Sunday, November 17, 2013

Macau GT Cup: Mortara wins Macau GT Cup

Audi R8 LMS Cup Press Release

  •          Edoardo Mortara wins third Macau GT Cup in a row for Audi
  •          Team R8 LMS ultra clinch GT Asia team championship
  •          Marchy Lee with excellent fourth place

Macau, November 17, 2013 – Edoardo Mortara won his third Macau GT Cup in a row in dramatic fashion today. Starting second on the grid, Mortara dropped to fourth after the first two corners, before eventually passing through the top of the field in the final three laps of the race. Marchy Lee produced a superb drive to secure fourth position after starting 11th on the grid. An excellent weekend for Audi was completed as Team R8 LMS ultra, with drivers Philip Ma, Francis Hideki Onda and Jeffrey Lee sealed the GT Asia team championship. 

“The one person who can make this possible is Edo. Yesterday he said he could not do miracles – then today when he overtook one of his competitors in the narrow hills of Macau he said over the radio ‘see, I can do miracles’. To collect his 6th win in Macau at the 60th anniversary of the Macau GP and against this year’s very strong competition is outstanding. Marchy Lee was excellent for 4th place. It shows how strong Asian drivers can compete on an international level,” said Rene Koneberg, Director of Audi Sport customer racing Asia. He continued: “Additionally we won the team championship of the GT Asia season today. This is the icing on the cake. In only two years, we have established our Audi Sport customer racing activities in Asia as the benchmark of motorsport in the Asian region.”

Mortara’s race got off to a disappointing start when he dropped from second to fourth. And there were little opportunities to regain positions, as the safety car was out for the majority of the opening six laps because of two crashes. The first one involved a handful of cars after New Zealand driver Earl Bamber hit the wall and spun. The second incident saw Australian Ro Charlz lose control of his vehicle. The standing car was eventually hit by the Audi R8 LMS ultra of team IMS driver Shim Ching, who had to retire from the race.

The race came alive on lap 7, with Maro Engel leading the field before he was forced to retire in lap 9. Three enthralling final three laps followed. On lap 10 Mortara was able to move into second place by overtaking Renger Zande’s Mercedes SLS AMG GT3 on a very tight corner of the snake-like hill area of the circuit. He now had a clear run at race leader Alexandre Imperatori.

And with just two laps to go, Mortara took the lead with another spectacular move. Danny Watts in the McLaren MP4-12C climbed from fourth to second in the shadow of the Audi driver. Mortara kept his cool and opened up a safe gap between him and his rival to take the chequered flag. 2012 Audi LMS cup champion, Marchy Lee, drove excellently to cut through the field from 11th on the grid to 4th.

For Mortara it was the sixth victory in Macau and the second in just as many weekends. Last Sunday he had already won the final race of the 2013 Audi R8 LMS Cup season on Macau’s Guia Circuit.

Jeffrey Lee finished third in the GT Asia category. His Team R8 LMS ultra secured the overall GT Asia team championship for Audi in Macau. They finished the series on top of the standings on 236 points ahead of Clearwater Racing on 206 and Craft Racing on 188.

Edoardo Mortara:

“The car was unbelievable, especially in the hill part. I never give up and always give everything. Congrats to Marchy [Lee] for fourth place and thanks to all the people that made this weekend possible. I have never seen such a competitive field in the GT Cup, and to have first and fourth is fantastic. We were losing 7 to 8 tenths on the straights, so we had to make that up in the mountains where we were quicker. Many people say you can’t overtake in the mountain area. But it was the only chance, so I had to do it.”

Marchy Lee:

“I started the race very patient and waited for my opportunities. Edo [Mortara] has been fantastic all weekend and I have learnt a lot from the Audi Quattro team and from Edo’s driving style. This will help me going into 2014. I hope I can come back to Macau next year. ”

Romolo Liebchen, Head of Audi Sport customer racing:

“I am not sure if my nerves can take this every year. After the start of the race I didn’t think victory was possible. But Edo [Mortara] again did an outstanding job. He was fantastic. He made history today!!”

Audi R8 LMS Cup Official Website:

Photo credit: Audi R8 LMS Cup