ATCC: Subic: Qualifying report

Subic International Raceway, Philippines April 13, 2002 (Saturday) Asian Touring Car Series - International champ dominates. Finland's Toni Ruokonen dominated qualifying for the Asian Touring Car Series in his Peugeot 306. "It will be much...

Subic International Raceway, Philippines
April 13, 2002 (Saturday)

Asian Touring Car Series - International champ dominates.

Finland's Toni Ruokonen dominated qualifying for the Asian Touring Car Series in his Peugeot 306. "It will be much more difficult at the next event," (at Johor, Malaysia in May) believes Ruokonen. With ten years experience and championship wins in the UK and Finland, he remains favourite for this year's series honours.

George Ramirez upheld Filipino honour with second place in both sessions on a circuit he designed. The three kilometre track makes use of airport runways that were previously part of the famous US naval base. Interestingly Ramirez and Ruokenen are taking different racing lines through the difficult first corner. "Everyone's asking me about that," said Ruokenen. "I'm just saving the tyres..."

Hong Kong's Honda Integra-driving brothers Lo Ka Chun and Lo Ka Fai were third and fourth. Their father Lo Hung Pui remains a key contender in the fiercely competitive Division 3 for smaller-engined cars. He and fellow Hong Kong driver Danny Stacy Chau faced a new challenge from Macau's Ao Chi Hong and Japan's Kanami Takeda, the first female driver to enter the series.

"Chi Hong is the biggest threat," says Chau, who has almost 30 years of racing experience. "His car was prepared in Japan and he drives well."

The crowd's support, however, is likely to be with the blonde-haired 33-year old Takeda.

-afos-

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Series General
Drivers Toni Ruokonen , Ao Chi Hong , Kanami Takeda