All did not go as planned for Zen Low and Fairuz Fauzy at the start of the GT Asia Series 2015 season in Korea as a gearbox issue caused the race to end for the team, just two laps before the chequered flag. The team started the race in eighth with Fairuz behind the wheel of the Lamborghini Gallardo FLII.
The weekend started out well for Aylezo, who are the Technical Partner for OD Racing – a newly formed race outfit. Both Zen and Fairuz showed great pace during practice, staying within the top eight throughout the week. The team tried various setups and just prior to the Qualifying session earlier today, the team decided to try something slightly different to get an extra edge. Unfortunately the plan did not work and the team qualified eighth for the race today and eleventh for Round 2 tomorrow.
In round 1, Fairuz got a good start as the lights turned green and was off into a battle with a Bentley and a McLaren for half his race. Halfway through, the characteristics of the car started to change and Fairuz began to feel the Lamborghini starting to oversteer. As time neared the pit-window, he dropped down the order before handing the car to Zen in ninth.
A perfect pit-stop later, Zen pushed hard as he came out of pit in tenth, climbing up to sixth before the gear issue slowed him down dramatically, dropping him down the order. Just two laps before the end as Zen was stuck in second gear, the engineer called him in to avoid disqualification.
“It was a disappointing end to what would have been a point scoring race for the team. We fought hard right from the start”, said Zen after the race.
For Fairuz, the race and his battles with the Bentley of Davide Rizzo and the McLaren of Vitantonio Liuzzi, was the most interesting part of the race, before the car started to oversteer.
“The race itself was good, I managed a good start and we were up to P6 at one point. It was a good fight between me and Davide, who was behind me, and also with Liuzzi. But then, in lap six or so the car’s balance started to change and it started to oversteer, so by the time I pitted on lap 14, the engineer informed me that tyre pressure was a bit too high on the front and rear tyres.
“It was unfortunate for Zen, but he did a good job to head out and continue for the team. Then just two laps before the chequered flag we had gearbox actuator issue and Zen could not change gears. It was unfortunate really as we were looking good to finish in the top six but luck was just not on our side. We will try again tomorrow in race two and we have Zen to start the race” ended Fairuz after the race.
“When Fairuz handed the car to me and I got out in P10, I had a pretty good several laps fighting with the Bentleys. I managed to find my way up to P6 but then we had the gearbox issue leaving the car to
stick in second and subsequently in first gear with just two laps to go.
“Then the engineer advised me to come in as we didn’t want to be black flagged for driving too slow, as I was going about 60km/h. So my race ended 2 laps before chequered flag and we are listed as DNF for not crossing the chequered flag.
“Otherwise, it would have been a good race, I was enjoying it right up to the time we had the gearbox issue. Hopefully tomorrow is a better day for us”, ended Zen with a dejected sigh.
The team is anxious to end the day in the points tomorrow and are already hard at work trying to rectify the issue with the gear. It will be a long night for the team but they are determined to end the weekend on a high.
The one hour GT Asia Series Round 2 is scheduled for 1.30pm local time (2.30pm Malaysian time) onSunday, 17th ay 2015.