This weekend, the F2 water formula engines were fishing in the Kupiškis Lagoon. Drivers from all over the world gathered to compete for the grand prize of the World Championship round. Abu Dhabi's Mansoor Al Mansoori won the F2 World Championship round on Sunday. Second place went to Semi Selio of the United Arab Emirates. Germany's Stefan Hagin came third. Edgaras Riabko, the Lithuanian pilot who celebrated his victory in the Kupiškis Lagoon last year, finished in 5th position and also scored 7 ranking points.
Athletes from 12 countries - United Arab Emirates, Latvia, Sweden, United Kingdom, United States, Germany, Poland, France, Lithuania, Portugal, Monaco, Norway, Lithuania, Monaco, the United Kingdom, the United States and Norway - have come to Lithuania to compete in the second stage of the F2 World Championships. Two more rounds of the F2 World Championship will take place in Portugal, where Lithuania's Edgaras Riabko will continue his fight for the podium.
Not everyone was successful in the championship
The race was full of incidents and technical failures, with Sweden's Bimba Sjoholm suffering setbacks right from the start of training on Saturday. During free practice, the formula piloted by Sjoholm flipped over and then she had a bad start. In the first few laps, a collision forced both Swedish drivers to retire from the race. Peter Morin of France also did not finish the race after technical problems forced him to watch the entire race in a floating formula in the middle of the track.
An unexpected twist after the F2 World Championship awards
"Two protests were received after the competition. One protest was from Duarte Benavente of Portugal, who said that he was blocked by Uvis Slakteris of Latvia and that this caused him to break the right-hand cornering shoe. When we turned to watch the video, the Jury decided that the action taken by the Latvian did not in fact have any influence on this offence. It was not a blocking action, as Mr Benavente claimed. The objection was rejected. The Portuguese received a one-lap penalty and fell into the appropriate position. Another protest was lodged by Latvia's Uvis Slakteris because he received two yellow cards. Later it turned out that the referees had mistakenly written the penalty incorrectly and it was cancelled. Yakom Osaki, who finished third, was disqualified during an engine failure. We don't have any official data yet, but the engine of the German in 4th place is being dismantled, so it will soon become clear who should have been in 3rd place." - said Karolis Ramoška, Secretary General of the Lithuanian Powerboat Federation.
"We have handed over the trophy, but unfortunately it will have to be taken away from Monaco and probably handed over to the third place winner Stefan Hagin." - says Edgar Riabko.
Edgaras Riabko of Lithuania says that the competition was tense and anxious from the very first minutes. "I had a good start, I was fourth or fifth after the first few laps, but on the first lap, when Johan Osterberg of Sweden flipped over, we had to stop the race and had to start from the start, under a yellow flag. This was not to my advantage, because not a single lap was completed, we had to go back to our previous position and I had to finish sixth again," says Riabko. The driver is not hiding his disappointment with his results. "I can't say that I'm very satisfied and happy, but it's not that bad."
"We are delighted that for the second year in a row we are able to contribute to the promotion of this exceptionally exciting water sport both in our country and around the world. This year, the live broadcasts, produced by the Content Bakers team led by experienced sports broadcaster Tomas Skamaročius, were watched by more than 23 million viewers worldwide on various platforms. The large number of participants confirms the relevance of this unique sports festival in Lithuania, which we are already planning to expand for the coming year. We are especially grateful to the Kupiškis District Municipality for their hospitality and to all the partners who have contributed to this festival." - Gediminas Jaunius, producer of the event, shared his impressions.
During the two days of the sports festival, which took place at the Kupiškis lagoon, athletes competed in various categories: in the Formula F2 sprint race, which attracted the most interest on Saturday, the winner was Edgaras Riabko.00, R2000, F4 class. Cezary Strumnik of Poland is the European champion in the OSY400 class.
Participants had a unique opportunity to experience the power of the sport for themselves by circling the track in a two-seater water formula. KaYra, Jessica Shy, 8 Room, Liepa Lee, Hey Mix and German guest Lian Ross, as well as other famous names from the national and international music scene. Rockers Still Runners and the Rokas Jaunius Jazz Quartet performed jazz compositions.
The F2 Water Formula World Championship in Lithuania is organised by the Watercraft Federation in cooperation with ELITAZ and Content Bakers.