October 21, 2013

Class 1 - Terracina Italy Grand Prix

Arif Al Zaffain and Mohammed Al Marri eased to their fourth win of the year with an untroubled flag-to-finish victory in race 1 of the Mediterranean Grand Prix in Terracina.
Behind the winners the fight for the podium was between LFF10 and Zabo-Isiklar but despite taking the chequered flag in second place, Luca Formilli Fendi and Giovanni Carpitella paid the price for destroying a turn buoy on the opening lap.
The Italians incurred a 25-second post-race penalty, which combined with the 20-second time compensation given to Ugur Isik and Christian Zaborowski, dropped them to third.
The Victory duo grabbed hold of the race from the start to lead by seven seconds at the end of the start lap increasing the gap to 26-seconds by mid race, going on to close out the win and complete the 11-lap, 53.06Nm race in 32:04.84s. 
The only slight controversy surrounding the defending Champions emphatic win was a 25-second post-race time penalty given to them for passing a mark of the course on the wrong side. But despite the penalty they still managed to win by almost 15-seconds.
Zabo-Isiklar and LFF10 continued their post-qualifying duel and produced a sensational opening two laps trading places, racing side-by-side just inches apart.
Isik and Zaborowski led at the end of lap one but by less than two-tenths of a second, then immediately conceded the position at the first turn with Formilli Fendi and Carpitella passing them on the inside.
The Italians were then able to pull away opening up a 23-second lead as they took the chequered flag in second spot. But it was the opening lap that would prove costly, the additional 25-second penalty costing them the runners-up slot. 
For Christian Zaborowski a third runners-up slot was a good result for the team after the work they have done on the boat and as much as they could have hoped for. 
Behind the top three LFF8’s Miles Jennings and Alfredo Amato ran a very solid and rather solitary race to finish well ahead of fifth placed FA.RO.ACCIAI, with Tarik Oktem taking his seat behind the wheel to join Giampaolo Montavoci in Poliform and picking up points in sixth.
1. 3 Victory - A Al Zaffain (UAE) / M Al Marri (UAE) – 32:04.84
2. 91 Zabo-Isiklar - U Isik (TUR) / C Zaborowski (NOR) + 14.77s
3. 10 LFFendi10 - L Formilli Fendi (ITA) / G Carpitella (ITA) + 37.11s
4. 8 LFFendi8 - M Jennings (GBR) / A Amato (ITA) + 1:43.00s
5. 23 FA.RO. ACCIAI - G M Gabbiani (ITA) / L Nicolini (ITA) + 2:24.00s
6. 74 Poliform - T Oktem (TUR) / G Montavoci (ITA) + 2 laps
5 Team Abu Dhabi - F Al Mansoori (UAE) / R Al Tayer (UAE) - dns
Miles Jennings and Alfredo Amato produced one of the most popular and surprising results of the weekend with a simply sensational win in race 2 of the Mediterranean Grand Prix, which started to turn dramatically on its head as early as lap 8 of 15.
The Anglo-Italian duo were running strongly in fourth place ahead of Poliform and were then elevated to third when Luca Formilli Fendi and Giovanni Carpitella’s race ended on lap 8 with a broken torque sensor. Two laps later race leader Victory slowed to a crawl after breaking a propeller and were passed by Zabo-Isiklar with LFF8 now up into second place.
But on the final lap and with the chequered flag almost in sight Zabo-Isiklar ran out of fuel and Jennings and Amato swept passed them and into the lead to take the chequered flag and their first win in just their third Grand Prix together. 
Behind the winners Poliform’s Tarik Oktem and Giampaolo Montavoci also took advantage of Zabo-Isiklar’s misfortune, passing them in the closing stages to take the runners-up slot and their first podium together, with the unfortunate Zabo-Isiklar classified in third. 
There was drama right from the beginning when the start was aborted by an offcial on the pace boat which then suffered a technical failure. The boats waited out on the course for a replacement which sparked some calls from teams raising concerns about possible fuel issues.
From the start Victory immediately got the jump on pole-sitters LFF10 and started to open up a lead moving 20 seconds clear by lap 5. Behind them LFF10 and Zabo-Isiklar gave chase with Formilli Fendi and Carpitella maintaining a comfortable advantage when the torque sensor let go and their weekend came to a halt.
On lap 10 Victory hit trouble and slowed and Ugur Isik and Christian Zaborowski hit the front and looked to be on course for their first win together and Zaborowski’s first since 2006. But five laps later their cocerns about fuel became a reality and they stopped and were eventually towed back to the pits. 
With the top three boats in the Championship all running into trouble it was Jennings and Amato in LFF8 who benefitted the most and from a solid fourth at the mid-point ran out the eventual winners.
Fourth place went to Gian Maria Gabiani and Luca Nicolini in FA.RO. ACCIAI who maintain their consistent run of finishing in the points, with Victory classified in fifth. Despite Team Abu Dhabi’s efforts to get the boat ready to race, their participation lasted just one lap.
Today’s outcome keeps Victory at the top of the standings on 91 points with Zabo-Isiklar moving up into second place on 65, three points ahead of LFF10.
The teams now head to the Middle East and the UAE for the final Grand Prix of the year in Abu Dhabi on 5-6 December.
1. 8 LFF8 - M Jennings (GBR) / A Amato (ITA) + 47:39.89s
2. 74 Poliform - T Oktem (TUR) / G Montavoci (ITA) + 51.52s
3. 91 Zabo-Isiklar - U Isik (TUR) / C Zaborowski (NOR) + 1 lap
4. 23 FA.RO. ACCIAI - G M Gabbiani (ITA) / L Nicolini (ITA) + 1 lap
5. 3 Victory - A Al Zaffain (UAE) / M Al Marri (UAE) - ret
10 LFF10 - L Formilli Fendi (ITA) / G Carpitella (ITA) - ret
5 Team Abu Dhabi - F Al Mansoori (UAE) / R Al Tayer (UAE) - ret
WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP - after round 3
1. 3 Victory Team - 91pts 
2. 91 Zabo-Isiklar - 65pts 
3. 10 FF10 - 62pts 
4. 7 HUB Team Australia - 60pts 
5. LFF8 - 52pts 
6. 23 FA,RO ACCIAI - 46pts 
7. 74 Poliform 34pts 
8. Team Abu Dhabi - 18pts

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