Macau Guia: Huisman at the double

Dutchman Patrick Huisman won an incident-filled Macau Guia race on Sunday after his predicted challengers failed to make the finish. The BMW driver, who had expected a Toyota to take the spoils, won both heats easily to take the win by 7.4 seconds

Macau Guia: Huisman at the double

The first race had to be stopped two times following opening lap collisions. In the first attempt, the track was blocked at Lisboa after cars spun into the barriers, while the second attempt also saw the red flags come out after a number of cars had again come to grief on the challenging Macau track.

But when the race proper got underway, Huisman made a clean start to lead the field into Lisboa. As he set about pulling clear at the front, Germany's Franz Engstler (BMW) got involved in a thrilling battle with Japan's Orida Manabu (Toyota) and Duncan Huisman (BMW) for second place.

The pair were separated by barely one second for much of the opening laps of the race, with Engstler locking his wheels up under braking as he tried desperately to keep his rivals behind him. But going into Lisboa on lap five, Manabu got a better run on the BMW driver and was through to second.

But his expected charge to close the gap on Huisman failed to materialise and, on lap eight, he was slowed by a mechanical problem which eventually forced him into the pits. That left Engstler only needing to fight off Duncan Huisman for second spot, before his job was made much easier when he slowed with a problem.

That retirement promoted Kurt Mollekens to third place, having seen his Peugeot team-mate Vincent Radermecker retire with mechanical problems on lap three. Fourth place in the heat went to Henry Lee Jr. in a Peugeot, with Simon Harrison an impressive fifth in his Ford. The race ended under the Safety Car after George Ramirez crashed heavily into the barriers at Mandarin on lap 10.

Huisman's second race was much easier than the first, after front-row starter Engstler first stalled on the grid on the formation lap and then started the race from the pits. That briefly promoted Mollekens to second place, but he was slowed by mechanical problems early on and overtaken by Lee Jr and Harrison on lap four.

Lee managed to hold on to second place despite a very strong challenge from Engstler, who had climbed up the field, in the closing laps. On the final tour, the pair pushed each other to the limits as they raced to the finish line. Harrison eventually finished fourth with Manabu salvaging fifth place for Toyota.

Harrison was then handed a surprise podium finish after third placed finisher Engstler was disqualified for a technical infringement.

The race stewards found that Engstler had started his car with a spare battery, and that water was poured over his tyres -- both of which are against the rules.

Engstler accepted the decision and confirmed that he would not be appealing.

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