With a great start the duo if the Emirati boat thake the lead of the race and smashes the opponents. Second is 222 Offshore, third The Blue Roo of Team Australia.

It’s the day of Abu Dhabi 4 in Hangzhou, China, stage 4 of the 2018 UIM XCAT World Championship. It’s Saturday, time for the first of the two races scheduled for the weekend.

After a tight qualifying session, which gives them the second spot on the grid behind Dubai Police, the #4 crew of Shaun Torrente at the throttle and Faleh al Mansoori at the helm performs an amazing start in the race and gets to P1 at the first buoy. From that moment, they keep an amazing pace, in order to be able and take their two mandatory long laps without ever losing the leadership. In the end, Torrente and Al Mansoori finish the 16-lap race with an advantage of 37 seconds on the second, taking into account the conservative last miles when they wanted to limit any risk.

Second spot goes to 222 Offshore, with the Italian Giovanni Carpitella and the Australian Darren Nicholson. As customary for them, they have a good start from the fourth spot and run a perfect race, slightly hindered by the fact that they missed the largest propellers after they damaged one in pole position.

Third is Team Australia: Pål Virik Nilsen and Jan Trygve Braten can be satisfied of the result, considering their unlucky qualifying when they missed a lot of time for a spin and the resulting sudden halt of an engine, which only restarted after many precious minutes.

Abu Dhabi 5 of Rashed al Tayer and Majed al Mansoori complete the good day for the Emirati team, while another perfect strategy for Hi-Performance Italia take Francois Pinelli and Giuseppe Schiano to a very good fifth place, after the podium in Shanghai R2.

We haven’t mentioned Dubai Police so far, and there’s a good reason. Arif al Zaffein and Nadir bin Hendi started the race from the first position, but a problem at the moment of the green flag meant they lost the perfect timing and went back to 4th position immediately. Then, some issues with one engine did the rest as Abu Dhabi 5 and HPI were able to pass them.

Seventh is Kuwait, followed by Videx, Newstar and Yacht Club Como, with the last two paying a third long lap and a 30-second penalty respectively, for rules’ infringements.

Pastamato suffers a failure and can’t complete the race, while Swecat is the most unfortunate of the pack as a damage to one gearcase in shallow water during quali impede them from even entering the race.

With this win Abu Dhabi 4 gets to the top of the overall ranking, with the exact same points (178)as Dubai Police. It seems like the fight for the 2018 title has found the first competitors, with Abu Dhabi 5 (154), Team Australia (152) and 222 Offshore (137) still capable of challenging them. And Sunday we will already have the first verdicts, as race two of XCAT Hangzhou GP is scheduled for 3pm local time (Gmt+8).

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