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Mena hopefuls battle for FIA Rally star prize in Abu Dhabi

The results will be used to determine who will join the FIA Rally Star European Final winner, Estonia's Romet Jürgenson, in the inaugural FIA Rally Star Training Season in 2023



(Supplied photo)
(Supplied photo)

By Team KT

Published: Thu 17 Mar 2022, 12:23 AM

The focus of the first FIA Rally Star Training Season switches this weekend to Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi where the Middle East and North African Final winner will be crowned.

From Friday to Sunday, the Emirates Motorsports Organization (EMSO) will host the FIA Rally Star Middle East and North African Final using purpose-built stage layouts located within the state-of-the-art Abu Dhabi Grand Prix venue.

Candidates from nine countries within the region, dreaming of one day competing in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC), will go for a life-changing opportunity by undertaking a series of timed tests and assessments.

The results will be used to determine who will join the FIA Rally Star European Final winner, Estonia’s Romet Jürgenson, in the inaugural FIA Rally Star Training Season in 2023.

EMSO President Khalid Bin Sulayem, said: "We are delighted to host the Middle East and North African FIA Rally Star final. Our mission is to develop motor sport at both national and international level, and rally has always occupied an important place in our country's motor sport heritage.

“Last week some of the world’s best cross-country competitors were celebrated here during the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge, round two of the FIA World Rally-Raid Championship, and now the focus turns to grassroots rallying and the next generation of champions in the discipline.”

In total, 24 candidates will contest the FIA Rally Star Middle East and North African Final, having qualified via Digital or Slalom Challenges held virtually within their country or online, or as a wildcard nominated by a National Sporting Authority (ASN).

Cyprus, Egypt, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar and UAE are all represented in the MENA regional final at Yas Marina Circuit. Tests include timed training runs in the TN5 Cross Car from FIA World Rally Championship driver Thierry Neuville’s LifeLive organisation.

It is the second of six FIA Rally Star Continental Finals in 2022, and follows January’s European Final held at the Estering in Germany. The results of the Continental Finals decide six of the seven FIA Rally Star Team members for 2023, with the seventh member coming from an all-female final to be contested later this year by the best-performing women in each of the six Continental Finals.


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