At the Grand Prix of Italy, Youssef Al Abdulrazzaq has sent a clear message to the world’s top Runabout GP1 riders on the UIM-ABP tour that he is the man to beat in 2013 after another dominant performance to complete the win-double in Viverone and emphatically win the Grand Prix of Italy.
Yesterday the Kuwaiti rider threw down the gauntlet, easily winning heat 1, and today he backed it up leading from the start and destroying the opposition over the 16-laps to win by almost 18-secconds from France’s Jeremy Perez and the defending World Champion, Francois Medori.
Heat 2 was a mirror image of heat 1 with Abdulrazzaq riding away from Cyrille Lemoine, and Lemoine fending off Perez, until lap-14 when Lemoine’s engine let go forcing him out of the race and robbing him of a podium finish – the Frenchman’s only comment 'there are still many races to go in the Championship!'
His misfortune allowed Perez to take second place and second overall, with Medori completing the podium line-up, finishing in third place after passing Johan Johansson on lap-12.
Poland’s Andrej Wisniewski grabbed a second top six finish in fifth, with Italy’s Lorenzo Benaglia coming home in sixth.
In Ski GP1 Nacho Armillas claimed his second consecutive Grand Prix title after taking his second win of the weekend in a race that was turned on its head on lap seven of nine when race-leader and the UIM-ABP European Champion and seemingly winner elect Tiago Sousa stopped, gifting the win and the title to the young Spaniard.
Another strong performance and another second place was enough to give Italy’s Alberto Monti second overall, with Hungary’s Lukas Binar completing the podium with third place in today’s heat.
Lining up in third place it was Sousa who led from pole-sitter Armillas and Monti at the end of lap 1, with Sweden’s Pontus Andersson chased by Lukas Binar and Dawid Michalak.
The positions remained unchanged until lap seven when, with a comfortable 5-second lead, the race leader stopped letting in Armillas and Monti, with Armillas running out the winner by 2.43 seconds.
Behind the lead trio, Binar finally caught and passed Andersson on the penultimate lap to snatch third and earn a podium place, the Swede finishing ahead of Dawid Michalak and Ugo Guidi.
Pija Sumer bounced back after failing to post points yesterday to take the heat honours as first woman across the line after finishing in ninth, with Jennifer Menard finishing 11th – but the Grand Prix title went to heat 1 winner Menard, with Marta Sorrentino taking second overall ahead of Sumer.
Slovenia’s Rok Florjancic rounded off an almost trick-perfect weekend by signing off with a remarkable show of skill and strength, completing 10 consecutive backflips to secure the win, maximum points and the Grand Prix title.
Second overall went to Nac Florjancic who was equally impressive, completing a Slovenian one-two with Italy’s Valerio Calderoni taking third in today’s heat and third overall.
Today’s result and a maximum 100 points from two events moves Rok Flojancic 27 points clear of his brother Nac and 32 clear of Calderoni in third.
The UIM-ABP Aquabike Class Pro World Championship now heads to Liuzhou for the Grand Prix of China, 3-4 October. Aquabike website