In what a press release from the Qatar Marine Sports Federation described as “blustery conditions and breaking waves” in Cocoa Beach, Fla., this afternoon, the Spirit of Qatar’s Ali Al-Neama and Mohammed Al-Nasser finished fifth overall in the Superboat class at the Space Coast Super Boat International Grand Prix. Today’s showing of the former Reliable Carriers 42-foot Marine Technology, Inc., catamaran with twin 700-plus-hp engines from Scorpion Racing Engines, was the Superboat-class debut for the new team.
“It was important that Ali and Mohammed got as much seat time in the new boat as possible and finished the first race,” said Sheikh Hassan bin Jabor Al-Thani, president of the Qatar Marine Sports Federation, in the release. “The water was rough and they faced the toughest teams in that class, so they did what they had to do to reach the finish. It’s a long season and the target is Key West. The next race is in two weeks and we hope that the water conditions will be better.”
Taking first place in the six-boat, 16-lap race were Billy Mauff and Jay Muller in WHM Motorsports, followed by J.D. Byrider team of Tony Marcantonio and Mark Kowalski in second and Robert Noble and Grant Bruggeman of Team Stihl in third.