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UAE motorsport titles up for grabs on final day

Dubai: Dubai Autodrome hosts the final UAE national race day of the 2013-2014 season on Friday, when champions will be crowned.

Two races remain in the NGK Racing Series and, although Costas Papantonis has dominated Class 1 in his Gulf Petrochem SEA, the focus is on Class 2, where the final day will decide the champion.

Honda driver Jonathan Mullan tops the standings with 222 points, ahead of fellow Honda driver Rupesh Channake, who is 14 points adrift, and Gulf Petrochem Renault driver Alexandros Annivas, 20 points off top spot.

The trio are all capable of taking the big prize, as the two worst scores are dropped in the championship points table and, when the maths is done, the title looks set to go down to the wire.

In the race-within-a-race Clio Cup, Annivas has already bagged the title but will nevertheless have to contend with the likes of Simon Dennis and Peter England, who will want to end their season with a flourish.

Speaking after a shock Class 2 win at Yas Marina last time out, Annivas said: “I am behind on points but, when you drop scores, it is looking very possible. Last year it was decided on the last corner of the last lap of the last race, this year I have a feeling the same will happen. I am the underdog so really not much to lose, it’s motor racing and anything can happen.”

Also to be decided is the UAE Sportbike Championship, where Liberty Kawasaki rider Abdul Aziz Bin Laden heads into the final two races with 250 points, with reigning champion Mahmoud Tannir 20 points adrift, but with dropped scores that is narrowed down to eight points.

It will be a tough task for Tannir to retain his crown as Bin Laden has been on a hot streak all year, winning 12 of 13 races.

Yamaha rider Michael Collins has already bagged the Rookie Cup title and will be looking to end the season with a flourish.

Track action on Friday starts at 9.50am, with entry for spectators on the day free, including access to the paddock area and grandstands.