Formula 1 Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix 2024

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Shaikh Salman and Almuyini claim double victories in national races at BIC

Shaikh Salman bin Isa bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa and Ahmed Almuyini had dream starts to their respective seasons after posting back-to-back victories in Round One of National Race Day, held Friday at a brilliantly floodlit Bahrain International Circuit (BIC) in Sakhir. 

Shaikh Salman was triumphant in both the evening’s races in the BIC 2,000cc Challenge, while Almuyini dominated both sprints in the Bahrain Motorcycle Racing (BMR) 600.

National Race Day was organised by BIC in cooperation with Circuit Racing Club (CRC), the Bahrain Motorcycle Club (BMC) and the Bahrain Motor Federation. Racing took place along BIC’s 2.55-kilometre Inner Track.



In the 2,000cc Challenge, Shaikh Salman put himself in prime position to take the Race One win after securing pole with a best lap of 1min 16.477secs during Qualifying.

The veteran talent did well to hold on to the leading position throughout the opening 12-lap battle, taking the chequered flag in his white Honda Civic in a total time of 15mins 47.409secs.

Ahmed Bin Khanen was the runner-up in his white Civic EG4. He started the race in second but lost his position to Raed Himmo (black Civic) on the opening lap. He regained his spot on lap five following Himmo’s unfortunate retirement, and finished 2.551secs behind Shaikh Salman.



Taking the final podium place was Shaikh Hamad bin Isa bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa, behind the wheel of his own white Civic. He started from sixth but quickly gained two places in the first lap before settling into third, also on lap five. Shaikh Hamad was classified 3.466secs from first.

Each of the top three were competing in the Pro class. Finishing in the top positions of the Novice category were Andreas Buelow (white Civic) and Husain Al Ghanem (yellow Civic).

The 2,000cc Challenge has two women running in both categories, setting Bahrain as a pioneer in national races and in supporting women racers in the region. Martyna Al Qassab in a blue Acura DC5 was seventh in the Race One Pro classification while Wiebke Buelow in a white Civic dropped out of contention in the Novice category after four laps.



Himmo registered the race’s fastest lap of 1min 17.032secs before heading back into the pits.

In Race Two, Shaikh Salman started from sixth position but was able to power to the front by the sixth lap after an early battle with Bin Khanen, Mohammed Faqihi (white Civic) and initial leader Shaikh Hamad, who retired in the third lap with car trouble. Shaikh Salman never looked back from there and completed the sprint in 15mins 54.811secs.

Bin Khanen (+1.571secs) and Faqihi (+23.209secs) remained in second and third until the end, while Al Qassab had a fine showing to be classified in fourth overall as well as in the Pro category.



In the Novice class, Wiebke Buelow claimed an impressive victory ahead of Andreas Buelow and Al Ghanem.

Shaikh Salman added to his Race Two win by clocking the fastest lap of 1min 18.246secs.

Meanwhile, in the BMR 600, Almuyini grabbed pole for the first sprint after topping the Qualifying timesheet with a lap of 1min 10.206secs.

He then enjoyed well-deserved victories in both races, where he was joined by Ali Ahmed Adiby and Hasan Al Awadhi on the podium both times.



All three started and finished in the same positions in Race One, with Almuyini winning in 13mins 12.514secs. Adiby followed 8.717secs behind while Al Awadhi was 17.978secs back. In Race Two, Almuyini won in 13mins 36.323secs, 3.502secs ahead of Adiby and 6.954secs in front of Al Awadhi.

Almuyini had the fastest lap of both races, posting a time of 1min 10.692secs in Race One and 1min 12.056secs in Race Two.

Following the evening’s action, the winners in both championships were presented their respective trophies by officials from BIC, CRC and BMC.