MUSCAT: Eight rally drivers will represent Oman in Qatar International Rally (Munawala) as the first round of Middle East Rally championship, which will be staged in different parts of Qatar for next three days starting from Thursday.
The rally, which consists of 10 stages including super special stage in Al Wakrah will be for total distance of 810 km around Qatar and most of famous names in the region will attend the rally including defending champion Nasser al Attiyah and other Qatari drivers like Abdulaziz al Kuwari.
Oman will be represented by eight drivers most of them in category ‘N’. Hamid al Qasimi with his co-diver Yaqdhan al Rashidi will participate in this rally on EVO 8. Hamid has good experience in local rallies, but this will be his first attempt in Qatar.
Meanwhile, leader of Oman Rally championship Zakaria al Aufi with navigator Ammar al Balushi on EVO 9 will be hoping for their best to end the rally in one of the top positions.
On the other side, Abdullah al Rawahi with experienced Jordanian navigator Atta Hamoud on Subaru N14 are all set for a good show with a mechanical support team. The young driver who showed an improvement in his skills during current local rallies and his last participation in rally of Jordan will try to improve his experience also.
Humaid al Waili with co-driver Ghaith al Qasimi, who is participating for the second time in Qatar after last edition, is looking for better performance this year to finish with positive result on his EV7.
Saif al Harthi, accompanied by navigator Saif al Hinai on Evo 10, had won the last year’s Qatar local rally. Saif will be focused on a podium finish this year.
Young driver Jarrah al Toqi and his assistant Issa al Wardi will look to work hard and put themselves in front at the end of the rally on Saturday. Al Toqi had retired from Qatar rally last year and this year much will depend on the quality of the car and the driver performance for a better result. Zakaria al Amri and co-driver Abdullah al Amri on Subaru N12 are looking forward to a fresh experience in Qatar. Zakariya had to retire from Ras Al Khaimah rally in UAE this month due to the technical problem.
An English driver from Oman will be part of this rally where driver Shaun and his navigator Neth on Subaru 12 will join this rally for first time.
The rally starts on Thursday with a two-kilometre special stage in Al Wakra. On Friday, another two stages in Al Gharbah and Al Ruwais will be attended by the drivers which will be repeated 2 times, followed by three stages on Saturday.
First stage is in Ouridah, where it will be repeated for 2 times, followed by another stage in Al Dhukhairah and the rally will end in Alkhor where the last stage will be conducted.