The UIM (Union Internationale Motonautique) and the WPPA (World Professional Powerboating Association) have signed an agreement of cooperation that ends the rift between the sport’s two organisations and clears the way for the World’s leading powerboat series, the Class 1 World Powerboat Championship, to return to racing under the umbrella of the sport’s World Governing Body – the UIM.
WPPA Class 1 World Powerboats (Raffaello Bastiani ©)
The agreement reached in Dubai between the recently elected UIM President, Raffaele Chiulli and WPPA President, Saeed Hareb ends months of speculation and negotiation between the two organisations. The key criteria for reconciliation give the WPPA the exclusivity to continue to manage Class 1 under the aegis of the UIM, with the WPPA recognising the UIM as the sole International Governing Body for World Powerboat Racing. “I can assure Saeed that all the conflicting situations and mistakes which determined the choice of the WPPA to independently organise Class 1 racing for one year have been now overcome by this agreement,” said UIM President, Raffaele Chiulli. “We are now jointly protected for future challenges and the great opportunities that lie ahead and I am happy to say that this cooperation will start with the first race of the 2008 season in Doha – Qatar, next week.”
Raffaello Bastiani © Dubai Grand Prix 2007 - WPPA Class 1 World Powerboat Championship Round)
After signing the agreement, WPPA President, Saeed Hareb said. “I am delighted that we have reached this amicable agreement for the future of our sport. I believe that with a new strategy and the clear approach of Raffaele we can achieve professional and ambitious objectives together. Both of us are convinced that what has been achieved today will take us in the right direction and will block any attempt to damage our solid and long lasting cooperation.”
The International Offshore Team Association’s General Secretary, Marco Sala, who played a key role in bringing the two parties together, also welcomed the agreement, with IOTA, as organisers of the Class 1 Championship retaining the worldwide television and commercial rights to the Championship. “All parties, institutions, teams and competitors can now look forward to a sustained period of growth and stability.”