Thursday, June 14, 2012

Race Report: Super GT 2012 Round 3: Sepang International Circuit

Beneath the scorching hot Malaysian sun, the 2012 Round 3 of the Super GT had just concluded last weekend. And what a race it was! The crowd turnout was nothing short of amazing with 80,000 people storming the circuit during the race weekend.

Where else would one find the perfect combination of fast and great looking GT cars, hot race queens and enthusiastic crowds all rolled into one? I’m a self confessed Super GT seasoned chap. Been reporting every single Malaysian round of the championship since the it first came to Malaysia in the year 2000 (that time known as the All Japan Grand Touring Car Championship). So needless to say, every June is an exciting month for me.

In the GT 500 class, the competing cars are pretty much the same as per last year but in the GT300 class, there’s a host of new entrants in the form of the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3, Audi R8-LMS, Subaru BRZ, Corvette Z06R GT3 and the Toyota Prius. This class is getting a myriad of vehicles from foreign makes. It used to be dominated by the Japanese.

My favourite team didn’t do too well, the Calsonic IMPUL GT-R got 5th place. The rest of team running the Nissan GT-R got 8th place (Motul Autech GT-R) and 14th (S Road Reito Mola GT-R). The D'station Advan GT-R retired just after 2 laps!

The S Road NDDP GT-R, being the sole Nissan GT-R competing in the GT 300 class got 4th place.

In the GT500 class, Machine No. 18 WEIDER HSV-010 took Pole Position during the Qualifying Session, and went on to win the race, although for most of the race, Machine No. 38 ZENT CERUMO SC430 was snapping at its heels. Takashi Kogure, Driver 1 of the No. 18 WEIDER HSV-010 remained steady under pressure and by Lap 13, he was leading by 3.438 seconds. Carlo Van Dam took the wheel in Lap 29 with the car still in the lead, and continued all the way to the chequered flag with a time of 1:47:52.531 seconds.

When Van Dam took over, he looked to be in a little trouble putting in quick laps at first. However, when speaking at the Post-Race Press Conference, Van Dam clarified, “I went more slowly at the beginning because I was trying to preserve the tyres so I took it easier – maybe a little too easy. Even so, I could see that the car behind me (No. 38 ZENT CERUMO SC430) was just keeping up, so I decided I would push the car a little more and it couldn’t follow anymore.”

In the GT300 class, Machine No. 33 HANKOOK PORSCHE claimed the chequered flag after 49 Laps of furious racing. The HANKOOK PORSCHE, which also took Pole Position in the Qualifying Sesion had a steady race with no problems. Drivers Masami Kageyama and Tomonobu Fujii made consistent and quick laps with the HANKOOK PORSCHE, crossing the finishing line with a time of 1:47:57.011 seconds. At the Post-Race Press Conference, both drivers attributed the win to keeping the tyre pressure and temperature steady.

After the Sepang Round, the Super GT entourage will move on to Round 4 SUGO, which is set to be on the 28th and 29th of July, giving the teams and their drivers plenty of time to rest and regain their strength after the gruelling two days in Sepang. Currently, Yuji Tachikawa and Kohei Hirate are leading the drivers standing in the GT500, while Kyosuke Mineo and Naoki Yokomizo are leading in the GT300.

Below are more images from the race. For the complete album, head on to this LINK.



1 comment:

  1. Did you take the photos yourself? If yes, Can i request an uncompressed picture of the goodsmile two Bmw's at the garage.

    My e-mail is



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