20 September 2011
Racing season starts at the Kartdrome this weekend
It has been over six months since the chequered flag fell on the 2010/2011 DAMC Karting season finale and with summer still lingering the UAE motorsport season gets underway, at the Kartdrome under flood lights – on Friday, 23 September 2011 – with the first round of the 2011/2012 DAMC Karting Championship.
Race night will feature DAMC Championship heats, pre-finals and finals for: Cadets, Junior Max, Senior Max and Max Masters, with sprint races for SWS Star Cup and SWS Master Cup drivers. There are six rounds over the course of the year counting towards the club championship.
This new season has attracted fresh talent to the karting scene, while many junior drivers have moved up a category and this year sees several cadet drivers moving up to the Max Junior Class.
The combined Max Seniors and Max Masters races will feature several drivers making their karting debut, who will be fighting it out with the ‘usual suspects’ such as Paul Walsh, Andrew Fuller, Arnaud Bouf and Ali Al Najjar with Raed Hassan moving up from the junior category to take on the seniors.
Tom Bale, multiple champion in the Cadets, is moving up into the Max Juniors class where he will take on reigning champion Piers Pakenham-Walsh in what should be an intriguing duel throughout the season. Also joining Bale in the category are a horde of his Cadet Class rivals including: Pasqual Pook, Cyrus Engineer and Patrick Hannah.
Multiple karting champion Maurits Knopjes will be the man to beat in the DD2 category.
In the SWS RX250 Master Cup the drivers are competing for valuable points counting towards a place in the Sodi W-Series World Finals. Rami Joudi has emerged as a force, and the man to beat, in this class and leads the UAE point standings, but this Friday faces a strong challenge from the likes of: Mahmoud Bedewi, Sam Zian, Paul Chatenay, Haytham Ali and Oscar Slawinski.
A big field has signed up for the SWS R7 Star Cup which features a couple of UAE Sportbike aces, Andrea Capoccia and Francesco Natale, out to try their skills on four wheels. They face some formidable opposition from the likes of Atef Al Barwani and Nathan Stevens, with lady racer Clarissa Fattore out to take on the ‘boys’ and show them a thing or two.
On the night there will be two races for each SWS categories and, as has become the norm, close and hard fought racing is expected from the leisure karting brigade.
Kartdrome manager Ryan Trutch said of the season’s opening night, “Karting is probably the most important rung in the ladder to the top of motorsport. We have had some fantastic young drivers make their mark at the Kartdrome before moving on to bigger and better things. We are proud that the likes of Mohammed Al Mutawaa, Saeed Al Mehairi, Edward Jones and Shahaan Engineer – to name a few – all spent a large part of their formative racing years on track at our facility.”
“Each year we look forward to ‘discovering’ a new young driver or witnessing a regular youngster develop into a top talent,” added Trutch.
Qualifying on Friday starts at 17.20 pm with the first heat race scheduled for 18.15 pm and the final race expected to finish around midnight.
More information on: www.dubaiautodrome.com
Image credits: www.dubaiautodrome.com