Hirani 2014/15 Champion

by Martin on April 3, 2015

The final 2 races of the season took place at the Dubai Autodrome, and it was there that the 2014/15 Championship would be decided.

With Tejas Hirani and Ahmed Al Ghanem only 10 points apart for the overall crown and Mashhur Bal Hejaila and Yousef Al Bader fighting for third, it was going to sure be a nail bitter.

A rather large spanner was thrown in the works for the Thursdays testing in the shape of an epic dust storm that had blown in from Saudi, with visibility down to 50m the organisers had no choice but to abandon the day of testing. This would leave the drivers with minimal practice for the race day.

Luckily the dust blew away over night and the sun and blue sky were once out again – game on!

In Free practice everyone was keeping their cards close to their chests, bedding in tyres and just doing any last minute checks on the cars given that there was no track time the previous day. So with no problems to report it was straight into qualifying with the all important 5 points up for grabs for Pole.

CE1E2983 Hirani 2014/15 Champion

After tyre temps started to rise the pack began to take shape, Tejas put in a quick lap in on lap 9 of 1:00.593 and set the pace! It was now down to the others to try and better that, but it was proving hard, Ahmed on the previous lap had set a 1:01.375 but was struggling to push better it. On lap 10 Bal Hejaila showed his pace and dropped in a 1:01.131, and that would prove to be it. Even though most drivers went on to complete another 7 or so laps no one could respond to Hirani’s lap, so the pole and all important 5 points were his!

Before you could blink race 1 was upon us. It was Hirani and Bal Hejaila making an early break with Al Ghanem and Al Bader a couple of seconds down the road. Ball Hejaila was able to consistently reel in Hirani over the last half of the lap and looked a few times to be making his move to take the lead, but was unable to get the drive out of turn 16, meaning that he was not able to make a pass. With the pace of the front 2 dropping and Al Ghanem getting on it he was pulling the two leaders in. But with only 7 laps to go was the charge started too late, did he give himself enough time? Going onto the final lap it was Hirani, Bal Hejaila and Al Ghanem nose to tail, but thats the way it would stay with overtaking very tricky on the short 2.5km club circuit and with all the drivers needing as many points as possible no one took the risk of a DNF!

CE1E2990 Hirani 2014/15 Champion

Hirani, really only had to finish Race 2 to become champion, but that didn’t mean he wasn’t in for the fight. Again he took the lead with Bal Hejaila tucked up behind. Al Bader was in third with Al Ghanem fourth. But he quickly slipped through and was chasing the front two hard!

But, as hard as Al Ghanem tried he was never able to out pace the Kenyan and with a gap of only a couple of seconds between them he was left to watch Hirani take a perfect score for the weekend and secure the 2014/15 championship.

So that was it Hirani the new Champion, Al Ghanem the new Vice Champion with Bal Hejaila taking 3 overall in the 2014/15 Formula Gulf 1000 series.

Hirani would collect his winners prize of an F3 test with Campos Racing at the Valencia circuit, while Al Ghanem would be invited as a guest of Aston Martin Racing courtesy of Gulf Oil International to the 24 hours of LeMans.

CE1E3457 Hirani 2014/15 Champion

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