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Nov 05, 2012 - 06:42 PM
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Al Nabooda Racing Geared Up For Bahrain Season Opener
Posted by: newsla on Nov 05, 2012 - 06:29 PM
Sports Cars
Al Nabooda Racing Geared Up For Bahrain Season Opener


Karim Al Azhari hopes a busy and successful race programme just completed on Europe’s top circuits can help him guide Al Nabooda Racing to team glory in the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East.

 

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Al Azhari scored podium finishes at Germany’s famous Nurburgring, as well as at Spa and Zolder in Belgium, during an eventful campaign which saw him competing against many of the world’s top GT drivers over the last few months.

He now looks forward to teaming up with young Austrian star Clemens Schmid as Dubai-based Al Nabooda Racing bid to secure the team title in the Porsche GT3 Cup series, which enters its fourth season at Bahrain International Circuit on 16-17 November.

"I raced on nine of the top European circuits through the summer, the most ever, and I definitely feel sharp," said multiple UAE GT champion Al Azhari.

"You cannot beat physical race time. Testing is one thing, but race time is much more valuable. With so much of that behind me over the last few months, I’m looking to put in a strong performance for Al Nabooda Racing and, hopefully, help us land the Porsche GT3 Cup team title."

The highlight of Karim’s European race programme came at the wheel of a Porsche GT3R in the recent City Challenge run on a street circuit in Baku, Azerbaijan - part of the City Challenge series looking to fill a gap left by the recent demise of the GT1 World championship.

Starting the main race in seventh position following the qualifying sprints, Al Azhari climbed to fifth and held off a succession of experienced drivers, including former F1 world champion, Jacques Villeneuve.

"Unfortunately, I picked up a penalty in the pits at the half way point, and finished fifth," he said. "Without that I’d have been on the podium, so that was a bit disappointing. But for me it was a fascinating race. I was in the zone and feeling good, especially as I was able to keep in front of a former F1 champion."

Al Azhari and Schmid now look forward to two full days of testing in their Al Nabooda Racing Porsche GT3 Cup cars at Bahrain International Circuit on 14-15 November prior to the start of the 2012-13 GT3 Cup season.

After this month’s season opener, the Porsche GT3 Cup series then heads for Rounds 3 and 4 at Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi on 6-7 December before reaching the half way point at Dubai Autodrome the following weekend on 13-14 December.


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