TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) lauded the implementation of the 2023 World Championship F1 Powerboat (F1H2O) race at the Muliaraja Napitupulu Balige Harbor, Toba District, North Sumatra Province, although saying it still needs a number of improvements.
“We need to improve several parts in the Lake Toba area, including the infrastructure, and the airport terminal. For the F1 Powerboat itself, we must fix many issues,” he conveyed after attending the event on Sunday.
The series of F1 Powerboat in Lake Toba is the first series of the 2023 single-seat racing boat competition.
“This is a very exciting event and this is the first time I watched this F1 Powerboat,” he continued.
According to him, the event will encourage economic growth around the race area which needs to be balanced with infrastructure improvements.
“I think it needs time and process. We just learned our shortcomings because of this event. It is ok to need improvement. Everything needs process,” he remarked.
In the race, Bartek Marszalek from the Stromoy Racing F1H2O Team, who started the race from the pole position, won the first place. He managed to beat Sami Seliö from Sharjah Team who had to finish in second place.
Meanwhile, Eric Stark from Team Victory took the third place while the defending champion Shaun Torrente from Abu Dhabi Team finished in 10th place.
After the race, Jokowi handed the trophy directly to the winner on the podium.
When asked about his favorite racer, the president mentioned the name Marit Stromoy, the only female racer in the event.
Meanwhile, the first round of the F1H2O which was scheduled for two races ended up with only one race due to strong winds and high waves in Lake Toba.
The second race is scheduled to start at 15:00 local time. Then it was delayed for about 15 minutes. The officers were seen at the race arena and pulling the track dividers which made the track shorter.
Then the racers also had time to start the race with three laps but they began to slow down and withdrew from their race considering the high waves.
The Race Director, Luis Miguel Ribero, then decided to cancel the second race for the safety of the racers.
“The event has been completed and was successful. We have completed qualifying and the first race at 12:00, but we really want to present more races to the Toba people. However, the weather did not allow it, so we canceled the additional race,” the Director of InJourney Dony Oskaria said.