V8 Supercar driver Alex Yoong remained in high spirits after a deflating experience in his first race on the new Shanghai International Circuit in China today. Yoong drove in the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia on the undercard to the Formula One grand...
V8 Supercar driver Alex Yoong remained in high spirits after a deflating experience in his first race on the new Shanghai International Circuit in China today.
Yoong drove in the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia on the undercard to the Formula One grand prix today, but was left to circulate mid field after blowing a left rear tyre on the second lap of the race.
Yoong, who was the fastest in Friday's practice session before qualifying third after an incident in the second session on Saturday, eased his car into second position shortly after the start of today's race.
But just two laps into the race his left rear tyre started to deflate, leaving Yoong battling to hold track position.
Shortly after the problem arose the tyre blew out, forcing Yoong back into the pits and effectively ruling him out of the race.
He returned to the track after a pit stop but his race was already lost.
"I just went out there and circulated but it gave me some good track time ahead of the V8 Supercar race on the track next year," said Yoong, who drives in Australia's V8 Supercar series for Gold Coast businessman Craig Gore's Wright Patton Shakespeare Financial Group.
"It felt like a home GP as I had a lot of support out there but after the tyre blew the best I could do was go back out and circulate."
Yoong said it was a memorable experience competing on the undercard to the first Formula One grand prix ever held in China.
"It was a good atmosphere but one of the pleasing things was the response I received at the V8 Supercar stand," said Yoong.
"People asked a lot of questions and there was good media interest so all is looking good for the race next year."
The V8 Supercar Championship Series moves into China in June next year when the fifth round of the 2005 season is held at the new Shanghai International Circuit.
This weekend's racing was the first of the major events ever held at the circuit.
Today's race was the second time Yoong has driven around the circuit.
Two months ago he drove Queensland Premier Peter Beattie on several hot laps at the track as part of the official launch of next year's V8 event.
Yoong is now preparing to return to Australia to get set for the Bob Jane T-Marts 1000 at Bathurst's Mount Panorama.
He arrives back at the WPS Racing headquarters in Queensland mid week ahead of a final test session at Willowbank Raceway at Ipswich.
He will be joined by WPS Racing team mates David Besnard, John McIntyre and Neil McFadyen.
The four will then travel to Bathurst early next week.