It was the toughest outing so far for the Aylezo duo of Zen Low and Fairuz Fauzy at Okayama International Circuit today for Round 3 of the GT Asia Series. The duo, driving OD Racing’s Lamborghini Gallardo FLII, finished the race in ninth, further collecting points for the 2015 Championship fight.
It was not the best of starts for Fairuz who lost a couple of positions as the lights turned green, but he was right in the middle of a four way battle with a Lamborghini, a McLaren and a Bentley and Fairuz managed to make some positions before handing the car to Zen in seventh.
Fairuz started the race in eleventh after a tough qualifying session earlier in the morning where both he and Zen felt a lack of mechanical grip and a slower car. Then after the race today, the Aylezo crew discovered a small crack on the exhaust which explains the mysterious loss of power felt during the Qualifying session.
Despite the issue, Fairuz had a good race and was quite contented with the outcome. “For me, it was a good race out there today, I had a car that I can fight with the other drivers. I did however lose a couple of positions at the start as I was too close behind a few cars and could not really see the start light.
“I was in a nice battle with the Ferrari of Matthew Griffin, the Lamborghini from Dilango and a Bentley.
“We started the race in 11th and after losing a couple of positions, I managed to fight my way up to seventh. In terms of performance, I was quite happy as the car was consistent which gave me the confidence to fight.
“We are still happy with our target, which was to finish in the points and we did. We just have to qualify better next time. Zen will start the race for us tomorrow and I am looking forward to try and get more points for the team” ended Fairuz.
Fairuz came in to the pit in seventh position but an error during the stop caused Zen to be unable to restart the car, costing the team 15 seconds and one position.
“Unfortunately again we lost about 15 seconds in the pit due to a few errors. I could not fire up the engine when I got in the car so I had to restart the car and in the end we lost one position. Then when we went out I noticed that the car is sliding everywhere, the tyres were all used up. Fairuz literally had to fight at every single lap of his race and it was a long stint for him to defend his position. It was a necessary move for him, he did a great job and it was an exciting battle to watch but it also meant that the tyres was used a bit more. When I went out, it felt quite slippery so I just had to hold on to the car as best as I could.
“Then I had to defend my position from a fast charging Aston behind me but after a while, he spun out behind me.
“It wasn’t the best race for me but it had some interesting moments. I didn’t think the car was in best form but all in all it was a good stint that allowed us to collect more points. We are looking forward to another day and another race tomorrow” ended Zen.
The discovery of the cracked exhaust has spurred the team to stay back to fix the issue in the hopes of finding the extra tenth of a second for the race tomorrow.
The GT Asia Series is at Okayama International Circuit for rounds three and four of a twelve round Series. The weekend continues Sunday, 28 June with the Round four race at 3:00pm.