Alex Carella takes third for Team Abu Dhabi at UIM F1 H20 Grand Prix of Portugal

Carella and Thani Al Qamzi began the race from similar positions on the start pontoon, but the race developed into a superb three-way tussle between Finland’s Sami Selio, defending world champion Philippe Chiappe and Carella.

Alex Carella of Team Abu Dhabi. Photo Courtesy ADIMSC
Powered by automated translation

Team Abu Dhabi’s Alex Carella and Thani Al Qamzi finished third and sixth overall in a thrilling UIM F1 H20 Grand Prix of Portugal on Porto’s Duoro River.

The Abu Dhabi duo began the race from similar positions on the start pontoon, but the race developed into a superb three-way tussle between Finland’s Sami Selio, defending world champion Philippe Chiappe and Carella. Chiappe overtook pole-sitter Selio on the Lap 10 and was storming towards an emphatic win until Selio flipped his boat nine laps from the finish and forced a yellow flag situation.

At the restart, Chiappe managed to retain the lead that he held to the chequered flag, but Carella was passed by Sweden’s Erik Stark and reached the finish in third. Italy’s Francesco Cantando was fourth.

Al Qamzi slipped from sixth to 10th on Lap 1 and fought his way back to finish the race in sixth place.

“Thani did very well on his return to the team,” team manager and Italian nine-time UIM F1 H20 world champion Guido Cappellni said.

“I am very happy. I could see, lap-by-lap, the improvement and the confidence coming back.

“We will carry out a series of tests after this race to ensure that we are fully prepared for the autumn and the races in Asia.”

American racer Shaun Torrente now leads the series by one point from Chiappe.

Team Abu Dhabi’s Rashed Al Qemzi and Rashed Al Remeithi qualified on pole position and in sixth place ,respectively, for the second of the weekend’s UIM F-4S Trophy races.

However, Al Qemzi went on to finish the race in third place after losing the lead on the opening lap to eventual winner Mike Szymura of Germany.

Al Remeithi looked to be heading for sixth until he hit trouble two laps from the finish and was classified in eighth at the finish.

Follow us on Twitter at NatSportUAE