Thursday 24th Jan 2013 – The 2013 phase of DAMC organised NGK Racing Series gets underway this weekend (Friday, 25 January) at Yas Marina Circuit on the South Circuit configuration, battle resuming after a month long lay-off since the last round at Dubai Autodrome in December.
The Dragon Racing Ferrari of Leon Price and Rob Barff tops the entry list and should be easy winner of both races on the day.
Behind them Costas Papantonis, in the Gulf Petrochem Seat Leon Super Copa, the Class 1 pace setter should have his mirrors full of Class 2 drivers battling it out including the likes of Rupesh Channake in the Lap 57 Racing Honda Civic and Jonathan Mullen in his privately entered Honda Integra.
Chasing the Hondas, while competing in the race-within-a-race Clio Cup, will be the likes of Duel Racing’s Ramzi Moutran, Gulf Petrochem’s Alexandros Annivas and Leon Johnson – the trio in Renault Clio Cup cars.
On the day qualifying for the NGK Racing Series starts at 10.15 am, with Race 1 due to be flagged off at 12.10 pm and Race 2 at 15.40 pm.
The race is run under the auspices of the Yas Racing Series, and on the bill there will be races for Formula Gulf 1000 and the Radical Winter Cup.
Radical Winter Cup
A record entry of more than 20 cars should ensure some exciting racing this weekend at the Yas Marina Circuit when the Radical Winter Cup visits the Formula One track for Round 4 of the 2012/13 series.
Making a welcome return to the monster V8-powered SR8 class is the UK-based duo of Tony Wells and James Littlejohn in their 2012 UK championship-winning car. The class is further strengthened by the entries from both the NSF run car driven by local favourite Julian Griffen and the Dragon racing car being piloted by Rob Barff.
With a total of six SR8 cars taking to the grid, series leader Bassam Kronfli will have his work cut out for him if he is to retain his lead.
“It’s great to see the Radical grids growing and more competitors joining the series,” fellow SR8 competitor, Dubai-based Jordan Grogor said.
“The quality of the drivers is particularly high in the SR8 class and this bodes well for the future of the series,” Grogor, who is sharing his car with Qatar’s Sh. Abdulrahman Al Thani added.
In the SR3 class, Saudi drivers Mohammed Fahad Al Saud and last season’s champion Raed Abu Zenadah will be hoping to give compatriot Mohammed Jawa from the GR8 team a hard time as they partner up for the first time. However they also have their collective eye on the bigger prize, that being to chase down the series leaders Hassan Dargahi and Tarek Elgammel.
Other newcomers to the series include Radical Australia owner Greg Smith who is sharing the drive alongside Oman-based Gordon Mellis as well as the Emirati-based youngsters Zaamin Jaffer and Ramez Azzam.
“With new drivers joining the grid, it goes to show that Radical race cars offer highly competitive and entertaining racing at an affordable price,” the managing director of Radical UAE which promotes the series, Carl Rolaston said.
“The growth of the SR8 class is particularly pleasing as it provides a step ladder for drivers to progress to more powerful cars and potentially onwards to international prototype racing. Plans are already being made for next season when the UAE series intends to introduce the low cost radical SR1.
“This will give novice drivers an opportunity to go racing on a very affordable budget,” Mr Rolaston added.
In keeping with the tradition of Radical racing in the UAE, spectators are welcome to visit the Radical pit garages where they can get up close to the cars, the drivers and the teams. Racing starts at 1300 on Friday.
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