F1 Jay Price qualifies sixth for Grand Prix of Russia
2008 UIM F1 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
Grand Prix of Russia - June 14th, round 4 of 9
For immediate release
Saturday, June 14th, 2008
QATAR'S CHAMPIONSHIP LEADER PRICE
QUALIFIES SIXTH FOR RUSSIAN RACE
Shoot-out victory and Russian pole position for Italy's Cappellini
Qatar's Al-Khulaifi and Al-Fayyad set to start race from 20th and 21st
SAINT PETERSBURG (Russia): The Qatar Team's Jay Price finished sixth overall in the time trials and subsequent six-boat shoot-out for the Grand Prix of Russia and will start the fourth round of this year's UIM F1 World Championship on the Neva River in Saint Petersburg from sixth position on the grid.
The current championship leader needs to maintain his early season form in Russia and will defend a 23-point series lead in his Mercury-engined DAC, run by the Qatar Team under the auspices of the Qatar Marine Sports Federation (QMSF) and the presidency of His Excellency Sheikh Hassan bin Jabor Al-Thani.
Italy's Guido Cappellini, Ahmed Al-Hameli, Thani Al-Qamzi, Jonas Andersson, Price and World Champion Sami Selio qualified for the six-boat shoot-out and it was Selio who laid down the gauntlet with a fastest first lap of 49.29s.
Price was next on to the six-pin Neva River course, but it was important that the Qatar Team driver did not damage his boat before the vital race. His first lap of 49.86s was followed by a run of 49.36s, but he was edged out by 0.7 seconds by Selio. Andersson fired home a 49.30s and hit provisional pole with a potent 49.11s as Al-Qamzi headed out on to the river for his two laps.
The Emirati shot into the lead with an opening 49.00s tour, but could not better his time with a second lap of 49.12s. His colleague Al-Hameli carded an opening 48.39s lap to stun the opposition and take provisional pole, with only Cappellini standing between the Abu Dhabi driver and the strategic race pole. The Como driver duly posted an opening salvo of 48.15s and that was sufficient to claim Pole Position and success in the thrilling Shoot-Out.
Qatar Team drivers Ahmed Al-Fayyad and Yousef Al-Khulaifi will start the Russia race from 20th and 21st positions after two further promising qualifying sessions for the F1 newcomers.
Cappellini set the pace in the opening time trial with a fastest lap of 50.17s during his 10-lap stint. The fastest lap of the weekend so far was sufficient to oust Al-Qamzi and Andersson, although Price improved on his Friday evening practice position and settled into a provisional fourth position, with Al-Hameli and Selio completing the top six.
Al-Khulaifi ran for 12 laps and posted the 19th fastest lap of 56.91s, but Al-Fayyad was forced to pull out after two laps, which left the Qatari at the rear of the 23-boat grid heading into the all-important second time trial. "Ahmed had a problem with the engine shutting down," admitted Mohammed Al-Jaidah, head of formula racing at the QMSF. "We found out that it was a fuel feed problem and not enough fuel had been put into the boat for the session, which meant he had more work to do in the second time trial."
Al-Qamzi and Selio were the first of the leading pack out on the water for the second time trial, although both Al-Khulaifi and Al-Fayyad made use of the session to gain further F1 racing experience. Al-Fayyad posted a potent lap of 56.25s to move up to 16th position, as Al-Khulaifi was demoted to 22nd.
Cappellini took to the water after 15 minutes, but the session was yellow flagged. Andersson joined on the restart and the heat was on the leaders to ensure they made the crucial top six in the closing minutes. Al-Khulaifi overhauled Bob Trask and moved up to 21st with a lap of 56,14s, but there were no changes in the top six at the half-way point of the session. Al-Fayyad completed his 16-lap stint but all eyes were on the battle for the top six.
Price was vulnerable to being overtaken by both Al-Hameli and Selio and the Team Abu Dhabi driver did just that with a flying lap of 50.58s with 13 minutes of the session remaining to catapult himself into second position. The result pushed Price down to fifth and the Qatar Team driver duly took to the water to defend his shoot-out place in the final minutes, but was not threatened by the chasing pack.
Team Abu Dhabi's Ahmed Al-Hameli had set the fastest lap of 52.27s in Friday evening's first free practice session, with Price, Al-Khulaifi and Al-Fayyad eventually finishing in sixth, 19th and 21st positions.
Price ran for 20 laps and posted a quickest tour of 54.60s, with Al-Hameli, Andersson, Cappellini, Al-Qamzi and Fabio Comporato running ahead of the championship leader in the one-hour practice stint. "Jay had a minor electrical problem near the end of the session, but it was nothing more than a loose wire," admitted Mohammed Al-Jaidah, head of formula racing at the QMSF. All 23 entrants took to the water for the first time and Al-Khulaifi and Al-Fayyad ran for 20 and 23 laps, respectively.
The Grand Prix of Russia will run over the six-pin course between Vasilievskiy island and Zayachiy island on the stunning Neva river in the centre of Saint Petersburg.
2008 UIM F1 World Championship - Shoot-out results:
1. Guido Cappellini (I) Tamoil F1 Team 48.15s
2. Ahmad Al-Hameli (UAE) F1 Team Abu Dhabi 48.39s
3. Thani Al-Qamzi (UAE) F1 Team Abu Dhabi 49.00s
4. Jonas Andersson (S) F1 Team Sweden 49.11s
5. Sami Selio (FIN) Woodstock Red Devil Racing 49.29s
6. Jay Price (QA) Qatar Team 49.36s
20. Ahmed Al-Fayyad (QA) Qatar Team 55.83s
21. Yousef Al-Khulaifi (QA) Qatar Team 56.02s
2008 UIM F1 World Championship - Pole Position (unofficial positions after round 4 of 9):
1. Guido Cappellini (I) Tamoil F1 64 pts
2. Ahmad Al-Hameli (UAE) F1 Team Abu Dhabi 50 pts
3. Thani Al-Qamzi (UAE) F1 Team Abu Dhabi 48 pts
4. Jonas Andersson (S) F1 Team Sweden 41 pts
5. Jay Price (QA) Qatar Team 19 pts
5. Sami Selio (FIN) Woodstock Red Devil Racing 19 pts
7. David Trask (AUS) Trask Brothers Racing 14 pts
8. Francesco Cantando (I) Singha Team 7 pts
9=. Massimo Roggiero (I) Woodstock Red Devil Racing 5 pts
9=. Phillipe Chiappe (F) Atlantic Team 5 pts
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