Round 1 that took place on the 1 dec at yas marina circuit, coinciding with the UAE’s 41st National Day Celebrations, witness a strong participation from many teams and drivers across the UAE and the region, all coming to celebrate this beautiful occasion and entertaining atmosphere.
Drivers were separated in to 3 Categories, based on the preparation of their cars and variation of skill level. Street category is for street registered cars in their stock form or slight modifications, the second category is the Modified class, which includes highly modified cars and moderate level of drifting experience. While the third category is the PRO Class, which includes professionally built cars for drifting with full safety and mechanical enhancement to be able to compete in twin drifting style battle.
The Hightlight of the night was the introduction of twin drift style competition; this is the first competition in the Arab world and Middle East to introduce this form of drifting. With 13 professional participants in this class alone and very entertaining driving battles, the crowds and drivers loved the show with all its noise, the smoke and the high speed sideways action.
Coming from KSA with FORD ALJAZEERA Drifting Team, Muath ALEssa Clinched the 1st place position in his Ford Mustand RTR, after a fierce final battle against his team mate from Ford Aljazeera Drifting team AbdulHadi AlQahatani in his Ford Mustang RTR-D, who took 2nd Place.
While the 3rd place battle was between the Emirati Driver Yousif AlRomaithy from Team Pirates of Drift in his V8 Powered Nissan 300ZX, against the Omani Driver Ali Albalooshi from Alshehani Drifting Team, after repeated twin battles and close calls, Yousif Alromaithy took the 3rd Place position.
Samer Khadra from SSK Drift and Ahmed Omar from UAE Drift Force competed respectively for 5th and 6th position.
Last Season Drift King Ahmed Alameri from Toyota Emirates Drifting Team, faced some technical difficulties in his brand new car the Toyota 86, which prevented him from qualifying to the final rounds.
Modified Category winner was the Bahraini Driver Salman Abdalla is his White Nissan Silvia S14, that amazed the crowds and the judging panel with his high level of control and skills. 2nd place went to new comer from Jordan , Omar Sammour in his black Nissan 350Z, while 3rd place went to Nawaf Alkalbani in his Nissan Skyline R32.
Crowd Favorite, Smoky Nissan Altima of Fahad Alloghani from XSix Drifting Team was a strong contender in the modified category, but a technical fault in his car prevented him from competing in the class finals.
Street Category win goes to the Omani Driver Mohammad AlAsmi (mambo) in his brand new stock Toyota 86, while 2nd place went to Emarati Driver Sultan Alqassimi in his evil Mercedes ClK Black Series, who pleased the crowds with a nice show. 3rd Place went to the youngest Driver from Lebanon Jihad Hassan also in his brand new Toyota 86.
“The competition was very nice and the layout was amazing” Said the Drift UAE Rd1 Winner Muath Alessa.
“Its great to see this completion move to this level and I was surprised and happy with the level and skills of the drivers this season, It seems that the competition will only get bigger and more fun as the season progress.” Said the 2nd place winner and the runner up of last year Drift UAE Challenge, Abdulhadi Alqahtani from Ford Aljazeera team.
“I was looking forward protect my title as drift king, and to showcase our new Toyota emirates drifting team car, the first of its kind in the region, but unfortunately we where faced with technical difficulties that prevented us from qualifying, this car is still in its R&D phase, but will be ready for the next round and to please the crowds and protect my title” Said Ahmed AlAmeri.
Darren McNamara, a professional drifter in formula d and Prodrift Series, was a special guest and Chief Judge in this Round ,Said “What I saw today exceeded my expectations, and I see great future for this sport in the region. All drivers showed a great deal of skills and control. The facilities and track was glamorous, and many international and professional drifters would love to come and participate in such competition, well organized and executed. All what is needed now is more practice time and support for those drivers to become international level contenders”
Judges Sam Zian and Walid Amir both said that they were pleased happy to see the level of competition and skills that drivers have shown, its honor for us to be in this growing competition.
Omran Alowais the Operation Director of the Championship said “the event went smooth and competition was fierce, there was good discipline from all drivers and teams, and we thank YAS for this great venue and facility”
Mohammad Alfalasi the Championship Director said “We are very proud of all the drivers and to see them reaching to this level of competition, Im vey happy to have reached to this form of Tandem Drifting, and become the first to do it professionally in the region. This will allow our drivers to be able to elevate their skill dramatically and allow them to rise up in the international scene and become worldwide stars. Im also vey thankful for Darren McNamara and the Judging team who their good work, and to Omran Alowais and his operations team that controlled the event and created a fun entertaining show for the crowds and spectators. A big thanks to Yas Marina Circuit for providing us with this great facility and supporting the Drifting Scene in the region. Celebration the 41 National Day of the UAE in such event and with such crowd, was an honor and happy occasion to remember. We have opened Drift UAE for all categories to encourage people and enthusiasts to participate within a safe and affordable environment, Drifting culture is grass rooted within the local and regional community, and we try to guide it and present it more professionally and controllably. I hope companies would be able to see the benefit of supporting this entertaining show and support our drivers and teams.”
Next round of Drift UAE championship will take place in 21 Dec in Dubai AutoDrome.