The Sunday morning was hot and humid thanks to the sun and the cloudless sky. The RCA Trackday which preceded the MegaLAP Time Attack last Sunday had some of the participants running their shakedown runs, some on semi-slick tyres.
The weather forecast had suggested rain in the afternoon, but there were no clues showing that it would be raining that day as the no clouds were brave enough to show up as the sun shone brightly above.
Massive bodywork on some cars as well as wheels shod in semi-slick tyres were present in the more serious time attackers.
This Mazda RX-8 was grunting and spitting fires like nobody’s business. We were caught off-guard when the RX-8 was reversing to park in the pit that we were in. The popping exhaust was awesomely scary.
A German expatriate later drove this Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X in the Clubsprint VTEC and Forced Induction category, clocking a very respectable 2:42.488.
It would’ve been awesome to see this BMW 1-Series M Coupe from Singapore to have entered MegaLAP. The car went around Sepang for a few laps but wasn’t competing in the time attack event. Perhaps next time bro.
A trio of Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution Xs lie in wait. Their shark-like snouts and muscular bodywork exudes angry sexiness if there is such a term.
As noon approaches, the circuit parking was beginning to be filled up with both competitor and spectator cars.
The Westfield AeroRace Club Racer being prepped for the time attack. It later clocked 2:37.709 in the Westfield Open Spec 2WD category giving them a podium finish.
The Westfield shared the same pit with the DragStar Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VII. I really love cars in red, the reason why my previous 180SX and current BNR32 are also red. Red cars are hot, their drivers hotter?
GT Auto’s Nissan R35 GT-R was the champion of the day clocking the fastest time of 2:26.822 by driver, Raymond Liew.
As the session started with the Clubsprint category, the sky began to darken.
Kevin Kong’s green monster was very tail happy in the wet but still managed to clock the fastest lap of 2:40.509.
Faster clock times were recorded in the dry as expected but the big boys in other category were destined to play in the wet.
Eric Yong’s CR-Z, one of two CR-Zs competing that day, managed to go below the 3 minute mark clocking 2:59.039.
Andreas West got a well deserved podium finish (third) in the Clubsprint VTEC and Forced Induction category.
Hairul Nizam did not manage to clock in a good time but he sure had fun looking at his smile.
Faisal Asri took the Westfield out on a flying lap and although the open-top Westfield had the disadvantage of being without a roof, he still managed to get a podium finish (third) in class.
Ee Shedden’s Porsche 997 GT2 was a handful in the wet having only rear wheel drive. He managed a 2:35.144 and finished second to Akina Teo who was driving Spark Motorsports of Singapore’s Nissan S15 Silvia who did 2:32.502.
As the sessions progressed, category by category the cars came out onto the track. This is no ordinary traffic jam as the cars roared their engines, eager to set the best times.
As it poured, those with all wheel drive were having better grip on the track. Ken Hooi did a 2:33.993 in his Subaru but I reckon could be faster if it was in the dry as he was using Toyo R888 semi-slick tyres all round.
James Kee who was running with Yokohama Advan A050 semi-slick tyres finished behind Ken Hooi by less than a second in his Subaru 2:34.573.
Ahmad Zuhaili was also running Yokohama Advan A050 and finished third in class with a superb 2:29.933 recorded later when the track was finally drying up.
It was during the second half of the time attack that most competitors managed better times.
Hsiao Tung Wei came up behind GT Auto’s Nissan R35 GT-R with a respectable 2:28.713.
Late braking in the first corner was difficult when you’re using semi-slick tyres in the rain, in this case the Yokohama Advan A050.
Badrul Hisham managed 2:42.273 in his N1 Racing supported Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX.
Ahmad Zuhaili as well as several other competitors were sporting stickers with the words ‘In the Memory of Zul’ as a tribute to their fallen comrade who passed on form a recent motor vehicle accident. A touching gesture indeed, signally the strong bond of brotherhood.
Akram of DragStar Performance Centre managed a 3:05.890 with his wounded Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX. The car had some technical problems from the day before but could still put in a good time around Sepang. The car with its front headlights covered by carbon fibre panels reminded me of Sierra Sierra’s Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VIII named Christine.
During the some of the heats, some decided to relax their tired feet in the dry and air-conditioned media centre. This room would be filled with journalists in most events such as Formula One and Super GT but there was ample room for people to have a quick rest before heading out to the pits again.
Compiled timings were posted at a noticeboard nearby for both competitors and spectators to see.
Faisal Asri was the designated driver for the Westfield AeroRace Club Racer during the time attack. The Westfield had proven itself as a potent time attacker and I was told that the company intends not only to sell these cars but to also offer them for rent in Sepang trackdays and competitive events.
As the engines died down, weary competitors especially those who had been on track since the wee morning were seen relaxing and socialising after completing their runs. The relaxed atmosphere was an obvious indication that the competitors had a wonderful time driving their cars on the track while the spectators had the chance to ogle at the cars.
The prize giving ceremony soon followed. Here at the podium, Raymond Liew finished first in the Pro Spec 4WD category followed by Hsiao Tung Wei and Ahmad Zuhaili while being flanked by two grid girls.
As Adian and the organising committee bids adieu, everybody packed their bags and prepped their cars for the journey home. We thank the organisers Ignition.My and Race Craft Academy for organising the round 1 of the MegaLAP Time Attack Series and for the wonderful time covering the event. We plan to return for the second round in April and hope to see more time attack awesomeness in Sepang!
Photos: Hussein & Naz
You may also like these articles::
- The Calm Before the Storm: MegaLAP Time Attack Series, Round 1 @ Sepang International Circuit
- Desktops: Sepang International Circuit Paddock Exit
- Event: The Launch of the New Porsche 911 (991) at Sepang International Circuit
- Event: Shakedown at RCA Dragon Prosperity Trackday, Sepang International Circuit
- Awesome Powered Time Attacker 2012