Sunday, October 19, 2014

Audi R8 LMS Cup: Couto wins in Shanghai and takes over series lead

Audi R8 LMS Cup Press Release

• André Couto wins ahead of Rahel Frey and Adderly Fong
• Championship remains close with just five points separating top three drivers
• Steven Lin consolidates lead in the amateur championship

Shanghai, October 18, 2014 — Former Macau GP winner, André Couto, enjoyed a start-to-finish victory in Round 7 of the 2014 Audi R8 LMS Cup at the Shanghai International Circuit, ahead of Swiss GT specialist Rahel Frey and 2013 Champion Adderly Fong. With his extra point awarded for clocking the fastest time in qualifying on top of his win, Couto moves to the top of the leaderboard with 101 points, narrowly ahead of Frey on 100 points. Alex Yoong is not far behind with 96 points, although he drops to third after coming to Shanghai as points leader.

“The 10 fastest drivers today posted lap times within a single second of each other, which shows just how competitive the driver field is this year in the Audi R8 LMS Cup. Any of the top drivers could go on to take the title this year. Not collecting any points in a race will most likely damper title aspirations. Consistency will be key to win the season”, commented Rene Koneberg, Director of Audi Sport customer racing Asia.

There was drama right at the start of the race as the front seven cars made contact when Alex Yoong pushed his way forward from position seven. Couto escaped with his lead intact, while Frey passed Sun Zheng for second place. The Chinese driver dropped several positions before retiring due to temporarily impaired vision. Another casualty of the early contact was Marchy Lee, who retired after the first lap due to damage sustained to his vehicle.

Talented youngster Aidan Wright, and Korean K.O. You put in strong performances to progress through the field. You started from tenth and finished in fifth after some impressive overtaking manoeuvres. Likewise Wright showed skilled driving to navigate from ninth to finish in sixth place.

Yoong’s fourth place finish along with recording the fourth fastest lap time in Round 7 puts him in a strong position tomorrow. The former Formula 1 driver will start from position four without any weight additions. Couto, who will start from pole for clocking the fastest lap time, will carry an extra 60 kg for today’s win. Fong clocked the second fastest time and will start from position two with 20 kg of additional weight, while Frey will start from position three with 40 kg.

In the amateur competition, Steven Lin notched up another victory ahead of Zheng Ting and Ashraff Dewal to further consolidate his lead at the top of the amateur rankings.

Round 8 of the Audi R8 LMS Cup will take place at 13:55 Chinese local time (UTC +8) on Sunday, October 19 and will be broadcasted live on

André Couto:

“Even though it may have looked easy, it was actually a very tough race today. The Cup is so competitive now and the top drivers are all fighting for points. The push-to-pass function makes everything more intense too and is something else we have to think about during the race.”

Rahel Frey:

“There’s five more races to go this season, so we can expect a lot more competition! I’ve collected some more crucial points today to remain in second in the rankings. I’m happy with the results today – there was the incident at the beginning but I managed to hold on to finish second.”

Adderly Fong:

“In the first half of the season, I thought there was some sort of problem with my car. No matter what we did to it, we couldn’t get decent results. Today we adjusted it so it’s now set-up the same way as last season, and I found it actually drove better, and the third place shows that.”

Steven Lin:

“I was nervous racing in front of my home crowd today, but I managed to pull off a win again. I saved my push-to-passes until the end for a strong finish.”

2014 Audi R8 LMS Cup
Round 7 — Shanghai International Circuit, China
Official Result

2014 Audi R8 LMS Cup
Top Ten Overall Classification After Round 7

2014 Audi R8 LMS Cup
Top Three Am Cup Classification After Round 7

Photo credit: Audi R8 LMS Cup