Veteran Hong Kong driver Darryl O’Young took pole position for the Macau GT Cup on Saturday, taking a huge step towards winning the prestigious race for the first time in 12 years. The 40-year-old was back at the Guia circuit doing what he does best as he won the qualification race for the Macau GT Cup, one of five races at the 67th Macau Grand Prix weekend. The Macau GT Cup qualification race was truncated after just five laps from eight because of fading light and O’Young also survived an investigation by stewards over the start of the race much to his relief. O’Young is competing in Macau for the first time in two years and is racing for the first time this year. The Craft-Bamboo Racing driver is making the most of his reappearance at the famous 6.2-kilometre Guia circuit as he showed his rivals a clean pair of heels with a steady drive around the tight and twisting circuit. O’Young finished ahead of mainland pair Ye Hongli, of Toro Racing, and Chen Weian, of Audi Sport Asia Team TSRT, who finished third. Hong Kong’s other veteran driver, Marchy Lee Ying-kin, was fourth for Audi Sport Asia Team X Works. O’Young thanked his team for helping him to pole. “The race was shortened and not the ideal length, but overall I’m really happy with the win, the team did a great job all weekend so far. A lot of preparation has gone into this event with our strategy and car preparation so it’s been a real team effort.” Macau Grand Prix: blue riband Formula Three race cancelled and replaced by Formula Four for 2020 event Since winning the inaugural Macau GT Cup in 2008, O’Young has been a regular visitor to the city. He’s a five-time winner at Macau but he hasn’t had much luck these past few years, especially in 2019 when he didn’t have a drive for Macau. This year, everything has been going smoothly for him. He made the decision to do a total of four weeks of quarantine just to compete in Macau. This weekend, he’s competing behind the wheel of the #95 Mercedes-AMG GT3 for title sponsors Challenger. It’s his 16th year racing at the Macau Grand Prix. “Now the focus is on tomorrow’s race, and with the car being on pole position, we are in the best position possible. But we need to stay aware of our competitors and I’ll see what I need to do to maintain that position. It will be important to lead the pack into Lisboa Corner tomorrow,” added O’Young. Meanwhile, teenager Charles Leong Hon Chio, of Smartlife Racing Team, took pole position for the 67th Macau Grand Prix and then thanked organisers for starting the race in the first place. The blue riband Macau Grand Prix is usually raced by the world’s up-and-coming young Formula Three drivers, but the race was cancelled and replaced by a FIA Formula Four race this year after the pandemic wreaked havoc on the Far East Classic race. Four weeks of quarantine to race at the Macau Grand Prix: ‘It’s a sacrifice I’m willing to make,’ says Darryl O’Young However, 19-year-old Leong made sure he put his name in lights by winning the qualification race. “Winning is an amazing feeling. To be fair I’m still pretty calm and not super happy yet, because I want to save everything for tomorrow. “Thanks to the Macau government for holding this race. It’s a huge accomplishment,” said Macau driver Leong. While spectators were allowed to attend this weekend’s races, crowd numbers were significantly down because of the pandemic. Many Hong Kong and overseas visitors opted to skip the event because of the strict quarantine travel restrictions imposed by the Macau government.