Macau, China - Eyebrows were raised when pint-sized Tyson Sy of the Philippines mounted the cockpit of car no. 89. His frail build casted doubts on what he was capable of doing behind the wheel. At first glance, one might have concluded that he was just a kid who got lost on his way to the arcade. Ten laps later, all those perceptions were erased and the young man appeared to stand a full head taller than his rivals.
The 17-year-old was pure excitement in the GT Tires Asian Formula Renault Challenge held here Sunday, the final day of the 51st Macau Grand Prix. He went full throttle from start to finish and overtook 15 cars in 10 laps to finish 6th overall. Tyson's successful debut in the Macau GP was supported by San Miguel Corporation and Petron Ultron.
Tyson's amazing speed surge from P21 captured the admiration of the thousands who came here for the annual motorfest. It was, in essence, a display of the grit and savvy of a full-blooded race driver, who quickly shrugged off the cobwebs from his crash a day earlier.
Tyson competed against 31 of the world's best junior formula drivers. His total elapsed time of 26:17.539 was also second best among the Asians, eclipsed only by the race winner's Cheong Lou Meng's 25:17.970 output. Brazil's Bruno Senna (25:19.54) and American Scott Speed (25:27.184) came in second and third respectively.
Tyson kicked off his racing career as a cadet karter. After bagging titles in the cadet and then the KT classes in the local Super Kart Series, he joined and immediately made waves in the Asian Formula BMW series in 2003. Early this year, he became the youngest campaigner in the Asian Formula 3 series. Tyson's latest caper puts him right on track in his quest to become the first Filipino to make it to Formula One, the pinnacle of motorsports.