September 2, 2019

Asian Nitro Championship Rd3 – Report

The third round of this year’s Asian Nitro Championship was held at the new Infinity International RC Speedway this past weekend. The newly built track is located near the famed Suzuka Raceway in Japan and in the premier 1/8th Open class the main was stacked with talent and with the current 1/8 World Champion thrown into the mix, anything was possible. Carmine Raiola captured the pole position and clearly he was aiming to keep the position for the win. The top two qualifiers, Tadahiko Sahashi and Chavit Saligupta set the pace early for the front runners as the pair were always within striking distance of each other for a large duration of the race. Behind them it was a totally different story as much of the field was jockeying for position. Current 1/8 World Champ Dario Balestri claimed the third position from past World Champ Naoto Matsukura for a bit as he had his sights set on the leaders preparing. By this time though, all cars were approaching pit stop time and how good your pit person is was going to start to determine if you can hold your position or not. If you had trouble following the order in the closing stages of the main, you weren’t alone. Race announcer Scotty Ernst called the action and kept things straight for the watching audience. By the sound of the end tone, second qualifier Sahashi managed to grab the big win with Chavit Saligupta coming all the way from the sixth qualifying spot to take second with TQ Carmine Raiola rounding out the top 3.

1/8th Open top 3 results:
1. Tadahiko Sahashi
2. Chavit Saligupta
3. Carmine Raiola
4. Dario Balestri
5. Takaaki Shimo

In 1/8 Masters Kenji Taira was able to start and hold his front runner position for a portion of the main event, but unfortunately for him, a series of unfortunate events began to drop him back into the field opening the door for second qualifier Komuro Takahito to take the lead. Tak Woo meanwhile was steadily making his way up the field. With only 30m-minutes for the racers to make things go their way, drivers would need to combine their best driving with a good race strategy with their pitmen. With time running out, Takahito was able to build a commanding 7-lap lead when time had expired to take the win. In the battle with the series point leaders, Tak Woo was able to make up 5 spots to finish in the 5th position with Kenji Taira finishing in the 7th position.

1/8th Masters top 3 results:
1. Komuro Takahito
2. 原 昭一
3. Hideki Kubo
4. Tony Tsang
5. Tak Woo

The first of the 45-minute mains was up with the 1/10 200mm Touring class. Aussie, Jessie Davis was sitting on the hard earned pole position and had every intention of taking full advantage it. It was a picture perfect start at the sound of the tone ad Davis held his ground around for the first lap. With a freight train of a field in tow, which included a couple of past world champions, the whole field settled in for the long main. About a quarter of way through the main, the World Champions were starting to show how they earned that title and the main quickly turned into the Andy Moore and Naoto Matsukura show. The two were stayed on the same lap for most of the race and it was incredible to see. Precision driving and to close to call passes, lead swaps occurred with Andy Moore able to make the last pass in the closing minutes of the main to edge out Matsukura for the win.

1/10th 200mm Touring top 5 results:
1. Andy Moore
2. Naoto Matsukura
3. Andrew Shapland
4. Felix Law
5. Jesse Davis

The mains started off with the 1/8 GT cars hitting the track first. This class only ran a 15-minute main, but 15-minutes is still 15-minutes. Hideki Iriguchi was the man on the pole and the rest of the field wasn’t going to let him win that easily. At the sound of the tone marked the beginning of the main events and everyone was pumped. Almost immediately the fireworks started between Iriguchi and Seigo Tasaka as they would swap positions on the third lap. Sometimes sitting in the third position is the best place to be and Rika Shusuzuki was patiently waiting for the front runners to make a mistake. Tasaks’s steady driving combined with quick pit stops allowed him to build a 5 lap lead by the end of the main for the over all win.

1/8th GT top 3 result:
1. Seigo Tasaka
2. Hideki Iriguchi
3. Rika Shusuzuki

Source: Asian Nitro Championship []


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