Gulf Sport Edition 14 Page

OFF TO A WINNING START

The Premier League is underway and Gulf’s partners Manchester United made a winning start to their season, with victory against the 2015/16 Premier League Champions, Leicester City, in pursuit of the Premier League title.

The Premier League is renowned as the toughest, most competitive domestic football league in the world – as United have already found in some of their subsequent matches – but, after an early season wobble, they have returned to winning form and emerged victorious from their the opening match of their Champions League campaign, away against the Swiss side, Young Boys in Bern.

In the meanwhile, Manchester United Legend, Dwight Yorke was on hand to help open Gulf’s first fuel station in China (pictured above), a hugely significant event in the brand’s ongoing expansion in Asia and a testament to the influence the partnership continues to have in helping Gulf further develop its business around the world.

Gulf is also able to celebrate a second championship of the year – after the Chennai Super Kings’ excellent victory in the IPL Cricket – as the Gulf Dragracing Team secured the European Top Fuel title in the final round, at the UK’s Santa Pod Raceway.

The name on the trophy, this year, will not be the redoubtable Ian King – though he is still running the team and will pilot the mighty Gulf DragRacing machine in America later in the year – but Filippos Papafilippou, known to the fans as “Fast Fil”, whose speed, talent and bravery throughout the season belied his lack of experience in the premier two wheeled drag category.

Congratulations are due to Fil, Ian and the whole Gulf team on another excellent season, with a bike that, of course, also holds a World Land Speed record and that, most importantly, has always run on standard road Gulf lubricants. Surely, this is something which we should celebrate and activate to the fullest extent.

This month also saw another motorsport first, as Eugene Laverty added a pole position and lap record to Gulf’s growing tally of achievements in the World Superbike Arena.

The action will continue to come thick and fast over the coming months and we look forward to more success in Gulf Sports to come.

Wishing you good sport and good business.

EUGENE LAVERTY SMASHES LAP RECORD, BUT WEEKEND BELONGS TO LORIS BAZ

Gulf Althea BMW’s Loris Baz secured two top-10 finishes at Portimão, as the World Superbike Championship returned after the summer hiatus, but it was a case of ‘what if’ for Eugene Laverty after crashing out of the opening race having beaten the lap record to secure a first pole position for Gulf and Milwaukee Aprilla.

Laverty guided his Aprilla machine to two historic podium finishes at Laguna Seca and Misano – the first for the team.

And the Northern Irishman maintained the form that made him formidable before the break, smashing the previous lap record to win pole position; however, his race lasted three corners after Xavi Fores collided with him.

In race two, Laverty raced valiantly to record a seventh-place finish; while naturally disappointed, the pace of the bike indicates a strong end to the season is on the horizon for Laverty and the team.

For Loris Baz, though, it was a successful weekend; after some rotten luck in previous rounds, he showed the potential of the Gulf Althea BMW by registering sixth and ninth-place finishes in Portugal.

The Frenchman hailed his weekend as “the best of the year so far” and is aiming to go one better with a top-five place at his home race in Magny-Cours at the end of September (28th-30th).

Meanwhile, in the European Superstook 1000, Alessandro Delbianco, returned after injury to claim a sixth-place. The Italian ace made progress throughout, overtaking riders and pulling away from rivals behind, which meant the rising star enjoyed a strong race.

www.worldsbk.com

MANCHESTER UNITED CONTINUE EXCELLENT PREMIER LEAGUE FORM

Manchester United returned from the international break to put in a commanding display against Watford and make it two wins from the last two in the Premier League.

José Mourinho’s charges continued the momentum gained from the 2-0 victory at Burnley, thanks to goals from Romelu Lukaku and Chris Smalling, which helped secure three points against the Hornets to continue the team’s push up the table.

It was Lukaku’s fourth goal of the season and he is now only one behind current top goalscorer and fellow Belgian compatriot, Eden Hazard.

It was Lukaku’s World Cup-winning team-mate, Paul Pogba, who was the hero a few days later, as he scored a brace to help The Reds coast to victory at Young Boys in their Champions League opener. Anthony Martial also chipped in with a goal to secure a 3-0 victory in Switzerland.

United has a rich history in a competition where Europe’s elite clubs battle for supremacy, lifting the European title three times (1967-1968, 1998-1999 and 2007-2008), and its 659 million fans around the world will be hoping Mourinho and his players can show the passion, endurance and quality required to record a fourth title and add another trophy to United’s cabinet.

As well as Young Boys, the Reds face Valencia and Juventus in the group stages, with the top-two after six matches (each team play the other both home and away) progressing to the round of 16.

For Pogba, he will line-up against some familiar faces when United take on Italian giants, Juventus. The French midfielder won four Serie A titles during his time in Turin.

www.manutd.com

BUMPER CROWD DESCENDS ON SILVERSTONE, AS GULF RACING CELEBRATES HOME WEC RACE

Gulf Racing UK returned home in August, as the World Endurance Championship headed to Silverstone for the third round of the season.

In what is one of, if not THE most important rounds of the season for the Milton-Keynes based team, thousands of spectators packed the grandstands on a sun-drenched afternoon at the historic circuit to see the local team in action as part of a huge weekend for sportscar fans that also included a round of the European Le Mans Championship.

During what was an extremely tight and competitive weekend in the LM GTE Am class, driver and team owner, Mike Wainwright (below), along with fellow racers, Alex Davison and Ben Barker, completed 167 laps and finished 6th in class and 22nd overall.

The team will be hoping for their first podium finish of the nine race WEC SuperSeason, when the series returns to action on the 14th October in Fuji, Japan.

Meanwhile, sticking with Silverstone, Gulf Retail renewed its agreement as the official fuel partner to Silverstone Circuits in June, providing the world-renowned motor racing venue with its full requirement of fuels, including a range of premium and racing fuels, as well as heating oils and generator fuels.

Twitter: @Gulf_Racing or Facebook: Gulf Racing

GULF AND MANCHESTER UNITED GO GLOBAL WITH SECOND SEASON OF #GULFFANACADEMY

Following the unprecedented success of the debut campaign, where 70 million fans were reached in India, the new season of Gulf Fan Academy promises to be bolder than ever with the academy spreading to 60 countries.

The academy was created so fans of the world’s largest football club could engage with their favourite stars. This term, they can participate in four challenges, share them online and watch a collection of fun and exciting videos, featuring Paul Pogba, David De Gea and Alexis Sanchez.

The challenges, designed to be easy and fun, will give fans around the world the chance to win an all-expenses paid trip to the Theatre of Dreams. Last season, Gulf treated nine superfans to the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, all of whom made the journey to Old Trafford to watch The Reds take on Swansea City.

Gulf Oil Lubricants India Limited Managing Director, Ravi Chawla, said: “We received a massive response from Indian Manchester United fans last year, and it spurred us to go global this time.

“In the first edition, we managed to reach out to 70 million people through our integrated campaign. I am certain that this year the academy will be able to engage with far more fans from across 60 countries.

“This season, we have packaged it on a grander scale, with 11 of the biggest Man Utd fans from India getting a chance to travel to Old Trafford to see a live match.”

As well as 70 million people reached, the #GulfFanAcademy trended on social media throughout the campaign, thanks to the consistent distribution of digital content. The launch itself was the number one trending story for three days on Twitter and a week on YouTube. Also, the hashtag #GulfFanAcademy recorded 800,000 unique engagements.

Pogba, De Gea and Sanchez all feature in a brand-new launch video, released in September 2018.

GULF ITALY HOSTS MANCHESTER UNITED SOCCER CAMPS – WITH THE HELP OF A REDS LEGEND

Gulf Oil Italy welcomed Manchester United Ambassador, Denis Irwin, to one of its recent soccer camps, in association with Italian distributor, SIFRA.

The former Republic of Ireland international, who spent 12 seasons under the guidance of managerial legend, Sir Alex Ferguson, and won many trophies during his playing spell at Old Trafford, was on-hand to demonstrate drills for the young players, including the Gulf Zig-Zag Challenge, which requires players to dribble around empty Gulf fuel containers, before handing out souvenirs and posing for photographs with the rising stars.

The soccer camp was one of two events held in collaboration with Manchester United; the other was a soccer school in partnership with fellow Italian distributor, Cuneo Lube.

ruggero.carlesso@gulfoilsupply.com.mt

GULF CARS AND GULF STARS HEADLINE AT ROLEX MONTEREY MOTORSPORTS REUNION

Derek Bell (above left) an integral part of Gulf’s Le Mans triumphs, was part of the presentation party at Laguna Seca, together with Gulf’s Ravi Chawla (above right) as Gulf celebrated the 50th anniversary of its first Le Mans victory and unveiled the new Ford GT ’68 Heritage at the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion.

The Heritage Blue and Heritage Orange paint scheme honours the Gulf Oil-sponsored chassis #1075 that won back-to-back Le Mans 24-hour races in 1968 and 1969 – before Bell went on to win the race for the first time in the Gulf-Ford GR8 in 1975.

The 1968 & 1969 winning Gulf GT40 made a rare public appearance for the launch as pictured here, with the new car leading it around the Laguna Seca race track and Derek Bell was interviewed by the car for Fox TV in South America.

Watch the Bell interview with Fox Sports here:

GULF DRAG RACING SECURES ANOTHER TOP FUEL CHAMPIONSHIP

Gulf Oil Drag Racing star, Filippos Papafilippou – AKA Fast Fil – has been crowned FIM European Top Fuel Motorcycle champion after a nerve-racking finale at Santa Pod, Great Britain.

The Greek rider follows in the footsteps of predecessor and King Racing Team Principal, Ian King, who himself won the championship 10 times during his illustrious career.

Fil went into the final round of the season, an event which attracted in the region of 30,000 spectators, with a healthy lead at the top of the standings with 175 points – 68 above French rival, Eric Richard, and 77 clear of Swedish rider, Richard Gustafsson.

However, Fil had to endure an anxious wait after failing to line-up at the first eliminator after he failed to stop the Gulf Oil bike on the high-speed run of qualifying and he bailed from the motorcycle just before the end of the track, with the bike and rider coming to a halt in a field at the end of the drag strip.

Fortunately, Fil escaped with just bruising, but the bike, such was the damage sustained, could not be repaired in time for the first eliminator. Despite the disappointment, Fil and the team actually extended their lead over Richard, with the Frenchman also enduring a tough weekend, to secure an 11th FIM European Championship win and a first with Fil at the helm.

This season has proved to be another incredible one for King Racing, Gulf Oil Drag Racing and the amazing 1,500BHP bike, which, since its inception, has always been raced in Gulf colours.

Fast Fil will be back on the bike in 2019, where he will be hoping to defend his Top Fuel title.

BEHIND THE SCENES - FILIPPOS PAPAFILIPPOU

Gulf Sport talks to the newly-crowned European Motorcycle Top Fuel Drag Racing Champion, “Fast Fil” – Filippos Papafilippou – about what has been a memorable first season in the top flight of two wheel drag racing and how partnership with Gulf means more than just a beautiful paint job…

Q – Firstly, many congratulations on the victory. How does the title ‘European champion’ sound?

FP – It sounds absolutely great and it is an awesome experience! I have won events in the past or ended runner up, but my best overall championship place was few years ago ending in 3rd place behind Ian King and Rikard Gustafsson. For me the great achievement is not only winning the title, but how we worked together as a team with our fantastic partners and achieved so much in such a short period of time – and in one season, my maiden one on a nitromethane fuelled Top Fuel Bike.

Q – You took over the reins of a 10-time European champion – did you feel the pressure of taking over from Ian?

FP – I took the reins of from one of the greatest achievers ever in drag racing motorcycle history across the globe. I mean 10-time European champion? Only a very few people that have great drag racing knowledge know how difficult this is to achieve. Regarding pressure taking over from Ian, I would say yes there is some pressure on me to perform to the usual King Racing standards, but together we all managed to achieve the results again this season and continued the success of the team even quicker than we all expected. So pressure relieved to some extent now!

Q – What’s the next aim for you?

FP – Stay focused, determined and safe above all. Further Championship wins and records will come as long as we all stay focused, determined and respectful to the awesome Gulf Oil Top Fuel motorcycle.

Q – Finally, Gulf Oil Drag Racing has racked up another championship – how important is Gulf to the success of the bike?

FP – In order that a machine can produce 1500HP consistently and reliably over a race weekend the oils and lubricants used must be the best in class. As Ian owns the company (Puma Engineering) who produce the most powerful motorcycle engines in the world and supply most of the Top Fuel Motorcycle teams across the globe he had found that Gulf Oil products were remarkable in their properties and were a class apart from many others.

The team has been proud to partner with Gulf in their race endeavours and looks forward to continuing their collaboration and shared passion for motorsport in the future.

 

GULF PRODUCTS POWERING BESPOKE TRACTOR PULLING CONTENDER

Customers of DCC Energy, the Danish distributors of Gulf lubricants, are using Gulf’s quality products to maximise the performance of their competition tractor.

Tractor pulling, also known as ‘power pulling’, requires modified tractors to pull a heavy sled along a 35ft wide, 330ft long track, with the winner being the tractor that pulls the sled the furthest.

Thanks to a €20,000 investment to buy and build this particular tractor, its engine produces up to 8,000hp. Performance and efficiency has been boosted by the use of Gulf Supreme Duty XLE 15W-40 and Gulf Universal Tractor Transmission Fluid 80W.

np@dccenergi.dk

 

50TH LE MANS ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATORY POSTER UNVEILED

This year marks the 50th anniversary of Gulf’s first-ever win at the iconic Le Mans 24-hour race. The 1968 GT40 is a race car that is synonymous with beauty, elegance and triumph.

To celebrate this milestone, Gulf has released a poster of the championship-winning car together with this year’s Porsche that fans around the world can either print to hang-up on their wall or download to use as a screensaver on their computer, phone or tablet.

To download a high-res version, click here:
https://extranet.gulfoilltd.com/partner/world-endurance-championship/

 

GULF’S ZOLTáN STRIDER WINS HUNGARIAN MOUNTAIN RACE

Gulf driver, Zoltán Strider, claimed victory in the 35th Hungarian Mountain Race after two days of tough competition.

Strider pushed his Gulf Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX to the limit on the roads running through the picturesque Hungarian mountain ranges and countryside. The Mátrai Hegyiverseny is a Hungarian motorsport tradition and is second only to the Formula One race at the Hungaroring in terms of popularity.

Zoltán can be seen in action, along with Patrik Szilágyi, who was competing in a Gulf-liveried BMW.

czanko@gulf.hu

 

GULF NETHERLANDS’ BMX STARS HELPING YOUNG RIDERS OF THE FUTURE

Gulf Netherlands’ BMX stars, Niek and Justin Kimmann, visited Hamburg recently to give tips and advice to some of the rising stars of BMX racing in Germany.

After driving to Hamburg, the Dutch riders, wearing Gulf-themed attire, shared their expertise to help the next generation of BMX riders, while they also posed for photographs with the young fans and signed autographs for all of them.

The brothers were back in action a few days later at the BMX National in Haaksbergen, Netherlands. Niek, 22, (pictured here) won the race, while younger brother, Justin, finished fourth. Both riders are proud of their partnership with Gulf, illustrated on the Gulf Netherlands Instagram page: @gulfnederland.

Videos from both events can be found on Justin’s YouTube page.

h.koetzier@gulf.nl

 

GULF OFF TO A SUPREME START IN THE PHILIPPINES

Basketball continues to be one of the most popular sports in the Philippines and The Gulf Oil Philippines-supported basketball team, the Gulf Supreme Boosters, tipped off their new Manila League campaign with an excellent 107-80 win against 365 Philippines.

Star of the show was Alwin Alday with 23 points.

marygrace@gulfoilphilippines.com

 

GULF SPORTING DIARY

 

MILWAUKEE APRILIA & GULF ALTHEA BMW

World Superbike Championship

Round 11 - Magny-Cours, France - September 28th - 30th

Round 12 - Parque Industrial Villicum, Argentina - October 12th - 14th


GULF RACING

World Endurance Championship

Round 4 - 6 Hours of Fuji - October 12th - 14th


MANCHESTER UNITED

English Premier League

Manchester United vs Wolves - Old Trafford - September 22nd

Manchester United vs West Ham United - London Stadium - September 29th

Manchester United vs Newcastle United - Old Trafford - October 6th

UEFA Champions League

Manchester United vs Valencia - Old Trafford - October 2nd

English League Cup

Manchester United vs Derby County - Old Trafford - September 25th