Batelco Drag 965 Racing tandem Mohammed Mattar and Khalid Alsaie eked out a narrow victory Saturday night in the first round of the 2016/2017 Bahrain Endurance SWS Championship at Bahrain International Karting Circuit (BIKC) in Sakhir.
The star pairing teamed up to win the opening three-hour challenge of the series, which featured a packed grid of 31 teams.
Mattar and Alsaie captured the chequered flag just 0.153 seconds ahead of sister squad Batelco Drag 965 Mechanics, who were made up of Ali Baslar and Abdulla Buhindi.
Zain Dangerous clinched the final spot on the overall podium. Their duo of Khalid Abdulla and Essa Al Kooheji finished 4.511s off the winners’ pace.
An elated Mattar commented after the race:
“Khalid and I are very happy to have won. There was plenty of good competition and it was very tough.
“It was the first time we had such a big field and the first time we raced with the new rules of kart rotation. In the end, my teammate and I had a good strategy and we managed to get the win.”
All three leading teams completed 127 laps on the night but Batelco Racing were the quickest of the field. They had also started from pole position, after registering a best lap in qualifying of one minute 12.279 seconds, just 0.102s quicker than the Mechanics.
Aside from taking the overall victory, Mattar and Alsaie were also triumphant in the race’s Pro class. Baslar and Buhindi were then also winners in the Nations class, while BBK Racing’s Faisal Al Shafei and Osama Albuflasa were the winners in the Corporate category.
Completing the Pro class podium were Zain Racing’s Raed Raffii and Khalifa Al Yaqoobi in second, and Al Najma Karting Team’s Ahmed Ebrahim and Mohammed Ameen in third.
Meanwhile, Zain Dangerous’ Abdulla and Al Kooheji added to their overall podium accomplishment with second place in the Nations’ category. Behind them were Batelco Drag 965 Juniors drivers Rashid Al Muammari and Hussain Hasan.
In the Corporate class, winners BBK were followed by Omantel Ozone’s Mohammed Al Kabani and Mazin Al Salmi. Third place went to BBK’s sister team BBK Online, who were composed of Nasser Al Alawi, Hamad Mattar and Ahmed Naqi.
The second round of the BESWS will be another three-hour race on December 3, while the championship finale will be a 24-hour event taking place January 27 and 28 next year.
31 teams were at the start of the opening round of the 2016-17 SWS Endurance Championship and after three hours of intense #racing, Batelco Drag 965 Racing claimed overall victory. Batelco Drag 965 Mechanics & Zain Dangerous complete the top three. #Karting #BahrainKarting #GoKarts #Sports #BahrainInternationalCircuit #BIKC #KSA #BMF #BICMC #IGDaily #UAE #GCC #Endurance