Wong earns maiden Formula BMW Pacific win in Japan.
Okayama, Japan - Calvin Wong (MAS/18/PETRONAS Mofaz Racing) won his maiden Formula BMW Pacific race after taking victory in Round 14 at the 3.7km Okayama International Circuit in support of the FIA World Touring Car Championship.
Finishing behind Wong was newly crowned Drivers Classification and Rookie Cup titles holder Richard Bradley (SIN/19/Eurasia Motorsport). Yuichi Nakayama (18/Asia Racing Team) took the final podium place and successfully rebounded from yesterday's Round 13, when the Japanese driver had his winning result excluded due to a technical infringement.
Rounding out the top five were Nakayama's compatriots, Ryo Hirakawa (JPN/16/Asia Racing Team) and Formula BMW Pacific Junior Kotaro Sakurai (JPN/15/Eurasia Motorsport) fourth and fifth, respectively.
Formula BMW Pacific Junior Jordan Oon (AUS/20/E-Rain Racing) finished 8th after starting 12th on the grid, while fellow Junior Jesse Dixon (AUS/18/Atlantic Racing Team) moved up six places from his starting position to finish ninth.
Although Oscar Tunjo (COL/Meritus) was taken out of the race while in the lead and did not score any points, the rookie still secured the runner-up position in both the Drivers Classification and the Rookie Cup.
As a result of Sakurai and Bradley's success, Eurasia Motorsport has now won the Team championship, making a clean sweep of all three Formula BMW Pacific titles.
The drama-filled race began when Dustin Sofyan (INA/16/Eurointernational) began Round 14 from pole position, but quickly lost the lead to Tunjo, who started from second. Sofyan quickly found himself in fifth place, with Bradley, Wong and Nakayama overtaking the Indonesian, who would later retire from the race with a battery problem.
On the second lap, Wong overtook Bradley to go second, and from there a furious battle ensued between Wong and Tunjo for the lead. A similar battle for third place was heating up between Bradley and Nakayama, with the Formula Challenge Japan champion eventually getting by the new Formula BMW Pacific champion on Lap 9.
One lap later, Tunjo saw his race end when Wong clipped him and sent the Colombian's FB02 into the gravel, resulting in a three-lap Safety Car period.
When the Safety Car came in on the final lap, Wong successfully navigated the restart to retain the lead and win by 1.219 seconds, while Bradley nabbed second place from Nakayama.
Pasin Lathouras (THA/16/Meritus) had his result excluded after causing an incident during the Safety Car period, and will also be penalized 10 grid positions for next month's Round 15.
Malaysian Nabil Jeffri (17/Eurasia Motorsport) was penalized 30 seconds for forcing a car off the circuit.
Round 15, the final Formula BMW Pacific race, will be run at the 57th Macau Grand Prix from November 18-21, where a record-breaking field of 27 will attempt to conquer the demanding Guia street circuit.
Formula BMW Pacific Driver Quotes:
Calvin Wong, 1st Round 14: "It was hard work to get to the top and I feel very satisfied. This is the result I wanted going into Macau. I think I've had a good weekend and I really like this track. The incident with Oscar was unfortunate. There was some drizzle on the track and that area of the circuit was wet. I locked up at the rear and I couldn't avoid the incident."
Richard Bradley, 2nd and Top JuniorRound 14: "With the championship locked up, I can go for these moves [like in the last lap]. I had one chance and I went for it and he [Nakayama] was very fair about it."
Yiuchi Nakayama, 3rd Round 14: "It was quite a shame to be disqualified from yesterday's race, but today I switched on again and I told myself that today would be a good practice for Macau. This was a motivation for me. I've only seen Formula BMW before on video games and my performance this weekend was much better than expected. I've really enjoyed my experience and I look forward to continuing to see what I can achieve, hopefully a podium in Macau."
Kotaro Sakurai, top Formula BMW Pacific Junior, Round 14 "I'm really disappointed with yesterday's result and today I just wanted to make sure that things went better. I really concentrated on each corner and pushed and pushed every lap. I am quite happy with today's result, but I was not strong enough to overtake the other cars. For me, having the Safety Car helped, but then I wasn't able to take advantage on the last lap and overtake anybody."
-source: fbmw pac