Eurasia Motorsport celebrated three top ten finishes over the weekend in Zhejiang before a disqualification in race two for Daniel Miranda for causing a collision prevented a full-house of points.
A scrappy qualifying saw Daniel qualify in tenth for race one, but reverse grid pole position for race two. Teammate, Gao Hua Yang, could only manage to qualify in 15th after a frustrating session left him towards the back of the pack.
Daniel raced hard in the early laps of race one with Asian Driver Class title rival Kim Jin Soo. The pair fought closely, swapping places before Daniel made a move stick to move into clean air and begun to chase down Asian Class race leader, Adam Khalid.
Gao however, swiftly elevated to 11th place and fought hard over several laps with Martin Xie. Having been pushed wide on the main straight, Gao’s Hyundai almost lost out to a closely following Zhang Zhen Dong; but Gao was able to keep up his pace despite the high-speed off-track excursion to maintain the position.
A post-race penalty for Daniel Lloyd meant Daniel wrapped up race one in sixth place overall and despite a late surge that saw a five-second gap decrease to two seconds at the flag, the Filipino driver ran out of laps to take the class lead. He finished the Asian Class in second. Gao however, finished in ninth place overall and fourth in the Asian Class and a great last lap pass saw Gao finish first in the TCR Medal Class.
Daniel started on pole position for race two on Sunday morning and was in with a good chance of taking his first ever TCR race win while Gao, once again, slotted into the top ten.
Daniel maintained the lead into turn one, but a Honda snuck ahead into turn five and pushed him wide on the run up to turn six, where both cars made contact and ultimately ran off the road. Daniel returned to the track and set his eyes on catching the three cars squabbling over fourth place when he was given a drive-through penalty.
Miscommunication from race control meant the team was not aware of the penalty and Daniel did not see the official board. As a result, he was black flagged and disqualified.
Gao had a rapid start to rocket into seventh by the end of first lap and was in the midst of the race action before dropping down to ninth place. Towards the end of the race he was embroiled in a three-car battle, before sneaking back into seventh place at the flag. The Chinese driver ended the weekends’ second race second in Asian Driver Class and first in TCR medal class, all from 15th on the grid.
The final round of the TCR Asia Series commences on August 31 in Thailand. Eurasia maintains fourth place in the teams’ classification with the final round left to run. Daniel remains in the Asian Class lead and fourth place in the overall standings while Gao promotes to seventh in the overall standings and fourth in Asian Class.
“It wasn’t the weekend that we wanted. I had good pace in Zhejiang even if it was my first time driving on this track. Qualifying and race one were good. Unfortunately I ran into an incident in race two while battling for the lead, which ruined my chances of a good result in China. Still, I’m happy to keep my position in the championship and I’m looking forward to wrapping up the season on a high note in Thailand.”
Gao Hua Yang
“The team prepared a fantastic car for me to race this weekend. In the first round, I managed to overtake five cars and finish in tenth before the post-race penalties. I gave it my all in that race and was patient towards the end before I finally made a pass stick on the Honda on the last lap.
“In the second race, I had a good start again. I got to sixth from P15 in the first two laps and had to defend Daniel Lloyd and Adam Khalid for many laps. I lost a bit of car performance due to the high temperatures, but I defended to the last second to keep hold of seventh. I made good progress this weekend and am happy to have come away with the points and more experience with the car and the team.”