ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates – December 5, 2008 – The long journey for a new U.I.M. F1 World Champion has finally come to an end, as Jay Price from New Orleans, Louisiana and the Qatar Team has become the third different driver from America to win the top rung in powerboat racing capturing the title with a win at the 16th Grand Prix of Abu Dhabi in front of thousands of race fans along the cornice.
“I spent many years racing in smaller countries and winning titles in Mexico and Cuba trying to keep my career alive and it truly paid off in the end.” said Jay. “My great people with the Qatar Marine Sports Federation gave me the chance to prove myself and I will always be forever in their debt for faith in my abilities. Now it is time to have fun in Sharjah and go for another win.”
While Jay had a perfect start from the pole and lead every one of the 50 laps and now has 105 points on the season, his chief rivals in defending World Champion Sami Selio of the Woodstock Red Devil Racing Team and Jonas Andersson of F1 Team Sweden who were both chasing Jay for the title had slow starts with Sami immediately falling back to fourth and Jonas trying to stay in the top three. In the end Selio was fifth and Andersson retired late and was classified 10th.
Team Abu Dhabi had a great day in front of its home crowd with Ahmad Al Homeli starting seventh and finishing second despite losing his cockpit canopy has now moved to second place in the World Championship standings with 55 points while his team mate Thani Al Qamzi finished his first race of the season with a fine third place and now is 14th in the points table.
Australian driver David Trask of the Trask Brothers Racing effort just missed the podium in 4th position sitting fifth now in the title with 41 points. His older brother Bob took home ninth position fighting up from 15th position.
Italian Francesco Cantando of the Singha Team came home sixth after starting 13th and Philiipe Chiappe of France was seventh after qualifying 9th in the Atlantic Team BABA boat. Italian Fabio Comparato of the 800 Doctor Team was 8th after starting 10th.
The tough and challenging 2.175 kilometer circuit was again a boat eater as only 12 of the 22 drivers finished the event. Italian Guido Cappellini of the Tamoil Team was the first to drop out after getting involved in a first corner collision which damaged his right front sponsoon for the four time winner of this race.
Rookie Italian Daniele Martignoni spun out to a stop bringing out the yellow flag and the pace boat on the 20th lap for the first time since Liuzhou, China.
Jay Price’s third career victory was the most dominating performance of the season with the “Ragin Cagin” winning by 23.76 seconds over Ahmad Al Hameli. The season moves on to the eighth and final round next Friday, on the 12th of December for the Grand Prix of Sharjah from the Khalid Lagoon just outside Dubai. The championship is decided but three different drivers are separated by just five points for the battle for runner-up in the championship. Stay in the know with F1 H20.