Good news to Audi R8 LMS Cup fellows as the official Audi R8 LMS Cup entry of Chinese Taipei driver Jeffrey Lee and Hong Kong’s Marchy Lee returned to podium form with a third-place finish in Round 6 of the GT Asia Series at the Fuji International Speedway.
Following a challenging start to both Jeffrey and Marchy’s Fuji debuts in Round 5, the Pro/Am pair made sure to use their Audi R8 LMS ultra to the max in Round 6 as they recovered from a spin on Lap 2 to take the final podium position.
With six rounds of the 11-race series complete, the entry – which showcases the Audi R8 LMS Cup, the brand’s first one-makes series – is now just shy of second place in the standings, with Marchy in third place and Jeffrey, two points behind in fourth.
Saturday’s Round 5 proved a challenge for the pairing, with Jeffery racing the first stint, starting from ninth on the grid. After nine laps, Jeffrey handed over driving duties to Marchy. The pair’s efforts to reach the podium were further complicated with a drive-through penalty for driving too fast through pit lane. Still, Marchy continued to push, showing the speed of the Audi R8 LMS ultra with the fastest lap of the race, to finish ninth overall.
Determined to end the weekend on a high note, Marchy started a wet Round 6 from third on the grid, having qualified third quickest in the Saturday’s second qualifying session. Off the start, Marchy quickly moved up to second on Turn 1 and by the end of the first lap was leading the field.
However on Lap 2, as Marchy pushed to increase his lead, he spun and fell back to fourth position. From there, he steadily chipped away at the lead, demonstrating the capabilities of the Audi lightweight technology. On Lap 11, Marchy grabbed an opportunity to overtake for third place.
Following the driver change, Jeffrey maintained the position, working hard to keep the pace, bring the car home and return the pair to the podium.
Said Rene Koneberg, Director of Audi Sport customer racing China: “We are delighted to return the podium this weekend and get our championship goal back on track in Fuji. It has been a pleasure to introduce the Audi R8 LMS Cup entry to Japan and we look forward to racing at Suzuka next month.”
Jeffrey Lee: “It’s great to stand on the podium again! We had a couple of errors, but I’m happy that we were able to achieve a strong result today. This weekend has been a good experience for us. It’s my first time driving the Audi R8 LMS ultra in the rain and it’s good to know what we can achieve in the wet.”
Marchy Lee: “The spin on Lap 2 was a big mistake but this is a competitive championship and you need to push. After the mistake I tried my best to recover and the car did a great job. The Audi R8 LMS ultra is very balanced and showed great pace in this weather. This is my first weekend at Fuji and if I come back next time, I know I will be stronger.”
The Audi R8 LMS Cup entry will be back in action next month in Suzuka for Rounds 7 & 8 of the GT Asia Series from August 18-19, 2012.