Gilbert scores maiden Carrera Cup Asia win
Australian Mitchell Gilbert recorded a breakthrough Carrera Cup Asia race win in the series’ opening heat at Sydney Motorsport Park.
Gilbert, born in Malaysia to Australian parents, jumped best from the outside of the front row and squeezed pole man Maxime Jousse into submission at the first corner.
With Martin Ragginger and Andrew Tang attacking the second-placed Frenchman, Gilbert was able to skip clear of the chasing pack.
The 22-year-old’s advantage approached two seconds at the halfway mark of the 16-lap encounter, before Jousse dropped his two challengers and began to close in on the leader.
The Frenchman cut the margin down to less than a second before dropping back. However, traffic late on compressed the top three for a close finish.
Gilbert had enough in reserve to greet the chequered flag first, ahead of Jousse and the Austrian Ragginger, who walked the tightrope of four ‘ kerb hops’ for the majority of the race.
Tang, on the other hand, breached the track limits at the Turn 5 exit for a fifth time on the penultimate lap, but the consequent five-second time penalty was not enough to cost the Singaporean fourth place.
There were a number of spins during the race, the wildest moment coming on Lap 2 when Vutthikorn Inthraphuvasak got crossed up on the kerb at the final complex.
Taiwanese Tiger Wu then encountered a spin as he attempted to evade the stricken Thai driver.
Nico Menzel experienced more disappointment as he parked his borrowed GT3 Cup car on Lap 2.
The German was only able to take the grid following the delivery of a spare car from Melbourne overnight.
Menzel rolled his own Team StarChase vehicle in a qualifying incident with Wang Xi on Friday.
A further 16-lap race will be held tomorrow from 0940, before combined races with Carrera Cup Australia competitors for the Challenge and Professional classes round out the championship’s Australia visit.
Result: Porsche Carrera Cup Asia Race 1
|1||Absolute Racing||Mitchell Gilbert (AUS)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||24:57.74|
|2||Kamlung Racing||Jousse Maxime (FRA)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||24:58.02|
|3||Team Porsche Holding||Martin Ragingger (AUT)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||24:58.82|
|4||Porsche China Junior Team||Andrew Tang (SGP)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||25:04.30|
|5||Absolute Racing||Bo Yuan (CHN)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||25:09.45|
|6||Team Jebsen||Yue Cui (CHN)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||25:17.98|
|7||Fun88 Team Sunfonda||Da Sheng Zhang (CHN)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||25:38.70|
|8||Team Jebsen||Yuey Tan (SGP)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||25:41.70|
|9||Zheng Tong Auto||Jinlong Bao (CHN)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||25:42.56|
|10||est cola Thailand||Vutthikorn Inthraphuvasak THA||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||25:42.69|
|11||OpenRoad Racing||Francis Tjia (HKG)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||25:43.22|
|12||OpenRoad Racing||Michael Soeryadjaya IDN||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||25:49.28|
|13||Modena Motorsports||John Shen (HKG)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||25:49.96|
|14||True Visions Motorsports Thail||Buncharoen Suttiluck THA||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||25:55.60|
|15||Modena Motorsports||Wayne Shen (HKG)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||26:03.70|
|16||Paul Tresidder||Paul Tresidder (AUS)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||26:11.88|
|17||Team Betterlife||Chao Li (CHN)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||26:12.32|
|18||RC Racing||Tiger Wu (TWN)||Porsche GT3 Cup||16||26:25.93|
|19||Arrows Racing||Billy Fung (HKG)||Porsche GT3 Cup||15||25:01.38|
|20||LKM Racing||Yuk Lung Siu (HKG)||Porsche GT3 Cup||15||25:03.62|
|21||Racing Spirit Thailand||Kumplome Sontaya (THA)||Porsche GT3 Cup||15||25:20.17|
|22||Team Formax||Xi Wang (CHN)||Porsche GT3 Cup||15||26:31.22|
|DNF||PICC Team StarChase||Nico Menzel (DEU)||Porsche GT3 Cup||1||2:03.57|