F1 Qatar's Price disqualified as Carella snatches crucial points in Liuzhou
2011 UIM F1 H2O WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
Grand Prix of China, Liuzhou - round 5, October 1-2
For immediate release
Sunday, October 2nd, 2011
QATAR’S JAY PRICE DISQUALIFIED AS ALEX CARELLA
SNATCHES FIFTH IN DRAMATIC GRAND PRIX OF CHINA
· Price takes reduced three-point lead to UAE races in December
· Team Abu Dhabi’s Thani Al-Qamzi takes victory in Liuzhou
· Qatar’s Al-Shamlan claims third place in second F-4S race
LIUZHOU (China): The Qatar Team’s Jay Price missed a crucial turn buoy and was disqualified from fifth position in Sunday’s dramatic Grand Prix of China on the Liu River in Liuzhou.
The 2008 World Champion held third position heading into the final lap, but the officials’ decision cost him vital championship points and enabled team mate Alex Carella – who started the race from the back of the grid following an engine failure - to take points for fifth position and move to within three points of his colleague in the World Championship standings.
Team Abu Dhabi’s Ahmed Al-Hameli and Thani Al-Qamzi dominated the race, with Al-Hameli dropping to second on the penultimate lap to enable Al-Qamzi to take maximum points and maintain his title challenge.
Qatar’s Khalid Saleh Al-Shamlan qualified second and finished third in the second of the weekend’s UIM F-4S races. He maintains third in the points’ standings after 10 races.
“It was one of those weekends where we had no luck at all,” said Khalid Bin Arhama Al-Kuwari, head of formula racing at the (QMSF), which runs under the presidency of His Excellency Sheikh Hassan bin Jabor Al-Thani.
“Jay missed a turn buoy and that has cost him dearly and Alex was forced to start at the back and did well to get back into contention at the end. It was not our lucky day, but we will regroup and look forward to Sharjah and Abu Dhabi.”
Carella and Price were scheduled to reach the start pontoon in second and fifth positions and team manager Al-Kuwari admitted before the 36-lap race that a podium finish for both drivers was the aim. But an engine problem in the morning’s practice session forced Carella to start from the back of the grid and promoted Price to fourth behind Ahmed Al-Hameli, Phillipe Chiappe and Thani Al-Qamzi.
Jonas Andersson jump-started the lights and was penalised with a drive-through penalty, as Al-Hameli led before a yellow flag was raised following an opening lap collision between Phillipe Tourre and Valerio Lagiannella, which sheared the engine clean off the Italian’s Singha F1 Racing Team boat.
The race restarted after three laps of the yellow flag and Price leapt into third behind Al-Hameli and Al-Qamzi. Carella climbed from 15th after the restart to 11th, but still faced an uphill struggle to reach the podium over the remaining 30 laps.
Price reached the 10th lap four seconds behind the leading UAE driver and Carella continued his slow climb towards the top three and held ninth. The leading drivers held station through 17 laps, as Price appeared content to shadow the Team Abu Dhabi duo in his DAC to conserve a potential 12 championship points. Carella managed to pass Francesco Cantando on lap 23 and climbed to eighth overall.
The race was yellow flagged for a second time after a violent accident involving Finland’s Sami Selio and resumed with just four laps remaining. Carella climbed to fifth and Price maintained third behind Al-Hameli and Al-Qamzi, but he lost ground on the final lap and slipped to fifth at the chequered flag, only to be disqualified at the finish.
Al-Hameli slowed to enable Al-Qamzi to take his first victory in 27 races and Carella reached the chequered flag with a failing engine in fifth position.
Bimba Sjoholm was fastest in the morning’s F-4S free practice session and went on to qualify in pole position for the race. Khaled Saleh Al-Shamlan set the fourth fastest lap in practice and improved to qualify second for the race, but the Qatari was unable to overhaul Sjoholm or Britain’s Matthew Palfreyman during the actual race and reached the chequered flag in third position to maintain a similar position in the championship standings.
Sjoholm’s victory gave her a nine-point advantage in the title race over Palfreyman, with Al-Shamlan still in contention, 26 points adrift of the leading Swede.
Grand Prix of China, Liuzhou – results
1. Thani Al-Qamzi (UAE) Team Abu Dhabi
2. Ahmed Al-Hameli (UAE) Team Abu Dhabi @ 3.19s
3. Phillipe Chiappe (FRA) CTIC China Team @ 6.41s
4. Davide Padovan (ITA) Team Mad Croc F1 @ 11.04s
5. Jay Price (QAT) Qatar Team @ 12.04s*
6. Alex Carella (QAT) Qatar Team @ 13.83s
7. Francesco Cantando (I) Singha F1 Racing Team @ 14.86s
6. Pierre Lundin (SWE) CTIC China Team @ 15.94s
9. Duarte Benavente (POR) F1 Atlantic Team @ 17l.22s
10. Tommy Vahlsten (SWE) Team Sweden @ 18.96s
2011 UIM F1 H20 World Championship – standings after round 5
1. Jay Price (QAT) Qatar Team 67 pts
2. Alex Carella (QAT) Qatar Team 64 pts
3. Thani Al-Qamzi (UAE) Team Abu Dhabi 55 pts
4. Ahmed Al-Hameli (UAE) Team Abu Dhabi 35 pts
4. Phillipe Chiappe (FRA) CTIC China Team 35 pts
6. Francesco Cantando (ITA) Singha F1 Racing Team 26 pts
7. Sami Selio (FIN) Team Mad Croc F1 21 pts, etc
2011 UIM F-4S Championship – standings after race 10
1. Bimba Sjolholm (SWE) Team Sweden 139 pts
2. Matthew Palfreyman (GBR) Team Atlantic 130 pts
3. Khaled Saleh Al-Shamlan (QAT) Qatar Team 113 pts
4. Filip Roms (FIN) Team Mad Croc 94 pts
5. Xiong Ziwei (CHN) Team China 81 pts
6. Tobias Munthe-Kaas (NOR) Team Nautica 60 pts
7. Majed Al-Mansoori (UAE) Team Abu Dhabi 33 pts
8. Christian Carlsen (NOR) Team Singha 19 pts
9. Kristoffer Fjelde (NOR) Team Singha 14 pts
10. Carl-Hampus Lundberg (SWE) Team Nautica 12 pts
11. Valts Silis (LAT) Team Singha 12 pts
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