High waves ensured the round island speed record would not be broken

High waves in the opening race of the Powerboat P1 World Championship may have ensured that the Round the Island Challenge speed record would not be broken but nevertheless there was no shortage of drama, excitement and spectacular action off the coast of Malta on Saturday.

It was a race of attrition as the demanding conditions took their toll but no one appeared to have told Marco Pennesi, Antonio Cola and Stefano Bonanno, as Fainplast, the all-Italian Metamarine boat demonstrated the class of crew, craft and its home-built engines. They proved to be the masters of the tough conditions to build an unassailable lead around the Island to win.

Behind them an intriguing battle was emerging for second place between the 2006 World Champions, OSG Racing and 2005 Champions, Wettpunkt.com. Whilst OSG lapped the Island more quickly, the brand new Buzzi built Wettpunkt.com, powered by Isotta Fraschini engines, was clearly in range and started to close down the lead as the teams started the five short circuit laps that followed. Lap by lap the distance closed but not quickly enough and OSG eventually took second place with Wettpunkt.com in third and Kiton in fourth.

The all-American Outerlimits Powerboats team, that had made impressive early running, was forced to retire with mechanical difficulties at the half way point In SuperSport, Britain’s Jackie Hunt and Mike Shelton in Extremeboat, built upon an excellent start to develop a commanding lead and win by some distance despite encountering five metre waves.

The US-built Dragon boat proved dominant in its class and remarkably completed the lap of Malta ahead of at least three of the higher powered Evolution boats. In second place was Roscioli Hotels Roma, the brand new Maltese-built boat of Italians Angelo Tedeschi, Fabio Magnani and Ugo Pellegrino. British team Buzzi Bullet finished third with local team Chaudron in fourth and Sunseeker fifth.

2007 Powerboat P1 World Championship

Maltese Grand Prix of the Sea

Round One Results

Evolution Class

1. – 64 – Fainplast – Italian – 100pts

2. – 88 – OSG Racing – Italian – 80pts

3. – 81 – Wettpunkt.com – Austrianpts 60

4. – 90 – Kiton – Italian – 50pts

97 – Outerlimits – American – DNF

SuperSport

1. – 55 – Extremeboat – British – 100pts

2. – 44 – Roscioli Hotels Roma – Italian – 80pts

3. – 47 – Buzzi Bullet – British – 60pts

4. – 46 – Chaudron – Maltese – 50

5. – 11 – Team Sunseeker – British – 40pts

6. – 09 – Marex – British – 30pts (Wild Card)

03 – Carpenter – Italian – DNF

07 – VoomVoom.com – British – DNF

08 – Sun Lik Beer – Chinese – DNF