Dubai, UAE, 27 November 2018: Anjum Shaikh claimed his sixth Sodi World Series (SWS) Senior Cup win of the year at Dubai Kartdrome on Monday night (26 November), his second victory in a row. Federico Al Rifai also doubled up with another SWS Junior Cup win and Atef Al Barwani returned to the Masters grid to regain control of the category.
SWS Senior Cup & Masters
Karim Al Azhari had the edge early on, topping the qualifying session by over two tenths of a second over Anjum Shaikh, and then going from pole to victory in heat one.
A seventh-place finish in heat two ruined Al Azhari’s chances of picking up his first SWS Senior Cup win. Instead it was Anjum Shaikh who finished the night strong, winning heat two by 0.924 seconds ahead of Romaldo Labrooy.
After points of the two heats were calculated, Shaikh racked up 73 points and took home the winner’s trophy. His Dojomoto teammate, Maz Nawaz, took the next step on the podium with 69 points. Karim Al Azhari was agonizingly close to victory in the first half of the evening, but by the end of the contest had to settle for 68 points and third-place.
Dubai Kartdrome Manager David Bright said, “Well done to Anjum for two wins in a row and also well done to Karim who, at 45, was the oldest driver to claim pole position at one of our SWS races at Dubai Kartdrome. He did a great job to win race one and, if not for a little nap at the start of race two, he might have won it all tonight.”
After being away for the last two rounds Atef Al Barwani returned to the Masters line-up and promptly resumed control the category that he has owned all season. Daniel Becker managed to get the better of Al Barwani in heat one, but the Emirati ace stuck back to take heat two.
Al Barwani ended the night on 50 points and his thirteenth class win of the year. Becker put in a great fight, earned 44 points and took home second-place silverware for his efforts. Andrew Vieira claimed third-place with 35 points.
SWS Junior Cup
Federico Al Rifai managed to squeak by his rival Patrick Debattista to seize his second Junior Cup victory in a row.
Both racers have had incredible drives in what has developed into a great rivalry this season, but on Monday night neither Al Rifai nor Debattista could get it going early on.
Yashish Manohar was quickest in qualifying, putting in a best lap time of 57.121 on the Speedway Circuit. Debattista was almost half a second off the pace to line up on P4 and Al Rifai started well down the grid in seventh.
Federico Al Rifai managed to find some race pace and he had the most consistent driving of the night, nabbing second-place in both heats. He lost to Nathan Pope in heat one and Debattista in heat two, but his steady and dependable finishing would pay dividends at the end of the contest.
After the points of the two heats were tallied, Al Rifai had earned 72, just one point ahead of Debattista with 71, who was just one point in front of Nathan Pope on 70, making it the closest Junior Cup podium of the year.
The final SWS Sprint Series round of the year will take place on Monday night, 17 December 2018 at Dubai Kartdrome.
Report: Aaron Meriwether
Photos: CK Designs