Team Abu Dhabi’s Rashid Al-Mulla continued his classy domination of the Freestyle category at the UIM-ABP Aquabike World Championship by trouncing the opposition in Moto 1 at the Grand Prix of the Mediterranean, late on Saturday evening in Olbia, Sardinia.
The 31-year-old Dubai-based water artist impressed the panel of judges with his impressive display of water acrobatics and amassed 87 points during a Moto 1 stint where he impressed on quantity but lost out to Italy’s Roberto Mariani on variety. The world number one duly finished second and Russia’s Alexander Kuramshin upped his game to finish equal third with Portugal’s Paulo Nunes. Italy’s Alberto Camerlengo endured a session to forget in a distant fifth.
Rashed Al-Tayer qualified second for his first Runabout GP1 race of the season and settled into a podium place for much of the race before being passed by Hungarian racer Gyorgy Kasza on the penultimate lap. Frenchman Jeremy Perez moved through the field and held on to the finish to reach the chequered flag 15.24 seconds in front of Kuwait’s Yousef Al-Abdulrazzaq in a race that was held in choppy water conditions. Kasza was third, ahead of Al-Tayer, and Italy’s Mattia Fracasso finished fifth.
Practice and Pole Position
Al-Tayer was seventh in the opening Runabout GP1 practice session on Friday and improved his best lap time by eight seconds in a pre-qualifying session that was won by Denmark’s Marcus Jorgensen. But the Emirati left his best form to the qualifying session on Friday evening and a lap of 1min 21.80sec placed Al-Tayer in second position for the Moto 1 race behind pole winner Jorgensen and in front of the talented Kuwaiti Yousef Al-Abdulrazzaq.
Neither Nak nor Roc Floranjcic from Slovenia registered for the Freestyle discipline and that left the door wide open for Team Abu Dhabi’s Rashed Al-Mulla to deliver another impressive artistic set on the water with his customary flips, spins and somersaults. The Emirati impressed the judges with a pole-winning score of 97 points, including a massive 34 for variety and 30 for quantity. His closest rival was Mariani on 82 points but Nunes, Kurumshin and Camerlengo were a distant third, fourth and fifth.
2018 UIM-ABP Grand Prix of the Mediterranean – Freestyle Moto 1 result
1. Rashid Al-Mulla (UAE) 87pts
2. Roberto Mariani (ITA) 82pts
3. Alexander Kuramshin (RUS) 64pts
3. Alberto Camerlengo (ITA) 64pts
5. Paolo Nunes (PRT) 11pts
2018 UIM-ABP Grand Prix of Italy – Runabout GP1 Moto 1 result
1. Jeremy Perez (FRA) 15 laps
2. Yousef Al-Abdulrazzaq (KUW) @15.24sec
3. Gyorgy Kasza (HUN) @25.29sec
4. Rashid Al-Tayer (UAE) @45.09sec
5. Mattia Fracasso (ITA) @81.92sec
6. Dmitry Tsukov (RUS) @95.68sec