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A thrilling second round of National Race Day took place under the bright lights of Bahrain International Circuit (BIC) in Sakhir.
Mohammed Faqihi, Shaikh Salman bin Isa bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa and Ahmed Almuyini were all victorious at Friday’s meeting.
Faqihi and Shaikh Salman shared the honours with a race win apiece in the BIC 2,000cc Challenge, while Almuyini posted an impressive double in the Bahrain Motorcycle Racing (BMR) 600.
Both championships raced along BIC’s 2.55km Inner Track with BIC’s state-of-the-art floodlighting system brilliantly lighting up the circuit.
In the BIC 2,000cc Challenge, Faqihi narrowly missed out on securing pole position after topping the timesheet in Practice. Qualifying was won by defending champion Raed Himmo, who clocked a fastest lap of one minute 17.008 seconds in his black-blue Honda CIVIC – just 0.319s quicker than Faqihi.
In Race One, however, it was Faqihi who quickly made the most of his front row starting position. Driving a white Civic, Faqihi captured the lead and by lap eight, the race was red-flagged due to incidents on track.
The drivers’ positions at that time counted as the final classification, and Faqihi was in first, followed by Ahmed Bin Khanen in a white Honda Civic EG4 5.739 seconds behind. Taking the final podium place in third was Tareq Al Tajer in a red Ford Focus, who was 8.057s from the winner. All three top overall placers were competing in the Pro class.
Amongst Novice drivers, Majed Himmo in a yellow CIVIC was in first place. Martyna Al Qassab in a blue Acura DCS came second and Giovanni Saerno in a blue Ford Focus finished third.
Raed Himmo posted the Race One fastest lap of 1:17.617.
In Race Two, Nasser Al Alawi in a red Honda S2000 was in pole position following the reverse grid rule. Shaikh Salman was right beside him on the front row, and he challenged for the win with Raed Himmo.
In the end, only 0.113s separated the pair, with Shaikh Salman narrowly taking the chequered flag ahead of his rival. Bin Khanen was third for his second podium of the night.
The Novice class top three included Martyna with the win, Saerno in second and Wiebke Buelow in a white CIVIC in third.
Shaikh Salman registered the race’s fastest lap of 1:17.308.
Meanwhile, in the BMR 600, Almuyini continued his seemingly unbeatable form in the series – one that dates back to previous seasons.
After setting the pace in both Practice and Qualifying, Almuyini went on to dominate Race One which he won by 9.958s ahead of runner-up Ibrahem Alsharida. Hasan Al Awadhi claimed third place a distant 22.113s behind, as all three competed in the Super Stock class.
Salman Khalaf was the winner of the BMR’s Hornet category, adding to his overall classification in eighth place.
In Race Two, Almuyini was once again the winner but Nasser Al Khadra narrowed the final gap to just 2.499s. Alsharida had to settle for third place as he enjoyed a double podium for the night.
Almuyini clocked the fastest lap in both sprints, going for a 1:11.168 time in Race One and then a 1:12.251 in Race Two.
Following all the action, the winners were presented their respective trophies in a podium ceremony attended by officials from BIC, the Bahrain Motor Federation, Circuit Racing Club and Bahrain Motorcycle Club.
The 2018/2019 racing season at BIC will feature seven rounds of National Race Day. Round Three is set for December 7, Round Four on January 11, Round Five on February 1, Round Six on March 8 and Round Seven on April 26.