x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 21 January 2018

Khalifa Al Mutaiwei eager to get back behind the wheel

The Emirati looks to close down gap in title standings in rally series this weekend in Spain.

Khalifa Al Mutaiwei is in action in Spain this weekend.
Khalifa Al Mutaiwei is in action in Spain this weekend.

Khalifa Al Mutaiwei is ready to get back behind the wheel and close the gap in the FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies this weekend after a three-month lay-off.

The Dubai-based driver and German co-driver Andreas Schulz trail France's Jean-Louis Schlesser by 16 points in the standings going into the Baja Spain, which starts on Friday and runs through until Sunday.

Al Mutaiwei, who drives for the Fazza Rally Team, has not raced since the last round in Qatar in April, and he said: "This event comes from a long absence from competition because of the nature of the calendar.

"I am really looking forward to sitting behind the wheel again."

The Emirati has used his team away from competition to good use, and is confident he is well placed for this weekend's action.

"I have been preparing physically over the last three months," he said.

"I have lost some weight and got myself into even better shape. I have also spent time with Andy [Schulz] and we reviewed our performances on the last three races and looked at the weak points and where we can make improvements.

This year's Baja Spain will be located mainly in the remote Monegros area of Aragon between the National II Highway and the Alcubierre mountains. There will be a punishing 200km stage with a start and finish in the small Aragon municipality of Perdiguera, near Zaragoza, and the action taking place over narrow, dusty tracks in intense summer temperatures.

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