Dubai: The Victory Team’s four-time reigning F1 world champion Alex Carella was hoping for a lot more after he led his blue boat to an outright win in the Match Race of the EDH Grand Prix of Norway in Tonsberg late on Friday.
The Dubai-based Victory Team had opted to promote Carella in a F2 cockpit for the Norway race weekend — Round Three on the 2018 UIM F2 World Championship.
Given his vast experience, Carella’s move into a F2 cockpit paid early dividends with the Italian driver powering his way to an outright win in the Match Race to bag Victory Team’s first points in F2 racing this season.
With 2017 UIM F2 World Champion Rashid Al Qamzi of Team Abu Dhabi opting to stay out of the championship so far, it was Victory Team’s Carella who showed a lot of focus while clocking a top speed of 187kph in the speed run in his first appearance for the Dubai-based team.
Competing in Norway’s oldest city of Tonsberg, Carella defeated home driver Ola Petterson in the final with a well-timed quick run of 1 minute, 13.45 seconds that proved to be much better than his Swedish opponent’s time of 1:13.99 minutes.
Earlier in the semi-finals, Carella had defeated Norway’s Tobias Munthe-Kaas, while Petterson had got the better of American Brent Dillard.
Carella — who surprisingly shifted from Team Abu Dhabi to the Victory Team at the beginning of this season — was pleased with the fine showing from the Dubai-based team that has so far gone without any major successes so far this year.
“We have a good package which really worked well for us today,” Carella admitted after his Match Race win.
“The package was really stable, so I think little by little we are getting there. We had to keep our focus and ensure we didn’t stray off the task at hand. So given that background, what we have achieved today will go a long way in fostering team spirit. This is one factor that we need to build on especially after our team’s lows during the past couple of races.”
Last year, Al Qamzi had consolidated his hold on the 2017 world title after finishing in third place on the famous fjord course before sealing a first-ever world crown for Team Abu Dhabi in the season-ending Grand Prix of Portugal in a shortened championship last autumn.
Italian Alberto Comparato is currently leading the 2018 drivers’ championship after winning the Grand Prix of Lithuania in Kaunas — the opening round of the championship — at the end of May. He is pursued by Edgaras Riabko of Lithuania (15 points), Stefan Hagin on Germany (12) and defending champion Al Qamzi (9).
Round Two of the championship that was scheduled to be held in Aalborg, Denmark was called off due to bad weather.