Balloch's Oban Duncan targets Monaco glory after first E1 pole position

Oban Duncan racing E1 Venice
-Credit: (Image: © Marta Rovatti Studihrad / Spacesuit Media)

Balloch’s Oban Duncan took her first E1 Series pole position - but admits that her weekend was a case of what might’ve been.

Oban and Team Drogba teammate Yousef Al-Abdulrazzaq set a blistering pace in qualifying to take pole position in Puerto Banús, Marbella, only for a misfire in the semi-final see them fail to make the final.

A fifth place finish was salvaged with Oban winning the place race, but the 18-year-old admits she was frustrated not to have more to show for the weekend.

Oban told the Lennox: “It was a good weekend. We started off really well by getting pole position. But then nothing went right in the semi-finals. We just didn’t have very much luck.

“We ended up fifth after the semi-finals, and then the best position we could get was fifth overall. I won the place race which was great, that ended the weekend on a high. But we were slightly gutted that we didn’t make the final.

“We did as well as we could; things just didn’t go our way in the semi-finals.

“I didn’t get a good start in the semi-final and that meant we were chasing and trying to catch up from the start, which isn’t easy. Then we had a couple of areas where the boost didn’t activate when it said that it had.

“We didn’t find that out until after the race when the guys got the chance to go through the data. That would’ve been the difference to us and would’ve meant we got into the final; but there was nothing we could do about it.

“But we did the best that we could.”

Oban Duncan Team Drogba E1
Oban is feeling more and more confident in her E1 Racebird -Credit:© Shiv Gohil / Spacesuit Media

Team Drogba currently sit fifth in the standings, and Oban believes they are making progress at every round - with her experience racing in the UK proving vital in challenging European waters.

She continued: “As a team we’re used to rough conditions, pole position was great and earned us an extra championship point which could be important by the end of the season.

“My experience racing in the UK definitely comes in handy and helps with the rough conditions. That made it easier to know how to control the boat.

“Water is water at the end of the day and you just have to learn how to drive the different conditions.

“We’ve learned loads. We know we were quick and we were happy with fifth; it keeps us fifth overall in the championship. We’ve shown that we are consistently in the middle of the pack, it’s annoying because we’re not at the top. But we’d rather have that consistency than be all over the place.

“We learnt loads and we know that, going to Monaco which will have similar conditions, then we should know what to expect.”

Oban and teammate Yousef Al-Abdulrazzaq are improving week-by-week.
Oban and teammate Yousef Al-Abdulrazzaq are improving round-by-round. -Credit:© Shiv Gohil / Spacesuit Media

And her sights are now set on securing a first podium in Monaco next month - a venue she has always dreamt of racing at.

Oban added: “Monaco will be our next event, which will be really cool. Everyone wants to win in Monaco. We’ve got a good plan and a good strategy. We’re confident that we’ll get in the final and get on the podium next time.

“Just speaking about Monaco is incredible. It’s always been my dream to race there; whatever happens we’ll get to say that we raced in Monaco.

“It’ll be something special and would be the perfect place to get our first podium. That would be very special.”