HUNGRY FOR THE SIXTH CONSECUTIVE CHAMPIONSHIP TITLE
• PETRONAS Syntium Team targets to achieve their sixth overall Super Taikyu title in a row
• The PETRONAS Syntium Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 #1 will be driven by Nobuteru Taniguchi, Dominic Ang and Melvin Moh, while sister car #28 will be driven by Tatsuya Kataoka, Fariqe Hairuman and Jono Lester.
• The 2013 season of the Super Taikyu Series is planned for seven rounds from April to November.
Competition for the 2013 season of the Super Taikyu Series, Japan’s leading endurance race series, gets underway at Sportsland Sugo this weekend and the PETRONAS Syntium Team is ready to clinch their sixth consecutive championship title. The driver line-up for this year will be similar to last year’s except for a slight change – the PETRONAS Syntium SLS AMG GT3 #1 will be driven by Japanese professional Nobuteru Taniguchi with Malaysians Dominic Ang and Melvin Moh, while Japanese pro Tatsuya Kataoka, Malaysian Fariqe Hairuman and Kiwi Jono Lester will be at the helm of sister car #28. Masataka Yanagida, who has been driving for the team since its debut in the Super Taikyu Series in 2007, will be taking a leave of absence until further notice.
Dato’ David Wong, Team Principal of PETRONAS Syntium Team, said, “We chose to retain most of our drivers from last year instead of introducing new drivers as we wanted to continue developing the young talent. Dominic (Ang) was crowned champion for two years for both Super Taikyu and the Malaysia Merdeka Endurance Race (MMER) since he joined in the team in 2011, while Jono (Lester) has shown tremendous progress especially towards the end of last year. Hoping to help these drivers maximise their potential in GT racing, we decided to keep them on the team to continue learning from the experienced Japanese pro drivers and Fariqe (Hairuman) who has been with us for almost two decades now.
“The expectations for the team are realistic and we aim for nothing less than victory. Competition has increased greatly this year with more teams and more professional drivers in the field, but we are confident that we have the package to fight for the title. It is our seventh year participating in the series and hopefully our experience will be of significance.”
This year will be a highly competitive one with a full grid of 45 cars across six classes. The PETRONAS Syntium Team will face six other teams in the eight-car GT3 category, the biggest field for the class ever. Kicking off at Sportsland Sugo this weekend, the format will be a three-hour race on Sunday, with the usual qualifying on Saturday and practice on Friday. Thereafter, the series has plans to head to Korea in May for the second round, before Motegi in July, Fuji and Okayama in August, Suzuka in September and Autopolis in November.