CC Qatar's Al-Mohannadi snatches fastest time in opening super special at Rally Jeddah
RALLY JEDDAH 2016, November 17-18
For immediate release
Thursday, November 17th, 2016
QATAR’S AL-MOHANNADI SNATCHES FASTEST TIME
IN OPENING SUPER SPECIAL STAGE AT RALLY JEDDAH
· Qatar’s Adel Hussein Abdulla in second; Lebanon’s Khneisser tops T2 times
· Yazeed Al-Rajhi stands down to let Saleh Al-Abdulali enter his car in Rally Jeddah
JEDDAH (Saudi Arabia): Qatar’s Khaled Al-Mohannadi and Saudi navigator Raed Al-Assaf made the perfect start to the third Rally Jeddah by securing the fastest time of 3min 07.7sec in their Buggy through the opening super special stage at Sharm Ubhur on Thursday evening.
Fellow Qatari Adel Hussein Abdullah and his French navigator Sébastien Delaunay held second place and first in T1, while Abu Dhabi-based Lebanese driver Emil Khneisser was third and first in T2 with a time of 3min 24.9sec. Saudi Arabia’s Ahmed Al-Shegawi and Ahmed Mohammed Al-Malki rounded off the top five.
Double event winner Yazeed Al-Rajhi opted to stand down at the 11th hour and give his seat to the talented Saudi rookie Saleh Al-Abdulali, who he had also supported in the recent FIA World Cup events in the T2 category in Morocco and Portugal with his respective co-drivers Michael Orr and Nasser Al-Kuwari. Mohammed Al-Naeem stepped in to partner this fellow Saudi on this occasion. Saleh was the first driver into the stage and clocked a target time of 3min 32.5sec to hold 13th place.
Ahmed Al-Sabban burst on to the rallying scene in a Ford Escort RS Cosworth entered in the Group N category of the FIA Middle East Rally Championship in 1993. The Saudi announced his retirement from the sport at the pre-event press conference that preceded the super special stage. That failed to stop the Ford Raptor driver from clocking a time of 3min 33.8sec to hold 17th overall with UAE navigator Nooh Buhumaid.
Thirty-one cars were eventually given the green light to tackle the super special stage, including Qatar’s QMMF-backed Khalid Al-Mohannadi, the UAE’s Atif Al-Zarouni and Kuwait’s Meshari Al-Thafiri running Buggies entered in the T3 class. The Qatari led after the super special stage following the shock retirement of Zarouni in the stage.
Competition was expected to be intense in the T2 category for Series Production Cross-Country Vehicles as well. Ten of the 31 starters were entered in this category, including defending champion Monif Al-Salmani, Al-Sabban and Khneisser, who won the special stage.
This year’s event is again being supported by Mohamed Yousef Naghi Motors (MYN Motors) – Land Rover - and other companies, such as the MBC Group, Al-Arabia, Al-Madina and Total Oils.
Rally Jeddah is being organised by the Jeddah Government and Abdullah S. Bakhashab Establishment under the supervision of the Saudi Arabian Motor Federation (SAMF) and the patronage of H.R.H. Prince Mishaal Bin Majid Bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud.
Action continues on Friday with what promises to be a demanding 220km selective section through the scenic western Saudi Arabian deserts around Jeddah.
Positions after SS1 (Thursday – unofficial @ 21.18hrs):
1. Khaled Al-Mohannadi (QAT)/Raed Al-Asef (SAU) Buggy T3 3min 07.7sec
2. Adel Hussein Abdulla (QAT)/Sébastien Delaunay (FRA) Nissan Patrol T1 3min 22.2sec
3. Emil Khneisser (LEB)/Aleksei Kuzmich (RUS) Nissan Patrol T2 3min 24.9sec
4. Ahmed Shegawi (SAU)/Arif Yousef Mohammed (UAE) Nissan Patrol T2 3min 25.4sec
5. Ahmed Mohammed Al-Malki (SAU)/Omar Al-Lahim (SAU) Nissan Patrol T2 3min 25.7sec
6. Ibrahim Al-Muhanna (SAU)/Osama Al-Sanad (SAU) Nissan Patrol T1 3min 25.8sec
7. Fares Al-Shammeri (SAU)/Saud Al-Taimi (SAU) Nissan Patrol T1 3min 26.2sec
8. Meshari Al-Thafiri (KWT)/Mubarak Al-Thafiri (KWT) Buggy T3 3min 27.7sec
9. Monef Al-Salmani (SAU)/Ali Hassan (UAE) Nissan Patrol T2 3min 28.0sec
10. Mashna Al-Shammeri (SAU)/Nawaf Al-Eanzi (KWT) Nissan Patrol T1 3min 29.2sec
11. Salman Al-Shammeri (SAU)/Nawaf Al-Onazi (SAU) Toyota T1 3min 29.9sec
12. Ahmed Al-Gashami (SAU)/Waleed Al-Faeim (SAU) Nissan Patrol T1 3min 30.3sec
13. Saleh Al-Abdulali (SAU)/Mohammed Al-Naeem (SAU) Hummer T1 3min 32.5sec
14. Khaled Al-Shammeri (SAU)/Fahad Al-Omar (SAU) Nissan Patrol T2 3min 32.7sec
15. Saeed Al-Shamrani (SAU)/Hassan Al-Sagaf (SAU) Mitsubishi Pajero T1 3min 32.9sec
16. Motab Saud Al-Shammeri (SAU)/Issa Al-Shammeri (SAU) Nissan Patrol T1 3min 33.1sec
17. Ahmed Al-Sabban (SAU)/Nooh Buhumaid (UAE) Ford Raptor T2 3min 33.8sec
18. Yousef Al-Shammeri (SAU)/Mohammed Al-Shammeri (SAU) Nissan Patrol T1 3min 34.1sec
19. Yayha Halwa (SAU)/Fahad Salim (SAU) Nissan Patrol T2 3min 36.3sec
20. Moter Al-Shammeri (SAU)/Hani Al-Shammeri (SAU) Nissan Patrol T1 3min 36.7sec
21. Khaled Al-Sadoon (SAU/Saud Al-Sadoon (SAU) Nissan Patrol T1 3min 37.4sec
22. Rajah Farhan Al-Shammeri (SAU)/Mubarak Al-Shammeri (SAU) Nissan T2 3min 40.4sec
23. Owaid Al-Shammeri (SAU)/Yazeed Al-Shammeri (SAU) Toyota T1 3min 41.1sec
24. Mohammed Al-Tuwaijri (SAU)/Muath Ababtain (SAU) Toyota T1 3min 41.9sec
25. Nayaf Al-Otaibi (SAU)/Nader Al-Daafs (SAU) Nissan Patrol T2 3min 42.9sec
26. Farouk Ghurab (SAU)/Ali Mirza (UAE) Toyota FJ Cruiser T1 3min 43.8sec
27. Mohammed Al-Saeri (SAU)/Ziad Al-Harbi (SAU) Nissan Patrol T2 3min 44.6sec
28. Khaled Al-Shammeri (SAU)/Mohammed Al-Shammeri (SAU) Nissan T1 3min 45.5sec
29. Salem Al-Thafiri (KWT)/Fares Al-Thafiri (KWT) Nissan Patrol T1 3min 47.3sec
30. Abdullah Al-Ramali (SAU)/Marde Al-Shammeri (SAU) Toyota T1 3min 50.1sec
Atif Al-Zarouni (UAE)/Mohammed Eid Al-Shammeri (SAU) Buggy T3 DNF
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English: Neil Perkins, NDP Publicity Services, international media officer, Rally Jeddah 2016, UK mobile: +44 7831 123153, E-mail: email@example.com, Twitter: @LordPerkins, www.ndp-publicity.com (press releases).