Who will last the pace? Kartdrome 24-Hour Race
It’s all to race for at the grand finale of the 2013 Kartdrome Endurance Championship this weekend where three titles – the Pro and Corporate categories, and the Nations Cup – will be decided.
This Kartdrome 24-Hours – Round 4 of the series – carries extra weight with 60 additional points for the winning team, 53 for second place and 48 for third. Going into the final round, the Dubai Falcons have 115 points, a slender five-point lead over CG Pro in second and 19 points on thirdplaced Timeless Events Racing.
As it stands either of the top two can win the championship by winning Rounf IV or, alternatively, if the Falcons and CG Pro strike problems then Timeless could shock the favourites and snatch overall victory.
The Corporate category is even closer at the top with four teams capable of taking home the big prize. Top of the points table is CG Racing 2 with 107 points, followed by sister team CG Racing 1 in second with 105 points, Action Racing is third with 99 points and Team Emirates, who won last time out for the first time, is fourth with 98 points.
Any of this quartet can win the coveted Corporate category title with a win.
Kartdrome manager Ryan Trutch said ahead of the weekend: “The title battles are too close to call and will probably only be decided in the finals hours, and perhaps even final minutes, of the event.
“With a top quality field, great drivers and challenging conditions, anything can happen.
“On the occasion of the final round of the championship I would like to thank my team for providing a pristine venue for this race, and of course a big thank you to Mini who have backed this event with enthusiasm.”
The series traditionally attracts some of the best drivers in the UAE as well as some top competitors from abroad, and this final round is no exception with the likes of Sheikh Hasher Al Maktoum, Saeed Al Mehairi and Mohammed Al Mutawaa in action for the Sky Dive Dubai-backed Falcons; while David Terrien, Alban Varutti, Piers Pakenham Walsh and the Azzam brothers, Rami and Ramez, are racing for the CG Pro outfit.
The unknown factor, particularly in the 24 hours edition of the race, are always the international teams. This year a strong contingent from Russia will be on the grid, including Lukoil Racing Team, Mazda Karting Academy, Mazda Sport Academy, Kozaks, Squadra, Formula Kart Krasnodar and BFA Bank Attack Team.
Europe is well represented with Pluscity Team from Austria, Kart Excellence made up of mainly Swiss drivers, Sensory Minds GP from Germany, strong French outfit CER Karting and the predominantly French team GP Racing.
One of the key factors during the course of the race will be the weather conditions which could vary dramatically. Teams and drivers will have to contend with temperatures ranging from around 30 degrees in the day to below 10 degrees at night, with rain, strong winds and fog possible.
Stakes are high as the championship- winning Pro team gets free entry to the 24 Hours RKC event in Paris, France, while the Corporate champions will gain complimentary entry to the 24 Hours Eupener Karting event in Belgium.
The prize also includes 50 per cent cover of the air tickets. On Friday, the field of 32 karts will be flagged off at 12 noon – in traditional Le Mans style running start – and will run for 24 hours until 12:00 noon on Saturday.
Entry to the Dubai Kartdrome is free for spectators throughout the two days. So it promises to be an exciting finish to the four-race series which began with a 12-hour race back in March. See who can emerge the strongest from this energy-sapping endurance challenge.
WHAT: Kartdrome Endurance Championship, Round 4: The Kartdrome 24-Hours
WHERE: Dubai Autodrome, Emirates Road
WHEN: Friday and Saturday. The race begins at 12:00 and ends at 12:00 the following day.
COST: Entry is free
Sport360 VERDICT: Have you ever tried karting. Well, to do so for a half-hour is draining, never mind 24 hours. Although, the drivers do take turns to drive, these guys have remarkable levels of cencentration.