2015 looks like being an excellent year for powerboat racing, kicking off with the brand new Qatar Cup in February, reports Richard Carr.
Two powers join forces
The Qatar Marine Sports Federation and the recently formed Offshore Powerboat Grand Prix will use their joint powers to promote and run the Qatar Cup, a four-day powerboat racing festival held in Doha Bay next month.
An exact timetable for the event (February 4-7) is yet to be finalised, but interim Chairman of the OPGP Steve Curtis confirmed that Tuesday 3 February would be a set-up day on Doha Corniche, whilst qualifying and practice would take place on the following day.
The first race of the Cup is scheduled for Thursday 5 February before further testing on the Friday ahead of the main races on the Saturday.
Qatar becoming a powerboat power
Speaking at the Oryx Cup last year, Sheikh Hassan bin Jabor Al-Thani, President of the QMSF, said: “Everyone knows that we wanted to expand the power boating and we wanted to do it the right way and grow with it as much as we can. The Qatar Cup idea was born last year, but we couldn’t get the American teams here last time.
“This time the formula is completely different and we have signed with a number of teams who will come here in February. This will be a stand-alone championship approved by the UIM and APBA. This will create bigger recognition, both here and abroad, and we are confident it will grow. It is also a perfect opportunity for our up-and-coming racers in Qatar to compete alongside international rivals.”
About Richard Carr
Richard Carr is one of the UK’s most experienced and successful powerboat racers, who has competed in the sport globally.
He has won numerous domestic and international honours: he became British Class 1 Champion in 1991; he was the winner of the coveted Needles Trophy and he also came second in the Cowes Torquay Cowes race in 1992. It was the year the race was controversially competed in the fog and it has been argued for many years that he actually won the race.
He is known in the sport for his aggressive racing character in rough seas and recently raced in the USA for Geico in 2011.