XCAT World Championship: (Team Australia) Abu Dhabi 5 wins a cluttered race in Shanghai

UPDATE – Sunday 14, 11:01 am

After re-examining all the images and the timing logs, and taking into consideration protests and appeals, the UIM and the XCAT World Championship Race Officers have issued the amended race results. Here below the official final results of Race 1, while the arrival order (with boats’ numbers is the following): 5 – 8 – 4 – 20 – 46 – 96 – 17 – 10 – 2 – 9 – 3 – 22.

Not just the usual XCAT World Championship action, but a roll over, a long yellow flag, penalties and a retirement for the championship leaders: in the end the winners of a tough race are Team Australia, followed by Abu Dhabi 4 and Hi-Performance Italia.

The 2018 XCAT World Championship is back into action with a long stint in China. This weekend the races are taking place in Shanghai, then the cats will move to Hangzhou and finally to Xiamen in the following two weekends.
On Saturday 13th race one of the Shanghai GP was kind of a confused one. The start saw Team Australia of P
ål Virik Nilsen and Jan Trygve Braaten keep the lead, while Abu Dhabi 5 stepped up from P4 to P2 followed by Dubai Police and Abu Dhabi 4 (down two positions after the green flag).

A crash and a stop

After some long-lap strategies, with the Aussies still in the lead but with both long laps still to take, boat 22 Videx suddenly rolled over, probably for a broken trim. No harms for Alfredo Amato and Dani Martignoni, but a red flag meant all the gaps were canceled.

The long restart procedure lasted no less than three laps under yellow flag, in a very tense situation. After the second green flag it could seem that the race was going to stabilize, but more twists were yet to come. Abu Dhabi 5 hit a buoy and incurred in a penalty, while Dubai Police of Arif al Zaffein and Nadir bin Hendi, actual leaders of the championship, broke a shaft and lost the propeller in the water.

A messy final part of the race ended with a win for Team Australia literally chased by Abu Dhabi 4 (Shaun Torrente and Faleh al Mansoori), who finished second by just three tenths of a second. MVP of the day goes to Hi-Performance Italia, with Francois Pinelli and Giuseppe Schiano (first XCAT race for the latter) closing third after a very consistent race, always staying out of trouble.

A thrilling race was actually predictable after the morning qualifying, as many boats fought for pole position with gaps in the range of hundredths and tenths of a second.

The sudden stop of Dubai Police gives a boost to all the chasers in the overall ranking, in particular Abu Dhabi 4 and Team Australia, who have now the chance to further close the gap with Sunday’s race, as Arif al Zaffein and Nadir bin Hendi will start race 2 from the back of the grid.

The live streaming of race two of the XCAT World Championship will be broadcasted on the sport’s social channels at 14:30 local time (GMT+8).

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