- 16-year-old New Zealander takes second dominant win in F3 debut for Pinnacle Motorsport
- Dragon HitechGP driver Hyman just nine points away from first F3 Asian Championship as title chase goes down to the wire
- Newcomer Tairoku Yamaguchi takes Masters win for B-Max Racing Team
Sepang, Malaysia (November 24, 2018) – Pinnacle Motorsport’s Liam Lawson continued his astonishing Asian and Formula 3 debut today with a second dominant victory in the penultimate race of the 2018 F3 Asian Championship Certified by FIA. The 16-year-old New Zealander took the flag more than 20 seconds ahead of second-placed finisher on track and championship contender Raoul Hyman of Dragon HitechGP who had started from fourth on the grid.
However, Hyman was later handed a five second penalty for a late-race move on ZEN Motorsport’s Yu Kuai. The penalty promoted Absolute Racing’s Ye Yifei to second, while Hyman collected 15 points for third. That means the fight for the inaugural title will go right down to the wire in the final race of the season.
Another newcomer, B-Max Racing Team’s Tairoku Yamaguchi took the Masters victory in just his second race with the championship, leading home BlackArts Racing’s Thomas Luedi and Super License driver Takashi Hata.
While Dragon HitechGP’s Jake Hughes still tops the drivers’ championship leaderboard, team mate Hyman is closing in on the title. Nine points stand between him and the inaugural F3 Asian Championship crown. American Jaden Conwright remains third in the championship, 15 points clear of Macau’s Charles Leong in fourth. A single point separates Absolute Racing’s Akash Nandy in fifth and sixth-placed Super License driver Tomoki Takahashi, each podium finishers this season.
Starting from pole for the second time, Lawson got off to a clean start and immediately pulled away from the chasing pack. He was uncontested throughout the 13-lap race,taking the flag well clear of second placed Hyman.
It was not the easiest of starts for Hyman from the second row, who dropped down to fifthafter starting from the slippery side of the track. He quickly recovered his pace to pile the pressure onteam mate Harrison Scott, who made an impressive start from seventh, before passing him at the end of lap one for fourth, leaving Scott to battle for position with Akash Gowda of M-Sport Asia and Louis Prette of BlackArts Racing.
Hyman then set his sights on Yu Kuai of ZEN Motorsport, taking the inside line at turn 15. The pair made contact and Yu spun before rejoining,with Hyman now up to third.
Hyman quickly caught up to Ye and, at the end of lap 10, he once again dived on the inside. The duo were two abreast on the main straight and into turn one, but Hyman out-maneuvered Ye to snatch second placebefore the flag.
Behind them, in the Masters class, Yamaguchi was untroubled on his way to his maiden series win, leaving the heated battle for second behind him. Luedi and Hata swapped positions several times throughout the second half of the race and on the last lap, Luedi made one last overtake and held on to second as the chequered flag fell.
The final race of the 2018 F3 Asian Championship Certified by FIAseason gets underway at 12:45 local Malaysian time on Sunday 25th November, with Lawson again starting from pole. The race will be live streamed on www.f3asia.com and on Facebook.
Driver Quotes: Race 14
Liam Lawson (Pinnacle Motorsport) – Race 14winner
“It’s definitely hotter today. Once again our car was unbelievable. From the start I felt as the tyres go off, the balance gets better and better and it was really nice to drive but I’m really struggling in this heat.”
Raoul Hyman(Dragon HitechGP) – Race 14 2nd
“Today was a good race. We struggled quite a bit on pace from Thursday so it’s really good to see that the hard work we put in yesterday, especially the team and the engineering team, to turn it around. We managed to do that to an extent and I am really grateful for their work. The drivers left the track at 11.30pm yesterday and the team left at 2am.
“Going into tomorrow I think we need to just keep everything clean and to get as far ahead as I can. I don’t really want to think about the championship too much and just score the points that I need. We will see how it goes.”
Ye Yifei(Absolute Racing) – Race 14 3rd
“Today I had a good start. I managed to get P2 from the beginning but after that we started to struggle with the tires, with the heat and the temperatures in the tires, so towards the end of the race we really struggled with the pace. We have to work hard to find the issues to get better for tomorrow’s race.”
Tairoku Yamaguchi (B-Max Racing Team) – Race 14 Masters winner
“First of all I want to thank everyone in the F3 Asian Championship, I am really happy to race this weekend and I am really happy and grateful to win this race today.”
F3 Asian Championship Certified by FIA
Race 14 Results
|1||10||Liam LAWSON||NZL||Pinnacle Motorsport||27:01.933|
|2||16||YE Yifei||CHN||Absolute Racing||+22.764|
|3||27||Raoul HYMAN*||GBR||Dragon HitechGP||+25.036|
|4||5||YU Kuai||CHN||ZEN Motorsport||+29.052|
|5||4||Louis PRETTE||HKG||BlackArts Racing||+36.609|
|6||34||Harrison SCOTT||GBR||Dragon HitechGP||+40.171|
|7||33||Akash GOWDA||IND||M-Sport Asia||+41.107|
|8||29||Akash NANDY||MAL||Absolute Racing||+45.898|
|9||8||Jeremy WAHOME||KEN||SVC Asia||+59.937|
|10||95||Tom BECKHÄUSER||CZE||BlackArts Racing||+1:02.124|
|11||28||Tairoku YAMAGUCHI (M)||JPN||B-Max Racing Team||+1:03.261|
|12||9||Thomas LUEDI (M)||HKG||BlackArts Racing||+1:08.545|
|13||2||Takashi HATA (M)||JPN||Super License||+1:24.345|
|14||80||Jaden CONWRIGHT||USA||Absolute Racing||+1:34.290|
|DNF||11||Charles LEONG||MAC||Dragon HitechGP||+10 laps|
|DNF||30||DRAGON (M)||JPN||B-Max Racing Team||+8 laps|
|DNF||3||YIN Hai Tao (M)||CHN||ZEN Motorsport||+6 laps|
|DNF||7||Tomoki TAKAHASHI||JPN||Super License||+2 laps|
* 5 seconds penalty for causing a collision
Fastest Lap: Liam Lawson/Pinnacle Motorsport/2:03.938/Lap 5
Championship 2018 Drivers Classification after Race 14
|1||34||Jake HUGHES||Dragon HitechGP||225|
|2||27||Raoul HYMAN||Dragon HitechGP||217|
|3||80||Jaden CONWRIGHT||Absolute Racing||158|
|4||11||Charles LEONG||Dragon HitechGP||143|
|5||29||Akash NANDY||Absolute Racing||125|
|6||7||Tomoki TAKAHASHI||Super License||124|
|7||5||YU Kuai||ZEN Motorsport||76|
|8||4||Louis PRETTE||BlackArts Racing||64|
|9||10||Liam LAWSON||Pinnacle Motorsport||50|
|10||34||Ben HINGELEY||Dragon HitechGP||43|
|11||16||YE Yifei||Absolute Racing||33|
|12||8||Jeremy WAHOME||SVC Asia||32|
|13||33||Akash GOWDA||M-Sport Asia||27|
|14||0||Chase OWEN||Chase Owen Racing||24|
|15||3||YIN Hai Tao||ZEN Motorsport||15|
|16||6||LIU Ze Xuan||Emc2 Racing||14|
|16||34||Harrison SCOTT||Dragon HitechGP||14|
|18||5||Kang Ling||ZEN Motorsport||12|
|19||55||Daniel CAO||Pinnacle Motorsport||7|
|20||32||Presley MARTONO||BlackArts Racing||6|
|21||2||Takashi HATA||Super License||2|
|22||95||Tom BECKHAUSEER||BlackArts Racing||1|
F3 Asian Championship 2018 Masters Classification after Race 14
|1||3||YIN Hai Tao||ZEN Motorsport||251|
|2||6||LIU Ze Xuan||Emc2 Racing||192|
|3||2||Takashi HATA||Super License||178|
|4||30||DRAGON||B-Max Racing Team||84|
|5||9||Thomas LUEDI||BlackArts Racing||62|
|6||28||Tairoku YAMAGUCHI||B-Max Racing Team||43|