Prime Speed Sport travelled from New Zealand to compete in the 12 Hours of Sepang. It was the team’s first-ever race away from home and they not only made it to the end but finished second in the Pro-Am class.

By Steven Walton

Prime Speed Sport had a new Aston Martin Vantage GT3 Evo for the 12 Hours of Sepang.

It was the first time the team had raced the car and it was also the first time they had raced outside of New Zealand.

The car was driven by amateur drivers Heremana Malmezac and Francois Beziac, along with silver-rated Jono Lester.

After 12 hours of racing, the team crossed the line to finish seventh overall, but second in the GT3 Pro-Am class.

The Pro-Am class – as well as the overall race – was won by R&B Racing.

‘Very happy’

Prime Speed Sport driver Jono Lester told Asian Motorsport the team’s race did not start well.

“The first stint was diabolical and it turned out we had an issue with the set of tyres … once we rectified that, the rest of the day was great,” he said.

Lester said he was “very happy” with the final result.

“Two years ago Prime Speed Sport was preparing club cars,” he said. “Three years ago these boys [amateur co-drivers Malmezac and Beziac] had never sat in a race car.”

Lester said he spent most of the race learning about the new Aston Martin.

Earlier in the weekend, Lester told Asian Motorsport his initial impressions, saying it was fast, incredibly stable, and gave a lot of confidence to the driver.

After the race, he said: “Every time I got in I felt more and more comfortable to the extent that in the last stint, we passed the race winner [and] we passed Timo Bernhard at the end, on the last lap.”

‘A nice journey so far’

After finishing the 12 Hours of Sepang, driver Heremana Malmezac said the toughest part was the light rain that began to fall just before the ten-hour mark.

“I like rain, but at nighttime, I couldn’t see what was going on on the track, it was a bit confusing,” Malmezac said.

He then joked: “We’ll go back to New Zealand [and] when it rains at night, we’ll go and hire the track.”

Malmezac said he was proud to be with the Prime Speed Sport team.

“It’s been a nice journey so far, lots of effort,” he said. “We have to do more now because we’re only starting to climb up … we have some big plans, we know we put the bar really high.”

The 12 Hours of Sepang was the first of five major events the team planned to race in this year.

Header image credit: 12 Hours of Sepang

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