Hong Leong Kencana Wins MME In Sensational Style
 


Team Hong Leong-Kencana Racing powered by Porsche 911 GT3 RSR wins MME. Photo by KF Chow (chow@malaysiacurrent.com)

25th August, Sepang - In a sensational end to the 2007 Petronas Primax 3 Merdeka Millennium Race (MME), Team Hong Leong-Kencana Racing snatched victory from Petronas Syntium Team after the favourites retired from the race at Sepang Circuit tonight with less than 55 minutes to go and 13 laps ahead.

Leading the race from the second hour and cruising to what looked like a sure victory, the engine of the powerful BMW Z4M Coupe simply stalled at the back straight and driver Fariqe Hairuman leaping out of the car, hopping map in anger and frustration.


Datuk Mokhzani Mahathir with Porsche 911 GT3 RSR
before the race flag of
f

That opened the door for the Team Hong Leong-Kencana Racing - with drivers Mokhzani Mahathir, Sven Herberger and LeMans driver Lars Erik Nielsen, taking the checkered flag, completing 288 laps in the 12-hour endurance race and a record in the eight-year history of the series. The previous record was 276 laps achieved in 2005 by Amprex Proton Motorsports.



Honda Malaysia Racing Team took second and third place with the partnership of Eddie Lew, Hiroki Katoh and Shinya Hosokawa taking second overall and first among Class A runners with 282 laps. The partnership Aaaron Lim, Rueben Wong and Fahrizal Hassan took third overall, also covering 282 laps.

 


Despite completing 275 laps, the Petronas Syntium Team - powered by the legendary Hans Joachim Stuck and his son Jonannes to partner Fariqe was classified as DNF (did not finish) as the rules requires competitors to take the checkered flag to have their results classified by the race officials.

Starting from third at the grid, Stuck, a former F1 driver and former winner of LeMans 24Hours and Nurburgring 24Hours, took the team's Porsche Z4 Coupe machine to the front in the second hour of the race and immediately took control of the race until that disaster struck the team.

Porsche Club Singapore Racing Team - with drivers Sri Lankan Dilantha Malagamuwa and Singaporeans Mok Weng Sun and Ringo Chong - started from pole position; but have their race ended pre-maturely with transmission problem ater covering 113 laps in four hours and 37 minutes.


Jazeman Jaafar's Team Proton R3 Motorsports also had a short outing of only 80 laps in just over three hours after the Lotus Exige 300RR machine - the car that won the race in 2005 and 2006 - encountered electrical problems and retired.

Malaysian favourite Jazeman Jaafar was superb in his first competitive drive in the MME, helping the team to fifth overall fastest at a time of 2 minutes 15.052 seconds.

Top 10 Finishers
(Number of laps covered after 12 hours)

1. Mokhzani Mahathir, Sven Herberger, Lars Erik Nielsen) (Porsche 911 GT3 RSR) 288 laps

2. Hiroki Katoh, Shinya Hosokawa, Eddie Lew (Honda Civic Type R) 282 laps

3. Rueben Wong, Fahrizal Hassan, Aaron Lim (Honda Civic Type R) 282 laps

4. Marcus Goh, Yasuhiro Kuhara, Ken Yap (Honda Integra DC5) 271 laps

5. Unemoto Junichi, Kusumoto Yoshiharu, Nagano Kenya (Honda S2000) 271 laps

6. Shaun Juniper, Paul Kelly, Craig Bird (Porsche 911 GT3 RSR) 270 laps

7. Helmi Ilyas, Adam Ilyas, Hisham Jahudi (Lotus Exige 240) 269 laps

8. Erwin Azizi, Adam Azizi, Johnson Chen (Honda Dc5) 268 laps

9. Keifli Othman, Peter Leemhuis, Tony Ford (Honda Integra DC5) 267 laps

10. Wong Yew Choong, Kek Tean Kang, Soh Kee Koon (Honda Integra DC2) 256 laps


Class Winners

Class O (Open class)
Mokhzani Mahathir, Sven Herberger, Lars Erik Nielsen (Porsche 911 GT3 RSR) 288 laps

Class A (production cars above 1900cc)
Hiroki Katoh, Shinya Hosokawa, Eddie Lew (Honda Civic Type R) 283 laps

Class B (production cars between 1601cc and 1900cc)
Wong Yew Choong, Tek Kean Kang, Soh Kee Koon (Honda Integra DC2) 256 laps

Class C (production cars below 1600cc
Harry Chai (Toyota AE101) 259 laps


To catch the exciting news and watch latest result on Merdeka Millennium Endurance, visit www.malaysiangp.com.my for more info or contact Azhar Ghazali at 019-3837865

 

Copyright © 2007 MalaysiaCurrent. All rights reserved.

        

 
 
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