|Menzel Completes Perfect Shanghai Weekend|
Reigning Porsche Carrera Cup Asia champion Christian Menzel of Team StarChase strengthened his 2010 title defence by taking a lights-to-flag victory in Round 10 at the 4.603km configuration of the Shanghai International Circuit.
In the Class B category, Team PCS Racing driver Mok Weng Sun was also celebrating, having locked up the Class title and extending his winning streak to 10 races.
Having taken pole position as well as the win for Saturday’s Round 9, Menzel now leads the overall championship by nine points with just two races remaining of the 2010 season. With just 41 points on offer, four drivers are still in contention for the championship: Menzel; Team PCS Racing’s Craig Baird; Red Bull Racing’s Marchy Lee; and Mok.
Said Menzel: “We won again today and that’s a good feeling, especially because we are in a better position in the championship. The championship situation is tricky. We are now nine points ahead of Craig. This sounds good, but remember me in Singapore? One wrong position and you lose all the points. I will fly to Zhuhai with the same procedure as always. We want to concentrate and to do good work.”
Joining Menzel on the Round 10 podium was LKM Racing driver Darryl O’Young of Hong Kong, who finished 9.091 seconds behind the German, with New Zealander Baird third. Lee finished fourth, while Team Jebsen driver Rodolfo Avila rounded out the top five.
“I started very good off the line,” O’Young said about his race. “I was inside Christian, but he had more grip on the outside. I tried my best to hold on and we touched a bit, but he held me well from the outside and there was nothing I could do. I switched to rain tyres after the warm-up lap but I think that was a mistake because it didn’t get up temperature, so in the first two laps it was like nothing.
Once I got the temperature up, the car felt much better. I got away from Craig, but challenging Christian was impossible.”
In Class B, Mok’s rival Ringo Chong of Team Kangshun finished second, while J2M Racing’s Jean-Marc Merlin of France was third.
“The win is fantastic and we also sealed the championship,” said Mok, who won his first Class B title in 2007. “The team told me this morning just to try to chase the guys in front and that’s what I tried to do today. Make sure I finish the race and keep the perfect record.”
Although the clouds stayed away during the race, the track was still wet from rain earlier in the morning. Starting from pole, Menzel pulled away, with O’Young behind him. Starting from fifth on the grid, Baird leapt into third place at the start, passing Avila and Lee. On the third corner Lee got by Avila, setting the final order for the top five.
Further down the field, Modena Motorsports’ John Shen overtook OpenRoad Racing driver Christian Chia to move up to ninth. Shen then set his sights on Merlin ahead. The two battled for the next three laps, with Shen overtaking Merlin on Lap 9. However, on that same lap, Shen made an error sending him back into 11th position. He finished 10th overall.
The title decider for the 2010 Porsche Carrera Cup Asia will be held from November 5-7 at the Zhuhai International Circuit where the series will for the first time support the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup. The season finale will be a Porsche family affair, with the Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid, which impressed at the Nürburgring 24-hour race earlier this year, racing in the 1,000km of Zhuhai.