee of Audi Ultra could not better the Kuala Lumpur born impressive lap of 1:34.014s around the 4.3km circuit, despite a close-run session which saw the top six all within a second of each other.
The former F1 driver then took a dominant victory in the race with a trouble-free pole-to-flag run setting the fastest lap of the race for good measure.
Building an impressive margin of 1.754s from second-placed Marchy Lee of the Audi Ultra Team, Yoong proved untouchable throughout the gruelling 21-lap race.
KLM Team’s Adderly Fong of Hong Kong was third, having pulled off a brilliant manoeuvre on Team Erdos Xinan’s Sun Zheng after the 16-strong field roared off the grid.
The weekend saw Yoong, who is roaring back after a tough weekend in Ordos, Mongolia, set his best time on his fourth lap out to take his second pole position of the season.
“I knew this was going to be a tough race and it was going to be all about consistency. I needed to get a good start and luckily I did, and then from there it was just to knuckle down and be consistent. I didn’t even look at the lap boards until I had a bit of a gap.”
“Every lap, every corner I had to be on it until the last couple of laps when (my rivals) eased up, and I did as well,” said Yoong.
After Race 1, Alex sits third in the points standings in which he has still a chance to take the overall title.
“I need to win races if I want to get back into the fight with Adderly (Fong) and Marchy (Lee), so I need to get right into,” added Alex
After Zhuhai, the race will move to the Shanghai International Circuit for Round 9 and 10 the final two races of the season.
The Audi R8 LMS Cup is the first ever ‘One-Make’ racing championship from Audi. After its debut in Shanghai, the series travelled to Zhuhai, moved on to Ordos in Inner Mongolia and return to Zhuhai before culminating into the grand finale in Shanghai to end the season.
At the end of the season, three titles will be up for grabs this season, namely the Audi R8 LMS Cup overall title, an Amateur Category and a Team award, based on points accumulated throughout the series.
words & pix: Audi GQ