AP: Sepang rounds five to eight preview

Jazeman looks to extend lead. Sepang, Malaysia -- Following his astonishing debut Formula BMW Asia outing last month, which saw him take two wins out of four races and charge straight to the top of the Driver leaderboard, Malaysian ...

Jazeman looks to extend lead.

Sepang, Malaysia -- Following his astonishing debut Formula BMW Asia outing last month, which saw him take two wins out of four races and charge straight to the top of the Driver leaderboard, Malaysian teenager Jazeman Jaafar (Team Meritus) is looking to continue his impressive season at Sepang International Circuit this weekend. Rounds 5-8 of the 22-race 2007 Formula BMW Asia season will be held as part of the SuperGT weekend from June 22-24 on the full 5.542km Grand Prix circuit.

Despite the Malaysian's 33 point lead, with arguably the most competitive field the series has seen since its inception in 2003, there are plenty of drivers ready and able to knock Jazeman off his lofty perch.

Indian Rookie and BMW Junior Akhil Khushlani (17/Eurasia Motorsport) is another driver who has made a stunning Formula BMW Asia debut, proving consistency is everything. His four 5th place finishes have put him 2nd in the Driver classification and top of the Rookie Cup leaderboard.

Currently 3rd and 4th in the Driver standings and returning for a second season, Indonesia's Zahir Ali (19) gave new Team TARADTM its first Formula BMW Asia victory last month, while Jazeman's Meritus team mate and former BMW Junior James Grunwell (18/THA) has one win under his belt and is quick around the Sepang GP track, having set the fastest lap there last season, and taking a pole position.

BMW Juniors Ross Jamison (17/Team Meritus) of Hong Kong and South African Kyle Mitchell (16/Eurasia Motorsport) both impressed on their debuts, taking a pair of Rookie Cup wins apiece, with two pole positions and two podium finishes for Mitchell.

Another BMW Junior, David Zhu of China (16/Team Meritus) found his feet in the third race just missing out on a podium, a situation he remedied in the final round last month with a superb 3rd place finish.

Having missed the opening rounds, Malaysia's Huzair Harun Rasip (18) begins his season with Team Meritus, adding to a field packed with talent and, no doubt, plenty of surprises.

After four rounds, Malaysia heads the newly-introduced Nations Cup with a 12-point lead over Indonesia. Joining Jazeman in the task of maintaining their country's lead before the series heads to Indonesia next month will be team mate Rasip, and the Team Holzer PFX trio of Imran Shaharom, Melvin Moh and Johan Adzmi.

In other news, Dominic Storey of New Zealand, who finished 4th in the 2006 Formula BMW Asia Rookie Cup, makes his debut this weekend in the Formula BMW UK Championship for Rounds 9 and 10 at Oulton Park. Storey joins Australian Sam Abay, runner-up in the Formula BMW Asia Driver Classification last year, who has been contesting the British series since the start of the season and currently lies 11th in the Driver Classification. Storey will be racing for Double R Racing sporting the BMW Sauber F1 Team Pit Lane Park livery to preview the team's high tech entertainment facility which brings Formula One closer to the fans during the British Grand Prix weekend at Silverstone next month.

<pre> Championship Points Tables after Round 4.

Drivers 1. Jazeman Jaafar (MAS/Team Meritus) 161 points 2. Akhil Khushlani (IND/Eurasia Motorsport) 128 points 3. Zahir Ali (INA/TARADTM) 119 points 4. James Grunwell (THA/Team Meritus) 111 points 5. Ross Jamison (HKG/Team Meritus) 104 points 6. Kyle Mitchell (RSA/Eurasia Motorsport) 95 points 7. Johan Adzmi (MAS/Team Holzer PFX) 89 points 8. Dennis Vollmair (GER/Engstler Racing) 86 points 9. Shohei Shiromoto (JPN/Team E-Rain) 72 points 10. David Zhu (CHN/Team Meritus) 71 points 11. Sean McDonagh (USA/Team E-Rain) 60 points 12. Imran Shaharom (MAS/Team Holzer PFX) 56 points 13. Melvin Moh (MAS/Team Holzer PFX) 48 points 14. Cchiranjeev R. Bedi (IND/Engstler Bollywood racing) 40 points

Rookie Cup 1. Khushlani 128 2. Jamison 104 3. Mitchell 95 4. Adzmi 89 5. Vollmair 86 6. Shiromoto 72 7. Zhu 71 8. McDonagh 60 9. Shaharom 56 10. Moh 48 11. Bedi 40

Nations Cup 1. Malaysia 37 2. Indonesia 25 3. India 24 4. Thailand 23 5. Hong Kong 21 6. South Africa 19 7. Germany and China 15 9. Japan 11 10. USA 10

Team Classification 1. Team Meritus 326 2. Eurasia Motorsport 225 3. Team Holzer PFX 175 4. Team E-Rain 140 5. Engstler Motorsport 132 6. Team TARADTM 116

</pre> -credit: fbmw

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About this article
Series Formula BMW
Drivers Jazeman Jaafar , Zahir Ali , Ross Jamison , Dennis Vollmair , Kyle Mitchell , Shohei Shiromoto , Akhil Khushlani , Sean McDonagh , Melvin Moh , James Grunwell , Huzair Harun Rasip , David Zhu , Johan Adzmi , Sam Abay , Imran Shaharom , Dominic Storey
Teams Sauber