Edoardo Mortara held the lead through a two lap sprint at the end of the City of Dreams Macau GT Cup race to take his fourth victory on the Guia Circuit – his second in GT machinery.
The two laps that remained after the safety car for Shim Ching’s crash at R-Bend were the final act of a race long batter between Audi R8 LMS ultra driver Mortara and Lucas di Grassi, driving a Ferrari 458 GT3 for the event.
Di Grassi stole the lead away from the rolling start, keeping Mortara at bay until lap four and a move into the Lisboa corner that put Swiss born Mortara back into the lead.
“Lucas was pushing really hard,” Mortara admitted. “He obviously had a good package, and he put me in trouble. After the start, I thought the race win would be really difficult. I had to invent a move into Lisboa to overtake him. To be honest, I took a lot of risks, not only in Lisboa but through Mandarin as well. His car was faster on the straights, so I had to be faster in the corners. I just went flat out in Mandarin, almost crashed, and then broke 50 or 60 metres later than him into Lisboa. So it’s not that easy, I’ll tell you!”
Di Grassi kept the pressure on the leader both before, and after Shim Ching buried his Porsche in the tyres around the outside of the final corner. However, post race the former F1 driver was adjudged to have jumped the rolling start and slapped down from second to 17th by a 60-second penalty.
Dropping di Grassi down the order elevated Alexandre Imperatori to second place – 4.2 seconds behind Mortara – with Danny Watts claiming the final spot on the podium for United Autosports.
Also driving a McLaren MP4-12C Japanese driver Akira Iida finished fourth with Romain Dumas completing an inconsistent weekend with a fifth place finish.
Keita Sawa, among the front runners all weekend was one of three retirements from the 12 lap race.