Alex Au leads Ferrari Challenge after Superb Performance in Fuji


A record 39 cars will take to the track on Friday for two rounds of free practice before returning on Saturday for the first qualifying session and Race-1, while Qualifying 2 and Race-2 will take place on Sunday.

Following the last race held on 27 May at the Shanghai International Circuit, Philippe Prette from Italy is leading the table standings in the Trofeo Pirelli class with 78 points. Alex Au of Hong Kong is a close second with only 2 points separating him and Prette after his double win there. Tani Hanna from Lebanon continues to lead the Coppa Shell class with 88 points after winning the last race in Shanghai. Hong Kong race driver Michael Choi comes back after Shanghai for his 2nd race in the 2018 calendar and looking to fully commit a challenge in the Coppa Shell class for the honours.

Race 1, Go Max, the home favourite, got off to a brilliant start to lead Trofeo Pirelli class. However, Alex Au from Hong Kong was not far behind him. It was a closely contested fight for the finish among the top four qualifiers, including Takeshi Kitai from Japan and Wei Lu from Canada. Max kept a close eye on Au. However Au managed to overtake Max and immediately pulled away from the Japanese to take the win. Max had to settle for second position while Lu, after some cool overtaking maneuvers, took the third step on the podium. Hanna dominated the Coppa Shell class. The Lebanese driver also set the fastest lap time of 1:44.622 in the second lap of the race. Coming in second was Eric Zang of China and Eric Cheung of Canada, while Michael Choi had a final lap, final corner overtake to cross the checker flag 6th.

Race 2, Alex Au from Hong Kong took the pole position in Race-2. In Trofeo Pirelli It was a close fight at the start with Hutasoit but the latter managed to overtake Au after the first lap exploiting a different aerodynamic set-up that allowed him to go faster along the long straight of the circuit. Taking third position was Martin Berry from Australia who pulled off an exciting comeback from the end of the pack to power ahead and take the last step on the podium. With his victory yesterday and second position today, Au extended his lead in the standings over Philippe Prette of Italy and Hutasoit. Both racers have the rounds in Suzuka and Singapore as well as Finali Mondiali in Monza to play catch-up. Tani Hanna from Lebanon was once again in perfect form in Coppa Shell during the race and was keen to continue his winning streak from Race 1. It was a more relaxed drive for him today as his main strategy was to maintain his pace and stay behind the two race leaders of the Trofeo Pirelli classification.

The next round of the Asia Pacific Ferrari Challenge Trofeo Pirelli will take place on August 23 – 25 in Suzuka, Japan, in support of Suzuka 10 Hours race.

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