Royal Automobile Club of Jordan announces revised rally

Jordan International Rally
2003 FIA Middle East Rally Championship, round 3 of 6
For immediate release
Tuesday, June 24th, 2002


Marlboro to support rally in club's 50th anniversary

AMMAN (Jordan): The Jordan International Rally, the third round of the restructured 2003 FIA Middle East rally championship, will take place on July 24-26th with support from Marlboro. The event was officially launched at a press conference in Amman today (Tuesday).

The Amman-based Royal Automobile Club of Jordan is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year and rally officials have laid on an ambitious and exciting route for the Hashemite Kingdom's premier motorsport event.

~We are delighted to announce this year's rally with an exciting and modified route and format,~ said Hassan Alaeddin, the chairman of the RACJ. ~The event has been at the forefront of regional motorsport for several years and we are confident that this year's rally will be warmly received and our most successful to date.~

~Moreover, this year the Jordan Rally is unique with its new technological applications. For the first time ever in the Middle East the rally will implement a management system which will combine electronic timing at the start and finish of each stage and tracking of the cars on the entire rally route, all coordinated by satellite communications.~

~We are proud to be associated with the Jordan International Rally for the second successive year,~ said Daoud Al-Issa, Sales and Marketing Director, Al Robban Trading, Philip Morris Distributors.

~The Jordan Rally has been one of the strongest rounds of the series for many years, in terms of the high standard of organisation and the quality of the entry. We are sure that our continued support will further strengthen its place in the FIA international motorsport calendar.~

This year's rally - rescheduled from its original May date because of the Iraq War - will use stages in the desert, Mount Nebo and Dead Sea areas for the first time in several years. With the route running near the Dead Sea, Jordan now claims to have the lowest special stage on earth.

Competitive action will kick off on July 24th with a three-kilometre Super-Special stage in Amman, which will be shown live on Jordan television's channel two. Stages in the desert will take place on July 25th and the Dead Sea area will be used on July 26th. There will be one service park per day.

The opening round of the Middle East regional series was held in Qatar at the end of February and local driver Nasser Saleh Al-Attiyah moved into the championship lead in his Subaru Impreza WRC. In Jordan he is likely to face competition from Marlboro Team Saudi Arabia's Abdullah Bakhashab and a host of Jordanian drivers, including Mar'ouf Abu Samra and Faris Bustami.

Motorsport has a long and prestigious history in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and was established by the late King Hussain, himself a keen competitor, in 1953. It retains its royal links to this day, with members of the Royal Family taking an active role in the organisation and administration of international motorsport.

The first Jordan Rally took place in 1964 and the first international status event was organised in 1981. The rally became a round of the FIA regional series two years later and the inaugural championship event was won by Qatar's Saeed Al-Hajri.

His Majesty King Abdullah Bin Al-Hussain (Jordan Champion 1986 and 1988) has regularly taken part in the event over the years and His Highness Prince Faisal Bin Al-Hussain, Chairman of the Motorsport Executive Council, is involved in organising and administering the event's complex safety plan.

The event is based at the Amman Marriott Hotel and has attracted further support from Marlboro, Royal Jordanian airlines, Amman Marriott, Masar/Motorola, Toyota, Mobilecom, Samsung, Minolta, Batelco Jordan and Aramex.

For further information about the 2003 Jordan International Rally, contact the Royal Automobile Club of Jordan, Tel: + 9626 5850626, Fax: + 9626 5818131, E-mail: racj@go.com.jo.



For further media information:
Alberto Chahoud, MS & L, Al Moosa Tower 2, Dubai, UAE
Tel: + 9714 311 7169 , Fax: + 9714 331 4944, E-mail: Alberto.Chahoud@dubai.mslpr.com


Neil Perkins, 2003 Jordan International Rally Press Officer, NDP Publicity Services,
Tel: + (44) 1952 825078, Fax: + (44) 1952 825001
E-mail: NDPPublicity@compuserve.com

Date issued: 24/06/2003

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