Published on April 10th, 2011 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Petronas Mofaz Racing’s Nabil Jeffri Makes History Winning First JK Racing Asia Series at Home
It was a good race that was won by Petronas Mofaz Racing’s Nabil Jeffri in front of his home crowd today at Sepang International Circuit. It was a proud moment for Jeffri as the Malaysian anthem played for him with the Formula 1 paddock watching closely. The young Malaysian driver started the race in second behind pole sitter, EuroInternational’s Lucas Auer who finished the race in third. Auer made two mistakes during the race leaving Afiq Yazid to take the second placed spot on the podium towards the end of the race. “I am grateful. The first win of the season, Alhamdullillah, and in my second season. I am proud of myself and thank you to the team, my father, my mother and sponsors” said Jeffri during the post race interview. “I had a really good start. I wasn’t really on pace but it was a good race.
“The car was harder to handle in the last three laps as it was getting slippery and my tyres were going off a lot. My engineers miscalculated the tyre and the pressure so there was major understeer but I managed to pull it thorough” he ended. Second placed Yazid did his team proud with his performance, finishing the race with a podium, but the driver was slightly disappointed when he was gunning for a win. “I feel so happy even though I got second place when I aimed for the top step. Nabil had a really good start and at the first corner”.
Dropping down to fourth a few laps from the start, Yazid managed to pull together to reclaim his spot and thereafter benefitted from Auer’s mistake at the last lap.
“After a few laps, they already pulled away. Then at turn four I made a bit of a mistake and Mun Shen overtook me, leaving me in fourth. Then I took them one by one. Then I caught up to Nabil, because I think he had a problem but he already had a good lead” ended Yazid.
For Austrian driver Auer, the race was one that he will learn from, making two mistakes that cost him his second place. “I feel okay. We were pretty quick. I did not manage a good start, then I made a mistake. For the first race maybe it was okay. We had a good speed but I made two mistakes. It is what it is” he said after the race.
“Everyone raced clean. I didn’t have a good start so they were right beside me. I was thinking I could brake at the first corner much later than them but then I went off. Everything was clean and we had some beautiful overtaking.
“For sure the next race will be better. I now know a lot more things and I learnt from it” he concluded. It was action all the way down the order. Fourth placed starter, Hiqmar Danial and Aaron Chang both had great starts and were immediately down the back of the lead three drivers, closely following them into turn 1 and trying to manoeuvre through to claim positions. Chang managed to push past Yazid on the opening lap but Yazid reclaimed the position on the next lap. Chang finished the race in fourth.
Meanwhile, Australian driver, Duvashen Padayachee made his way up the ranks from seventh and was in the top five by the fourth lap after overtaking Danial, where the duo finished the race in the same position. Behind them Natasha Seatter and Pasin Lathouras has a battle of the teammates from the start to the end of the race. Seatter dropped down the order at the start of the race but regained her position before overtaking a few drivers to finish the race in seventh despite the pressure given to her by her Eurasia Motorsport teammate. Newcomers Jimmy Antunes of Atlantic Racing finished the race in ninth, dropping down one spot from the start while Calvin Seibl of EuroInternational remained in tenth. Irfan Ilyas managed a decent start and maintained his position in the race until lap six when a mistake caused him to drop down the order, finishing the race in eleventh.
Youngest driver, Nandy Akash and his Meritus GP teammate, who confirmed his drive at 11pm last night, Andrew Kharpov crossed the line in twelfth and thirteenth with Freddie Ang, Dylan Young, Raj Bharath, Juwon Seo and Natalia Freidina completed the list of finishers for the race. After the race, teams had to wait some tense hours as a protest was filed by two of the teams on a ‘false start’ by the race winner. The scrutineers made a judgement and reviewed the video and disagreed with the protest. The result remained the same. Round 2 of the JK Racing Asia Series will be held today 1.45pm, Sunday.