Coming into the 2023 season for the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia (PCCA) one-make racing collection marks 20 years because the one-makes collection started, and the primary race for the season was held on the Sepang Worldwide Circuit in Malaysia, which was additionally the place the very first race of the collection was held in 2003.
The twentieth season of PCCA additionally welcomed a renewed thrust from Malaysia within the collection with the debut of the Sime Darby Racing Crew (SDRT), fielding a single automotive entry within the Professional class with Malaysian racing driver and former Formulation 3 racer, Nazim Azman.
The 2023 season noticed the return of two veterans of the PCCA collection, Chris van der Drift for Crew Shanghai Yonda and Martin Ragginger for Porsche Holding, who started in in third and fourth place on the beginning grid of Race 1 of the Sepang spherical, respectively.
Pole place for Race 1 was claimed by PCCA newcomer Florian Latorre, with a qualifying time practically one second faster than that of Luo Kailuo of Toro Racing who began in P2. Prime Professional-Am starter and P6 on the grid total was three-time PCCA Professional-Am champion Bao Jinlong, whereas the highest Am class starter and P9 on the grid total was Eric Kwong.
Race 1 started in damp situations, with Luo and Latorre beginning robust although the previous managed to start out placing clear air between himself and Latorre early within the race. The respective Professional-Am and Am class pole-sitters bumped into hardship, Bao spinning out earlier than reclaiming P8 and Kwong dropping right down to P19, leaving fellow Am class racer Adrian D’Silva to take the category lead.
A spin into the T15 gravel entice by Jacky Wu of Shanghai Pudong & Waigaoqiao 69 Racing on lap 4 introduced out the protection automotive earlier than the race was red-flagged a lap later, because the automotive was unable to maneuver away to security by itself. Following a 10-minute pause, Latorre discovered himself in P1, although additionally with a 10-second time penalty that will be added to the race end as a result of a leap begin firstly of the race.
Latorre would cross the end line first on monitor, nonetheless the time penalty meant he could be labeled for a fourth-placed end, simply outdoors the rostrum positions. Luo was second to the chequered flag and claimed the race win because of Latorre’s penalty, whereas van der Drift and Ragginger finishing the rostrum in second and third locations, respectively. Malaysian PCCA debutant Nazim Azman took fifth in Race 1.
Race 2 of the PCCA season-opener at Sepang introduced an analogous lead pack on the beginning grid however in additional excellent climate. Latorre led on the grid in P1, adopted by Luo, van der Drift and Ragginger behind him. Equally Bao Jinlong took the highest Professional-Am beginning place in P6, whereas Eric Kwong additionally took the Am class pole in P8 on the grid amidst Professional-Am racers.
A number of battles happened on Race 2, with Latorre in pursuit of Luo on the sharp finish for practically the entire period of the race, whereas van der Drift noticed a comparatively quieter run to P3. Behind the New Zealander was Ragginger in P4, who was heading off the valiant efforts of Nazim Azman earlier than the Malaysian spun out of his overtaking try on Ragginger at T1.
Nazim dropped again to P6, although a fast restoration and a reinvigorated chase by the ex-F3 racer recovered the place from Gao Yujia of Crew Jebsen to hold on to P5 on the chequered flag.
In the meantime, Professional class race chief Luo held on to take the race win by a margin of two seconds for his second win of the season, whereas Latorre recouped his Race 1 shortfall with a P2 end, and the rostrum was rounded up by van der Drift.
The Professional-Am class noticed Bao Jinlong and Gao Yujia commerce positions a number of occasions throughout Race 2, finally with Gao rising forward although Bao scooped the Professional-Am class win.
In the meantime within the Am class, pole sitter Eric Kwong dropped down the order on the primary lap of the race, leaving Yang Ruoyu to guide the Am class pack in P11 total. Kwong fought his was again up the order, although needed to accept second by the chequered flag as Yang took the Am class win, with Li Xuanyu rounding up the highest three Am class finishers.
Subsequent on the 2023 Porsche Carrera Cup Asia calendar is Spherical 3 and 4, which takes the collection to Yeongnam, South Korea the place the following rounds will happen from June 2 to 4.
This would be the second of a complete of eight rounds, adopted by Suzuka, Japan and Buriram, Thailand earlier than the collection comes again to the Sepang Worldwide Circuit on August 25 to 27 when Spherical 3 of the Malaysia Championship Sequence (MCS) will even be held. The 2023 PCCA season concludes in Shanghai, China, the place Rounds 13 and 14 shall be held from October 27 to 29.