This year’s Ferrari Challenge Asia Pacific took place in Shanghai with 32 drivers across 29 Ferrari 458 Challenge cars. The Challenge consists of two races: the Trofeo Pirelli and Coppa Shell. Amongst the top finishers in both races were Singaporeans Ringo Chong who came in 1st for the Trofeo Pirelli and Gregory Teo in 2nd for the Coppa Shell.
Singaporean Greg Teo first on the left
After the incredible success of the first Ferrari Racing Days at Suzuka, the Asia Pacific Ferrari Challenge came to the Shanghai circuit for the second round of the season on the last weekend of April. It was a truly unique spectacle put on by the Maranello marque, with its racing owners at the wheel of their own cars, competing in action packed high class races.
Established in 2011, the Asia Pacific series immediately proved to be a great success for those taking part, continuing a tradition established in Europe way back in 1993. That was when the company’s racing DNA was translated not just into the ever present Formula 1, but also through the birth of a championship that has evolved until it is now considered the benchmark for this type of racing. That success has extended to the Asia Pacific series which, in this second year, can already boast a field of 29 Ferrari 458 Challenge cars with 32 drivers entered.
One of the main reasons behind the success of this series is the spectacle it produces, thanks to the driver-owners, some complete novices and others with a higher level of racing experience. The former group race in the Coppa Shell, with their own classification and final title, while the latter run in the Trofeo Pirelli, which also has its own title up for grabs. Starting this year, to avoid unfair competition, the pros and the gentleman drivers now compete in their own separate races. The Trofeo Pirelli features well known names, who tackle the Challenge to increase their own reputation and that of the Concessionaires for whom they race. But there are also youngsters with a little bit of experience behind them, who through the challenge and the famous Ferrari name hope to find the launch pad for a future career. The Coppa Shell races are also particularly closely contested, featuring gentleman drivers of all ages and varying levels of experience.
In the Trofeo Pirelli, the first race was won by Pasin LATHOURAS (Thailand) who crossed the line ahead of Ringo CHONG (Singapore) and Philippe PRETTE (Italy) while at the end of the second event, victory went to Ringo CHONG (Singapore), who got the better of Hisamori HAYASHI（Japan）and Alain LI (France). The Coppa Shell was a close fought contest, with Race 1 being won by Alex AU (Hong Kong) followed past the flag by Eric CHEUNG (Canada) and Francis Hideki ONDA (Japan) while Alex AU (Hong Kong) came out on top in Race 2 again, with the second and third places going to Gregory TEO (Singapore) and Eric CHEUNG (Canada).
The event was a great success, confirmed by the fact that over 30 thousand people, owners and spectators, attended over the weekend and the action was shown live on www.corseclienti.ferrari.com, the new channel entirely dedicated to all the activities of the department set up by the Maranello marque to look after those owners who want to go racing.
The next round will be held on 16 – 17 June at Shanghai again.