(MENAFN Press) It's all to play for at the grand finale of the 2013 Kartdrome Endurance Championship driven by MINI this weekend (Friday and Saturday, 6-7 December) where three titles will be decided - namely the Pro category, the Corporate category and the Nations Cup.
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This weekend's Kartdrome 24 Hours, Round 4 of the series carries additional points with 60 up for grabs to the winning team, 53 points for second place and 48 for third place.
Going into the final round, the Dubai Falcons Racing Team have 115 points, a slender five points' lead over CG Pro in second and 19 points on third placed Timeless Events Racing. Any of the leading trio can take top honours at the end of what is likely to be a grueling contest for the title. As it stands, the championship will be decided by whoever of the top two wins the final round, or alternatively if the Falcons and CG Pro strike problems then Timeless could shock the favourites and snatch the title.
The Corporate category is even closer at the top with four teams capable of taking home the big prize. Top of the points table is CG Racing 2 with 107 points, followed by sister team CG Racing 1 in second with 105 points, Action Racing third with 99 points and Team Emirates, who won last time out for the first time, fourth with 98 points. The team who wins on the day will take home the coveted title.
CG Racing 1 with an all-Lebanese driver line-up head the prestigious Nations Cup championship with 110 points to their credit. Trailing them by 13 points are Dubai 5, an all-Emirati squad who will be looking to triumph in the wake of UAE National day.
The MINI-backed series traditionally attracts some of the best drivers in the UAE and some top competitors from abroad; this final round is no exception with the likes of Sheikh Hasher Al Maktoum, Saeed Al Mehairi and Mohammed Al Mutawaa in action for the Sky Dive Dubai backed Falcons; David terrien, Alban Varutti, Piers Pakenham Walsh and the Azzam brothers, Rami and Ramez, in action for the CG Pro outfit.
The unknown factors, particularly in the 24 hours edition of the race, are always the international teams. This year a strong contingent from Russia will be on the grid, including: Lukoil Racing Team, Mazda Karting Academy, Mazda Sport Academy, Kozaks, Squadra, Formula Kart Krasnodar and BFA Bank Attack Team.
Europe is well represented with Pluscity Team from Austria, Kart Excellence made up of mainly Swiss drivers, Sensory Minds GP from Germany, strong French outfit CER Karting and the predominantly French team GP Racing.
One of the key factors during the course of the 24 hours, held in December, will be the weather conditions which will vary dramatically. Teams and drivers will have to contend with temperatures ranging from around 30 degrees in the day to below 10 degrees in the night, with rain, strong winds and fog possible - all adding to the challenges.
Stakes are high as the championship-winning Pro team gets free entry to the 24 Hours RKC event in Paris, France, while the Corporate champions will qualify for free entry to the 24 Hours Eupener Karting event in Belgium. The prize also includes 50% cover of the air tickets costs by the organisers.
Kartdrome manager Ryan Trutch said ahead of the weekend, "The title battles are too close to call and will probably only be decided in the final hours, and perhaps even final minutes, of the event. With a top quality field, great drivers and challenging conditions, anything can happen."
"On the occasion of the final round of the championship I would like to thank my team for providing a pristine venue for this race, and of course a big thank you to MINI who have backed this event with enthusiasm," added Trutch.
On Friday (6 December) the field of 32 karts will be flagged off at 12:00 noon - in traditional Le Mans style running start - and will run for 24 hours until 12:00 noon the following day, Saturday. Entry to the Kartdrome is free for spectators throughout the two days.
Captions for and links to high resolution images:
CG Racing have three titles they are targeting with their three teams
Dubai Falcons Racing Team lead the championship going into the final round
Le Mans style start always adds drama to proceedings
Night racing is a vital element of 24 hours of racing
Fly Emirates won the Corporate category last time out
Tough cnditions expected during the Kartdrome 24 Hours driven by MINI