Yas Marina Circuit gears up for Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East
A competitive line-up will race into action at the iconic Yas Marina Circuit for Rounds 3 and 4 of the 2012/13 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East on the 7th December.
A world-class grid featuring 16 cars and drivers spanning eleven nations, including the UAE, Bahrain, Kuwait, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Qatar will seek to narrow the gap on Al Nabooda Racing's Clemens Schmid, who won the opening rounds of the fourth season last month at the Bahrain International Circuit (BIC).
A chasing pack led by reigning champion Abdulaziz AlFaisal of the Saudi Falcons, former champion Salman bin Rashid Al Khalifa, Al Nabooda team-mate Karim Al-Azhari of the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait's teenage prodigy Zaid Ashkanani and Faisal Binladen of Saudi Arabia are expected to challenge for podium places on the world-famous Abu Dhabi circuit.
Walter Lechner, Manager of the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East, said: "Everyone is excited to return to the Yas Marina Circuit with the prospect of two more incredible rounds of racing. The series is the purest form of racing and this season the competition is intense throughout the entire field. In Bahrain, Clemens was at his best and produced two stunning performances back to back in both qualifying and the races. But there is little between the leading drivers and I expect more close battles in Rounds 3 and 4."
Schmid who will be looking for a hat-trick of wins in Abu Dhabi said: "It's been a strong start to the season and that's what I wanted. I just want to keep going. With a good strategy, I am confident myself and Karim can reproduce our good performance from Bahrain and continue our fine form."
Saudi Falcons Abdulaziz AlFaisal will look to collect his first victory of the season. The Saudi, who finished second and third respectively in Bahrain is determined to build on his performances and keep Schmid in his sights.
AlFaisal said: "I'm looking forward to racing in Abu Dhabi and hope to pick up a win over the weekend. It's a circuit that can really inspire you and all the drivers will want to prove themselves. I'm only six points behind and with solid drives in both rounds I believe I can put some pressure on Clemens before we head to Dubai".
Judging from events at the BIC, it could develop into the most competitive GT3 Cup series yet in the Middle East.
Salman bin Rashid Al Khalifa, said in Bahrain that he felt good about his chances of challenging for the title. He followed up his fourth place finish in Round 1, by securing second position only 24 hours later.
Also hoping to pile on the points are two revelations from the season opening weekend, Ashkanani and the first female driver ever to race in the championship, Denmark's Christina Nielsen.