Text size:

  • Small
  • Normal
  • Large
Jordan's Maruf Abu Samra and his co-driver Malek Hariri drive past Qatar’s Khaled al-Suwaidi and his Italian co-driver Nicola Arena at the Jordan Rally. AFP Photo
HO
Jordan's Maruf Abu Samra and his co-driver Malek Hariri drive past Qatar’s Khaled al-Suwaidi and his Italian co-driver Nicola Arena at the Jordan Rally. AFP Photo

Abu Dhabi Racing pair survive cliff scares at Rally Jordan

Majed Al Shamsi escaped with a hurt shoulder after crashing off a cliff, while Mohammed Al Sahlawi narrowly escaped going over the edge himself.

Two of Abu Dhabi Racing's drivers fell foul of the tough terrain on the opening day of Rally Jordan, with one falling 20 feet off a cliff while another was left dangling over the edge.

While Mohammed Al Sahlawi and his co-driver Allan Harrymangot away with their close encounter as their Citroen DS3 R3 2WD car was pulled away from the edge by spectators and marshals, Majed Al Shamsi and his co-driver John Higgins were not as fortunate.

They slid off at the same point as Al Sahlawi, falling 20 feet and landing on its roof. Al Shamsi was taken to a clinic with his shoulder in a sling for a precautionary check-up, but his Irish co-driver John Higgins said: "We're both fine."

Higgins added: "We came to a loose sharp left with a big drop, and the back wheels went over the edge. The car just fell back over the edge and landed upside down."

Al Sahlawi, whose incident had happened earlier in the day, recalled of his scare: "It was a blind corner and I was worried about it so I was slowing down.

"But everyone had been cutting from the left and there weren't any lines to follow. I stopped when I saw the water but the front right wheel went over the edge and we got stuck.

" We just waited for someone to pull us back. We were scared we might fall off."

Al Sahlawi will take advantage of the super rally regulation to return on today's second leg, but Al Shamsi will not restart because of the damage to the car.

Meanwhile, fellow Abu Dhabi Racing driver Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi remains upbeat on his chances of success at the front going into the second leg.

The Emirati had finished second in the opening two rounds of the Middle East Rally Championship (Merc) and had been looking to try to close the 14-point gap to championship leader Nasser Al Attiyah.

The Abu Dhabi Citroen Total World Rally Team driver had been cautious beforehand on his prospects as he felt he and the team had not yet cracked the set-up for racing on the terrain.

That proved to be the reality as he was unable to keep up with his Qatari rival's pace as Al Attiyah finished the day's eight stages 1 min 11.2 secs ahead of him, with only 8.8 seconds keeping him ahead of Lebanese driver Roger Feghali.

Of his day, Sheikh Khalid said: "On the second stage we were completely over-shooting the corners and had to back off because there was so much loose gravel. Stage three was good but on the next stage the tyres became really slick because of all the wear and the heat, and the car was all over the place. But we're fine, and still in the battle."

It was a good day for Bader Al Jabri, who ended the day in ninth place overall in his Subaru N15, and second position in the Group N production class, while Mohammed Al Mutawaa heads the two-wheel category.

twitter Follow us @SprtNationalUAE

Back to the top

More articles


Editor's Picks

 The seventh edition of the Indian Premier League Twenty20 tournament was kicking off at Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi on Wednesday with plenty of excitement in store. Ravindranath K / The National

In pictures: IPL 7 kicks off in Abu Dhabi

The first match in the seventh edition of the Indian Premier League Twenty20 tournament, between Mumbai Indians and Kolkata Knight Riders, was held at Zayed Cricket Stadium amid plenty of colour.

 Al Rayyan's Yakubu Ayegbeni, left, tries to escape the attention of Jazira's Khamis Ismail. Karim Jaafar / AFP Photo

Late strike qualifies Al Jazira for last 16 of Asian Champions League

A dramatic late goal gave Al Jazira a 3-2 victory at Al Rayyan of Qatar in the Asian Champions League (ACL) on Wednesday night and it was just enough to push Walter Zenga’s side into the knockout stages.

 Zayed Cricket Stadium had not witnessed so electrcic an atmosphere before Wednesday evening. Pawan Singh / The National

Packed house gathers in Abu Dhabi for Indian Premier League opener

In less than half a day, Zayed Cricket Stadium witnessed the force that is Indian cricket, with the sound drowning out the controversies that have dogged the Twenty20 tournament, writes Osman Samiuddin.

 Lionel Messi of Barcelona looks down after being defeated during the Copa del Rey Final between Real Madrid and FC Barcelona at Estadio Mestalla on April 16, 2014 in Valencia, Spain. David Ramos/Getty Images

Plenty of life still in Barcelona, says Gerardo Martino

Barcelona coach maintained his side can still return to their former glories after they were beaten 2-1 by a Gareth Bale-inspired Real Madrid in the Copa del Rey final.

 Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton, left, and Nico Rosberg at the official press conference following qualifying for the Australian Formula One Grand Prix at Albert Park on March 15, 2014 in Melbourne, Australia. Mark Thompson/Getty Images

F1: Toto Wolff says Mercedes have all the right ingredients in place

With Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg at the wheel, Mercedes have so far dominated the first three grands prix going into this weekend’s fourth round in China.

 Sunderland manager Gus Poyet, left, reacts as Manchester City's manager Manuel Pellegrini looks on during their English Premier League football match at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester on April 16, 2014. The match ended in a 2-2 draw. AFP PHOTO/Andrew YATES

Poyet says ‘I am sure that Luis Suarez is going to be happy’ after Sunderland draw at Manchester City

Sunderland’s survival chances remain slim because now they face Chelsea away at the weekend but manager Gus Poyet insists they are not trying to benefit Liverpool or his fellow Uruguayan, Luis Suarez.

Events

To add your event to The National listings, click here

Get the most from The National