DOHA, Qatar -- The Lamb Weston Columbia Cup was four months ago.
The last H1 Unlimited race was two months ago.
But the circuit's final race of the season got going Wednesday night as 10 unlimiteds started testing for the Oryx Cup UIM World Championships in Doha, Qatar.
There is an 11-hour time difference between Doha and the West Coast, so testing began at 10:30 p.m. Wednesday and ran through 1:30 a.m. today.
Qualifying was set for 2 to 5 a.m. today.
There is a lot riding on this final race.
Driver Steve David and the U-1 Oh Boy! Oberto hold just a 186-point lead over Dave Villwock and the U-96 Spirit of Qatar -- 7,639 points to 7,453. Villwock would tie the late Bill Muncey for most victories ever at 62 if he wins the Doha race.
The other competing teams are the U-5 Formulaboats.com (driver Jeff Bernard); the U-7 Graham Trucking (J. Michael Kelly); the U-17 Miss Red Dot (Kip Brown); the U-21 Go Fast Turn Left Racing (Brian Perkins); the U-22 Matrix Systems (Mike Webster); the U-25 Superior Racing (Dr. Ken Muscatel); the U-37 Miss Peters & May (JW Myers); and the U-100 Leland Unlimited (Greg Hopp).
Heats will start Friday morning, with 1A set for 2 a.m. PST, 1B at 2:30 a.m., 2A at 3:45 a.m. and 2B at 4:15 a.m.
At midnight Saturday, heat 3A will be run, followed by heat 3B at 12:20 a.m. Heat 4A is set for 1:45 a.m., and 4B is at 2 a.m.
The Oryx Cup World Championship will run at 4 a.m. PST Saturday.