Friday, 9 June, VIESTE (Italy): Defending world champion Yousef Al Abdulrazzaq grabbed his first pole position of the year, posting a fastest 1:32.12s lap and will start the UIM-ABP Aquabike Grand Prix of the Mediterranean in P1 ahead of arch-rival James Bushell, with UIM-ABP tour newcomer Carl Lampe getting his best qualifying result with third quickest.
Abdulrazzaq looked comfortable in both sessions and in each posted his best and the fastest times on his first flying lap to turn the tables on Bushell who took the pole last time out. “I made sure that I was first to go in Q2 when the water was a little smoother so I could pick out any waves,” he said. “It worked out really well. I didn’t have to work too hard but tomorrow is another day.”
After a frustrating morning with technical issues that limited his time on the water in practice, New Zealander Carle Lampe turned things around with second and third quickest times in both sessions. “I’m stoked with that. First would have been better but my goal was top five,” he said. “We sorted out our issues, but that is what practice is for, and the boat was awesome. I actually got stuck in high boost but it worked out well for me.
“Tomorrow will be about being consistent and it will be a lot easier starting in the first group of five. I am still getting used to the 25-minute races, but I will ride as hard as I can.”
Despite taking a big tumble and hurting his neck Lars Akerblom was able to recover to secure fourth spot. “I think maybe the crash knocked the wind out of me a bit but also I realised that my Ski is not set up for these conditions so we will work on that tonight.” said Akerblom.
Christophe Agostinho posted the fifth best time, with Jeremy Perez sixth quickest.
[For further information and to watch all the action from Motos 1&2 on Saturday and Sunday streamed live; visit aquabike.net]