F1 Jay Price aims to climb back into F1 title contention in Shenzhen
2009 UIM F1 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
Grand Prix of Shenzhen, China – October 17th-18th, rounds 9/10 of 16
For immediate release
Thursday, October 15th, 2009
QATAR TEAM’S PRICE AIMS TO CLIMB BACK
INTO F1 TITLE CONTENTION IN SHENZHEN
· Australian Craig Bailey hopeful of more points in second Chinese meeting
· Team Qatar hoping to close gap on Andersson and Al-Qamzi in title race
SHENZHEN (China): Team Qatar heads to Shenzhen in the Chinese Guangdong Province to tackle rounds nine and 10 of the 2009 UIM F1 World Championship this weekend. The team’s defending World Champion, Jay Price, will be hoping to put the disappointment of two retirements from the recent Liuzhou races behind him.
Team Qatar arrived in China two weeks ago in a strong position to retain the coveted world crown, but a pre-race accident and engine-related problems meant that Price failed to add to his 55-point tally and he slipped 24 points behind new championship leader Jonas Andersson and 22 behind arch rival Thani Al-Qamzi.
Price qualified third for last year’s single Shenzhen race and eventually finished second behind Finland’s Sami Selio. He is confident that podium finishes are possible in the two races on Saturday and Sunday.
Several members of the team, including Price, stayed in China between the two races, rather than risk the jet-lag associated with travelling between time zones. Khalid Bin Arhama Al-Kuwari, Head of Formula Racing at the Qatar Marine Sports Federation (QMSF) - which is run under the presidency of His Excellency Sheikh Hassan bin Jabor Al-Thani - returned to Doha between the two races and he is upbeat about Price’s chances in Shenzhen.
“I decided to return to Qatar between the races,” said Al-Kuwari. “We had some bad luck in Liuzhou. There is no getting away from that. Fortunately there was not a lot of damage to Jay’s boat after the accident. The only problem we have faced is getting the engines and spare parts through Chinese customs. Some of them have been held for more than two weeks.”
Al-Kuwari feels that Team Qatar hasn’t benefited from any luck at all this season. “We have either had a niggling engine problem or an accident,” added the Doha-based team manager. “But we all believe we can make up the difference in the next few races. We must not forget the season is only at its half-way point at the start of the weekend. Jonas (Andersson) leads the championship, but he has been lucky. He has a knack of finishing races and taking the points when others have mechanical problems.”
Australian racer Craig Bailey joined Team Qatar before the recent Liuzhou meeting to replace the injured Andy Elliott and the experienced New South Wales driver scored three points for the team in the second race, after engine problems had cost him his place in race one. “Craig is a good driver and is enjoying his time with us in the Qatar Team until Andy recovers from his accident,” added Al-Kuwari. “We were all delighted for him to score points in Liuzhou and I am sure he will be giving it everything in Shenzhen.”
The weekend’s timetable gets underway with technical scrutineering on Thursday (tomorrow) with the competitive action firing into life with one-hour free practice on the five-pin course from 09.15hrs (local time) on Saturday morning.
The time trials to determine the race starting order get underway at 11.15am and the first of the two Grand Prix of Shenzhen starts at 3pm (10am Doha time) on Saturday afternoon. The timetable is repeated on Sunday (October 18th), with the second Shenzhen race starting at 10am (Doha time).
2009 UIM F1 World Championship – positions after 8 of 16 races:
1. Jonas Andersson (S) Team Azerbaijan 79 pts
2. Thani Al-Qamzi (UAE) F1 Team Abu Dhabi 77 pts
3. Jay Price (QA) F1 Team Qatar 55 pts
4. Sami Selio (FIN) Mad Croc F1 Team Woodstock 54 pts
5. Guido Cappellini (I) Zepter Team 49 pts
6. Ahmed Al-Hameli (UAE) F1 Team Abu Dhabi 47 pts
7. Fabio Comparato (I) 800 Doctor Team 42 pts
8. Francesco Cantando (I) Singha F1 Racing Team 37 pts, etc
2009 UIM F1 Pole Position Championship – positions after 8 of 16 rounds:
1. Jay Price (QA) F1 Team Qatar 121 pts
2. Sami Selio (FIN) Mad Croc F1 Team Woodstock 93 pts
3. Ahmed Al-Hameli (UAE) F1 Team Abu Dhabi 90 pts
4. Guido Cappellini (I) Zepter Team 77 pts
5. Jonas Andersson (S) Team Azerbaijan 57 pts
6. Thani Al-Qamzi (UAE) F1 Team Abu Dhabi 31 pts
7. Francesco Cantando (I) Singha F1 Racing Team 29 pts
8. Massimo Roggiero (I) Mad Croc F1 Team Woodstock 20 pts
9. Pierre Lundin (S) Team CTIC China-Charente 19 pts
10. Phillipe Chiappe (F) F1 Atlantic Team 7 pts
For further information:
Neil Perkins, NDP Publicity Services, Mobile: + 44 7831 123153, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. www.ndp-publicity.com (press releases).