Sunday, 2 September: MAMAIA (Romania):

Victory 77’s Arif Al Zafeen and Jean-Marc Sanchez took their third win of the season in an incident filled Romanian Grand Prix, round four of the WPPA Class 1 World Powerboat Championship, to clinch the 2007 WPPA Class 1 European Championship. Second place went to Sheikh Hassan Al-Thani and Matteo Nicolini in Qatar 96, with team mates, Abdullah-Al Sulaiti and Luca Nicolini completing the podium in third.Following a chaotic start, with two boats appearing to go early, and despite starting from second place on the start line, Al Zafeen and Sanchez were lying in third place at the end of lap 1, behind Negotiator, with team mates, Al Sayed and Nadir bin Hendi, Victory 7, out in front. They overhauled Negotiator a lap later and fought back to grab the lead on lap 6. For the next three laps, Victory 77 fought off a strong challenge from rivals Qatar 96, who had moved up through the field from fifth place on the first lap, to be challenging for the lead.On lap 10, Victory 77 took their first long-lap, but as they came off the lap, had to swerve violently to avoid Qatar 96, coming out of the turn. For the next 10 laps, Al Zafeen and Sanchez were able to maintain a narrow advantage over Qatar 96, going on to take the win and extend their world championship lead to 19 points. "I think that was one of the best races of my career," said Jean-Marc Sanchez. "It was a tough race. We gave 100 per cent from the start-to-finish. There were some dirty manoeuvres out there and some backmarkers that caused us problems. But we won and we are happy about that and we have our first title of the season." Asked about the incident on the long-lap with Qatar 96, Sanchez dismissed it, saying ‘that’s racing’. Second place for Sheikh Hassan and Matteo Nicolini, their fourth consecutive podium of the season, was not enough for the duo to regain the European crown they won in 2005, but keeps them in the hunt for the overall title. "We missed out on the title, but it was an excellent weekend for the team with second and third places," said Sheikh Hassan. "Our performance was good and I think we may have been a little faster than 77 at times, but not enough to get past them. But Abdullah and Luca showed great improvements in Qatar 95 and Matteo and I managed to take crucial championship points to remain in second place in the championship and maintain the pressure on Victory 77."Qatar 95’s first podium of the season was well deserved and hard fought for, with Al-Sulaiti and Luca Nicolini, moving from fifth place into third on lap 9. "I think everyone saw that the start was not good. But we drove very hard and we pushed the boat all the way to make the podium. And from here we can build on this performance." said Al-Sulaiti.Fourth place for Spirit of Norway was not the result they were looking for in a race that went wrong for them at the start, finding themselves down in eighth place at the end of lap 1 after starting from pole position. Having clawed their way back into fourth place, Gjelsten and Curtis then spun out on lap 7 while trying to pass Victory 7, dropping them back down the running order to sixth. And a penalty long-lap incurred several laps later for hitting a turn-buoy ended their hopes of a podium, and despite moving into third place in the title race, are now 30 points off the lead. But both Gjelsten and Curtis were clearly unimpressed and angered by the tactics used by some of their rivals. "Some people out there are driving like idiots and ignoring the rules." said Curtis.After a frustrating season so far and a difficult weekend, Chris Parsonage and Bard Eker produced easily their best showing, bringing Negotiator home in fifth. "After all the problems that we have had, that was a good result for us," said Parsonage. "It was a bit of a dog-fight out there and we had a good fight with Qatar 95. The boat ran well but we needed more speed but knew from the set-up we opted for we would be slightly compromised. But to finish in fifth is great for the team after all the hard work."Giampaolo Montavoci and Marco Pennesi, won their on-going battle with Tom Barry-Cotter and Pal Nilsen, finishing in sixth ahead of Spirit Norway 20, with Jotun salvaging three points in eighth after breaking a propeller, with SeveneleveN and VM Foresti & Suardi picking up points in ninth and tenth. Victory 7 was the only retirement of the race, after breaking a propeller and damaging the boat.