23 April 2017

Text/Photos: Motorsport Media


TCR Asia Series, Zhuhai International Circuit, China (21-23 April, 2017)

Phoenix Racing Asia – a leading force in Audi Sport customer racing’s push into Asia – have delivered the German manufacturer their maiden TCR pole position worldwide for the exciting new Audi RS3 LMS TCR at Zhuhai in China during qualifying for the second round of the competitive TCR Asia Series.

17-year old Jasper Thong had been a standout during pre-event testing, but mother nature had intervened during official practice making it difficult to establish a good baseline for what was expected to be a dry qualifying session, but using their immense experience in GT racing, Phoenix were able to provide the perfect platform to Thong to attack, and the Audi Hong Kong driver duly delivered.

“This is just our second event with the new Audi RS3 LMS,” Phoenix Racing Asia co-team principal Marchy Lee admitted. “So I’m very happy to be able to deliver them their very first TCR pole with the new car in just our second event together, but it’s just qualifying so now the focus turns to the race one and going after the first win in TCR for the RS3 LMS TCR.

“This weekend we have three cars running with Jasper joined by Hong Kong’s SK Tong and entertainer Alex Fong who has driven brilliantly since he first climbed into the car, but it is Jasper who has really risen to the occasion to turn in an almost flawless lap for pole position.”

“I’m honoured to have been able to deliver Phoenix Racing Asia and Audi Hong Kong their first pole position, and obviously overjoyed that it’s Audi’s first pole with the RS3 LMS TCR worldwide,” Thong admitted.

“I knew the lap had to be perfect, but also that I had to respect the track limits, as there were some drivers penalized for putting all four wheels on the grass, so I knew it had to be clean. The car has been amazing since we first ran it in Malaysia, it has been more about me getting used to the dynamics of the turbo-charged 2-litre front-wheel-drive touring car, and I think in the dry, we’ve found the perfect setup. I’m looking forward to starting Sunday’s first race from the front. And it would be my aim to stay there!”