Brendon Lim in Car 86 started the day four points ahead of Brendan Paul Anthony. — Picture courtesy of Toyota MalaysiaKUALA LUMPUR, March 25 — After a total of four rounds and eight races in each category, the 2017/2018 Champions for the Toyota Gazoo Racing Vios Championship have been decided. In the Promotional category, Malaysian Beat-boxer Shawn Lee took top honours convincingly by winning the penultimate race earlier today, amassing 20 points by finishing at the top of the order. Having started the race with an 18 point lead over his nearest rival, Shukri Yahya, Shawn ended up with a total advantage of 23 points, sewing up the Promotional Class Championship without having to run in the final. Shawn took it easy and cruised home to a 4 th place.
In the sporting Category, Brendon Lim in Car 86 started the day four points ahead of Brendan Paul Anthony. Brendan Paul Anthony started on pole position, and cleverly shut the door on Brendon Lim at Turn 1 in the first race. Brendan Paul Anthony then held on to the lead all the way to the end, with Brendon trailing in second place. In the second race later on, Brendon Lim, having learnt his lesson from the earlier race, got into turn 1 first, and led for the first lap. However, at the end of the second lap, he left the door open at Turn 7, the last turn on the track, and let Brendan Paul Anthony slip through to take away the lead. Brendan Paul Anthony drove superbly, extending his lead slowly but surely, again taking the chequered flag to win again in the second race. The two wins gave Brendan Paul Anthony a total of 10 points more than Brendon Lim for the day. Brendan could have ‘neutralised’ the points garnered by Brendan Paul Anthony if he had managed to win the second, final race of the day, but that one error on lap 2 cost him dearly.
In the Super Sporting Category, Tengku Djan’s mistake of missing a gear shift during qualifying on Saturday cost him dearly, a mistake which relegated him to 7 th on the starting grid for the first race today. With fourteen cars on the grid, it would have been nearly impossible for Djan to get anywhere near to the front of the grid, let alone win.
With only 4 points separating him and his nearest rival,William Ho, who also was sitting on pole, Djan came up with the brilliant strategy of finishing 6 th overall in the first race of the day. Form the very start of the Super sporting Class race, Djan planted himself into 6th position, as he well knew that for the second race of the day, there would be a grid position swap,with the winner exchanging places with the 6 th position driver – which would put Djan at the front of the grid. Towards the end of the race, with over-heated brakes, Djan made a small mistake at Turn 3, and was passed by another car. Being relegated to 7 th wouldn’t do, because Djan needed sixth, and fortunately, Djan got back the position again within the same lap.
For the final race of the day, Djan started with 82 points, gaining 6 points from his 6 th placing, while William Ho was sitting on 93 points on account of his 20 points plus one additional point for pole position. William only needed 10 points to stay ahead of Djan for the final race, which meant a finishing position of 4 th or better.
Djan drove his heart out for the final race, starting in pole and finishing in first place. William ho got a good start from 6 th on the grid, getting into 4 th position by the end of Lap 1. A few laps later, William managed to get into 3rd position, but reportedly, an incident with Ser Ming Hui whilst in the process of gaining third place got him a penalty – William Ho was relegated to fifth, and that cost him the championship. Tengku Djan was declared the overall winner of the Super Sporting Class in the official results.
That was that for the Toyota Gazoo Racing Vios Challenge – it has been an exciting season, and I really enjoyed being a part of it, as a motoring journalist. Here’s looking forward to the new season for 2018!