UIM Skydive Dubai XCAT World Series 2013 is currently underway. The seventh and final round takes place from December 12-14. American powerboating legend Jay Price could not have imagined a better introduction into the Series.
Skydive Dubai - Italian GP2 - UIM Skydive Dubai XCAT World Series 2013
Not only has he won two races of the Series (in Italy and China) but together with teammate Sultan Al Dhaheri, the Skydive Dubai team is also on the verge of an overall Series podium place, with one race to go.
XCAT action resumes in two week’s time with the final race of the season taking place at DIMC in Dubai from December 12-14. Current leaders, Fazza, are taking nothing for granted as there are two boats within striking distance for the top of the Series podium – Mouawad and Skydive Dubai.
'To get an XCAT Series podium finish against the best drivers in the world in only my first season would be one of my greatest achievements in my career,' said Price. That’s a massive claim, considering the American has won four World Championships, one European Championship, two North American Championships and 10 National Championships in a various classes.
Speaking about the upcoming race, Price added: 'I feel really good about my chances of a podium in Dubai. To win again will be difficult , but we will give it our all.
'Sultan is a good driver because he has confidence, he is fearless, he has experience from Formula racing and he can adapt to the changing water conditions,' added Price, pointing out the vital importance of a strong relationship between driver and throttleman in the boat.
'It is very difficult. It takes time to develop trust between driver and throttleman, but I have been very lucky both times [with teammates Al Dhaheri and Rashid Al Tayer]. I have had very experienced pilots to work with. Communication is very important but relationship is the key to success, because the driver and throttleman need to have confidence in each other to win.'
Al Dhaheri & Price - Chinese GP - UIM Skydive Dubai XCAT World Series 2013
Although coming off a great victory in the last race of the Series – the Chinese Grand Prix in Ningbo last month, Price knows competition will be fierce in Dubai.
'In Dubai I expect all the teams to be at the top of their game. I expect that Fazza, Victory Team, Mouawad and Six will have been testing and well prepared to fight to win the number one position in qualifying. I will have to fight for this position as it will be very important because the top boats are very evenly matched.
'I am very excited to have the opportunity to drive for Skydive Dubai and am very happy with the team’s results,' he added.
And as for a possible second XCAT season next year: 'At the moment the only plan that I have is to do my best in the Dubai race. As for my future in XCAT, I can only hope that my results bring me the opportunity to race with such a great organisation in 2014.'
Meanwhile, President of the WPPA Dr Saif Al Ketbi yesterday expressed his excitement at Dubai’s winning the right to host Expo2020 – a decision that was made in Paris last night. 'The WPPA has supported the bid throughout with the Expo2020 logo proudly displayed on all the boats taking part in the UIM Skydive Dubai XCAT World Series as well as other branding and collateral,' he said. 'We are proud and deeply honoured to have played our small part in supporting the bid to bring this incredibly prestigious event to our wonderful city,' added Al Ketbi.
Skydive Dubai - Italian GP - UIM Skydive Dubai XCAT World Series 2013
Al Dhaheri & Price - Chinese GP2 - UIM Skydive Dubai XCAT World Series 2013