x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 19 January 2018

Victory boosts Price's title prospects

The championship race is left wide open with the top five drivers, including Abu Dhabi's Al Qamzi, being separated by 29 points.

Jay Price, racing under the Qatar flag, on his way to victory in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix yesterday.
Jay Price, racing under the Qatar flag, on his way to victory in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix yesterday.

ABU DHABI // Jay Price's victory in yesterday's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix has thrown the world championship wide open. The reigning champion moved to third in the standings and is one of five drivers in with a chance of winning the title with the final two rounds in Sharjah next weekend. Guido Cappellini (129) heads the table followed by the Team Abu Dhabi driver Thani al Qamzi (119), Price (105), the Swede Jonas Andersson (104) and the Finn Sami Selio (100).

Price, racing under the Qatar flag, finished a comfortable winner in the end from Team Abu Dhabi's second driver, Ahmad al Hameli, and Philippe Chiappe of France. Price ran in the top three throughout the race and the American produced a strong finish to claim what was his sixth victory of the campaign after the early retirements of Andersson and the nine-time Italian world champion Cappellini, both after accidents, and Selio and al Qamzi because of engine trouble.

Price had led at the start but lost it to Selio after the restart three laps in following a collision between Andersson and his fellow Swede Pierre Lundin. Selio held on to the lead after the restart with Price and al Qamzi in pursuit. Selio's boat stalled, allowing Price to take the lead as al Qamzi was also forced out of the race as he suffered mechanical problems. "I wasn't far off the first boat and always fancied my chances," said Price. "And all that happened on the water played out to my advantage. It was a good win and 20 points keeps the championship wide open."

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