LOS ANGELES, Calif. (September 16, 2015)- With zero experience in the top-tier Supercar category of the Red Bull Global Rallycross (GRC) championship, World Stage Racing’s Brian Wong made a strong impression during this past weekend’s doubleheader event at the Port of Los Angeles.
“There is absolutely nothing like this series in the world,” stated Wong. “I hadn’t even sat in the car before Friday’s practice, so to be as competitive as we were and fight right to the end during both days, made for a great experience. The GRC product is incredible. They’ve managed to really bring in a new audience to motorsport, and the enthusiasm we saw from everyone in the stands was unlike anything I’ve seen. The series has clearly found a great demographic and audience. Everyone at Rhys Millen Racing did an excellent job preparing me, and the car was excellent. I can’t thank all of our partners from World Stage Racing enough: Super Street Network, GT Channel, Koomus, Wags and Walks and Nitty.”
Having not turned a wheel in his No. 89 Hyundai Veloster before Friday practice, Wong did an impressive job getting up to speed during the day’s practice and qualifying sessions. Coming off of a busy summer in which he’s driven in everything from the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series to the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo Series, the opportunity to jump in a small car designed to drive off road, over jumps, and through the tricky confines of the port of Los Angeles presented a unique challenge to the 26-year-old.
Thanks to excellent preparation from the team, the Californian was up to speed quickly, eventually qualifying eighth out of 16 vehicles.
During Saturday’s Race One, the unique heat format meant that Wong would need to either finish in the top three during the day’s semi-final, or top four during the famed “Last Chance Qualifying (LCQ)” in order to advance to the final round.
With zero experience in this type of racing, the pressure was high during the day’s semi-final, and while Wong would push hard to make his way to the top three, a sixth place was all he could muster during the chaos.
With only one more heat race, the “LCQ,” before the final, Wong knew he had to find his way to the top four in order to advance. With a flurried field making their way through, Wong was in contention throughout much of the event looking to capitalize on the field in front of him. However, while turning into a short-cut rout for what’s known as the mandatory “joker” lap, Brian would run just a little too hot and nose into the retaining wall, ending his day.
Despite significant damage to the front end of the car after his incident, the partnership with Rhys Millen Racing showed immediate return, with the hard working crew working through the night to get the car turned around and ensuring they'd be ready by Sunday.
During Sunday’s Race Two, and with a day’s worth of racing experience behind him, confidence was higher. Headed into the semi-final, Wong would get increasingly aggressive staying right in the mix with the field in front of him, but ultimately resigning to seventh and being forced to the LCQ.
During the LCQ round, Brian’s last chance to make Sunday’s final, a hard fought race would ensue, with the Chinese-American driver battling hard with many of the series’ Subaru entrants. While Brian would ultimately make contact again and finish sixth, failing to make the final, the driver could still take pride in his ability to mix it up with the best in the business.
“It was intense competition for sure,” stated Wong. “These guys are the best at this type of racing, and just being able to mix with everyone was a tremendous opportunity. Of course I would have loved to have made it to the final, but we came close in every heat we ran, so I’m not too disappointed. Hopefully we’ll have another chance at this soon.”
Continuing World Stage Racing’s commitment to engaging new partners and focusing on a digitally-engaged, millennial audience, the team was joined by a number of successful partnerships over the course of the weekend. Super Street, widely known as part of the TEN network for their range of content and publications related to aftermarket tuning and lifestyle, shared Wong’s efforts with their 5+ million social media followers. Additionally, GT Channel, who has helped promote WSR throughout much of the summer, will be publishing a series of videos in the coming weeks as well. Koomus, a producer of quality car mounts for smart phones and tablets, provided the team with an assortment of their mounts for demonstration and was on display all weekend, followed by the team’s charitable partner in Wags and Walks pet rescue services, as well as Nitty.
While the GRC event is in the team’s rear-view summer, Wong and World Stage’s whirlwind summer is still in full swing with the driver returning to competition in the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo Series at the famed Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas, tomorrow and Friday. Race One will take place tomorrow at 6:55PM CT, and Race Two on Friday at 9AM. The team will provide continuous updates via their Facebook and Twitter accounts.