Selio on Pole Position

ST. PETERSBURG, Russia – Saturday, July 10, 2010 – Finnish driver Sami Selio picked up his first pole of 2010 and his ninth in his last 12 races and will lead the field of 20 drivers from 12 different nations for tomorrow's Grand Prix of Russia for the second round of the 2010 UIM F1 World Championship for power boating.

The Mad Croc lead driver worked his way through three elimination sessions and grabbed pole with a 52.03 second lap in the windy and rough conditions on the sometimes fickle Neva River in front of tens of thousands that came out to watch on a sun drenched afternoon with temperatures above 30 degrees.

“We kept on working to improve the boat in the last 24 hours, since we were the last boat to arrive in the paddock and were trying to catch up with the rest of the teams, to get ready for qualifying,” said Sami. “Now, we feel we can do a good job tomorrow and earn our first points of the season, hopefully with a win, at the end of the day.”

Second quick in qualifying was Team Abu Dhabi driver Ahmad Al Hameli who was .91 seconds behind Sami with a 52.94 lap around the 6-pin 2.014 kilometer circuit. He however, had a heart breaking final moment in qualifying with his engine apparently seized and with the rules stating that if he does need to change an engine, he will be forced to start at the end of the starting field.

Third quickest was Jay Price of the Qatar Team with a 53.14 second lap in his DAC hulled boat. “We felt we had a shot at pole today but we couldn't find the clear lane we needed in the final 10 minute session so we had to settle for third,” said Jay. “We have the confidence to win this event for a second straight year tomorrow and we are looking forward to the challenge.”

Earning the fourth fastest spot was rookie Italian Alex Carella of the Mad Croc Team as he continues to impress with the guidance of fellow teammate Selio and boat builder and ex-driver Massimo Roggiero who had his BABA hulled boats in the first, second, fourth and fifth qualifying positions at the end of the afternoon.

Fifth is Fabio Comparato of Italy in his 800 Doctor BABA hull with a time of 53.57. Sixth was last race pole sitter Francesco Cantando of the Singha Team with a 54.36. Thani Al Qamzi of Team Abu Dhabi was seventh with a 54.78 and French driver Philippe Chiappe eighth with a 54.97 lap.

Jonas Andersson of Team Azerbaijan who has won two of the last three events was ninth with a 55.30 lap and rounding out the top ten was rookie Italian Davide Padovan of the Rainbow Team with a 56.34.

Sami Selio's speed was 157.06 kph around the twisty tricky circuit almost three kilometers per hour faster than Al Hameli.

The Eighth Grand Prix of Russia from St. Petersburg will start at 14:00 GMT, 18:00 local and 09:00 EDT on the East Coast of North America. The live world television feed can be seen by going the UIM F1 H2O official website at starting at 13:55 GMT. Following the race, the bonus coverage of the days activities, can be seen on the website starting at 15:30 GMT with the “After Hours” Show giving you incites and latest inside news to days events. So, stay tuned.

Be In The Know – With F1 H2O!