Ibrahim, Alva reach Rotax Max World Finals finale race, Aradhya misses the cut
Three Indians represented the country in the karting event.
The Rotax Max Challenge World Finals 2017 had 59 countries and a total of 360 drivers competing in the various categories in the six-day event in Portugal.
The Indian contingent had three young hopefuls, with Yash Aradhya and Muhammad Ibrahim in the 125 Junior Max category, while Ruhaan Alva raced in the 125 Micro Max class.
Racing for the Praga Asia KRS outfit, Ibrahim was 22nd, 23rd, 10th and 28th in the non-qualifying practice in the Odd numbers category, with Aradhya 31st, 27th, 31st and 33rd in the Even numbers class.
In the Qualifying Practice, Ibrahim was sixth with Aradhya 34th - after his best times got cancelled, unfortunately. They were 18th and 67th overall, taking both Odd and Even categories drivers.
Moving to the Qualifying Heats, both Ibrahim and Aradhya were handed 10-second time penalty for frontfairing in the first heat of even laps, as they finished 23rd (A+B classes) and 31st (C+D classes) respectively.
In the second heat, Ibrahim was 10th (B+D classes) and Aradhya 22nd (A+C classes), while in the final heat, Ibrahim finished seventh, with Aradhya 19th (B+C classes). Overall, Ibrahim was ranked 18th and Aradhya 51st.
In the two pre-finals to qualify for the World Finals finale race, Ibrahim managed to make the cut finishing 10th in his #259 kart, while finishing 22nd, Aradhya in his #255 kart couldn't get through.
However, in the finals, it was a disaster for Ibrahim who was disqualified from the race after finishing an impressive fifth, which was won by Dutch driver Tijmen van der Helm from Frenchman Sami Meguetounif and Belgian Luca Leistra.
Meanwhile, at the same time, Birel ART India driver Alva in the Micro Max category finished 29th, 15th and 24th respectively in the three non-qualifying practice sessions to start his maiden run on the track.
He was 14th in the Qualifying Practice, but improved in the Qualifying Heats to be 10th and 12th respectively - showing good form despite the limited running. The Bangalorean then took his form into the Pre-Finals to be 13th.
However, the finale turned to be sour as he was disqualified due to being 100 grams below the minimum weight, despite finishing 12th in the race which was won by Frenchman Louis Iglesias.