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Welcome arrow Articles arrow Personality Profiles arrow Mortara on for fifth Macau
Mortara on for fifth Macau PDF Print E-mail

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Eduardo Mortara won the Macau Grand Prix in consecutive years – the first in the F3 era ever to do so – and has triumphed in the GT Cup in the past two years in an Audi R8.
Despite serious competition from ex-Formula One ace Lucas Di Grassi in the Ferrari 458 Italia, and Britain’s Danny Watts in the McLaren MP4-12C, it was Edo Mortara that took the chequered flag first in the 2012 Macau GT Cup.
The road-going R8 V10 sells in Hong Kong for “over three million,” says sales manager Timothy Tse. The spectacular V10 chucks out 550 bhp (404 kW) and is good for a benchmark 0-100 km/h time of just 3.5 seconds.  Top speed is equally spectacular at 314 km/h.  That is significantly more than Edo Mortara is doing before it’s hard on the brakes for the tight right-hander at Lisboa.
In road spec. the R8’s V10 is mated to a seven-speed, dual-clutch S-tronic transmission, complete with steering column-mounted paddle shifts.  The result is some extremely rapid acceleration, yet the R8 is so beautifully balanced, it remains fully controllable at all times.
The V10 is hand-built at Audi’s Gyor plant in Hungary but then sent to Neckarsulm in Germany to be installed in the again, largely hand-built aluminum/carbon fibre body.

We caught up with Edo at Brands Hatch in May, scene of a DTM round in the Audi.
He explains: “I don’t know at the moment if I will compete at Macau this year.  We are only at the beginning of my DTM season and Macau is quite far away. I still hope though that I will be competing there in November.
“I am often asked how much support the (Audi) factory gives us.  The simple answer is that they don’t give us a lot.  We normally have one engineer from Audi Customer Racing coming along, but normally the rest is done by Absolute Racing.  They are based in Asia and every year do an enormous amount of work preparing the R8.”
Asked how it was to drive the R8 in the tight confines of Macau, Mortara replied: “Generally, Macau is a pretty difficult place for a GT car but the R8 is behaving very well there.  Even the steering lock is perfectly adequate for places like the Melco Hairpin. We did not have to modify it, even the first year I came to compete.
“At the end of the straight we are doing something like 270 km/h but the brakes are fine, otherwise I wouldn’t have survived the last two races I did with the R8.  They are extremely efficient and last the entire race with no problems.  We run on Michelin tyres which are also perfectly up to the task.”

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Best of the Rest
“Both Ferrari and McLaren are significant competitors  Whoever can be as fast as us.  Last year it was the Ferrari 458 with (Lucas) Di Grassi, Porsche with (Alexandre) Imperatori and (Danny) Watts in the McLaren, so quite a lot of competition.
“I have spent two seasons now, including 2013, in DTM but I have to say that I am living my dream of working as a factory driver for one of the biggest car companies in the world.  At the moment everything is going very well.  I just hope it will continue like that.
“Whenever I have the possibility to race in Macau I will come over.  Every Macau win has been special to me, but probably the two F3 victories meant more because nobody has ever achieved that before in Macau.”  

Eduardo Mortara was talking to Jeff Heselwood

 
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© 2018 Jeff Heselwood. All rights reserved.
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