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Al Qamzi signs off in style

Wins Sharjah GP to help Abu Dhabi to F1 powerboat championship team crown

Image Credit: Ahmed Ramzan/Gulf News
Thani Al Qamzi surges ahead to win the Grand Prix of Sharjah in the sixth and final round ofthe UIM F1 H20 World Championship 2012.
Gulf News

Sharjah: Thani Atiq Al Qamzi signed off with a flourish by winning an incident-packed home race in Sharjah to help Team Abu Dhabi win the teams’ crown at the sixth and final round of the 2012 UIM Formula One World Powerboat Championships at Khalid Lagoon here on Friday.

With championship-winning driver Alex Carella failing to fire in the 38-lap race, which was later reduced by four laps following three stoppages, it was the 34-year-old driver from Abu Dhabi who dominated the race from the start to win ahead of Qatar Team’s Terry Rinker and Singha F1 Racing Team’s Francesco Cantando.

Shaikh Sultan Bin Mohammad Bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Crown Prince and Deputy Ruler of Sharjah, presented the trophies to the winners along with UIM President Rafaello Chiulli, Saeed Hareb from the UAE Marine Sports Federation and Shaikh Sultan Bin Ahmad Al Qasimi, Chairman of Sharjah Media Corporation (SMC).

“Nothing can be more satisfying that winning a race. I was determined to go and end on the top of the podium as this is our home race,” Al Qamzi told Gulf News.

“This has been an amazing season and to finish it off with an outright win only proves that we are among the best. Hopefully we will be able to carry on this success next season.”

Qatar Team’s Carella sealed the world drivers’ title last weekend when he won the Abu Dhabi GP. So that left all eyes on the fight for team honours between defending champions Qatar Team and Abu Dhabi Team, and Al Qamzi delivered on his promise as he shot off to win by less than two seconds.

The 20 points from the win took Abu Dhabi Team to 119 for the season, while Qatar Team had to settle for second best on 107 and CTC China were third on 75.

Frenchman Philippe Chiappe managed to keep a hold on the drivers’ runners-up slot by adding five points for finishing sixth to end with 62 points, leaving Al Qamzi and Sami Selio tied for third on 60 apiece.

Team Abu Dhabi’s Ahmad Al Hameli, who contested the first three races this season till an illness put him out of action, finished in fifth overall with 50 points.