ABU DHABI - (Friday, September 28, 2012) - For the second time in the last six years one of the premiere organizations in all of powerboat racing, Team Abu Dhabi has been forced to replace a key driver on their team because of illness.
Through their misfortune however, Team Abu Dhabi may have found a true future winner in the sport of UIM F1 H2O World Championship series at the same time.
Stepping on the stage for the fourth round of the series is talented and versatile driver Majed Al-Mansoori who joins the F1 team replacing World Drivers Championship points leader Ahmed Al Hameli. The 33 year-old from Abu Dhabi is currently in the United States fighting his own illness at the world renowned Johns Hopkins Hospital and University in Baltimore, Maryland.
Unable to defend his nine point lead in the standings this upcoming Tuesday the 2nd of October at the 18th Grand Prix of China in Liuzhou because of his condition, Salem Al-Romaithi head of Abu Dhabi International Marine Sports Club (ADIMSC) was forced to make other plans bringing in Al-Mansoori.
Many in this sport look at Majed, as truly a "Man for All Seasons". He has fought his way up from his start in jet-ski racing over a decade ago. He then moved into various single seater events branching out into the F4S Eurofin Trophy series the last few years.
His star began shining the brightest recently, however, by winning a pair of Nations Cup events in the last year beginning in Singapore in November followed by the Khor Fakkan event in the UAE this past spring.
Majed has stepped in as a regular throttle-man to the successful Class One Team Abu Dhabi boat in the worldwide offshore powerboat championship partnering with driver Rashid Al-Tayer. The duo is fresh off it's successful two days of racing finishing second and fourth at last weekends Class One Italian Grand Prix on Lake Como in Italy.
"I have really mixed emotions at this moment," said Majed. "On one hand I'm truly excited to get my chance in F1, but at the same time I'm thinking of nothing but Ahmed in America fighting his own battles as well. I hope I can make him as well as my team proud of me this next week in China."
The Abu Dhabi resident is no stranger to the F1 series. This week will mark his third run in championship starting a decade ago when he was just 22 years-old at his home Grand Prix. Majed qualified a respectable 14th and earning four points in his first race with a seventh place result.
A week later at the 2002 final Grand Prix in Sharjah he came off the dock in 20th and finished 15th.
It was another five years before Majed returned to F1 in 2007. He was helping out a crippled team that had just lost their four time World Champion Scott Gillman to illness. The Californian was leading the championship by a comfortable margin early in the season in Xi'an, China when he was forced to step out of the boat while wrapping up a brilliant career in the process.
This time around Al Mansoori's success wasn't so memorable when he dropped out in the season's only race he officially started in Abu Dhabi.
So, with the weather forecast calling for warm conditions and expected large crowds once again lining the banks of the Liu River for the fifth straight year, can the newcomer fresh from a Class One event in Italy help Team Abu Dhabi steer a course to winning another UIM F1 Team Championship, while at the same time, hoping to repeat what the organization did a year ago with teammate Thani Al Qamzi heading to a one-two podium domination here in the Far East.
The one hour Qualifying battle for pole position and starting grid gets underway at 15:00 local, 08:00 GMT and 03:00 Eastern Daylight Time in North American on Monday, the 1st of October.
The same schedule will follow on Tuesday the 2nd of October with the 18th Grand Prix of China starting the all important second half of the 2012 campaign.
Be In The Know - With F1 H2O!
|UIM F1H2O World Championship|
|UKR||Kyiv Region (TBC)||Jul 19|
|UAE||Abu Dhabi||Dec 5|
|UIM Nations Cup|
|UAE||Abu Dhabi||Dec 4|
|date and venue could be changed|
|02||Philippe Chiappe||+ 34.61 secs|
|03||Duarte Benavente||+ 1 Lap|