Powerboats – XCat World series: Skydive Dubai claim top of podium after fierce fightback from Fazza at Italian Grand Prix
1 September 2013, Stresa, Italy – Skydive Dubai staved off a fantastic fightback from current UIM Skydive Dubai XCAT World Series leaders Fazza to claim the inaugural Italian Grand Prix title on Lake Maggiore today.
Fazza started bottom of the pile after an underweight boat saw them disqualified after the Pole Position race, but some careful planning and years of experience meant they didn’t stay there for long.
A sensational start from the Fazza duo of Arif Al Zaffain and Mohammed Al Marri saw them speeding from last place to second by the first corner – a position they then held on to for the remainder of the race.
“They came from the last position to second which is quite amazing,” said Skydive Dubai throttleman Jay Price after the race. “If they had had the pole, I’m sure we would have had a fight that would have been unbelievable, because we were the two fastest boats here today, no doubt.
“I was really surprised to see them in second place behind us – they had an excellent start,” added Price who was thrilled with his first XCAT win.
This is only the second time the American former F1 champion has raced in XCATs and the first time he’s been in the boat with Rashid Al Tayer.
Speaking of the victory, he said: “Not bad at all. This is a great boat and a great team to work with and I have a great driver. He did a fantastic job. We worked the boat well together and we didn’t make any mistakes today.”
Equally as thrilled with his second spot, Fazza’s Al Marri explained the spectacular start was all part of the plan.
“We did a great job, myself and Arif. We had a plan for the start and that’s how we did it. It was fantastic. We reached the first corner in second place, which nobody could have dreamed of – from last to second. We also pushed hard to take the lead but that was too hard for us.”
Also having a phenomenal start was the Victory Team boat of Salem Al Adidi and Talib Al Sayed. They posted the fastest lap in Official Practice this morning, but struggled with engine trouble in yesterday’s race for Pole Position and as a result had to start in 11th spot.
The pair powered their way to third on the first lap – a position they also held until the finish to complete the podium sweep for the Dubai-based Victory Team outfit.
The action continues next weekend with the fifth round of the UIM Skydive Dubai XCAT World Series, the European Grand Prix, taking place a little further south on Lake Maggiore in the historic town of Arona.