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Asian Le Mans Series

Asian LMS Champions to Be Decided in 4H Sepang

Champions, Le Mans invites to be decided in Asian LMS finale…

Photo: Vision Sport Agency

Photo: Vision Sport Agency

Championship battles in four of the Asian Le Mans Series’ five classes will be played out in the Four Hours of Sepang this weekend, with three automatic invites to the 24 Hours of Le Mans also set to be awarded.

The provisional entry list for the final round of the 2016-17 Asian Le Mans Series season has been released, with a total of 28 cars including four in LMP2, ten in LMP3, one CN car, 11 GT entries and two in GT Cup.


Jackie Chan DC Racing heads to Sepang as points leaders in the LMP2 category, with Ho-Pin Tung and Gustavo Menezes in the hunt for the drivers’ title, although set to be joined by Thomas Laurent for the third round in succession.

They have 69 points compared to 50 for the No. 25 Algarve Pro Racing Ligier JS P2 Nissan, which is second in the championship and could win the title if the DC Racing Oreca 03R Nissan failed to finish the race.

Andrea Roda and Andrea Pizzitola are the drivers in contention for the title if the No. 25 car won, but they will be joined by Aidan Read this weekend, who replaces Matt McMurry.

The sister No. 24 Algarve Pro Ligier JS P2 Judd is also technically in contention for the championship, but Michael Munemann, Tacksung Kim and Mark Patterson would need both cars currently ahead of them in the standings to retire in order to ensure the title.

The title battle in LMP3 is much more open, with five cars fighting for the title and Le Mans invite. ARC Bratislava leads the way with the No. 4 Ginetta LMP3 entry that won last time out at Buriram.

However, that car is listed with a different driver lineup than the previous three rounds, with Darren Burke joined by only Konstantins Calko and not by Mike Simpson or Miro Konopka, who both move to the sister No. 7 car.

Tockwith Motorsports is second in the standings, just four points down on the No. 4 car, and Philip Hanson and Nigel Moore will be eager to win the Le Mans entry in their No. 26 Ligier JS P3 Nissan.

The Jackie Chan DC Racing Ligier JS P3 Nissan, No. 7 ARC Bratislava Ginetta and G-Print by Triple 1 Racing Ligier also have a shot at the championship, setting up an exciting battle in LMP3.

Michele Rugolo, Matthieu Vaxiviere and Stephane Lemeret almost wrapped up the GT class title for DH Racing last time out but a post-race penalty demoted them to third from the class win.

Nevertheless, the No. 5 Ferrari 488 GT3 does still lead the GT standings, with 52 points compared to second-placed Team BBT’s 38.

However, Anthony Liu, Davide Rizzo and Alessandro Pier Guidi could still secure the Le Mans invite for Team BBT with a strong finish, as could Clearwater Racing, Spirit of Race and the No. 3 DH Racing entry, confirming that the championship will be won by a Ferrari.

Of note, PS Racing and FIST-Team AAI will both bring an ADESS 03 Nissan each back to the LMP3 class for Sepang, increasing the class’ manufacturer count to three, joining the multiple Ginetta and Ligier entries.

While PS Racing has already wrapped up the CN championship by being the only entry, there will be a battle in GT Cup, with Team NZ and TKS both taking part in the Sepang race. Both teams have won one race each so far, and so they are even on 26 points.

Track action for the Four Hours of Sepang gets underway on Friday with the race on Sunday.

Jake Kilshaw is a UK-based journalist. He is a graduate of Politics and International Relations.

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