Andre Heimgartner enjoyed strong car speed and set-up in today’s final day of the Porsche Carrera Cup Australia Championship’s visit to the Sepang International Circuit, however it wasn’t to be the Melbourne-based Kiwi’s day.
After another blistering race start saw him move to third before turn one, Heimgartner passed Alex Davison for second through the opening turn and set after race-leader David Wall.
A check-up by Wall soon after saw Heimgartner lose momentum momentarily, with Davison taking advantage to pass for second.
Heimgartner recovered quickly to take the challenge to Davison. A number of side-by-side battles ensued but unfortunately it would all end in tears with contact. Post-race investigations into the incident are continuing.
“Davison and I had been having a pretty intense battle and he had been pushing me pretty aggressively early on,” Heimgartner said.
“In that corner, I was chasing and he went into that corner deep and wide – I took the opportunity to dive up the inside but he ended up gathering it up and shutting the door.
“I had nowhere to go and there was nothing I could do – the result is disappointing as of course there was no intention there to ruin anyone’s race and I couldn’t do anything when he came back across, but it is what it is and we just have to move on.
“What was encouraging is the car was very quick, the set-up was working well even though Wall did have an edge over us, and even though things didn’t go our way I was feeling really great in the car.
“This place is certainly like nothing we have over in Australia and I have really enjoyed wrapping my head around it this weekend.”
For his part of the incident with Davison, Heimgartner was penalised 25 seconds and was classified eighth as a result despite crossing the finish line in second place – post-race investigations continue.
What was the second of two championship races to be held this weekend at Sepang for the Porsche Carrera Cup Australia Championship wasn’t the end of the 22 year old’s racing this weekend, with Heimgartner going on to take part in a Pro-Invitational race held between the Carrera Cup Australia and Carrera Cup Asia fields.
Heimgartner again had a great start, moving into third from fifth off the line before going on to challenge Wall for second. Unfortunately, when Wall made a mistake into turn 15 Heimgartner was caught up and Phil Hamprecht was able to take the advantage. Heimgartner would finish in the top four of the non-championship race.
Heimgartner will next be on-track with the Porsche Carrera Cup Australia Championship at the Sandown 500, to be held at Sandown International Raceway in Victoria across September 15-17. The round will feature the first round of the all-new Endurance Cup championship; the final three rounds of the 2017 championship to feature one longer distance race alongside two sprints in a new innovation for the series this year.
For more on Andre Heimgartner, visit www.andreheimgartner.com