- 2016 was a truly momentous year for 8 year-old Rashid Al Dhaheri; during the year he amassed a large number of titles and awards in both the local and international karting circuits.
On the local scene the young Emirati karting star blew past his competition winning everything he entered. He won the O Plate title for a 3rd time in a row; he took home convincing victories in the IAME X30 UAE Championship winning in both Dubai Kartdome and RAK. As well as the numerous titles he won the prestigious “Mohamed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Creative Sport Award” beating a number of young Emirati athletes to win ‘Young Local Athlete’.
Rashid also took his first significant steps into the international karting arena, taking on his busiest and most challenging season so far, entering a number of high profile tournaments in Italy. He moved up age categories (to age 8-10/ 8-12) and started competing in some of the toughest international karting events in the world. Despite being a huge step up both in age group and ability, Rashid rose to the challenge, establishing himself as a serious competitor despite often being the youngest driver in the field.
In Italy, Rashid earned victories or reached the podium in almost every race in the Parolin Academy Championship, the ROK Championship, Italiano Campionato and the WSK Series. The WSK Championship is the biggest and toughest karting event in the world with up to 90 top international drivers competing in the mini category alone.
Rashid’s 2016 season also saw him join Italian ‘Babyrace’ Team. Babyrace is one of the most famous junior karting teams in the world which currently undertakes drivers’ development programs from Karting until GP3.
At the tender age of 8, Rashid is already one of the UAE’s hottest young sporting talents, Rashid has competed in 23 races locally and internationally this year, of these he has reached the podium 14 times and 8 times in first place.
Rashid’s 2017 season, will see him participate in the Italian WSK Championship, ‘Campionato Italiano’ Championship, the Italian ‘ROK Championship’, UAE Rotax Max Championship of course UAE X30 Emirates Challenge Championship, where he is leading on the Championship, despite being the youngest driver in the field.
Sandro Lorandi, Founder and Owner of the ‘Babyrace’ Team commented:I heard news about the Rashid pilot during a conversation with my talent scout about a year ago and I was really impressed. He is young, he is talented, he is intelligent, he has real passion for the sport even for one so young and most importantly he has the support of his family, he could potentially be an F1 driver in 10 years.