Round 6 of the 2017 Ferrari Challenge Asia-Pacific was a special one in this year’s racing calendar as it was the only street circuit in the season and stood in as one of the support races for the 2017 Singapore Grand Prix. The 5.065km Marina Bay Street Circuit thoroughly gave Team NAZA Aylezo a challenge throughout its 23 corners as the street circuit has very minimal run-off areas and has virtually no room for error.
But the tight and twisty street circuit was not the only challenge Zen Low had faced at Marina Bay. With the monsoon season around the corner, the torrential downpour had soaked the circuit a number of times including the Practice session. This had forced Zen to carefully thread his way through the circuit and by the end of the session, he was able to clock a best time of 2:36.456.
Luckily for Zen, he was able to take the 488 Challenge race car closer to its limits during the Qualifying session where the track conditions improved dramatically. Zen used this golden window of opportunity to nail down a proper lap and by the end of the session, his speedy 2:22.736 had earned Team NAZA Aylezo P3 on the grid to start Race 1 in.
With a good position to start the race, Zen made full use of the P3 spot and immediately sprang into action as soon as the lights turned green. His quick reaction had definitely paid off as he was able to overtake a rival and take P2 at Turn 1 on the opening lap. It was not long until the race turned into a bumper-to-bumper battle, but Zen was not going to let the pursuing P3 pass him under any circumstances.
Even after a race restart which saw the safety car being deployed for a number of laps, the pursuing P3 made a number of attempts to pass Zen, which all were met by Zen’s brilliant defense. This aggressive defense proved fruitful as he did not only manage to cross the checkered flag to claim an encouraging P2, but also managed to collect extra championship points by clocking the fastest lap in the race.
The brilliant P2 finish in Race 1 also benefited the team for Race 2 as the starting grid was based on the finishing position from Race 1. Starting from the front row meant that Zen had a clear field of vision in front of him, but he still had to be wary of those chasing from the rear.
While things might have gotten a bit too close for comfort on the start which resulted in a missing side mirror, Zen had managed to successfully defend his spot on P2 after the first few turns from the fast-approaching rivals who showed interest in Zen’s position. Being in P2 meant that there was a big chance that the team will be going home with another podium finish in hand, but the field of cars at the back were constant reminders that one should never be too comfortable of their position until the checkered flag flutters.
Car #39 in particular showed interest in Zen’s position in a number of occasions, but the threat from the chasing P3 died down on Lap 9 where he was hit from the rear by car #4 which tried to overtake from the inside. With the rivals taking themselves out from the race, Zen was virtually left with no immediate threat from the back and sailed through the checkered flag to comfortably bring home another P2 for Team NAZA Aylezo.
With 6 rounds in the bag, Team NAZA Aylezo now takes a quick break before getting back into action at Mugello, Italy, for the Finali Mondiali on 26-29 October. After 11 races, Zen had managed to finish in 7 podium spots and scored 142 points, and is now in third place overall in the Trofeo Pirelli classification.
Team NAZA Aylezo would like to take this opportunity to extend their greatest appreciation to everyone who had helped in making this journey possible, especially NAZA World, FXPrimus, Rudy Project, Ecotint, Lifestyle Chiropractic LLP, Under Armour, TMK Motorsports and Kryptonite Productions.