|Qmsf Makes Final Preparations To Host 2011 Oryx Cup World Championship In Doha Bay|
|Wednesday, 16 November 2011 02:45|
DOHA (Qatar): The Qatar Marine Sports Federation (QMSF) is putting together the final preparations on the Doha Corniche for this weekend’s Oryx Cup World Championship, the final round of the 2011 Air National Guard Hydroplane Championship - the most spectacular power boat racing series on the planet.
Twelve of the world’s fastest hydroplane racers have arrived in Qatar for the weekend’s event, which forms the final round of the series for the third consecutive year thanks to the vision and foresight of His Excellency Sheikh Hassan bin Jabor Al-Thani, the president of the Qatar Marine Sports Federation (QMSF), who worked tirelessly with Air National Guard Hydroplane series chairman Sam Cole and his team to bring this form of marine sport to a global audience and to the Middle East for the first time in 2009.
“Once again we are delighted to welcome our international visitors and friends to Doha for the third Oryx Cup,” said Sheikh Hassan. “This event has now taken its place as the final round of the World Championship and we continue to make improvements where necessary to ensure that the race in Qatar is well received by everyone. Everyone at the QMSF wishes our visiting guests and teams a safe and successful weekend’s racing on Doha Bay.”
On-water action starts on Thursday morning with three hours of testing, where spectators will be able to witness Dave Villwock starting his three-day campaign to seal a triumphant season for the U-96 Spirit of Qatar Team. The 3,000hp Air Guard series boats are capable of reaching top speeds of 200mph-plus (321.87km/h) on the water and have a lap speed record of 173mph (278.42km/h) on a 2.5-mile course, with a world record speed of 354.868km/h set on a kilometre course in Seattle.
The QMSF has made the format of this year’s Oryx Cup as spectator-friendly as possible. Entry to the facility will be free of charge during the three-day running of the event and Mona Nasser, the QMSF’s race and event co-ordinator, has outlined an exciting line-up of entertainment.
“We have moved the catering area to be more user-friendly for the visitor and we will have a gym area on site, courtesy of MTM. There will be a children’s play area with entertainment such as magic shows and these will be staged during the down time between race heats. In collaboration with the Qatar Swimming Federation, we have also arranged a water polo tournament to take place in front of the grandstand over the three days.”
Mona Nasser also confirmed that the larger public grandstand now caters for up to 500 people and the pit area will be open to the general public each evening after the race heats have taken place. “This will give spectators the chance to meet the teams and see the boats up close and personal,” added Nasser.
The QMSF has worked in close association with the Marriott Hotel – the official hotel for the Oryx Cup, IFS (the QMSF’s official clearance company), Byrne Equipment, shipping company Peters & May and MTM to make the weekend’s events happen.
Testing and qualifying will take place on Thursday, with the first two pairs of the four sets of heats taking place on Friday on the Doha Bay course. The third and fourth sets of heats will be staged on Saturday morning and lunchtime in preparation for the Oryx Cup World Championship final at 3pm on Saturday afternoon.
Oryx Cup World Championship – timetable of events
Thursday, November 17
09.00-12.00hrs Unlimited testing
13.00–16.00hrs Unlimited qualifying
16.15hrs Podium for top three qualifiers and pairings’ draw for Friday’s first heats
16.30-18.00hrs Pit area open to public
Friday, November 18
09.00-10.30hrs Unlimited testing
13.00hrs Unlimited Heat 1A
13.30hrs Unlimited Heat 1B
13.50hrs Podium for Heat 1 winners and draw for second heats
14.45hrs Unlimited Heat 2A
15.15hrs Unlimited Heat 2B
15.35hrs Podium for Heat 2 winners and draw for third heats
15.40-17.00hrs Pit area open to public
Saturday, November 19
08.00-09.00hrs Unlimited testing
11.00hrs Unlimited Heat 3A
11.20hrs Unlimited Heat 3B
11.35hrs Podium for Heat 3 winners and draw for fourth heats
12.45hrs Unlimited Heat 4A
13.05hrs Unlimited Heat 4B
15.00hrs Oryx Cup World Championship
15.30hrs Podium awards presentation
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