Mads Østberg og Patrik Barth kjører førstkommende helg Qatar International Rally i en Skoda Fabia RS.
Den norsk/svenske duoen har kjørt dette løpet også tidligere. På bildet er Mads sammen med hjemmehåpet Nasser Saleh Al-Attiyah. I år får de blant annet konkurranse fra Pierre-Louis Loubet fra Frankrike og Mārtiņš Sesks fra Latvia, som også kjører Skoda.
Løpet starter torsdag kveld med første fartsetappe. Totalt skal det kjøres 13 etapper før det hele avsluttes midt på lørdag.
Live resultater vil være tilgjengelig her: Stage results Qatar International Rally 2024 (ewrc-results.com)
Pressemelding fra arrangøren av Qatar Int. Rally:
ØSTBERG, LOUBET AND SESKS TO TAKE ON MERC REGULARS
IN STAR-STUDDED ENTRY FOR QATAR INTERNATIONAL RALLY
- Twenty-two teams and competitors from 17 nations on entry list
LUSAIL (Qatar): WRC stars Mads Østberg, Pierre-Louis Loubet and Mārtiņš Sesks are just three of the names on the impressive entry list for the 2024 Qatar International Rally announced this evening by the Qatar Motor and Motorcycle Federation (QMMF) for next weekend’s opening round of the FIA Middle East Rally Championship (MERC).
Twenty-two teams and competitors from 17 nations will take part in the three-day event through the northern Qatar deserts. The entry list features eight Rally2 cars, 10 competing for MERC 2 honours, one Rally 4 Fiesta and three SSVs competing in the T4 category, which is permitted in the regulations for regional rally championships.
Nasser Saleh Al-Attiyah tops the field in his Autotek Motorsport Volkswagen Polo GTI, as he bids to win his home event for an unprecedented 18th time and a seventh occasion with co-driver Mathieu Baumel.
While the opening round of the regional rally series will offer Loubet and Sesks a first opportunity to compete over open desert on fast gravel surfaces against the region’s top drivers, Østberg will be visiting the event for a third time.
In 2022, the Norwegian and co-driver Ilka Minor led overnight and extended their advantage on the first stage of the second day before a rear puncture cost them the lead before the regroup. A heavy impact in the penultimate stage damaged his Škoda Fabia R2 and fractured a water pipe, which led to retirement within sight of the finish. Last year, he and Patrik Barth shadowed Al-Attiyah to the finish in second place.
Oman’s Abdullah Al-Rawahi and Jordanian co-driver Ata Al-Hmoud shared the regional rally title with Al-Attiyah and Baumel in 2023 and they crew the fifth of the Rally2 cars. Qatar’s Abdulaziz Al-Kuwari and Khalid Al-Suwaidi are entered in a pair of Volkswagens and Nasser Khalifa Al-Atya is entered in a Ford Fiesta MkII. The Qatari trio have called upon the co-driving services of James Fulton, Ross Whittock and Ziad Chehab on this occasion.
In the absence of defending MERC2 champion Meshari Al-Thefiri, Jordan’s Shaker Jweihan, Husam Salim and Issa Abu Jamous and Kuwait’s Jassim Al-Muqahawi top the category in Mitsubishi Lancers.
Competition comes from Lebanon’s Ahmad Khaled, Jordan’s Shadi Shaban and Ihab Al-Shurafa, Oman’s Zakariya Al-Aamri, Qatar’s Mohammed Al-Atteya and Indian driver Fabid Ahmer.
Payyaakkal Panikkaveettil and Musa Sherif are contesting rounds of the UAE National Rally Championship together and will tackle the Qatar event for the first time in a two-wheel drive Ford Fiesta. Qatar’s Khalid Al-Mohannadi and the Italian duo of Stefano Marrini and Filippo Epis round off the entry and will battle it out for T4 class supremacy.
Officials at the QMMF have laid on 13 timed special stages and 201.04km competitive kilometres in a route of 622.53km. Designated spectator points have also been arranged on the stages and will be shared during rally week via the social media platform.
The rally will be held under the chairmanship of QMMF President Abdulrahman Al-Mannai, senior committee member Abdulrazaq Al-Kuwari and the QMMF’s Executive Director Amro Al-Hamad.
2024 Qatar International Rally – entry list:
- Nasser Saleh Al-Attiyah (QAT)/Mathieu Baumel (AND) Volkswagen Polo GTI
- Mārtiņš Sesks (LVA)/Renārs Francis (LVA) Škoda Fabia RS
- Abdullah Al-Rawahi (OMN)/Ata Al-Hmoud (JOR) Škoda Fabia Evo
- Pierre-Louis Loubet (FRA)/Loris Pascaud (FRA) Škoda Fabia RS
- Abdulaziz Al-Kuwari (QAT)/James Fulton (IRL) Volkswagen Polo GTI
- Mads Østberg (NOR)/Patrik Barth (SWE) Škoda Fabia RS
- Khalid Al-Suwaidi (QAT)/Ross Whittock (GBR) Volkswagen Polo GTI
- Nasser Khalifa Al-Atya (QAT)/Ziad Chehab (LEB) Ford Fiesta MkII
- Shaker Jweihan (JOR)/Carlos Hanna (LEB) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X
- Jassim Al-Muqahwi (KWT)/Thamer Al-Mutairi (KWT) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X
- Husam Salim (JOR)/Nancy Al-Majali (JOR) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X
- Ahmad Khaled (LEB)/Samer Sfeir (LEB) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX
- Issa Abu Jamous (JOR)/Saqer Abu Jamous (JOR) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX
- Payyaakkal Panikkaveettil (ARE)/Musa Sherif (IND) Ford Fiesta Rally 4
- Zakariya Al-Aamri (OMN)/Mohammed Al-Mazroui OMN) Subaru WRX-STI
- Shadi Shaban (JOR)/Samer Issa (JOR) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX
- Ihab Al-Shurafa (JOR)/Yousef Juma (JOR) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX
- Mohammed Al-Atteya (QAT)/Savvas Laos (CYP) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X
- Fabid Ahmer (IND)/Milen Cherian (IND) Subaru WRX-STI