As speculation went back and forth whether the Dubai-based Victory Team was withdrawing from the Union Internationale Motonautique (UIM) Class 1 World Powerboat Championship season last week, speedonthewater.com waited for word from Class 1 whether the defending champion—and easily the sport’s foremost team—was in for the first race of the year in Sanya, China (March 28-30).
Well it’s official, the No. 3 boat from the Victory Team made it on the boat, which is due to arrive to arrive at the Hainan Island port around March 15, along with eight other high-powered catamarans that will lineup at the inaugural China Grand Prix.
While the issue of whether Victory Team would race this season fell on the lack of a complete schedule, Nicolo di San Germano, chairman of Class 1 and president of F1 H2O World Championship, told speedonthewater.com he plans to meet with all the teams in China and update them on the season.
“We will be making several announcements in the coming weeks,” the promoter said. “We’ve said six events this year and that is our target. We fully understand the frustrations of some teams, but we were always confident that once the issues that we could influence had been addressed and discussed face-to-face that we would have a strong lineup going to China. Victory is the defending champion and we are very pleased that the team will be with us to start the defense of its title.”
Here’s a look at the official lineup for next month’s historic Class 1 debut in China: Victory Team, Team Abu Dhabi, Victory Australia, Subseapilot, LFFendi, FA.RO ACCIAI, Poliform, Visun-Sanya and Zabo Isiklar.