Renamed Fazza claims Round 1 XCAT victory in Dubai

A change of name did the trick for XDubai who sailed to victory in Round 2 of the UIM XCAT World Series in Dubai on the weekend, reports Richard Carr.

Fazza -> XDubai

Last year’s series Champions Arif Al Zaffain and Nadir bin Hendi, in the renamed XDubai, boat left it late to snatch the honours in Dubai.

Not many would have expected to see the same thrills and spills in Dubai that were on show during the previous round’s action in Fujairah, however fans got a second dose of thrilling powerboat racing based on strategy and speed.

Like in the last round, XDubai won the pole position shoot-out and started the race at the front of the grid, but they didn’t have it all their own way. Giovanni Carpitella and Ahmed Al Hamli in the T-bone Station boat led for much of the race, however a repeat of their mechanical failures in Fujairah meant they retired. This time a problem with the fuel feed caused their downfall.

Fast and steady

Having lost the lead to T-bone, XDubai took the decision to take their compulsory long lap very early in the race. From there they steadily, but swiftly, made their way through the field closing the gap on T-bone and first round winners Abu Dhabi.

T-bone managed to hold on to the lead until the penultimate lap when they were overtaking by XDubai before then falling foul to engine problems. Abu Dhabi followed in second to maintain their lead at the top of the series standings.

Bin Hendi told after the victory: “We were pushing like crazy – we wanted to win and that’s how it happened – we won.

“We had a problem with the right engine at the start but we were able to keep pushing. At the start number 10 [T-bone Station] was a bit faster by two or three miles and they got in front of us.

“So then we both made the decision to take the long lap and just said we have to work hard, which we did. We were just pushing like crazy the whole way.”

There is now a break of over a month before racing resumes in Europe for the third and fourth rounds of the series.

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.


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