x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Powerboat: Victory hope for a sweet time at Italian Grand Prix

Team official banking on cool weather for good result at Stersa.

Stresa is a freshwater venue for the Italian Grand Prix and boats are expected to sink less.RaffaelloBastiani/WPPA
Stresa is a freshwater venue for the Italian Grand Prix and boats are expected to sink less.RaffaelloBastiani/WPPA

The Dubai-based Victory Team will have three boats in the mix this weekend for the fourth round of the UIM Skydive Dubai XCAT World Series, in Italy.

The series leaders Fazza will be considered favourites. The Skydive Dubai combination of Sultan Al Dahri and Jay Price will also compete, along with the Victory Team boat piloted by Salem Al Adidi and Talib Al Sayed.

Nadir bin Hindi, the deputy executive director of the Victory Team, said: "We are all confident, yes. But there are also other teams that are strong. You can't say what will happen - like in the last race in Dubai where we had a technical problem and dropped from first place to last.

"All the teams are quite close, so it's a tough series. It makes everyone work hard because all the engines are the same - limited. All the gear boxes are more or less the same, and the propellers, as well, so it's all about how you set the boat up and how the two guys fight in the boat to come in first place."

The competition, on Lake Maggiore in northern Italy, brings a freshwater venue into the equation.

"Because it's sweet water, the boat tends to sink a lot more than in salt water," Bin Hindi said.

"Here the weather is cooler than in Dubai and there's a bit less oxygen but the engine performs better - so we'll see how it goes."

As for the set-up in Stresa, the lakeside base for the first XCAT event outside of the UAE, Bin Hindi said: "Not just me but everyone says it's a big 'wow'. I hope it's all a success. The way they've set everything up is beautiful. … The way it's going I think XCAT is going to become the No 1 class in the UIM."

Action begins with practice at 10am today, followed by qualifying at 2.30 and the Speed Cat Run at 5pm.

The weekend's main event, the Italian Grand Prix, begins at 3.30pm tomorrow.

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