Expectations and spirits are high heading to the foothills of Mount Fuji after the Porsche 911 GT3 R locked out the overall podium at Suzuka and scored further class victories during the weekend. Absolute Racing arrives fresh from a second 1-2 finish of 2019 last time out, which extended its teams’ standings lead to 104 points.
The #911 car enters heading the overall and Silver drivers’ championships following a second victory of the season for Porsche Carrera Cup Asia duo Tanart Sathienthirakul and Porsche Motorsport Asia Pacific Young Professional Phillip Hamprecht.
Twice polesitter in 2019 Yuan Bo returns in the sister #912 car. The former Carrera Cup Asia driver once again has Leo Ye alongside him, having marked his return to the series with a podium finish last time out.
Double Super Car Thailand champion and former Carrera Cup Asia racer Vutthikorn Inthraphuvasak scored two Pro-Am podiums to take the championship lead and third in the overall standings at the previous round for Panther/AAS Motorsport. His regular co-driver Alexandre Imperatori is back after competing in the Nürburgring 24 Hours.
JRM’s #910 pairing return to happy hunting ground following its Suzuka Pro-Am podium. Twice overall China GT runner-up Li Chao came third in Pro-Am in the Carrera Cup Asia Fuji race in June, while his overall championship leader team-mate Chris van der Drift scored two podiums.
Having taken its first class win and best overall result in front of its home crowd at Suzuka, Japanese squad ARN Racing is in high spirits with 2017 Super Taikyu champion Hiroaki Nagai and 2019 Porsche Japan Junior Yuta Kamimura in the #8 Bronze/Silver line-up.
Super GT class winner LM Corsa scored an Am victory on its championship debut at the previous round, with the bronze Japanese duo of GT500 podium finisher Shigekazu Wakisaka and Kei Nakanishi eager to impress once again in the #60 car.
Qualifying will take place on Saturday 6 July at 11:12 local time with the first of two-60 minute races starting at 15:45. Lights out on Sunday will be at 13:05.
Fabien Fior, Absolute Racing Team Manager: “Fuji is an awesome challenge for the drivers, engineers and the whole team. We know the track very well and have been extremely successful here over the years. Our drivers are determined and motivated to keep up the good momentum. We know the Porsche 911 GT3 R has been quick this season and we’re looking to convert that pace into results once again this weekend.”
Tanart Sathienthirakul, Absolute Racing: “We go to Fuji with good momentum following a strong performance at Suzuka, where we won overall. We expect to continue fighting for the championship until the end of the season. I’m looking forward to getting back behind the wheel again.”
Yuan Bo, Absolute Racing: “We’re moving in the right direction and going to Fuji I think we’re in good shape following our podium at Suzuka. Hopefully we can take our first win in the championship. I can’t wait to race again.”
Chris van der Drift, JRM: “It’s been a record number of trips to Japan this year and, like always, I’m looking forward to heading to the Fuji Speedway. Coming off a good result from Suzuka, I am confident our #910 Porsche 911 GT3 R will be able to top the times again and show awesome race pace. We’re definitely looking to go one better and win in our Pro-Am category.”
Alexandre Gibot, Head of Porsche Motorsport Asia Pacific: “After a great outing at Suzuka, we are all going into the Fuji race weekend in reasonably positive spirits. We want to keep up this momentum to help each of our customers championship hopes across all the categories. But, at the same time, we must remain level-headed and not get carried away as we still have three rounds to go in the season. We wish the best of luck to all our customers for the weekend ahead.”
Source. Porsche/Photo. SRO Motorsports Group