Even with the sun shining mercilessly above the Sepang skies, it was not an excuse for the fans of the famous Japanese touring car championship to not be there and join in the excitement of the 2012 AUTOBACS SUPER GT Round 3. With a great line up of cars and drivers in both the GT500 and GT300 class, the race promises some breathtaking driving actions, and also some hidden surprises along the way.
And to start things off, Sepang is proving to be a lucky ground for the Weider Honda Racing team as they had successfully defended their pole position from start to finish in the GT500 class with their HSV-010 GT, which was exactly the same result as last year’s Round 3. Being the fastest in the qualifying session with a time of 1:55.321, the Weider HSV-010 enjoyed the lead during the race, but this time they were trailed close by the Lexus Team Zent Cerumo’s SC430 which finished in second place.
And it is in this round that the Lexus Team LeMans ENEOS that had showed an amazing performance, taking home the best performance title. Starting off from the back of the pack, the ENEOS SC430 driven by Daisuke Ito and Kazuya Oshima managed to pass through the traffic and overcome the challenges of the scorching heat to secure a place in the podium finish, closing up to a gap of only six seconds behind the second position.
The intense heat during Sunday’s race was truly a challenge as a number of cars became the victims of blowing tires. D’Station ADVAN GT-R only managed to do two laps before being forced to retire after blowing one of its tires at the main straights. Later in the race, S Road REITO MOLA GT-R also suffered the same fate, where they blew one of their tires and went out of control, before crashing into PETRONAS TOM’S SC430 and putting them both out of the race.
The GT300 class saw the European makes basking in victory with two Porsches and an Aston taking the podium after the 49-lap race. The HANKOOK Porsche started off in pole position with its best time of 2:04.262 during qualifying and had widened the gap throughout the race with the advantage, taking the chequered flag with a gap of 24.267 seconds between them and the second place. Coming up in second was also a Porsche 911 GT3 R from Team TAISAN ENDLESS, followed by the triple a Vantage GT3.