Porsche Carrera Cup Asia Set to Thrill in Singapore The Asian edition of the world's most successful GT one-make series, the Porsche Carrera Cup, is all set to bring its unique brand of thrilling motorsport to Singapore as part of the...
Porsche Carrera Cup Asia Set to Thrill in Singapore
The Asian edition of the world's most successful GT one-make series, the Porsche Carrera Cup, is all set to bring its unique brand of thrilling motorsport to Singapore as part of the historic 2008 FORMULA 1 SINGTEL SINGAPORE GRAND PRIX. All eyes will be on the city-state as it hosts its first ever modern Grand Prix on the exciting new 5.067km Marina Bay Circuit, and the 12-lap Porsche SC Global Carrera Cup Asia -- Singapore 2008 will hold plenty of local appeal.
As anticipation builds ahead of what will be a momentous occasion for the series, which has become the region's premier GT championship after only six seasons, organisers, partners and drivers are gearing up for a truly exceptional event.
Nineteen of the awesome Michelin-shod Porsche 911 GT3 Cup racing machines will line up for the race which is scheduled for the late afternoon on Sunday, just prior to the start of the Grand Prix itself, and is Round 9 of the championship.
The race is supported by Singapore leading luxury residential property developer, SC Global Developments, which is both title partner of the race and Official Real Estate Partner for the entire 2008 season, and one of the largest financial services groups in Asia, DBS.
Amongst the field of GT experts from Asia, the Pacific and Europe are a large number of local drivers and teams, with no fewer than seven of the entries having close connections to Singapore: Competing with Team Porsche Club Singapore Racing are brothers Greg and Gerald Teo, David Lai, and Tan Ian Mao; Melvin Choo is flying the
Singaporean flag for Team Corum ThunderAsia Racing, as is Ringo Chong who is competing in the professional category; while SC Global Racing is another local team fielding 2004 Porsche Carrera Cup Asia Champion Matthew Marsh.
For series organisers, Singapore-based Porsche Asia Pacific Pte Ltd, the race provides a welcome opportunity to showcase the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia at home for the first time, and to partner with two highly prestigious companies. Commented Porsche Asia Pacific's Managing Director Mr. Christer Ekberg: "To be part of this enormously significant and historic event for international motorsport is tremendously exciting for everyone concerned. Porsche Asia Pacific is delighted to have SC Global Developments and DBS as partners for the occasion, both respected companies which share our commitment to excellence."
For the drivers, the heady excitement of the momentous occasion will not detract from the fact that there are two Championship titles to be won this season - Class A for full-time professional racers, and Class B for gentleman drivers -- and the stakes could not be higher.
Six drivers remain in contention to take the Class A title this year, and leading the pack after eight races of the 12-round season is Team Jebsen's Darryl O'Young. O'Young won the title in 2006 before spending a season last year in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, which supports the European rounds of the FIA Formula One World Championship. On the podium after every race so far this season, the Hong Kong racer has an 11-point lead over Australian Christian Jones, an Asian Formula 3 Champion and son of former Formula One World Champion Alan.
A single point adrift of Jones is reigning Porsche Carrera Cup Asia Champion, two-time British GT Champion, and FIA GT and Le Mans racer Tim Sugden of Britain competing with GruppeM Racing. Fourth on the leaderboard and nine points behind Sugden is Germany's Christian Menzel, making his Asia debut this year with Team StarChase of Nanjing, China.
Hong Kong's Marchy Lee, currently fifth, is contesting his first full season in GTs this year with Beijing's Team BetterLife, while SC Global Racing's Marsh will be going all out for glory at his new Singapore team's home race, and to remain a Championship contender.
In Class B, Melvin Choo is flying the flag for Singapore at the top of the leaderboard with a 21-point lead over rival Tunku Hammam of Malaysia. However Australian series newcomer Paul Tresidder, who has made an impressive Asian debut this season, and Hong Kong veteran Philip Ma both remain very much in the chase for Class B honours.
The winner of the Porsche SC Global Carrera Cup Asia -- Singapore 2008 will collect 20 valuable points in each category, with an additional point for pole position.
This season the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia features as an official support race at three rounds of the FIA Formula One World Championship, in Malaysia, China and Singapore. The 2008 calendar also includes Bahrain for the very first time, where the season grand finale will be held as part of the V8 Supercar weekend in November.
The Carrera Cup concept sees all drivers compete in identical racing machinery, with only minor modifications to set up permitted. This creates a level playing field where driver skill is to the fore, and where the financially better off drivers do not have a competitive advantage.
The new Marina Bay street circuit will of course be new to all 19 of the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia drivers, setting the stage for 12 laps of GT racing at its absolute finest.
Supporting the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia are two of the most recognised names in international motorsport, Mobil1 and Michelin. Mobil and Porsche have been partners since 1996. Close co-operation in research and development has led to every new Porsche engine being filled with Mobil1 high-performance lubricant. Porsche Carrera Cup Asia drivers also have the advantage of racing on cutting-edge tyres supplied by series partner Michelin. The consistent performance and leading technology of Michelin tyres constantly improve the performance of many teams in international motorsport. The partnership between Michelin and the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia has emerged from a worldwide agreement signed between Porsche AG and the Michelin group.