Malaysia continues to lead the A1GP standings despite a quiet showing in the second round of the 2008/09 season at Chengdu, China.
After winning the first race of the season at Zandvoort, before following that up with second place in the feature event, Malaysia arrived in China with a comfortable advantage and while they could only salvage a best of fifth over the course of the weekend, it still keeps them five points out front.
Fronted once again by Fairuz Fauzy, the GP2 Asia race winner struggled to make progress from his lowly 14th place grid position in the sprint race, eventually crossing the line in 13th position and out of the points.
Nonetheless, sixth on the grid in the feature race raised hopes of a better result and coupled to a savvy pit strategy Fauzy was able to leapfrog the Australian car of John Martin and snatch what would become a fifth place finish.
“It was very tough, very physical,” Fauzy said. “The pace of the car was good but I was stuck behind Australia for a while. I managed to pass that car eventually and that resulted in another point for us so that was good.
“The pit crew were perfect in the stops although I didn't make it easy for them when I came in a little too fast for the slippery surface and overshot my marks. Luckily it didn't cause any delay in the stop. I'm really pleased we have the championship lead heading into Malaysia.”
It means Malaysia head to round three at their home Sepang circuit clutching a five point advantage over second place Ireland and France.
“The team worked very well today, with great pit stops and a superb drive from Fairuz,” said team manager Jack Cunningham. “There were several very good calls from Alan today, particularly with use of the PowerBoost and the race strategy, which was critical today. We had good pace and coming away with the lead of the Series is the best possible place for us to be ahead of our home race.”