Rashid Al Dhaheri powered to a convincing victory in the IAME X30 Cadet Class at the prestigious Dubai O-Plate weekend at the Kartdrome on Saturday.
Al Dhaheri was part of a field of over 100 UAE based and international karters that descended on Dubai to take part in what has become one of the most prestigious karting events in the region.
The Abu Dhabi schoolboy signaled his intent early on by claiming pole position in qualifying on a slippery track and in challenging conditions.
On day one, in Heat 1 and Heat 2, eight year old Al Dhaheri was unstoppable as he claimed two comfortable victories, including the fastest lap in both races.
But Heat 3 proved trickier as his start was compromised and from then he was forced to fight back through the pack. However contact on the last lap, after regaining the lead, resulted in him dropping to third.
On day two Al Dhaheri started the day well by going fastest of all in the short warm-up session before the finals.
In the Pre-Final he started from pole position, but found himself in second place early on. He proceeded to work with the leader to build a gap over the chasing pack and with a couple of laps to go he attacked to take the lead. Thereafter he built a gap to win by four seconds.
Al Dhaheri kept his best to last as he dominated the Cadet Final in style. He took the lead from start, of the 12 laps race, and built a handy gap over his rivals, winning by 7.6 seconds and setting the fastest lap of the weekend in the Cadet class.
After the Final team manager Fausto Ippoliti commented: “Great racing from Rashid managing a good start and then escaping from the pack where the drivers keep fighting and loosing time. He made no mistakes and was in top form all weekend. Mission accomplished.”
Al Dhaheri said of his weekend at the O-Plate: “In the final the start was really important. So I focused to get a good start and then concentrated on creating a gap. I am really happy.”
He added: “This is my fourth participation in the Dubai O-Plate and also my fourth title in this event, three in the Bambino class and now one in Cadet class. It was a very good weekend, with many drivers from many countries. Well done to the Kartdrome for organising such a great event.”