Ismail regains top spot in Masters
Gianluca Elmosi nabbed his first Senior Cup trophy with a stunning win at the Sodi World Series (SWS) race night on Monday (21 August) at the Dubai Kartdrome while Mohammed Ismail reasserted his dominance in the Masters category with a flawless class performance.
The short Speedway Circuit was implemented for the evening, along with an enhanced race format which included two points scoring heats followed by a winner-takes-all final race.
SWS Senior Cup
Last year, Gianluca Elmosi was a regular winner of Masters Silverware but after making the jump to Senior Cup, the podium had eluded him. With a gutsy drive and a bit of luck, the Italian racer finally prevailed on Monday night.
At first it appeared the veteran elites would dominate the night as Rami Azzam clocked the best qualifying lap out of thirty drivers with a top time of 49.271, one of only four drivers to dip below the 50 second mark.
Azzam went on to win heat one, after a feisty battle with Ahmed Al Hammadi and Anjum Shaikh. Azzam crossed the finish line 0.110 seconds ahead of Al Hammadi and Shaikh was another 1.708 seconds back to claim third.
The same three drivers controlled heat two, but it was Shaikh who took victory by 0.551 seconds over Azzam, with Al Hammadi settling for third place.
Elmosi managed to finish seventh and fifth in the first two heats, which earned him fifth on the grid for the final race. Azzam started on pole position with Shaikh and Al Hammadi slotting in right behind.
With everything to gain in the conclusive race, a brawl developed at the front with Al Hammadi, Azzam and Shaikh in contention for the lead, and Elmosi steadily reeled them in. From the scuffle Al Hammadi took control of the contest while Azzam fell behind and Shaikh dropped out altogether and into the pits. Elmosi moved up into second place.
At the chequered flag Ahmed Al Hammadi appeared to have scored his second SWS Senior Cup victory in a row, but a subsequent penalty dropped him down two grid places, promoting Gianluca Elmosi into first place and Rami Azzam into second.
On the podium Elmosi remarked, “I was lucky enough. It’s amazing. It’s like living the dream.”
In the Masters category of the Senior Cup, for drivers 35 years or older, Mohammed Ismail was relentless on the night, topping qualifying and then cruising for three class wins.
With a best lap time of 49.836, Ismail was stormed the qualifying round, taking fourth place overall and an incredible 21 grid places ahead of his nearest Masters competitor.
Ismail went on to take both heats and the final race, wrapping up a convincing class domination and a first place trophy. Best-of-the-rest was awarded to Pierre Olivier Chevalier in second place and Floris Du Bois claimed third.
Ismail was pleased to challenge the sharp end of the grid. He said, “It was nice as I was able to compete with the Seniors. My lap times were close, maybe only a few tenths (of a second) off.”
The next SWS Sprint Series round will take place on Monday night, 11 September at Dubai Kartdrome.