Daman Speed Academy’s Junior drivers gain experience in O-Plate, Dubai

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Potential: Mini Max Category.

A thrilling day’s racing at the Dubai Kartdrome saw one of the UAE’s hottest young prospects backed by Abu Dhabi Racing, 6 year old Rashid Al Dhaheri ‘the Little Alonso’ put in yet another stellar performance to win the Bambino category on his home circuit. 

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Meanwhile in the Mini Max Category Hamda Al Qubaisi narrowly missed the podium, finishing in 4th place after starting in 6th position. Hamda performed some impressive overtaking moves displaying excellent focus and determination.

In the Junior Max Category the DSA drivers had a good day but were unlucky in the final race, Amna Al Qubaisi, Saeed Al Ali, and Ahmed Al Khamisi came off the track in turn 2 as a result of heavy traffic which didn’t allow them to continue their final race of the day.

Junior Max - Amna Al Qubaisi.

Salem Ibrahim however, made it through the traffic and put in a solid performance to finish the final race only 0.7secs off the pace. 

Omar Al Khouri, Abdulla Al Qubaisi, Ali Al Shamsi and Ahmed Al Saadi all gained valuable race experience in the Micro Max Category putting in consistent times.

Robert Cregan, Daman Speed Academy Program Director at ADR said: "It has been a valuable learning experience for all the DSA students, unfortunately we didn't finish on the podium in any of the categories but we have been really encouraged to see that all the drivers have continued to improve their speed.

"It has also been excellent preparation for the next UAE Rotax Max Championship event which will be taking place in the Dubai Kartdrome."

Rashed Al Dhaheri.

Daman Speed Academy was launched last year as a joint initiative between the National Health Insurance Company “Daman” and Abu Dhabi Racing.

Its objective is to prepare the next generation of Emirati track stars who through their performance and ambition, will inspire Emirati youth into harnessing their skills to reach their goals and aspirations in the future.

For further information about Daman Speed Academy, please visit:  www.damanspeedacademy.ae or the Academy’s Facebook page: www.facebook.com/damanspeedacademy

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Sheikh Khalid in Monaco to support Citroën Total Abu Dhabi

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Making his presence felt: Khalid.

Abu Dhabi Racing chairman and World Rally Championship driv­er Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi has joined the Citroen Total Abu Dhabi team in Monaco to offer moral sup­port ahead of the opening round today (Thursday).

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Speaking to Sport360° from Monte Carlo, Sheikh Khalid said: “Ever since our partnership with Citroen-Total in the WRC, I have always visited the team ahead of the opening round to wish them all the best for the season ahead.

“We have put in a lot of work on the car, improving it for 2015 and we are very happy with the way the DS3 had developed and are hope­ful of good results in the months ahead.

“Also, I am extremely happy that Sebastien Loeb, a legend who is a nine-time WRC champion, has agreed to drive for us in the opening round.”

Sheikh Khalid revealed that this is just a one-off for Loeb as the Frenchman will then concentrate on his second season in the World Touring Cars Championship. Ho­ever, he has been allowed to score points for the team.

“We are now hoping that Loeb’s one-off participation will give Cit­roen Total Abu Dhabi a winning start to the New Year which is bound to give the team a lift for the rest of 2015 season.”

The regular drivers for the team are Mads Ostberg and Kris Meeke, both having retained their seats while Sheikh Khalid will again be doing a limited campaign as he con­centrates on the Middle East Rally Championship.

Ostberg finished last season in fifth overall while team-mate Meeke also finished inside the points in seventh place.

Sheikh Khalid opens his regional campaign with Rally Qatar, sched­uled to be held from February 5-7.

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Emirates Desert Championship set to extend to Umm Al Quwain

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Timely boost: Action from Round 2 of the Emirates Desert Championship.

The Emirates Desert Champion­ship breaks new ground this week­end when the national Baja series extends into Umm Al Quwain (UAQ) for the first time with the full backing of Crown Prince Sheikh Rashid bin Saud bin Rashid Al Mua’lla.

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Taking place under the patronage of Sheikh Rashid, the fourth round of the 2014/15 championship runs in the Falaj Al Moalla area on Friday morning, with over 100 drivers and riders expected as the six-round championship continues to go from strength to strength.

The Emirates Desert Champion­ship is organised by the ATCUAE and the Emirates Motor Sport Fed­eration, with TAG Heuer Middle East as the official timekeeper and founding partner.

Launched in October 2013 to safeguard the future of rallying on a national basis, the champion­ship has met the growing demand from the country’s motor sport fraternity for a new series of highly competitive events run in a natural environment, with an emphasis on safety.

With categories for cross coun­try cars, buggies, motorcycles and quads, it is a natural feeder series for the Abu Dhabi Desert Chal­lenge, a round of the FIA Cross Country Rally Championship.

Entries have climbed past three figures for each of the three rounds so far this season, hitting a record 135 for Round 2 last October. 

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