|press release||14 January 2017|
Chinese driver looks back on successes in Asian Karting Championship
2016 was a successful season for driver Haopeng Zhang. The Chinese driver posted strong results in every event he competed in throughout the year, his strongest showing being at the Asian Karting Championship. He completed the entire circuit with the Mars Racing Team, traveling all over Asia for the five round series. He competed in the X30 Senior and Formula 125 Open categories, battling against drivers from all over the world, including Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, New Zealand, Macau, China, and Thailand.
Above: Zhang had impressive runs in Asian series (Photo: Haopeng Zhang)
Round one of the Asian Karting Open Championship was held in Macau, where Zhang scored a strong fifth place finish to kick off the series. Zhang continued to improve as the series progressed, taking the win in the second round in the Philippines. He put on another solid performance in Thailand for the third round of the series, finishing fourth. Round four brought hardship for the Chinese driver, as he finished the weekend in the 21st position. Zhang came back for redemption in round five, striving to end his season with a strong finish.
Zhang started off the final round of the series by qualifying 24th in a competitive field of over 50 drivers. In Heat 1, he started in the 16th spot, gaining five spots throughout the race and finishing 11th. With some unfortunate luck in Heat 2, he started 31st in the prefinal. Zhang charged through the field, battling his way up to the 12th position, earning the hard charger award. After a crash and a broken spark plug in the final, Zhang ended his weekend with a 24th place finish, a solid finish under the adversity he faced throughout the race. Zhang finished the season as Vice Champion of both the X30 Senior and Formula 125 Open categories.Zhang is now focusing on the 2017 season, as he is planning to compete on both Asian and American karting circuits.