ZHUHAI, CHINA will be the site for a three-way battle between Englishman Mark Goddard, Frenchman Philippe Descombes and Hong Kong's Paul Chan, when the 2002 Asian Formula Challenge, Asia's first truly international championship for Formula 3 and Formula Renault which is organized by the Asian Formula 3 Corp. (AF3), Formula Racing Development (FRD) and the Malaysian Motor Sports Club (MMSC), resumes at the Zhuhai International Circuit in China's Guangdong Province on Sunday, July 21.
Goddard, driving for Castrol Team Goddard, is looking to extend his lead in the Asian Formula 3 Championship as his closest rival, Silverio of Tom's Zed, will be absent from the track owing to a commitment to drive for his team in the Philippine National Touring Car Championship, which is also slated for this weekend.Third placed Descombes of FRD Harbour View, meanwhile, has made alterations to his car based on information gained during the last rounds and intends to thwart Goddard's designs, while the perpetually calm and collected Paul Chan of Vertex Motorsports is shaping up as the series' dark horse and may yet steal the show on Sunday.
Also seeing action in the Asian Formula 3 Championship are Filipinos Richard Joson of Denso JF3 Racing, Pepon Marave of the Shell Racing Team and JP Tuason of TRP Team Oxygen. Waiting to surge to the front are Hong Kong 's Jonathan Chan of Vertex Motorsports, the FRD duo of Steven Chau and David Louie, and Korean Dong Wook Lee of E-Rain Racing.
In the Asian Formula Renault Championship, series leader Franky Cheng of China is the heavy favorite to win, but he is being shadowed by the Netherlands ' Francis Tjia and Filipino Enzo Pastor. Hong Kong 's Kenneth Ma and Michael Choi, however, are proving that their consistency could move them up the standings, most especially if the leaders run into trouble.
Also expected to make their debut in the Asian Formula Challenge are , touring car champion Henry Lee, Jr. of Hong Kong, Filipino Roland Hermoso of Team Petron and popular Hong Kong film and TV star Aaron Kwok. Lee will be driving in the AF3 championship, while Hermoso and Kwok will be competing in the AFR championship.