Report: DAMC Karting Championship Round 5
24 February 2012
Dubai Kartdrome hosted a day of action packed karting featuring some of the country’s top drivers in action in fifth round of the 2011/2012 DAMC Karting Championship.
Technically speaking Dubai schoolboy Piers Pakenham-Walsh should be racing in the Max Juniors category, but a special ATCUAE dispensation has allowed the 15 year old to participate in the Max Seniors class, where the competition is stiffer and far more experienced.
This has failed to deter Pakenham-Walsh who gave one of his best displays ever at the Kartdrome when he powered to victory in the final of the Max Seniors race after a problem plagued first two races of the day.
Starting from the back of the grid for the final, the youngster showed a level of maturity, pace and precision driving that belies his age, while carving his way through a very strong field to take claim the top spot on the podium, his first – of no doubt many – in the senior category.
Pakenham-Walsh said afterwards, “After the troubles we had in the races leading up to the final and starting from way back, it is particularly satisfying to win. I have won heats in this class, but have had some frustrations since I moved up into this class from the juniors. But with this win all the effort is worth it and I look forward to doing it again.”
Also having one of his strongest showings was Alexandre Silanine who finished second after spending the entire day at the sharp end of proceedings, ahead of Nikita Milakov who took third place in the final.
Maurits Knopjes took top honours in the DD2 final after a winning the heat race and pre-final, but it was not an easy day for him as he was chased hard all day by Mohammed Al Dhaheri who, in the end, had to settle for second place ahead of third placed Hussain Umid Ali.
Knopjes summed up his day, “It was a tough day but very satisfying, because Mohammed and I have been trading wins, so it was good to get this one here today at the Kartdrome. There is very little between us at the moment in terms of pace so winning is always a pleasure.”
Walid Al Qassemi was unbeatable all day in the Max Masters, starting the day by claiming pole position and following this up with a hat trick of dominant wins including the all important final. Behind him Andrew Fuller took second place, with Paul Walsh taking third.
The Max Juniors class this year is arguably one of the most competitive seen in local karting, with at least five drivers capable of taking the chequered flag at any given time. Proof of this was that in qualifying the top four drivers were covered by a mere 0.289 seconds with Abdullah Al Rawahi taking pole position.
In the subsequent races Al Rawahi faced stern opposition from Ameer Hassan, Cyrus Engineer and Pasqual Pook. The four running bumper to bumper all afternoon, with Al Rawahi winning the heat race, but Hassan, having one of his best days on track, bouncing back to take a pair of wins in the pre-final and final respectively. Al Rawahi was second in the final, with Engineer and Pook not far behind in third and fourth respectively.
Hassan said of his maiden Max Juniors final win, “It was very close all day, there is very little between the four of us. But today luck was on my side and I managed to come back to win two races which makes me very happy.”
Taymour Kermanshahchi has emerged as the young driver to beat in the Cadet Class and looked set to notch up a hat trick of victories on the day after winning the heat race and the pre-final, but in the final Zachary Robertson pulled the proverbial rabbit out the bag to snatch victory by the narrowest of margins, with Kermanshahchi second by 0.238 seconds. Charlie Bale gave a good account of himself to finish third.
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