Menzel Clinches Victory in Beijing Team StarChase driver Christian Menzel conquered Beijing's 2.4km Goldenport Circuit today to clinch victory in Round 4 of the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia, beating pole-man Darryl O'Young and setting the fastest...
Menzel Clinches Victory in Beijing
Team StarChase driver Christian Menzel conquered Beijing's 2.4km Goldenport Circuit today to clinch victory in Round 4 of the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia, beating pole-man Darryl O'Young and setting the fastest lap of the race. Third for the second time today was GruppeM Racing's Tim Sugden, making it a clean sweep for the China Porsche dealer teams.
Menzel now leads the overall championship race with a margin of six points over Sugden in second. Macau's Rodolfo Avila remains third, two points ahead of Team Kangshun's Ringo Chong who was fifth in Round 4. O'Young's points haul for the weekend promotes Team Jebsen up to fifth on the championship leaderboard.
Singaporean Melvin Choo took his fourth consecutive victory in Class B, ahead of Jacob & Co Racing's Philip Ma of Hong Kong, with fellow countryman Mak Hing Tak of OMAK Team third after an epic battle with Team PCS Racing's Yuey Tan.
Fourth over the line was Dutchman Danny Chu who emerged triumphant after a multi-lap battle with Dilango Racing's Dilantha Malagamuwa.
Menzel, who had finished second in the earlier race, was thrilled to have mastered the mentally and physically demanding Beijing track: "I had a better start than Darryl, which put me in the correct position into the first corner. A big compliment to Darryl as he pushed very, very hard, and I pushed very, very hard as well! I looked in the mirror several times and saw him pushing hard, which was a nightmare for me."
Although O'Young's second place certainly helped his title defence, it wasn't a factor in the heat of battle according to the two-time champion: "I wasn't thinking about the points, just focussing on the race and getting past Christian. I had a tough start and I couldn't defend my position, but it was a good race."
O'Young lost his pole advantage to Menzel at the start, with Sugden following the pair in third ahead of Asia Racing Team driver Avila. Behind Avila, Malagamuwa had got by Chu into fifth, and the furious Dutchman immediately gave chase.
At the front, Menzel set about pulling a gap from O'Young, something the Team Jebsen driver was not prepared to allow, repeatedly reeling the leader back in.
Midway through the 18-lap race, Avila spun while pushing hard to catch Sugden. He continued, but pitted shortly afterwards, retiring from the race.
In Class B, while Choo pulled ahead of the pack, Mak and Tan were engaged in a battle of their own, with the Hong Kong racer finally claiming the remaining podium place with a margin of just 0.217 of a second. Said Mak: "I had a better start than Yuey, but spun at the last corner. I tried my best to catch up. This is my first season in the series, so I have to learn from other drivers!"
On the final lap, O'Young put on a charge in a list ditched attempt to catch Menzel, but was unable to catch the championship leader although the gap was just 0.371 of a second at the flag. However, behind them the race for fourth place was far from over. Having held off the hard-charging Chu since the opening lap, Malagamuwa's race ended in the barriers after the Dutchman passed him on the way to the finish line.
The 2009 Porsche Carrera Cup Asia continues next month at the Zhuhai International Circuit in Southern China, where Rounds 5 and 6 will be run as part of the Pan Delta Super Racing Festival from June 19-21.
The second race rounded off an enormously successful debut 'Fascination Porsche', which saw hundreds of Porsche fans descend on the Beijing racing facility for a weekend of automotive action and excitement.
-credit: pcc asia