Rashid Al Qemzi, competing for Team Abu Dhabi, finished second in the opening Match Races at the UIM Nations Cup at the Abu Dhabi International Marine Sports Club yesterday.
Team UAE remain in contention for the UIM Nations Cup title, despite the fact that Mohammed Al Mehairbi was eliminated in his first heat.
Al Qemzi reached the final – where he was beaten 2-1 by Team Qatar’s Khalid Abdullah Al Kuwari – but Team Italy hold the unofficial early advantage in the Nations Cup after finishing third and fourth in the Match races.
The first Nations Cup of its kind to be held in Abu Dhabi attracted teams from across the Emirates, Qatar, Italy, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Russia, Norway and Venezuela and followed quickly on the heels of the Nations Cup that was held in Doha Bay, Qatar, last month.
Al Mehairbi was eliminated in his first Match Race heat by Team Italy’s Marco Gambi, but Al Qemzi managed to reach the semi-finals where he lined up alongside the Team Italy duo of Gambi and Stefano Paoletti and Team Qatar’s Khalid Abdullah Al Kuwari.
The Emirati got the better of Paoletti to reach the final and he faced Al Kuwari.
He won the first heat, but jump-starts proved costly from then on and he was beaten to the match race win by the Qatari.
Today, the first of two Nations Cup sprint races starts at 12.30pm and the second brings the day’s action to a close from 3.30pm.
Attention will then turn to the final round of the 2013 UIM Class 1 World Powerboat Championship in Abu Dhabi tomorrow and Friday.