CC Al-Rajhi and Gottschalk cruise into comfortable Rally Jeddah lead after first desert stage
RALLY JEDDAH 2015, April 29-May 2
For immediate release
Friday May 1st, 2015
AL-RAJHI AND GOTTSCHALK CRUISE INTO COMFORTABLE
RALLY JEDDAH LEAD AFTER FIRST COMPETITIVE DESERT STAGE
· Second position for Al-Shegawi; motorcycle lead for Abdul-majeed Al-Khulaifi
· Event reaches conclusion on Saturday after stage from Al-Buraikah to Khulais
OBHUR (Saudi Arabia): Saudi Arabian driver Yazeed Al-Rajhi and his German navigator Timo Gottschalk cruised into a comfortable lead of 16min 09sec after the opening selective section of Rally Jeddah between Obhur and Bahra, south-east of Jeddah, in western Saudi Arabia on Friday afternoon.
The Hummer Dbug crew began the day with a two-second lead after winning Thursday evening’s opening Prologue and they were never troubled, as Al-Rajhi steered his powerful Hummer Dbug into a clear advantage over 34 rivals. He finished the day’s desert stage in punishing heat in 1hr 32min 35sec.
Saleh Al-Abdulali and Mohammed Al-Naeem were Al-Rajhi’s closest challengers through the early kilometres in their Nissan Patrol. The Saudi duo had been third on the Prologue stage before stopping with technical problems.
Saudi’s Ahmed Al-Shegawi and French navigator Laurent Lichtleuchter slotted into second overall, Motair Al-Shammeri moved up to third with the second quickest time and the Total-backed Nissan Pick-Up of Issa Al-Dossari and Ali Obaid was fourth.
The Nissan Patrol crew of the Emirati duo of Yayha Al-Helai and Khaled Al-Kendi began the day just two seconds behind Al-Rajhi, but stopped shortly after the stage start with technical issues with their all-important GPS system. Saudi drivers Saeed Al-Mouri and Ibrahim Al-Salman also failed to complete the stage.
Seven competitors were registered for the motorcycle and quad categories and Saudi’s Abdul-majeed Al-Khulaifi (Kawasaki) was a clear winner of the opening stage. The inaugural Rally Jeddah winner finished six minutes in front of Sultan Al-Masood. Prologue winner Ahmed Al-Nasir was fourth, but only six of the seven riders completed the stage.
The rally is being supported by Mohamed Yousef Naghy Motors (MYN Motors) – Land Rover – and has the backing of the higher committee of Rally Jeddah, which incorporates the General Presidency of Youth Welfare, Jeddah Municipality, the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiques in the Mecca region and a branch of the Saudi Red Crescent in Mecca. Support has also been received from Jeddah police and traffic departments and civil defence administration.
The second selection section runs for 222km from Al-Buraikah to Khulais, starts at 10.15hrs on Saturday and precedes the ceremonial finish in Obhur. In a total route of 649.80km, competitors will tackle 345km against the clock.
Positions after SS1 (Friday – unofficial @ 17.00hrs):
1. Yazeed Al-Rajhi (SAU)/Timo Gottschalk (DEU) Hummer Dbug 1hr 35min 17sec
2. Ahmed Shegawi (SAU)/Laurent Lichtleuchter (FRA) Nissan Pick-up 1hr 51min 26sec
3. Motair Al-Shammeri (SAU)/Raid Al-Assaf (SAU) Nissan Pick-Up 1hr 54min 11sec
4. Issa Al-Dossari (SAU)/Ali Obaid (ARE) Nissan Pick-Up 1hr 55min 20sec
5. Moteb Al-Gnoon (SAU)/Sulaiman Al-Sinosi (SAU) Nissan Pick-up 1hr 56min 48sec
6. Emil Kneisser (LEB)/Aleksei Kuzmich (RUS) Nissan Patrol 1hr 56min 55sec
7. Moteb Saud Al-Shammeri (SAU)/Issa Saud Al-Shammeri (SAU) Nissan 1hr 57min 26sec
8. Saeed Al-Shamrani (SAU)/Mohd. Al-Faqeh (SAU) Mitsubishi Pajero 1hr 57min 33sec
9. Saleh Saeed Al-Hoot (SAU)/Anas Al-Ghamdi (SAU) Nissan Patrol 1hr 58min 44sec
10. Ahmed Al-Sabban (SAU)/Adel Hussein Abdullah (QAT) Ford Raptor 1hr 58min 48sec
11. Yahya Halawi (SAU)/Fahad Al-Sufyani (SAU) Nissan Patrol 2hr 01min 31sec
1. Abdul-Majeed Al-Khulaifi (SAU) Kawasaki 450 1hr 19min 07sec
2. Sultan Al-Masood (SAU) Yamaha 450 1hr 25min 20sec
3. Faisal Fahad Al-Sharif (SAU) Ram 503 quad 1hr 52min 31sec
4. Ahmed Al-Nasir (SAU) Honda 450 1hr 49min 41sec
5. Abdulaziz Al-Hathlool (SAU) Honda 450 2hr 26min 44sec
6. Abdulsalem Hamam (SAU) Yamaha 450 2hr 38min 30sec
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For further information:
English: Neil Perkins, NDP Publicity Services, international media officer, Rally Jeddah 2015, UK mobile: +44 7831 123153, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, Twitter: @LordPerkins, www.ndp-publicity.com (press releases).
Arabic: Firas Nimri, Arabic media officer, Mobile: + 962 777 282000, E-mail: email@example.com.