Macau Grand Prix newsletter 2010-08-06

FIA FORMULA 3 INTERCONTINENTAL CUP Masters of Formula 3 Bottas Twice the Master Finland's Valtteri Bottas, 5th in Macau last year, became the only driver to win two Masters of For-mula 3 when the 20 year old took a second consecutive victory in ...

Macau Grand Prix newsletter 2010-08-06


Masters of Formula 3
Bottas Twice the Master

Finland's Valtteri Bottas, 5th in Macau last year, became the only driver to win two Masters of For-mula 3 when the 20 year old took a second consecutive victory in June at Holland's Circuit Park Zandvoort. Pole man Alexander Sims and Marco Wittman finished second and third, respectively.

"It was a tough race, but now I am really happy. Winning the Mas-ters for the second time was my goal for this weekend. Before the race, we opted for slicks, which turned out to be the right choice," said Bottas.

Sims, 22, was classified 18th overall at Macau last year, and made his Guia Circuit debut in 2008 where he finished 8th in the Formula BMW Pacific race.

Alumni Update
Dominant Class Win at Le Mans for Danny Watts

Danny Watts, who has raced at the Macau Grand Prix eight times in single seaters and sportscars, put in a stunning performance at the 78th Le Mans 24 Hours to win the LMP2 class along with his Strakka Racing teammates Jonny Kane and Nick Leventis. With the team finishing fifth overall (the highest ever position for an LMP2 car), it was Watts who set both pole position and the fastest lap in the world's most prestigious en-durance race.

Describing the win as the big-gest of the 30-year old's career thus far, Watts said: "It's great to win any race, but it's absolutely As the countdown to the Grand Prix begins, keep track of the riders and drivers who could be Macau-bound in November! Dates: November 18-21, 2010 Tickets: Masters of Formula 3 Bottas Twice the Master Finland's Valtteri Bottas, 5th in Macau last year, became the only driver to win two Masters of For-mula 3 when the 20 year old took a second consecutive victory in June at Holland's Circuit Park Zandvoort. Pole man Alexander Sims and Marco Wittman finished second and third, respectively.

"It was a tough race, but now I am really happy. Winning the Mas-ters for the second time was my goal for this weekend. Before the race, we opted for slicks, which turned out to be the right choice," said Bottas. Sims, 22, was classified 18th overall at Macau last year, and made his Guia Circuit debut in 2008 where he finished 8th in the Formula BMW Pacific race. Alumni Update fantastic to win here at Le Mans. We came here as underdogs, but after the performances at Paul Ricard and Spa, we knew the car would be strong, and we believed we were in with a shot. We estab-lished a benchmark for the class in practice and qualifying, but after Jonny put us in such a strong po-sition during his opening stint we were able to set the pace all the way to the chequered flag. That put the pressure on the others to catch us. This result has put Strakka on the map in sportscar racing, and against the best in the world. It's a fantastic achieve-ment."

Watts, who won the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia season finale at the 2006 Macau Grand Prix, will race with Strakka Racing for the 2010 Le Mans Series.

Formula 3 Euro Series

Reigning Formula 3 Macau Grand Prix champion Edoardo Mortara leads the 2010 F3 Euro Series, having won three out of eight races thus far. The 23-year-old Italian, who finished second in the F3 Euro Series in 2008, has stepped back into Formula 3 after competing in GP2 in 2009. Sec-ond and fifteen points behind the leader, is Mortara's Signature teammate Marco Wittman. Witt-man, 20, is also in his second year of F3 Euro Series, having finished 18th overall in 2009. Sitting in third is Valtteri Bottas. Confirmed in January, 2010 as the AT&T Wil-liams F1 test and reserve driver, Bottas has put in a strong showing this season, taking not only the Masters of Formula 3 victory, but also his first F3 Euro Series win in July at Norisring.

Spain's Daniel Juncadella, 19, is currently the leading rookie and is sixth overall.

Cooper Tires British F3 International Series

Carlin's Jean-Eric Vergne seized control of the 2010 Cooper Tires British F3 International Se-ries following a perfect weekend which saw the Frenchmen win all three races at Spa. With 12 races remaining, Vergne leads Fortec Motorsport driver Oliver Webb by 87 points, with Carlin's James Ca-lado a further 12 points adrift.

With nine wins so far this sea-son, Vergne is the man to beat, and is the first driver to win all three British F3 races in a single weekend.

Starting from pole in the first of the weekend's three races, Vergne got off to a poor start and quickly lost two positions. With Calado leading the way, followed closely by Webb, Vergne man-aged to find a way past his closest rival on the second lap. From there, he concentrated on getting by teammate Calado, taking the lead on the seventh lap.

Although Vergne started Round 17 from 7th on the grid, he stormed through the field on the opening lap and up to second place. From there, it was a tense battle between Vergne and race leader Felipe Nasr of Raikkonen-Robertson Racing. It didn't take long for Vergne to get past the Brazilian and from there, the Frenchman held on for his second win in as many races. Nasr, in his first year of British F3, finished second, with Fortec Motorsport driver Daniel McKenzie third.

Vergne took his third victory of the weekend in Round 18, with the Red Bull Junior confident as he lined up second on the grid. A strong start was not enough to beat pole-sitter Webb, but Vergne's persistence paid off and he took the lead on the third lap. Meanwhile, Calado had worked his way up from fifth to third and was focused on going one place higher. On Lap 5, Calado found his way past Webb to make it a Carlin 1-2. ART driver Alexander Sims rounded out the podium, while Webb did not finish the race after an incident with Raikkonen-Robertson Racing driver Carlos Huertas.

Sino Vision Racing: New British F3 Team with Manor Roots

New team Sino Vision Racing is contesting their first British F3 campaign this season, with drivers Adderly Fong of Hong Kong and Briton Wayne Boyd. The new team entered British F3 after buy-ing two Dallara-Mercedes from Macau regular Manor Motorsport, which continues to provide techni-cal support to the team.

The team was established at the end of 2009 by German F3 Cup mechanic Chris Churchill, who had previously worked with Fong during his German cam-paign. Fong, who was the Chinese A1GP rookie test driver, is in his first season of British F3, while Boyd is in his second. Boyd com-peted at Macau in 2009, but an incident in the Qualification Race ended his debut.

British F3 to Formula 1

Since its inception in 1964, British F3 has produced more graduates to F1 than any other single-seater series, including for-mer British F3 champions Ayrton Senna, Jackie Stewart, Emerson Fittipaldi, Gunnar Nilsson, Nelson Piquet, Derek Warwick, Stefan Johansson, Johnny Herbert, JJ Lehto, Mika Hakkinen and Rubens Barrichello. And of course, many of these drivers have also been part of the Macau Grand Prix, in-cluding Senna, the first-ever For-mula 3 Macau Grand Prix winner, and Hakkinen, whose exciting Macau Grand Prix battle with Mi-chael Schumacher celebrates its 20th anniversary this year.

Japan Formula 3 Championship

Yuji Kunimoto continues a per-fect season in the All-Japan For-mula 3 Championship, with the 19-year old TOMS's driver extending his winning streak to eight in as many races. The younger brother of 2008 Formula 3 Macau Grand Prix winner Keisuke, Kunimoto has been unstoppable in 2010 and with half of the 16-race season complete, the PETRONAS TEAM TOM'S driver has put together a dominant lead over second-placed Yuhi Sekiguchi.

Kunimoto is in his second sea-son of Japanese Formula 3, hav-ing finished 3rd in 2009. The Japa-nese driver has twice visited Macau, first in 2008, where he finished 5th in the Formula BMW Pacific race. In 2009, Kunimoto raced in the headline Formula 3 Grand Prix, where he finished 9th overall.


Chevrolet's Yvan Muller currently tops the leaderboard of the 2010 FIA World Touring Car Champi-onship (FIA WTCC), with three wins thus far this season. The Frenchman leads 2009 FIA WTCC champion Gabriele Tarquini by just five points, with three-time champion Andy Priaulx in third.

In Rounds 13 and 14 at Brno, Chevrolet's Robert Huff took his first victory of the season in Race 1, while Andy Priaulx scored BMW's 50th FIA WTCC win in Race 2.

Huff claimed a lights-to-flag victory, despite a short safety car period, ahead of both reigning champion Gabriele Tarquini and his Chevrolet teammate Alain Menu.

In Race 2, Priaulx took victory from fourth on the grid. Colin Turk-ington finished second having held off Menu, who crossed the line third.

With eight races to go, series leader Yvan Muller, who did not score points in either race, is now just five points ahead of Tarquini, 16 points ahead of Priaulx and 32 points in front of Huff.

The 2010 FIA WTCC began at the Autodromo Internacional de Curitiba racing circuit in Brazil and for the second consecutive year, Chevrolet's Muller secured his pole position for Race 1.

Due to torrential rain, Round 1 began behind the Safety Car, but when it pulled in, the Chevrolet team quickly took the first three places as Gene ran wide, allowing Menu and Huff to pass. The trio continued to lead the race all the way to the finish line.

The second race saw SR-Sport teammates Tarquini and Gene cross the finish line first and sec-ond with Menu third. Round 2 saw defending champion Tarquini earn his first win of the season, ahead of teammate Gene.

Said Tarquini: "The SR-Sport team have done a fantastic job. Last year I knew I could fight for the title but this year my plan is to score some victories and the first one is here."

The races scheduled for Pue-bla, Mexico were cancelled, so the third and fourth rounds of the sea-son were held in May in Marra-kech, Morocco. Tarquini set a qualifying record by almost four seconds and looked to be in fine form to defend his 2009 FIA WTCC title.

Indeed, Tarquini held on to first place from start to finish, easing to victory in the 11-lap Race 1, ahead of Huff and Tiago Monteiro.

Priaulx won the second race in Morocco, ahead of Muller and Tom Coronel. A five-car incident at the start brought out the safety car. Only seconds after racing was resumed, another multicar acci-dent between Farfus and Menu meant that the safety car was de-ployed once again. It pulled off with just one lap of the race re-maining and a sprint to the finish saw Priaulx win BMW's first victory of the season.

Rounds 5 & 6 took place in Monza, with Farfus earning BMW Team RBM's first pole position of the season.

A drama-filled first race saw Priaulx take a second win, fol-lowed by Farfus and Huff. Round 6 was an equally exciting affair which saw Muller win his second race of the season, with Coronel and Huff rounding out the podium.

For the first time ever, the FIA WTCC visited Circuit Zolder in Belgium for Rounds 7 and 8. Tar-quini secured his second pole po-sition of the season, with team-mate Gene second fastest, and Chevrolet's Menu starting from the second row.

Tarquini secured his third win of the season in Round 7, after Gene was excluded for not pass-ing a technical check. Priaulx won his third race of 2010 in Round 8, followed by Rob Huff and Tiago Monteiro.

Rounds 9 and 10 took place in Portimao, Portugal and on his home circuit, Tiago Monteiro claimed his first pole since 2007, and followed it up with a lights-to-flag victory in Round 9, ahead of Muller and Tarquini.

Reigning champion Tarquini claimed his fourth win of the sea-son in Round 10, with Muller and Menu rounding out the podium. Norbert Michelisz led the race for the first four laps, before being passed by Menu and Tarquini, whilst Muller moved into fourth place, ahead of Coronel.

At Brands Hatch, Muller se-cured pole position for Round 11, and went on to claim victory in the race ahead of Huff and Yokohama Independents' Trophy contender Turkington.

Priaulx won Round 12, with Turkington and Tarquini second and third, respectively. Despite a bad start from pole, Priaulx got by BMW Team RBM teammate Au-gustus Farfus to reclaim the lead. Farfus and Menu then lost second and third place as the pair made contact, promoting Turkington and Tarquini up the order.

Said Priaulx: "It's a brilliant re-sult to be third in the champion-ship, and we are heading to a few circuits that will suit us so hope-fully we can take the champion-ship fight all the way to Macau."

Twenty Years on the Edge

For any motorsport fan, it comes as no surprise that Macau regular Tom Coronel has a few stories to tell. And as the animated Dutchman, racing this year for SR Sport, celebrates two decades of racing, Coronel decided to work with journalists Coo Dijkman and Rick Winkelman to write his memories down. The end result? Twenty Years on the Edge.

According to Coronel, the hard-est part about creating the book was getting everything to fit into 184 pages and he could easily have filled a further 100!

"It was fun to think back to the start of my racing career and all of the adventures I've been through," said Coronel. "It made me realize that I've achieved a lot. There were always people who were will-ing to help me, but also because I've always been very driven and worked hard. An unexpected fun part about the book is that there are a lot of people who come up to me and say they enjoyed the book because it explained to them why certain things happened."

Twenty Years on the Edge chronicles Coronel's life in and out of motorsport, including the highs and lows of his career. Among the highs were his Marlboro Masters of Formula 3 victory in 1997, two Independents titles in the FIA WTCC, and championship sea-sons in Japanese Formula 3 and Formula Nippon. And while there were certainly lows, Coronel man-ages to speak about them with a sense of humour.

"Of course, there were the two races in Macau which I led but crashed out in because of my own mistakes," he said. "This hap-pened to me in 2001 and in For-mula 3 in 1997. I was about to get onto the winners list with guys like Senna, Schumacher and Coulthard but missed out the chance to win. But I won't give up!"

Despite the two close calls, the Macau Grand Prix remains one of Coronel's favourite races and no doubt the Guia Circuit features a few times in Twenty Years on the Edge. Asked what's in store for the next 20 years, Coronel said: "I will continue to follow my heart so I will race and race. Until I'm 65. Or 70."


Hutchinson Sets Record with Five Isle of Man TT Victories

Ian Hutchinson became the only rider in the 103-year history of the Isle of Man TT to win five races in a single week. The 30-year old broke the previous record of four after guiding his Padgetts Honda to victory in the Dainese Senior TT.

In the final race of the 2010 Isle of Man TT, Hutchinson took the lead from the start and when close challengers John McGuinness and Conor Cummins retired and crashed, respectively, Hutchinson was able to ease off in the closing stages to finish 37.77 second ahead of Ryan Farquhar and Bruce Anstey.

Sweeping all five solo races, Hutchinson, who has raced at the Macau Motorcycle Grand Prix five times, opened up his brilliant week with a win in the PokerStars Su-perbike race. He followed up that success by winning the Monster Energy Supersport "A" and the Royal London 360 races.

Equaling the previous record of four wins, Hutchinson won the second Supersport race just over a second ahead of Michael Dunlop.

Miller wins zero emissions race

Mark Miller won the Isle of Man TT Zero Race, an event for motor-cycles powered without the use of carbon-based fuels and which have zero emissions. Though Miller and MotoCzysz won the race on their E1PC machine, they just narrowly missed out on the GBP10,000 prize offered by the Isle of Man government to the first team to record a 100 mph lap.

Northwest 200 Wrap Up

Macau Motorcycle Grand Prix riders put in strong performances at the North West 200, with John McGuinness, Keith Amor and Ian Hutchinson all winning races at the 2010 edition of the classic race.

McGuinness, 2001 Macau Mo-torcycle Grand Prix winner, won the rain-delayed Yoko Bistro Res-taurant and Noodle Bar Superbike race after getting by Conor Cum-mins, who had led the field through the end of lap one. On the last lap, McGuinness held off Cummins by two-tenths of a sec-ond, with Alastair Seeley, who fin-ished third, setting the fastest lap of the race. Amor and two-time and defending Macau Motorcycle Grand Prix champion Stuart Easton rounded out the top five, finishing fourth and fifth, respec-tively.

The Clinton Enterprise Su-persport race was won by Seeley, with Hutchinson finishing second, two places ahead of Amor in fourth, and McGuinness in fifth place overall.

After two fourth-place finishes, Amor won his first international road race with a victory in the five-lap CP Hire Superstock race. The Scotsman also gave manufacturer BMW their first-ever North West 200 win, after Amor edged out Hutchinson, Ryan Farquhar, Seely and six-time Macau Motorcycle Grand Prix champion Michael Rut-ter.

Said Amor: "After two fourths in the earlier races, I was determined to get a podium. It was a real bat-tle and I just had a slight top end advantage, so it was a matter of keeping the lead and getting the job done. It's brilliant as this team was set up at the eleventh-hour and it is real satisfying to get my first international win."

Amor would step on the po-dium once more that day after fin-ishing second in the Ballymoney borough Council Supersport race which was won by Hutchinson. New Zealand's Bruce Anstey was third.

-source: macu gp

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