«

Content:

Skydive Dubai Falcons look to soar to new heights as Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East races into Dubai

Championship debutants Skydive Dubai Falcons have set their sights on soaring to second place in the team title when Round 5 of the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East returns to their home track this weekend at the Dubai Autodrome.

Currently in third place in the team category, the talented Emirati racers of Sheikh Hasher Al Maktoum and Saeed Al Mehairi will look to claw back second place from rivals the Saudi Falcons, represented by former champion Abdulaziz AlFaisal and the experienced Faisal Binladen.

Sitting only 29 points behind their namesakes from Saudi Arabia and with just four races of the champions left, both Al Maktoum and Al Mehairi are relishing the challenge of overtaking the Saudi Falcons at a crucial time in the season in front of their passionate home fans.

A consistent performer and currently placed an impressive fourth in the overall driver standings, Skydive Dubai Falcons Sheikh Hasher Al Maktoum said: “As a team we’re really looking forward to this week. With each round I’m definitely feeling more comfortable in the car and the hard work is paying off. Plus it’s great to be racing at home in Dubai to try to narrow the gap. 

“When it’s your first season everything feels so new, the car, the set-up, the tracks and the Porsche GT3 championship is so tough, so competitive. There is nothing like it in the region and there is very little between the top drivers. We’ve performed consistently to be third overall but we’ll push hard to get into second.”

It has been a hugely impressive debut series for both Al Maktoum and Al Mehairi with both drivers regularly finishing in the top six positions and outperforming expectations for drivers new to the championship and new to a Porsche GT3 Cup Car. 

Al Maktoum has been admirably supported by team-mate and wingman Al Mehairi who currently stands in sixth overall following strong finishes under the lights at Losail International Circuit, Qatar in Round 4.

Speaking ahead of Round 5 in Dubai, Saeed Al Mehairi said: “We know getting into second won’t be easy. Abdulaziz and Faisal are quality drivers and we’ve a lot of respect for them. We might have some home advantage they have the advantage of experience on their side which probably counts for more. Whatever the result is it’s going to be exciting and that’s why we race.”

“Personally I feel a lot more confident and the chance to race again in Dubai couldn’t come at a better time. I’ve put the effort in alongside my team to try to improve, as even a tiny fraction quicker here or there makes a huge difference.”

Commenting on the fight for second in the team title, Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East manager Walter Lechner said: “Shifting the Saudi Falcons from second spot will be no easy feat with AlFaisal and Binladen seasoned campaigners and regulars to the podium.

“But this is the type of sporting rivalry that motorsport needs in this region and it’s a competitive rivalry that could be forged for years to come. All four drivers are talented, passionate and ready to push themselves to the limits. You couldn’t ask for anything more.” 

In the overall drivers stands and the race for the title Round 5 of the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge could be the most defining of the season with Al Nabooda’s Clemens Schmid 39 points ahead of his nearest rival, Zaid Ashkanani of Kuwait. Schmid has won 6 of the season’s 8 races with Ashkanani getting the better of him in Race 2 of the previous Dubai round. With drivers and team titles potentially up for grabs this weekend the racing is set to be the tightest and most tense yet.

Showing the way in the team title Dubai based Al Nabooda (314) are well in control leading rivals the Saudi Falcons (263) and Skydive Dubai Falcons (234).

The Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge returns on 14th and 15th February for Round 5 at the Dubai Autodrome.

Overall championship standings after Race 2 Round 4 – Top 6 

 

Name

Country

Team

Points

1st

Clemens Schmid

UAE

Al Nabooda Racing

196

2nd

Zaid Ashkanani

Kuwait

BuzaidGT

157

3rd

Abdulaziz AlFaisal

KSA

Saudi Falcons

152

4th

Hasher Al Maktoum

UAE

Skydive Dubai Falcons

130

5th

Karim Al-Azhari

UAE

Al Nabooda Racing

122

6th

Saeed Al Mehairi

UAE

Skydive Dubai Falcons

107

Overall Team Title standings after Race 2 Round 4 – Top 6 

 

Name

Country

Points

1st

Al Nabooda Racing

UAE

314

2nd

Saudi Falcons

KSA

263

3rd

Skydive Dubai Falcons

UAE

234

4th

Team Bahrain

BAH

167

5th

BuzaidGT

KUW

121

6th

Milon Racing

GER

93

 

Next Race

17Nov

Round 1

Bahrain International Circuit

All Racetracks

Latest Results

16Apr

Bahrain International Circuit

Winner: Ryan Cullen

View Results