In terms of obligations, today was a low-pressure affair for offshore racers and their crews competing in the augural Qatar Cup in Doha. The day started with a 10 a.m. mandatory drivers’ meeting led by longtime offshore racing referee Mike Tomlinson. During the meeting, Tomlinson walked the group through basic safety and emergency procedures—reminded that the dunker is there to use with safety crews for practice—and gave them the layout of the course.
Tomlinson also detailed tomorrow’s “Pole Position” qualifying event, which will be used to determine starting grids for the races on Thursday and Saturday. Each team will be given a warm-up lap and a timed lap. Teams that would like a second time lap also can take one—the best time will be used to determine qualifying position.
After the meeting, the racers returned to the dry pits to continue setting up their boats and work stations. Reflecting the mood of most racers from the United States, DoublEdge Motorsports driver Tanner Lewis said, “I am just so happy to be here.”
To enjoy some of the setup action from today’s Qatar Cup check out the slideshow above.
With the breathtaking Doha skyline close in the background, crews from the Qatar Marine Sports Federation went to work on immense hospitality and viewing areas on the Persian Gulf. Thousands of spectators are expected to pack the shores for both races, which are being co-produced by the QMSF and Offshore Powerboat Grand Prix and being sanctioned by Union International Motonautique.
Editor’s note: Look for frequent updates on the Qatar Cup as events unfold.