After a year of waiting and waiting on Yas Marina to clear up some space on their 'Busy Calendar', the 2018 UAE Time Attack Season got off to a slow but fiery start. A perfect brew of some finely tuned machines, flaming exhausts and a field of great drivers got together and kicked things off under the bright lights. The series is the only FIA approved time attack event in the UAE. Based at the Yas Marina Circuit. The Series sees the drivers attempt to put in their fastest lap time over a number of sessions, allowing the CarCulture cameras (and not Speeding Cameras) to get some 'Fine' pictures of these spectacular road going, come track cars!
Round 1 saw the drivers attack the more technical South Circuit. Twelve turns and over 2.4 km that took the cars across the Yas Marina and right under the Yas Viceroy Hotel. With the only 'straight' being the section of the track right in front of the Support Pits, drivers went at it with little to spare. Some last minute rescheduling by Yas meant that only 18 cars were able to make it to the event. A fairly good number considering the event that would finish up late on a Saturday night.
With only 18 Cars present, it meant that drivers were able to get some practice time to get the cars fine-tuned for the circuit. The participants were split into four groups based on vehicle class and in turn by the drive train. Each group would get three 15 minute sessions of track-time. So would Fadi finally get past that feisty green Mclaren?.... Was a certain 'Gandalf' white Evo making it hard for others...Would Michael Haywood finally get that Black Beast of an Evo past the Practice session n show us what it can do on track? Well......Yeaah, they all most certainly did!!! Let’s move on to the results of the evening.
In the Super Street RWD Category the S2000 Honda of Jobert Garcia took top honors with the fastest lap of the evening.
Marawan in the team +971 Track GT86 finished just half a second behind in second place.
Saad Alomaira took the final step of the podium in the other GT86.
In the Super Street FWD Category Rawi Tayah was fastest in his Clio RS.
Shoaib of Team Late Ricer spent the same amount of time off track as he did on track. But managed to put his Honda Civic on to the final step of the podium in FWD Super Street.
In Modified RWD it was a battle of the Beamers. Fouad Wagdi Seffain in his BMW 135 came out on top after a tough battle.
Ibrahim Abouelgheit came in second in his BMW M3 E93.
Abdel Ghafour Alsaid pushed all the way in his BMW e46 330CI but had to settle for third.
In Modified AWD, the classic battle of Evo Vs STI had Ramy in his familiar Mitsubishi 'Gandalf' Evo (#whitenoise) take the victory. Yes, no one has Passed him... yet. Can anyone bring the challenge to him this season?
Mahmoud Sharaf had to settle for second place in his Subaru STI. Mahmoud, have a word with SAM performance about squeezing more power out of the STi to get past Rami. I will be looking for that flaming Exhaust next round.
In the newly created Super Car category, Abdulaziz Alyaeesh steered his green McLaren to victory in Super Car RWD.
Maher Elroz followed the Mclaren home in second place. The Corvette had a trouble-some evening as it spun out towards the final turn of the lap.
In the Super Cars AWD Category a pair of Tensai tuned Nissan GTRs battled it out with a good looking GETECH Porsche 911 turbo. Continuing his streak from last season Saif Hamdan was able to put his GTR onto the top of the podium.
Hesham AlKhateeb followed pursuit in second and kept the GTRs together with a 1-2 finish.
Mario Sciacco guided his 911 onto the final step of the podium.
And finally.....the battle of the evening....the unlimited Category. Some much need track time for the Sam performance built Black Evo, something that we missed last season. The Black beast put in some good lap times, but the night belonged to the Flying Flaming Fadi Bikawi. He guided his Tensai built Mitsubishi Evo to the top step of the podium in his class taking fastest lap of the evening along the way.
Michael Heywood will be back for the next round, finishing narrowly behind Fadi in second.
Ahmad Almoosa finished third in his LS powered colorful Mazda Miata.
If this was a sneak peek of whats in store, then we will be looking forward to round two in February. Congratulations to all the winners, participants and petrol heads for making time at the end of a weekend and running some hot laps on a circuit. And also we shouldn't forget the organizers. Everything will be on the line again for round two, see you in February!