Chris van der Drift writes after returning home as the 2015 Porsche Asia Carrera Cup Champion….
Wow we did it! As I have just returned back to Wales it’s a great feeling to once again call myself a Champion it’s been a while since my last triumph but never the less we have done it.
At the start of the season when I didn’t have anything locked in, this deal all came about just 10 days before the first event. It was a mad rush to get my Chinese visa for the round at Shanghai (F1 support event) and then only having 30 minutes in a brand new car we managed to walk away with 2nd position in my first ever race in a 911 GT3 Cup Porsche which was mega.
We went away and came back to Korea even stronger for the second event and we took a double victory and double pole position which really kick started my season campaign, from there we won 6 races in a row which was absolutely magic and took 6 pole positions in total, overall we finished 10 times on the podium from 14 races putting us every weekend on the podium!
A highlight of my season was also being able to represent Porsche Carrera Cup Asia at the famous Spa 24hr event as a support race (Porsche Carrera World Cup), we ran with Sebastian Loeb Racing and immediately from free practice we were at the front of the field. We actually took pole position for the race but the stewards decided to take it off me which put us back to 5th for the race. On the day the heavens opened up and this would be my first race in the rain piloting the 911 and by the closing stages of the race I was in 2nd and hunting down 1st place, I ran out of laps but what a mega race!
As we got close to the end of the season it emerged that fellow Kiwi Craig Baird (most successful Porsche Carrera Cup driver in history) would be my main competition and as he continued to score points he kept the championship alive right up to the last event on the weekend at Shanghai.
I qualified for both races in 2nd and finished race 1 also in 2nd place which extended my overall points to the point where I simply had to finish race 2 to be crowned champion. I got off to an awesome start and took first place and lead for a lap but then soon realised 2nd was much quicker than myself (had new tires) and I let him go, then after a few more laps the same happened with 2nd and 3rd (all being on new tires) so without any problems I let them go as all I had my sights on was this championship. I crossed the line in 4th place and although it would have been nice to be back on the podium it didn’t really matter as I was now CHAMPION!!!
It has been a tough road since my big accident back in 2010 not really having a proper drive or full season since then so it’s great that given the chance I am able to show my talent once more!
I don’t know what’s around the corner now but as long as I keep riding this wave I’m sure something great will come out of this!
For now we are the 2015 Porsche Carrera Cup Asian Champions!