MERC Sharqia Rally takes shape in Saudi Arabia's Eastern Province

Sharqia Rally 2010
FIA Middle East Rally Championship, round 4 of 8

For immediate release
Wednesday, April 7th, 2010


·         SAMF carries out improvement work on desert special stages

·         Super special stage to get action underway on April 20th 

RIYADH (Saudi Arabia): The Sharqia Rally, round four of the FIA Middle East Rally Championship, is taking shape in Saudi Arabia’s Eastern Province and will be staged on April 20-22.


The rally is being held under the patronage of HRH Prince Mohamed bin Fahd bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, Governor of the Eastern Province and the Chairman of the Higher Committee for the Sharqia Rally, with full FIA World Council approval.


Clerk of the course Elie Semaan has confirmed that work is being carried out on specific areas of the route through the Half Moon Bay area of Al-Khobar to prevent the sandy surfaces from cutting up when used on more than one occasion to host the three-day rally.


The Saudi Arabian Motor Federation (SAMF) will run the event to a similar format to 2008, with a timed 1.5km super special stage getting the competitive action underway on Tuesday, April 20th.


This will be followed by three desert stages, repeated twice, on Wednesday April 21st and a further three timed tests, repeated twice, on Thursday, April 22nd. All the desert stages are based upon versions of the routes and trails used during the 2008 candidate event in the Al Zabnah, Al Uqair, Qaryah, A'Dannan, Ras Qaryah and Dhallum areas of Al-Khobar.


“We had received around 20 entries before last weekend’s Jordan Rally and we expected the remainder of the regional championship contenders to finalise their entries this week,” said SAMF president Mishaal Al-Sudairy.


“Our team is working hard to get everything ready and we are all looking forward to hosting a round of the FIA Middle East Rally Championship for the first time. We have seen from the results of the first three rounds, where there have been three different winners, that this year’s championship is absolutely wide open and the Sharqia Rally will be very important to all the teams.”


Semaan confirmed that little revisions should make the event compact and concise. “The work on the stages is important and will make the surfaces in the corners more resistant to the passing of the rally cars.


“We have also introduced some chicanes into some of the faster sections, which may well have been too fast on the candidate event in 2008. There will also be remote refuelling this time around and a centralised service area near rally headquarters.”


Further rally and visa information is available from the Saudi Arabian Motor Federation, PO Box 87881, Riyadh 11652, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Tel: + 9661 477 1035, Fax: + 9661 477 1050, E-mail: info@samf.gov.sa or Hamoud Al-Jabry, Technical Advisor, Mobile: +966 560 623436 or + 966 546 677660, E-mail: aljabri@samf.gov.sa or coolmoodz@hotmail.com.



For further media information:

Neil Perkins, 2010 Sharqia Rally International Press Officer, NDP Publicity, Services, Tel: + 44 7831 123153, E-mail: ndppublicity@googlemail.com. www.ndp-publicity.com.

Arabic: Firas Nimri, National Press Officer, Mobile: + 9662 777 282000, E-mail: firas@nimri.com



Date issued: 07/04/2010

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