Team StarChase’s Yu Kuai Takes Double Win in Zhuzhou
25 October 2021 | ZHUZHOU-CHINA
Zhuzhou. Team StarChase scaled again the top of the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia rostrum at Zhuzhou in Hunan Province last weekend (October 23/24) with Yu Kuai adding two more victories to his impressive rookie season tally, and taking the championship title fight down to the final round.
The Asia’s premiere sportscar one-make series runners went from Ningbo in Zhejiang Province, where Yu Kuai had claimed the team’s maiden victory of the campaign, to Zhuzhou in Hunan Province. The Zhuzhou International Circuit, a new addition to this year’s calendar, is a 3.771-kilometer undulating circuit with 14 corners that consistently delivers exhilarating racing and has once again exceeded expectations.
The triple-header weekend kicked off well on Friday afternoon with Yu Kuai leading the way with a stunning performance in the single 30-minute Qualifying session. Team StarChase rookie driver came on top of a very close damp but drying session, where the top three was covered by just one tenth of a second, to earn his second and third pole-positions of the season.
Yu Kuai, while delighted with his maiden double pole position and his improved time, said: “We managed to improve our lap times in the drying conditions. The team did a great job setting up the car and helping me find the pace we need, and I am very thankful for everyone’s effort.”
On Saturday, Yu Kuai started the race one from pole position and was forced to fend off the attentions of the second place driver throughout the opening couple of corners, but managed to gap his opponent from there on in to record his second win of the year. He crossed the finish line with a seven second comfortable margin to second.
Despite starting from pole position for race two, the 20-year-old Chinese ace could not hold onto his advantage on the long straight towards turn one, dropping to third in a dramatic opening lap. Things would get worse for Yu Kuai, as he ended up spinning while trying to overtake down the hill an opponent in lap nine. Yu Kuai fell to sixth place before retrieving one position before the chequered flag, gaining valuable championship points in the process.
The final race of the weekend took place on Sunday morning with the V-KOOL orange liveried No. 99 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup lining up in first position. The Chinese driver was in imperious form as he led every lap from pole position and set fastest lap on his way to a significant win, which was also his third win of this season. Yu Kuai immediately pulled away from the field on the start, but an early-race caution period brought the field back up to the race leader. He continued his strong performance at the restart, instantly putting space between him and the next cars back, continuing to hold a safe two second lead over the field to the chequered flag, earning the team the 47th overall victory in the series.
After scoring two wins out of three, Yu Kuai was pleased with the enormous progress made over the weekend, and his increasing confidence in the car: “I am very happy that we achieved two pole-to-wins this weekend. Our pace has been really strong throughout this weekend, and I thoroughly enjoyed driving at the Zhuzhou circuit which has such dramatic elevation changes. I need to further improve my race craft and I think we have made a lot of progress since the beginning of the season. I am looking forward to racing again soon.”
Chief Executive Officer Greater China of StarChase, Mr. Robby Niermann added: “My huge congratulations to the whole team, and especially Yu Kuai for a near-perfect performance! Hard work and perseverance are paying off. Team StarChase is now going into the final weekend as the in-form-team, having won three of the last four races. We hope to put on another strong performance in front of our partners and fans at our home race in Shanghai”.
Reigning champions Team StarChase still have a mathematical chance at retaining their title in 2021, as the team prepares for the season finale triple header in Shanghai from October 29-31. Yu Kuai is currently on 210 points in third place, 16 behind the leader with 79 points on offer in Shanghai. Team StarChase now sits in third in the Porsche Dealer Trophy.