Following an emphatic shut out with three wins out of three on Saturday, it was once again Jordan Love who came up tops on Sunday with two more race victories to make it a clean sweep at the second event in the 2015 AsiaCup Series.
Claiming the top step in Race 4, Jordan Love made it look easy as he eased to another victory in the mid-day race despite starting from P2 on the grid. Demonstrating a great start strategy it did not take long for the Australian ace to take the lead from Adam Khalid who was starting in pole position, en route to claiming another race win.
Meanwhile, for pole-sitter Adam Khalid, Race 4 proved to be a more difficult affair as he struggled with pace. After losing the lead to Love, he was soon engaged in a four-way fight for the final two podium spots involving fellow countryman Adam Haikal (MAS #77), Nazim Azman (MAS #17) and Yuma Shoji (JPN #19).
It did not take long for Adam Haikal and Nazim Azman to prevail over Adam Khalid, taking second and third positions, which they held on to through to the chequered flag.
Further back, there was plenty of drama involving Kiwi Faine Kahia who suffered a penalty for a start procedure infringement, which saw the 19-year old drop down the field after serving his drive-through penalty. Similarly, a spin for Yuma Shoji saw the Japanese driver’s race suffer though he did recover to record a fifth place finish.
The final race of the weekend on Sunday afternoon was once again a Jordan Love affair; with the Australian claiming his fifth straight win of the weekend. The Perth native was however made to work for the win with the unpredictable conditions dictating the final laps of the race.
As the rain began to fall in the final half of the race, the race leader did manage to maintain the pace and gap to the field ensuring another victory.
The bulk of the action was however reserved between five drivers for the remaining two spots on the podium. The battles were split into separate groups by the mid-way point of the race with an epic duel developing between Yuma Shoji and Faine Kahia for second position.
Behind the pair, Nazim Azman, Danial Frost and Adam Khalid were all engaged in a battle royale for position. Unfortunately, missing from action in Race 5 was Adam Haikal who suffered an accident on his out-lap, forcing the Malaysian to miss the final race.
With the weather changing in the closing stages of the race, the conditions managed to trip a few drivers up including Yuma Shoji who dropped down the running order after suffering a spin. The incident promoted Malaysian youngster Nazim Azman into third position, his second podium finish of the weekend.
Peter Thompson, AsiaCup Promoter: “It has been another exciting weekend of racing at the second event in the 2015 AsiaCup Series. Congratulations to Jordan Love for another fantastic result with five race victories here this weekend. What is especially encouraging to see is the performance improvement by all the other drivers! The Malaysian contingent with Adam Khalid, Nazim Azman and Adam Haikal were all very competitive this weekend, matching Jordan’s pace. Similarly, Japanese youngster Yuma Shoji also had a fantastic formula-racing debut here, demonstrating that he too has incredible pace. It will be interesting to see how the drivers perform in the coming event.”
With five wins to add to his impressive record, Jordan Love has solidified his lead in the drivers’ championship with 206 points after two events. Adam Haikal who is currently second in the standings leads the Malaysian charge ahead of compatriot Adam Khalid in third place.
Jordan Love (AUS #79) – Race Winner: “I had another great start in Race 4 and had a really good fight for the lead with Adam (Khalid). After that, I only had to focus on managing my pace and pull away from the rest of the field.”
Adam Haikal (MAS #77) – P2 and Rookie award winner: “I had a really good start today and was able to move up into P4 after the first couple of corners. Before long I was already chasing Adam (Khalid) and managed to overtake him and could pull away from the rest. After a few laps, I started to worry about the drivers behind me and kept looking into my rear view mirrors, which led me to make some rookie mistakes and lose touch slightly with Jordan (Love). This means I have to focus on my concentration for the next race.”
Nazim Azman (MAS #17) – P3: “This was a much better race for me compared to yesterday’s race. I had a really good fight at the start and when Yuma (Shoji) spun in front of me, I was able to gain another position. I also saw that Adam (Khalid) was having some problems and I could overtake him. I also managed to catch Faine (Kahia) and overtook him into turn 9. From that point on, my goal was to pull away from everyone else as much as possible. I am really happy with the pace and my laps times were quite consistent. I am happy with that and hope to get another podium for the next race.”
Jordan Love (AUS #79) – Race winner: “This has been another awesome weekend for me! To come away with another clean sweep is definitely something I am truly proud of, especially given that there were a number of good battles on track with Adam (Khalid). Race 5 was similar to Race 3 in that the weather was a crucial factor. When the rain started to get heavier, I knew I needed to keep my cool and changed my strategy to ensure that I did not need to take any unnecessary risks.”
Faine Kahia (NZL #55) – P2: “What a great race! Starting from P7, I had a clear scenario in my mind about what I had to do to gain track position. To chase down the leaders, I braked late into turn 1 which brought me up a few positions. Before long, I had already caught Yuma (Shoji). Then he started making a couple of mistakes and I knew that was my chance. When it started to rain, I decided to change my strategy a bit to take advantage of the situation. I changed my racing line and was able to take the position.”
Nazim Azman (MAS #17) – P3 and Rookie award: “That was a really exciting race. Throughout the weekend, I knew I had the pace, especially after Race 4. I also knew that I had to work harder starting from the middle of the pack but I knew I could do it. It was tough battling it out with Adam (Khalid) and Danial (Frost) but when the conditions started to get bad, I tried my best to keep my cool against the elements. Suddenly I saw that Yuma (Shoji) had spun and before I knew it I was in third place!”
Race Results (Selected)
Race 5 (8 laps) – Sunday, 8 November
1 #79 Jordan Love AUS 18:39.972
2 #5 Faine Kahia NZL +8.070s
3 #17 Nazim Azman MAS +11.185s
4 #5 Adam Khalid MAS +12.195s
5 #66 Danial Frost SIN +13.531s
6 #19 Yuma Shoji JPN +17.637s
7 #46 Lyubov Andreyeva KZH +18.276s
8 #42 Luke Thompson MAS +24.014s
Race 4 (10 laps) – Sunday, 8 November
1 #79 Jordan Love AUS 23:01.508
2 #77 Adam Haikal MAS +7.088s
3 #17 Nazim Azman MAS +20.470s
4 #66 Danial Frost SIN +29.328s
5 #19 Yuma Shoji JPN +29.526s
6 #42 Luke Thompson MAS +36.118s
7 #9 Keifli Othman MAS +43.985s
8 #55 Faine Kahia NZL +48.745s