Victory Team soars to the top with a race win in St Clair
Dubai: Dubai’s Victory Team ascended to the top of the Class 1 standings with a commanding victory at the St Clair River Classic in St Clair City late on Sunday.
The team dedicated the win, in Round Four of the 2019 ABPA Offshore Championship Series, to their crew.
More than 70 boats turned up for the annual event, held on the St Clair River.
The Victory 3 pairing of Salem Al Adidi and Eisa Al Ali led from the start to finish of the 13-lap race to further consolidate their position in the overall standings ahead of ‘222 Offshore’ and ‘Miss Geico’.
With a thunderstorm threatening to disrupt the race, organisers clubbed the Class 1 boats with the Supercats and Vee Extremes.
Al Adidi and Al Eisa had been denied full points in Round Three in Sarasota earlier this month following a final lap mechanical issue.
The crew worked throughout the three weeks and got a spare boat ready in record time — replacing the Lamborghini engines with Mercury 1,100 machines to put the boat on the water in time for Round Four in St Clair.
“The crew needs to be applauded for all that they have done to put this boat on the water in time for the round. We’ve all witnessed what a fantastic job they’ve done,” Victory 3 driver Al Adidi told Gulf News after their win in St Clair in the early hours of Monday.
“Our first objective was to stay away from our main challengers, and at the same time we had our eyes on first place, so that we could occupy the top position heading into next week’s fifth round in Michigan City. We got no time to do any testing of the spare boat, but we relied solely on the job done by our crew,” he added.
Al Adidi and Al Ali commanded an outright lead at the first turn with Giovanni Carpitella and Gary Nicholson following in second in their ‘222 Offshore’, while Steve Curtis and new driver Miles Jennings tried to keep pace in third with ‘Miss Geico’.
Victory 3 continued improving on the lead from their two main challengers, and barring one lap when the Supercats and Vee Extremes forced them to cut down on speed, they were unstoppable taking the chequered flag with ease ahead of 222 Offshore and Miss Geico.
“This is a great win for us simply because it has come under tough conditions. I am proud of our drivers and the entire crew who ensured Victory Team ends right on top,” Huraiz Bin Huraiz, Chairman of the Board of Directors at Victory Team, said.
“Winning this race means we now get a good lead at the top of the overall standings. But, that said, there is no time to relax as we have two more races to go. We will keep our fingers crossed and our eyes on the championship title,” he added.
There will be very little time to celebrate now as the boats make their way to Michigan City in Indiana for the Great Lakes Grand Prix at the Washington Park Beach from August 2-4.