Published on September 2nd, 2013 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
CLEARWATER RACING DOMINATES MMER 2013
Clearwater Racing made amends for lucking out at last year’s MMER by taking a decisive victory at this year’s competition in the GT3 category. It was certainly a sweet victory for the team which endured heart ache last year after retiring due to mechanical failure.
Unmistakable in their chrome coloured Ferrari 458 Italia GT3, Clearwater Racing laid the down the gauntlet as they made their charge towards the chequered flag. Consistently leading the race as it reached the halfway point, drivers W.S Mok, H. Hamaguchi and Craig Baird and the team put in a sterling performance that kept them ahead of their nearest rivals.
“It was a really emotional victory for us,” said Wok Meng Sun of Clearwater Racing’s victory at MMER 2013. “I was crying at the finish line because this win was truly special for us especially all our heart-breaking DNFs in previous years. It’s a great feeling really, especially when you take into account the level of quality on the grid this year” he added.
Co-driver Baird shared the Mok’s sentiment and put the team’s victory down to a consistent performance. “We were happy to go into the race from box five in qualifying and we just focused on consistency and slowly made our way up,” revealed Baird. “Everyone will have their own war story about racing, but today, as a team, we’re just extremely happy with this win.”
Aussie outfit Roger Lago Racing claimed the second spot on the podium in their Lamborghini LP560-4 with Roger Lago, David Russell and Peter Kox at the wheel. The team eventually finished six laps behind the race leader. The battle for third spot in the race however proved to be a highly-contested affair with three teams in the mix.
As the race reached the final hours, the battle to claim the third and final spot saw Naza Nexus Racing with drivers Adrian D’Silva, Earl Bamber and Alif Hamdan in a Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 swap positions with another 458 GT3 belonging to Italian race outfit AF Corse with Pasin Lathouras, Mika Salo and Michele Rugolo in the driver’s seat.
Both Ferraris were also challenged by the Porsche GT3R of LKM Racing with drivers Darryl O’Young, Vuthikorn Intharaphuvasak and Siu Yuk Lung but team fell off the pace in the final hour of the race. In the end though, it was AF Corse who managed to pip Naza Nexus Racing for the final spot as they orchestrated an overtaking manoeuvre in the final 15 minutes of the race.
On the home front, odds-on favourites and defending champions Petronas Syntium Racing were dealt a double blow when both their Mercedes SLS AMG GT3 cars retired with mechanical failures. The team began the MMER 2013 looking to repeat their memorable first and second finish from last year by occupying the front row of the grid.
However pole sitter Thomas Jäger, Lucas Wolf and Luca Ludwig eventually retired after clocking in a DNF after 101 laps whilst teammates Bernd Scheider, Jono Lester and Dominic Ang retired after 218 laps.
TOP FIVE FINISHERS MMER 2013 GT3 CATEGORY
Mok Weng Sun/Hiroshi Hamaguchi/Craig Baird (Ferrari 458 Italia GT3) 12:00:08:429 (323 laps)
Roger Lago Racing
Roger Lago/David Russell/Peter Kox (Lamborghini LP560-4) 12:01:09:724 (317 laps)
Mika Salo/Pasin Lathauras/Michele Rugolo (Ferrari 458 Italia GT3) 12:01:53:841 (316 laps)
Naza Nexus Racing
Adrian D’Silva/Earl Bamber/Alif Hamdan (Ferrari 458 Italia GT3) 12:02:11:673 (316 laps)
Darryl O’Young/Vuthikorn Intharaphuvasak/Siu Yuk Lung (Porsche GT3R) 12:02:09:584 (314 laps)