The UAE’s top kart drivers are bound for the Dubai Kartdrome this weekend as the Rotax Max Challenge rolls into town with a double header.
The third and fourth rounds of the 2015-2016 UAE Rotax Max Challenge marks the first of two successive race weekends at the venue.
Hot on the heels of last weekend’s Grand Finals in Portugal, this weekend’s action boasts the biggest field of the season so far across the various Rotax MAX classes.
On Friday and Saturday there will be races for Micro MAX, Mini MAX, Junior MAX, MAX and DD2 combined with DD2 Masters, with Bambino Time Trials scheduled for the first day.
On day one the regular Kartdrome configuration will be used, while on day two the faster Speedway configuration will hope to add variety.
Dubai Autodrome General Manager Richard Birch said: “It is always great to host the UAE's premier karting series as it creates a great buzz around the Kartdrome, which in turn attracts strong fields of drivers who invariably deliver exciting racing.
“Karting is the grassroots of motorsport anywhere in the world, from where most of the world’s most famous F1 drivers have emerged.
“It is very encouraging to see how the sport has developed here in the UAE over the past few years and we are proud that the Kartdrome has played a significant role in this evolution.”
The track action starts on Friday at 10:30am with combined practice and qualifying for Micro Max.
The first race is scheduled to be flagged off at 12:30 pm and the final race is scheduled to start at 17:05 pm.
Fashion lovers are invited to make their next stylish purchase while experiencing cutting-edge technology at The Galleria on Al Maryah Island, Abu Dhabi, the capital’s premier shopping and dining destination, as it brings back the unique and interactive Virtual Style Pod between November 19th, 2015 and January 2016 after a successful inaugural run.
An activation exclusive to the Middle East, the Virtual Style Pod is an augmented reality “dressing room" through which guests will experience a new and futuristic approach to shopping: viewing themselves in an array of stylish outfits without the need to actually try them on.
Shoppers can navigate through the wide selection of fashion items while standing in the pod to create an ensemble suited to their own personal style.
The latest in 3D body-mapping technology meets cutting-edge fabric simulation, creating a realistic 360° view for shoppers to then see themselves in the selected outfits.
With looks curated by internationally renowned fashion director and stylist, Esther Quek – shoppers seeking the latest looks straight from the runway need look no further than The Galleria on Al Maryah Island, Abu Dhabi.
The Virtual Style Pod also features selections from retailers such as Pinko and Emilio Pucci to help female shoppers with the perfect purchase for a glamorous day and evening look.
Gentlemen looking for that effortless dapper style can choose between brands such as Ermenegildo Zegna, Thomas Pink and Sacoor Brothers.
The full list of participating brands also includes: Diesel, DKNY, La Martina, Longchamp, Michael Kors, The Cobbler, and Tommy Hilfiger.
Visitors can then take a memorable photo of themselves and be accompanied by the property’s brand ambassadors to various stores at The Galleria on Al Maryah Island, Abu Dhabi to purchase the items they desire.
Located on Level 1 of The Galleria on Al Maryah Island, Abu Dhabi, guests will be offered complimentary access to the Virtual Style Pod during the property’s opening hours from 19th November 2015 to January 2016.
The inaugural Students’ Karting Cup – a new grassroots series targeted at boosting domestic interest in the sport of karting – will take place over four weekends in January and February next year.
With registration now open to UAE-based students of all nationalities between the ages of 12 to 19-years-old, the multi-round cup will feature two competition categories: Juniors for 12 to 15-year-olds and Seniors for 16 to 19-year-olds.
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The brainchild of PRODRIVE Sports Services, one of the UAE’s leading independent organisers of individual and corporate sporting events, the Students Karting Cup will take place at Al Ain Raceway – the Middle East’s only International Karting Commission (CIK) accredited International Grade B circuit.
“This first-of-its-kind karting competition will galvanise an already popular sport in the UAE and, we hope, contribute to propelling the evolution of regional motorsports,” said Sayed Harris Hassan, PRODRIVE’s CEO.
“The UAE is now home to an increasingly diverse calendar of world-class motorsport events and we want to see homegrown talents fighting it out on the international stage – both domestically and internationally. The Students’ Karting Cup has been conceived to introduce the UAE’s next generation of sporting talent into competitive karting – the traditional entry-point for the majority of professional motorsport drivers.”
In contrast to other regional karting programmes, the karting event aims to develop all aspects of young drivers’ capabilities – from punctuality and adherence to safety, to natural speed and attention to rules and regulations on the circuit.
“Contrary to popular belief, racing is not just about speed,” added Sayed. “Drivers need more in their lockers than raw pace alone. The Students’ Karting Cup will assess young drivers, identify who has the rounded talents required for modern day racing and then nurture the best prospects.”
Supported by Abu Dhabi Racing (ADR), the Abu Dhabi-based company that develops initiatives to boost the emirate’s presence in global motorsport, the competition will also offer a coveted trial with ADR’s prestigious Daman Speed Academy – which aims to groom young UAE nationals to become professional racing drivers – to the top-ranking Emirati drivers in the Junior andSenior categories.
“Karting is the starting point for virtually every world-class racing driver competing today – it is the heartbeat of motorsport,” said Khaled Al Qubaisi, ADR’s Managing Director and the first Emirati to finish the famous 24 hours race at historic French circuit, Le Mans.
“Karting is a breeding ground for talent. The sport hones young drivers’ skills and provides them with invaluable racing experience. It is also a crucial platform for physical and emotional development. Karting is where drivers develop and grow into their adult bodies and discover the competitive edge as they learn what it takes to be successful, victorious and how to be a team player.”
Registration for the Students’ Karting Cup costs AED1,150 per individual driver and is open until Tuesday 15th December.
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For their entry fees, students will receive a Starter Kit worth AED900 that includes branded Students’ Karting Cup clothing and 60-minutes of assured track time. The track time includes two 15-minute ‘Arrive and Drive’ sessions and an ‘Open Day’ pass for an unlimited number of sessions – available on a first-come, first-served basis – that can be redeemed at Al Ain Raceway any time between December 16 to January 14.
On Friday 15 January, all drivers will convene at Al Ain Raceway for a 30-minute assessment where qualified instructors from the circuit and PRODRIVE will evaluate their abilities and responses to aspects such as safety, punctuality, speed and the attention paid to rules and regulations. Following the assessment day, the expected 200-250 driver field will be trimmed to a final line-up of 100-125, who will contest three race weekends on Friday 5, 19 and 26 February.